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The Suburbanite
  • Shooting death of grizzly investigated in Montana

  • One of Montana’s biggest grizzly bears, a male that stood more than 7 1/2 feet tall and was informally known as “Maximus,” has been found shot to death, and state and federal wildlife officials are investigating why.

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  • One of Montana’s biggest grizzly bears, a male that stood more than 7 1/2 feet tall and was informally known as “Maximus,” has been found shot to death, and state and federal wildlife officials are investigating why.
    The bear didn’t have a history of feeding on livestock or having run-ins with people, and was shot outside of black bear hunting season, said Mike Madel, a grizzly bear management specialist with Montana’s Department of Fish, Wildlife and Parks. Hunters sometimes mistake grizzlies for black bears.
    The bear was discovered Aug. 12 by a rancher near Dupuyer in northwestern Montana. Madel believes the 9 1/2-year-old had been dead for about four weeks.
    “Someone just indiscriminately shot the bear,” he said.
    Madel was trying to snare female grizzlies as part of a population study when he accidentally captured Maximus in 2007. The bear weighed an estimated 765 pounds and was the second-largest male ever captured by bear managers in Montana, Madel said.
    A remote camera snapped a picture of the same bear in the fall of 2008. Madel said it looked as if the bear had grown to more than 800 pounds.
     

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