By Molly Messick
Laramie, Wyo. – An investigation is underway into what happened before a grizzly bear killed a 70-year-old man near Cody last Thursday. The bear had been tranquilized and fitted with a radio collar earlier in the day.
Chuck Schwartz leads the Interagency Grizzly Bear Study Team, the group that trapped and tagged the bear. He says that researchers follow a long list of precautions to keep the public away from work areas, and this fatality was unprecedented. "This is the first time that it's ever happened in association with trapping of grizzly bears," he said. "You know, the study team, for example, has been working and monitoring bears, collaring bears, in the Yellowstone ecosystem for over 33 years."
According to reports, Erwin Evert, the man who was killed, ignored warnings to stay away from the area where researchers were working. The grizzly bear has since been tracked and put down.