Belgrade bear cub to be returned to wild By Andy Malby

Not to be an armchair bear manager…but this seems like a death sentance for tis yearling…I guess we will see? I am curious about bears in my area.
A yearling black bear whose mother was illegally shot and killed along Dry Creek Road north of Belgrade two weeks ago was expected to be released back into the wild this week. Meanwhile, authorities continue to pursue leads in the felony poaching case, a Fish, Wildlife and Parks spokesman said.

The bear cub, spotted trying to nurse off its dead mother and later taken into captivity, was to be released, but not in the same area where it was found, game warden Brian Lloyd said.

“That particular area, while it does support a number of bears — it’s kind of a corridor — we’ll probably put this little guy where it’s not going to have a problem finding water and appropriate food.” he said. “At the same time we need to get it away from residential areas.”

The cub, which weighed 20 to 25 pounds when it was captured, was fitted with a unique ear tag to help FWP monitor it, he said.

“If he starts getting into trouble or starts needing help, we can monitor it,” Lloyd said. “People will be able to see that specific ear tag. That will be the only cub marked that specific way.”

Lloyd said in spite of the cub’s young age and small size, FWP bear experts believe it can survive in the wild.

“It’s weaned, so it’s not surviving only on mother’s milk,” he said. “It does have some knowledge, and I think it has what it needs to survive on its own, as long as we’re able to find an ideal spot to put it in.”

Investigators continue to follow leads related to the fatal Aug. 3 shooting of the cub’s mother. No arrests have been made.

“We have no new developments in the case,” he said, “but I am getting a few names coming in about a potential suspect. Unfortunately, most of what I’m getting so far is hearsay. But the leads are starting to come in.”


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