Two bears removed from Helena so far this month

Nolan Lister

Officials have immobilized and removed two bears from Helena city limits so far this month, including a young black bear that was found in the downtown area Sunday. 

Game Warden Sgt. Justin Hawkaluk of the Montana Department of Fish, Wildlife and Parks said the bear removed Sunday was a 2- to 3-year-old female that weighed about 130 to 150 pounds.

Hawkaluk said the bear cozied up in a narrow passage between a fence and a home near the intersection of Raleigh Street and Sixth Avenue mid-day.

“It must have been comfortable there,” he said. “It didn’t seem at all concerned by our presence.”

Hawkaluk said he and another game warden were outside of town when they heard the radio traffic about a bear in the city.

He said they were able to immobilize the bear with a dart gun within about five minutes. He said they were aided by a Helena Police Department animal control officer and two patrol officers who initially responded.

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The bear was relocated to the Granite Butte area.

“We have had very good success with bears being relocated to that area,” Hawkaluk said.

He said

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