A man shot a grizzly bear on his front porch near West Yellowstone last weekend after it broke into his garage to get a hanging elk carcass. Andrea Jones, a spokeswoman for Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks, said the incident happened on Sunday evening south of U.S. Highway 287 and near the Grayling Arm of Hebgen Lake. She said an agency investigation determined that the man shot the bear in self-defense. “We have a pretty clear case of self-defense here,” Jones said. Jones said the bear was a sow grizzly likely more than 15 years old. It broke through a metal door to get into a garage where an elk carcass was hanging. The homeowner heard noise coming from the garage. He grabbed a gun and went onto the front porch to see what was going on. “There was a bear not 10 paces from him on his porch,” Jones said. Jones said the man told FWP investigators that the bear turned and began to approach him. He shot the bear dead. Jones said investigators saw bloody paw prints around the property, including within 10 feet of the front door. They also saw paw prints on the home’s living room window. The bear had been trapped by Interagency Grizzly Bear Study Team researchers once before, but it didn’t have a history of run-ins with people. Jones said it appeared that the garage was secured properly and that there was nothing the homeowner could have done differently. She added that it’s important for people to recognize that both grizzly and black bears are still wandering around and trying to fatten up for the winter. The Interagency Grizzly Bear Study Team has counted a total of 37 known bear deaths this year, including both human-caused and natural deaths. An adult male was killed by bear managers earlier this month in the Grayling Creek area of southwestern Montana after it had broken into multiple buildings and eaten food.
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