June 2020

Montana map with region 2

UPDATES: June 25, 2020

BLACK BEAR

Anaconda: There have been a handful of reports of black bears getting into garbage and bird feeders. Please bring in bird feeders and contain garbage in a bear-resistant manner until pickup or until you can take it to the dump.

Bitterroot: FWP continues to field a number of calls from the Bitterroot about bears getting into garbage. Contain your garbage in a bear-resistant manner until the morning of pickup and/or contact your local waste hauler about getting a bear-resistant container for garbage. FWP also worked with Wildlife Services, Wind River Bear Institute and Defenders of Wildlife to install a bear-resistant electric fence around a sheep night pen.

Clinton: Black bears have been getting into garbage and bird feeders. Bring in bird feeders.

East Missoula: FWP has fielded multiple reports of black bears getting bird feeders. Bring in bird feeders.

Evaro: Wildlife Services euthanized a black bear after it killed goats in the area. Electric fence can be an effective deterrent for keeping bears out of areas containing small livestock.

Grant Creek: FWP continues to get reports of black bears in the area and is investigating a possible black bear poaching incident. Bring in bird feeders and contain garbage in a bear-resistant manner.

Kim Williams Trail: We have had multiple reports of people seeing a black bear on or near the Kim Williams trail. This bear will likely start feeding on serviceberry as it ripens in the area. Remember to always carry bear spray and know how to use it when recreating on the trails around Missoula.

Lolo Creek: There have been a handful of incidents of black bears getting into garbage and bird feeders in the Mill Creek area. Bring in bird feeders and contain garbage in a bear-resistant manner until the morning of pickup.  

Lower Clark Fork: There have been reports of bears getting into garbage and bird feeders.

Rattlesnake: Bear activity has increased in the Rattlesnake neighborhoods. A female with cubs has been seen in the Lincoln Hills area and at least 3 other bears are active in the area. In the recreation area there continue to be a lot of reports of people seeing bears, including a female with cubs of the year. The serviceberry looks good this year and as that ripens over the next couple weeks people should expect bears to move into the area to access this important natural food resource. Bring in bird feeders and contain garbage in a bear-resistant manner until the morning of pickup. Close garage doors even when you are home.

West Ninemile: A black bear killed chickens. Electric fencing is an effective deterrent for keeping bears out of chicken coops.

Seeley Lake: Black bears continue to get into garbage and bird feeders. Do not put out garbage until the morning of pickup or until you can take it to the dump. Bring in bird feeders. By allowing bears to get into your garbage and bird feeders you are teaching them that these are available food resources and they will continue to seek them out. By securing attractants you improve conditions for both bears and people.

GRIZZLY BEAR

Big Sky Lake near Seeley: A grizzly bear has been reported close to home sites that have multiple attractants. FWP is working to address the issue of numerous attractants out and available to bears at this location.

Blackfoot/Clearwater: People continue to report grizzly bear activity. Please contain attractants in a bear-resistant manner. Carry and know how to use bear spray.

MOUNTAIN LION

Bitterroot: Mountain lions have been observed near irrigated agricultural fields where there are congregations of deer.

Missoula urban/wildland interface: There were several reports of mountain lion activity around the Missoula interface. Those reports ended up being house cats and fox. Mountain lions do occasionally move through these areas.


June 11, 2020

BLACK BEAR

Anaconda/Georgetown: There were reports of black bears getting into garbage. FWP is monitoring.

Bitterroot: FWP continues to get reports of black bears getting into garbage and pulling down bird feeders. This is a chronic issue in the Bitterroot. Please do not put garbage out until the morning of pickup. Bring in bird feeders.

Clinton and Donovan: There have been multiple reports of black bears getting into uncontained garbage and there was one report of a possible grizzly bear. People are leaving garbage out all week. Please contain garbage in a sturdy shed or building. FWP has worked with several property managers to have bear-resistant garbage cans provided to residents.

East Missoula: There have been several reports of three small black bear yearlings near residential areas. FWP is monitoring the situation.

Grant Creek: FWP has continued to get reports of black bears in Upper Grant Creek. Animal Control patrolled lower Grant Creek (within city limits) and issued tickets related to the garbage ordinance. Bring in bird feeders and do not put garbage out before the morning of pickup.

Lolo Creek: There have been a couple of reports of black bears getting into uncontained garbage and chicken coops.

Ninemile: There was a report of a possible grizzly bear a home in the Ninemile. FWP is monitoring. There has been multiple report of black bears getting into garbage

Rattlesnake: There has been increasing reports of black bears in the Rattlesnake. Multiple reports have been about a small, thin, yearling male black bear. This bear was frequenting areas near homes and pulled down multiple bird feeders. He was captured by FWP and relocated on June 10th. Bring in bird feeders. Bears have also been observed on Mount Jumbo. Within the Rattlesnake Recreation Area, hikers and bikers have reported black bear activity on or near the trails. Multiple reports include a female black bear with cubs of the year. Bears in the area are likely very used to seeing people so they may not run off if you come across one. Carry bear spray on your person and know how to use it. It’s important to be aware of your surroundings and headphones are not recommended. Dogs off leash can aggravate bears, harass wildlife and may bring bears back to you and therefore leashing is recommended. Please visit the Lolo National Forest-Rattlesnake Recreation Area website and/or check the boards at the trailhead for more information. Dogs are required to be on leash in sections of the Rattlesnake and should be under voice control where a leash is not required.

Seeley Lake: There continue to be multiple reports of black bears getting into garbage in the town of Seeley Lake. This is a chronic issue resulting in bears used to getting into garbage in town now visiting campgrounds. FWP has been working closely with the Forest Service and has had to remove and euthanize two subadult black bears. These black bears were frequenting the campgrounds, exhibiting severe food conditioned behavior and had started to approach people. Contain all garbage in a bear-resistant manner until the morning or pickup or until you can take the garbage to the dump. If you do not have a way to store garbage inside or in sturdy shed with a secure door, electric fencing can be an effective way to create a space that you can have attractants like chickens, a garbage can, etc. but keep bears out.

GRIZZLY BEAR

Anaconda: A grizzly bear was seen east of Anaconda in Boulder Range.

Blackfoot/Clearwater: There have been reports of people seeing grizzly bear tracks and some grizzly bear sightings.

Deerlodge Valley: A grizzly bear was seen attempting to cross I-90 (northside of the highway).

Seeley – Woodworth Road Area: A possible grizzly bear has been seen near homes. FWP is monitoring the situation and neighborhoods have been alerted.

MOUNTAIN LION

There have been multiple reports of people seeing mountain lions, especially in areas of irrigated fields where there are a deer.  


June 4, 2020

Region-wide: Please take bird feeders down April 1 – December 1. This includes hummingbird feeders. Birdseed has a lot of calories so it is very attractive to bears. There have been numerous reports of bears taking down bird feeders and exploring porches for bird feeders in Region 2 this year. Hanging them during the day does not prevent bears from seeking them out. In some areas, bears are now actively on porches during the day because they continue to receive a “food reward”. Put in a bird bath or birdhouse instead.

BLACK BEAR

Anaconda: A black bear broke into a garage. FWP set up critter gitters, a sound scaring device, and assisted with garbage containment.

Big Flat: Residents have reported seeing black bear activity near homes. No conflicts have been reported. Please secure attractants in a bear-resistant manner.

Bitterroot: Garbage continues to be the primary conflict source in the Bitterroot. There have been multiple reports of black bears getting into garbage and bird feeders. Containing attractants is key to reducing conflicts with bears. Calling MFWP to remove a bear but still leaving attractants available around your home does not solve conflicts. Other bears will continue to seek out such “food rewards”. Contact your local waste hauler about options for securing your garbage in a bear-resistant manner. 

  • Bass Creek: This area sees frequent wildlife activity, including bears, largely because it is still has habitat that wildlife can use to move from the west to the river. FWP is working with residents in this area to get a neighborhood network going and to increase awareness about the relevance of this area to wildlife.
  • Florence: A black bear killed multiple sheep in the Florence area. MFWP is working with landowner on an electric fence and Wildlife Services is attempting to trap this bear. Electric fencing can be an effective tool to secure attractants and prevent conflicts with bears.

Grant Creek: Bird feeders have been a major attractant in Grant Creek this year and bears continue to seek them out as well as uncontained garbage. Multiple bears are still very active in Grant Creek. MFWP did trap a 200lb brown-phase black bear on June 2. This bear was relocated because it was not the bear that FWP was attempting to trap. Contain garbage in a bear-resistant manner and take bird feeders down until December 1.

Pattee Canyon: Residents have reported seeing black bear activity near homes. No conflicts have been reported. Please secure attractants in a bear-resistant manner.

Rattlesnake: There are several black bears active in the Rattlesnake. Please secure attractants in a bear-resistant manner.

Seeley Lake: Two subadult, brown-phase black bears have been reported on porches, getting into garbage and approaching people. FWP captured one of the subadult black bears in Big Larch campground and euthanized that bear yesterday morning. Multiple bears are still active in Seeley. Contain garbage in a bear-resistant manner until the morning of pickup or until you can take the garbage to the dump.  

South Hills: Residents have reported seeing black bear activity near homes. No conflicts have been reported. Please secure attractants in a bear-resistant manner.