(Canadian Press)

One of three rescued bear cubs in Banff likely eaten by grizzly

Parks Canada says they found the one-year-old bear’s carcass in early September after her GPS collar was stationary for 24 hours

One of three black bear cubs abandoned in a washroom and returned to the wild in Banff National Park this summer has apparently been eaten by a grizzly bear.

Parks Canada says conservation officers found the one-year-old bear’s carcass in early September after her GPS collar went into mortality mode on Aug. 28. It had been stationary for 24 hours.

“It was in a large berry patch,” said Bill Hunt, manager of resource conservation with Banff National Park. “She had run into another bear. She had been mostly consumed by the other bear and we found a large puncture wound in her skull.

“Whether that was a grizzly or a large black bear, we can’t know for sure. It’s consistent with a grizzly bear encounter.”

The three black bears were found in the bathroom along the Trans-Canada Highway in April 2017 and sent to the Aspen Valley Wildlife Sanctuary in Ontario. Each bear has grown to about 50 kilograms from the three kilograms they weighed when they first went to the wildlife sanctuary.

The three sisters were released together in the Banff backcountry in mid-July and started travelling independently almost immediately.

Hunt said the bear that was found dead was doing well prior to its encounter in the berry patch.

“She had found the right food in the right place,” he said. “She was in the Clearwater area and had moved through some areas where there would have been camps and other activity in the area and hadn’t gotten into any trouble so that was encouraging.”

Officials are still monitoring the other two bears through their GPS collars and they appear to be moving around within the national park.

Hunt said it’s not uncommon for bears to be eaten by other bears.

“Bears work hard to avoid each other but, unless it’s breeding season, it’s usually not a positive encounter when bears run into other bears,” he said. “This happens in the wild. It’s a natural process.”

In November 2015, a large male grizzly bear was suspected of eating a smaller grizzly bear after officials found the skull.

In August 2013, hikers came across another big grizzly bear feeding on a carcass just off a hiking trail near the Banff townsite. Wildlife officials later determined a small black bear had been killed.

The Canadian Press

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Alberta RCMP remind citizens to create a nightly #9PMRoutine

‘We are using #9PMRoutine because of its popularity across the globe.’

Alberta discussing early Stage 2 economic relaunch

Nineteen new COVID-19 cases confirmed by government Wednesday

PHOTOS: Heartland Youth Centre has named the winners in this year’s fundraising raffle

Nan Gardner has won the grand prize of the 2020 GMC Terrain

Israeli, Chinese policies ‘concern’ Canada, undermine freedom, says Trudeau

Israeli, Chinese policies ‘concern’ Canada, undermine freedom, says Trudeau

House of Commons can manage virtual voting securely if MPs want it, Speaker says

House of Commons can manage virtual voting securely if MPs want it, Speaker says

Hydroxychloroquine does not prevent COVID after exposure to the virus: study

Hydroxychloroquine does not prevent COVID after exposure to the virus: study

Nunavut RCMP to consider body cameras as tension between police, Inuit grows

Nunavut RCMP to consider body cameras as tension between police, Inuit grows

Stockwell Day steps down from several roles after comments about racism

Stockwell Day steps down from several roles after comments about racism

Trudeau to join global COVID-19 vaccine fundraiser amid calls for fair access

Trudeau to join global COVID-19 vaccine fundraiser amid calls for fair access

Joint inquiry or review of mass killing taking shape, N.S. justice minister says

Joint inquiry or review of mass killing taking shape, N.S. justice minister says

Greens likely to hold virtual leadership convention due to pandemic: May

Greens likely to hold virtual leadership convention due to pandemic: May

Meng hearing schedule to expand; lawyers ask for ‘referee’ in case

Meng hearing schedule to expand; lawyers ask for ‘referee’ in case

As some protesters in D.C. gird for battle, others provide first aid, supplies

As some protesters in D.C. gird for battle, others provide first aid, supplies

Most Read