The Mystery of GB799: Hundreds, if not thousands of fortunate visitors were granted with the presence of a very large and blonde colored female with 3 cubs-of-the-year (COY) last May (2016) in Hayden Valley, Yellowstone National Park (image).
This bear, GB799, was seen frequently between Trout Creek and Mary Mountain Trail on the west side of Hayden Valley. She was notorious for roaming the sage flats; in 2016 her cubs were in tow, and some of the most playful and entertaining bears to watch.
GB799 was first captured on October 15, 2014 at Trout Creek in Yellowstone National Park. She was fitted with a radio collar; that year she was observed with 2 yearlings. In 2015, GB799 was observed with no young. During 2016, GB799 was captured again, near Trout Creek in Hayden Valley. During this capture, 1 of her 3 COY was killed while she was in the culvert trap (2016 IGBST Annual Report).
GB799 would have emerged this spring from the den with two yearlings. However, her collar was on mort, which is a signal given off after inactivity to signify mortality. GB799 was found dead early this spring; neither of her two remaining cubs were with her, and they never located during 2017. She was 14 years old this year. Her death remains a mystery; she died of natural causes but the specific mechanism surrounding her death remains unknown.
Tyler Brasington is a native born and raised Pennsylvanian, yet proud current Wisconsin resident. He graduated from the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater with a B.S. in Environmental Science. Currently, Tyler is pursuing his masters in Natural Resources with the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point. He has worked in Yellowstone National Park under the guidance and supervision of Dr. George Clokey and Dr. Jim Halfpenny.
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The Greater Yellowstone Grizzly Project
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