Aversive Conditioning of Backcountry Grizzly to Begin Friday
Contact: Matt Graves, 406-888-7942
WEST GLACIER, MONT. – Glacier National Park officials report that the aversive conditioning of the female grizzly in the Oldman and Morning Star area will occur August 11-21. The conditioning was postponed one week due to the Red Eagle Fire. Officials also note that area trails will be closed during this two-week period. The trail closures are in addition to previously announced closures of Oldman and Morning Star Campgrounds.
The closed trail portions are: the Pitamakan Pass Trail from the Dry Fork junction to the junction with Cut Bank Pass; and the Cut Bank Valley Trail from the Atlantic Creek junction to Pitamakan Pass. Dawson Pass to Pitamakan Overlook and the Cut Bank Pass will remain available to hikers.
Trail closures throughout the program will ensure that the aversive conditioning is conducted in a controlled environment, without interrupting or altering the management actions due to hiker activity. It will also allow the bear’s response to be carefully monitored.
This aversive conditioning will be conducted by park rangers and staff from the Wind River Bear Institute (WRBI). The two-week treatment program is being paid for by a grant from The Glacier Fund.
Aversive conditioning is the application of negative reinforcement aimed at behavior modification. Officials hope that through a continued aversive conditioning effort, this individual bear will be able to remain in the ecosystem.
Did You Know?
Lake McDonald is the largest lake in the park with a length of 10 miles and a depth of 472 feet. The glacier that carved the Lake McDonald valley is estimated to have been around 2,200 feet thick.