Bear 148 hunter knew bear was wearing tracking collar before kill – Calgary

The hunter that killed a notorious female grizzly bear in B.C. after the bear wandered into the province from Alberta knew the animal was wearing a research tracking collar but shot it anyway.

The Alberta government had moved the grizzly, known as Bear 148, in July from its home range in a popular developed area west of Calgary to a remote park north of Jasper to protect public safety.

The grizzly, which is a threatened species in Alberta, hadn’t hurt anyone but had gotten too close to people too many times around the Canmore and Banff area.

The B.C. Conservation Officer Service said the bear was shot on Sunday in the McBride region by a non-resident hunter who was with a guide.

“The guide and hunter knew that the bear was collared prior to harvest,” the service said in an email. “This was a legal hunt and no investigation is underway.”

No information on the hunter was given.

In August, the B.C. government announced it would end the grizzly bear trophy hunt in the province as of Nov. 30. Grizzly hunting in Alberta was outlawed in 2005. (Alex Taylor/Parks Canada)

Last month, B.C. announced it would end the grizzly bear trophy hunt as of Nov. 30, saying it is inconsistent with the values of most British Columbians.

Brett Boukall, a senior wildlife biologist with Alberta Environment, said data from Bear 148’s tracking collar suggests the grizzly had not been a problem before it was killed.

“It was kind of being the perfect bear doing bear things away from people,” he said. “To my knowledge, there had been no reports of any conflicts.”

After the bear was relocated in July, it wandered around its new range in the northern Alberta wilderness.

Bear crossed into B.C. Friday

The tracking data suggests it crossed into B.C. on Friday after a storm dumped snow in the region, perhaps making it more difficult for it to find food, Boukall said. It was wandering toward the Fraser River when it was shot.

“Myself and my colleagues felt disappointed that…

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