Update: The man killed in the bear attack has now been identified as 38-year-old mountain biker named Brad Treat. Treat, who also happens to be a law-enforcement officer with the U.S. Forest Service, was riding his bike along with a friend when the bear attacked. The bear was reportedly startled by the duo and knocked Treat off his bike. The other biker was unable to rescue Treat and ran to get help. Treat’s body was later found, close to the area where the attack took place.
— Julia Jacobo (@JuliaTheWriter) June 30, 2016
Flathead County Sheriff Chuck Curry issued a statement following the death of a fellow officer.
“Brad was an integral member of our area law enforcement team and a friend to us all,” Curry said.
Paul Jorgenson, Treat’s coach in high school added that Treat was a standout distance runner in high school,
“He was a really good runner but he was also a kind-hearted person who cared about people,” Jorgenson added.
A bear attack has led to the death of one person in Flathead National Forest, outside Glacier National Park in Montana. According to initial reports, a grizzly bear was behind the fatal attack. Details regarding the incident are sketchy at this point. The identity of the person who has been killed is also unclear. Initial reports, however, add that the victim was an adult male.
According to Flathead County Sheriff Chuck Curry, the bear attack happened on Wednesday afternoon about a mile from the West Glacier KOA campground. He added that the bear attack did not occur inside the national park.
@ABC Man encroaches on Bear’s territory, man gets killed for intruding but it’s the Bear’s fault?
— MalibuMom (@Malibu_mom62) June 30, 2016
Local news portal Flathead Beacon reports that the victim was riding a bicycle near Halfmoon Flats Road when the grizzly bear attacked him. This location is near the U.S. Highway 2 and is located less than four miles south of the West Entrance to Glacier National Park. Officials are currently looking for the bear that is believed to be behind the attack. The sheriff has in the meantime appealed to people to stay away from the area where the attack happened.
Bear attacks are rare in this region. In fact, the last fatal grizzly attack in the area was reported more than 15 years ago — in 2001. Back then, an elk hunter was killed by a grizzly bear near Blackfoot Clearwater Game Range. In the Glacier National Park too, grizzly bear attacks are very rare. In fact, since the creation of the park in the year 1910, there have only been 10 fatal bear attacks — with the last one reported in May 1998. Back then, a 26-year-old man who was hiking in the region was attacked and killed by a grizzly bear. However, there have been bear attacks in other parts of the state, especially the Yellowstone region of Montana, with more than six deaths reported since the year 2010.
An estimated 1,000 grizzly bears live in Northwest Montana, making it the largest grizzly bear population in the lower 48 states.
Also called the North American brown bear, grizzly bears are among the largest species of bear on the planet. According to a study conducted on these bears, the average weight for an inland male grizzly was around 272 kilograms (600 lb) while the same for a coastal male was around 408 kilograms (900 lb). Female bears tend to be smaller in size with the average weights ranging between 136 kilograms (300 lb) and 227 kilograms (500 lb) for inland and coastal bears, respectively. There have been larger bears with one specimen reportedly weighing more than 680 kilograms (1,500 lb). Grizzly bears are also huge animals with a large male usually reaching 9.8 feet tall (3 meters)
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