Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks plans to trap a young adult female grizzly bear in the North Fork or Flathead River area this year to release into the Cabinet Mountains, said the agency’s bear management specialist, Kim Annis.
In order to meet the criteria, the potential bear must not have dependent cubs or a history of human conflicts.
The proposed transplant is part of an ongoing program to increase the Cabinet-Yaak grizzly population. An estimated 40 grizzlies inhabit the ecosystem, which encompasses more than 2,500 square miles in the Yaak River drainage and Cabinet Mountains.
The success of the plan will depend on whether a bear with the right specifications can be found, Annis said. In 2007, for example, FWP did not release any grizzlies into the Cabinets because the agency was unable to trap one that met its requirements. Two grizzlies were transplanted into the Cabinets in 2008 and one was released there last year.