BOZEMAN — Yellowstone National Park reported on Tuesday its first grizzly bear sighting of 2022, on Monday, March 7.
Park officials said in a news release a pilot supporting Yellowstone National Park wildlife research observed the adult grizzly walking in a meadow in the west-central part of the park on Monday.
The first grizzly sighting of 2021 was on March 13, according to the release.
Male grizzlies emerge first from hibernation in early March, while females with cubs emerge in April and early May, the release stated. Bears coming out of hibernation are looking for food and can react aggressively to encounters with people when feeding on carcasses.
Yellowstone officials remind the public that all of the park is bear country and provided the following guidelines:
- Prepare for a bear encounter [nps.gov].
- Carry bear spray [nps.gov], know how to use it, and make sure it’s accessible.
- Stay alert.
- Hike or ski in groups of three or more, stay on maintained trails, and make noise. Avoid hiking at dusk, dawn, or at night.
- Do not run if you encounter a bear.
- Stay 100 yards (91 m) away from black and grizzly bears. Approaching bears within 100 yards is prohibited. Use binoculars, a telescope, or telephoto lens to get a closer look.
- Store food, garbage, barbecue grills, and other attractants in hard-sided vehicles or bear-proof food storage boxes.
- Report bear sightings and encounters to a park ranger immediately.
- Learn more about bear safety [nps.gov]