Hazing Efforts Lead to Death of Black Bear in Glacier National Park

Efforts to convince a black bear in Glacier National Park that it shouldn't hang out around people have led to the bear's death, according to park officials.

The bear died when a "cracker shell," which is fired from a shotgun and is designed to create a loud noise when it explodes, actually entered the bear's body before exploding.

The hazing effort was conducted near St. Mary on the eastern side of the park during the evening of May 22. The dead bear was found the following day.

Glacier officials plan to conduct a Board of Review to produce recommendations for management actions and/or for improving strategies and tactics.

The hazing of bears using cracker rounds is one of several tools used by park rangers as aversive conditioning techniques that are employed in accordance with Glacier National Park’s Bear Management Plan and Guidelines.

Comments

I we think that they are the "ANIMALS"

I realise this was certainly an accident as I have had contact with the Glacier NP rangers while extensively exploring this park and I know that their #1 commitment is to the wildlife and resources of the park. However somebody has to look at these "cracker rounds" to determine why its design could actually penetrate like that. The other thing that needs to be looked at is how it was used...aimed at close range at the bear? A shot that just got away from the intended aim point? It is a shame.

These poor animals are being killed in the very place they are supposed to be protected...very saddening.

The "hazing" rounds come in a package of five and must be loaded into the shotgun in proper order. The "cracker" (3) rounds first followed by the rubber pellet (2) rounds. The hazing starts with the bear being
shot in the rump with the rubber pellets. Once the bear is on the run, the "cracker" rounds are fired behind and above the bear. The loud noise backs up the pellets shots to condition the bear to not return to the area. My guess is that the weapon was not properly loaded. But it's only an educated guess.