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677-pound grizzly attacks man hunting with wife at Montana creek, wildlife officials say

Bear climbs two utility poles. (AZ Game & Fish Dept/Twitter)

A 677-pound grizzly came charging out of thick brush and attacked a bird hunter in Montana, wildlife officials said.

The 51-year-old man from Washington and his wife were hunting for upland game birds in a creek bottom in Teton County near Choteau on Tuesday, Oct. 11, the Montana Department of Fish, Wildlife and Parks said in a news release.

Then a bear charged out of the brush and attacked the hunter. To stop the attack, the hunter fired his shotgun at the bear, wounding it, officials said.

The couple and their dogs left the area and reported the attack to authorities.

The man suffered non-life-threatening injuries from the bear, officials said.

Bear specialists, game wardens and Teton County deputies began searching the area for the bear and euthanized it, the release says.

The male bear had not been handled by bear managers before, and it didn’t have a known history of causing human conflict, officials said.

Choteau is about 100 miles north of Helena, Montana.

Bear Encounter Tips

What to do in a surprise bear encounter, according to wildlife officials:

  • Carry bear spray and be ready to use it.
  • Watch for bear signs and have caution around creeks and spots with “limited visibility.”
  • Hunt in a group, and make noise to alert bears you are around.
  • Be mindful when making distinct noises and smells, as bears can be attracted to elk calls and cover scents.
  • Remove meat from kill site as soon as possible.
  • Hang meat at least 10 feet from the ground and 150 yards from a gut pile if you need to leave it in the field.
  • Use binoculars to see if the left meat has been touched or disturbed. If a bear is in the area, leave and call wildlife officials.


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