First Selkirk Grizzly Ever Radio-collared

Attached is scanned photo of the first grizzly bear ever trapped and radio-collared in the Selkirk Ecosystem. This bear was ID #863 and nicknamed Sly. She was captured by Jon Almack, in 1983, which was then a graduate student. The nickname for this bear, Sly, was short for Jon’s wife Sylvia. Over this bear life she wore 4 different radio-collars over a 10-year period. She was considered a matriarch of the ecosystem. She was killed by an elk hunter from Bellingham, in October 1993. At that time she had 2 cubs, young of the year with her. It is believed that both cubs died shortly thereafter from exposure, although it never could be confirmed. The Elk hunter who shot her was taken to federal court and later fined 21k, 5k for each bear and 6k for I believe for not reporting the death. This is the first grizzly bear I meet in the Selkirk’s in 1990 at Bismark Meadows while investigating her food habitats with Rob Weligus who at that time was a graduate student. I believe the picture shows her in a leg-hold trap, as the researchers were approaching her.

At unverified story about this bear is that because she had been captured and radio-collared repeatedly, that during her last capture she just laid down and stretched out her neck waiting for the new radio-collar. Although, not having been there, I am sure this is just a story. She had been radio-collared 4 times during her lifetime. She produced 7 cubs in her life, most of which were then later killed north of the border, either illegally or as part of sanitation related incidents and were later involved in management removals.

One thought on “First Selkirk Grizzly Ever Radio-collared

  1. I had the priviledge of viewing a pair of Grizzly bears on flower dome, while hiking from lk. chelan back to Index , where I was living at the time. They were in a meadow with a pair of black bears about 3 or 4 hundred yards away, for good a comparison. Made the distinct difference in size obvious.
    I just stumbled upon your sight here, and love it, thanks so much for sharing with us.

    Richard Poole

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