Hunters spotted two grizzly bears in Wekweeti just before noon on Tuesday, December 4th.
The men — Gilbert, Brian, and B.J. — were setting traps about 10 kilometres from town when they spotted a large grizzly on the lake and a smaller one two kilometres ahead, near a cabin. They found blood and tracks in the snow, and they believe the two bears could’ve been fighting earlier.
Gilbert’s brother, Bobby Boline, was initially told that only one large bear was spotted, but he has confirmed that there were, in fact, two grizzly bear sightings.
Bobby told CKLB that the large bear was on the lake, heading towards town: “My brother said that it was a pretty big grizzly bear. It looked pretty healthy from the pictures… It was heading towards town. We want to get everybody aware that the grizzly is out of its den and looking for its meal.”
When the men saw the large bear, they took photos of it and took off when it started walking towards town, according to Bobby.
Robert Mulders, the carnivore biologist for Environment and Natural Resource’s (ENR) Wildlife Division, says that grizzly bears are typically in their dens in late Fall, but it’s not totally unheard of for them to be roaming around searching for a meal.
Mulders told CKLB: “Typically grizzly bears have been denned up in late October early November. But there is year-to-year variation, and sometimes bears might still be wandering in the late Fall… We have had milder weather, and so it is possible that the bears are still finding food or you may have some bears that are nutritionally stressed, maybe haven’t put on as much weight. They might be motivated to stay out longer and travel further out looking for sources of food to put on weight before they den up.”