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Game and Fish euthanizes black bear in Sheridan


SHERIDAN, Wyo. — Wyoming Game and Fish Department wildlife managers euthanized an approximately 6-year-old female black bear in Sheridan on Friday morning. Personnel had responded to multiple reports of the bear in the neighborhood near Emerson Park on the evening of May 25 and morning of May 26.

At approximately 9:45 a.m. on May 26, personnel located the bear near Edwards Drive, where it went up a tree in a residential yard. Once in the tree, personnel could see the bear had an ear tag, indicating it had been caught and relocated previously. The decision was then made to euthanize it.

Records show the bear was immobilized at a Sheridan residence on Fifth Street and Spaulding on June 9, 2021. At that time, Game and Fish had received multiple reports over several days of the bear accessing residential garbage. It was relocated to a remote area of the northern Bighorns, a distance of 46 air miles.

“Unfortunately, even though it has been two years, the relocation attempt was unsuccessful,” Sheridan Region Wildlife Supervisor Dustin Shorma said. “The bear had traveled a long distance to return to the Sheridan area and showed no aversion to being in a residential setting around people.”

Game and Fish personnel have responded to multiple reports in recent days of a bear accessing attractants in the Woodland Park area. Those reports indicate a bear had killed multiple domestic chickens in a coop, ate chicken feed at a different location and accessed unsecured garbage. Based on the reports, it appeared the bear was moving north along Little Goose Creek. It is possible, but unknown, if the euthanized bear is the same one reported from Woodland Park.

“Both Big and Little Goose creeks flow through Sheridan and are natural corridors for bears to use,” Shorma said. “The vegetation along the creeks provides good cover and forage and so it is expected bears might move through those areas. It is important for residents living near those creeks to keep garbage, livestock feed, bird feeders and other attractants secured. This includes keeping chickens, goats, beehives or other backyard domestic animals protected in a hard-sided building at night and always keeping their feed securely stored.”

Electric fencing can be an effective way to protect domestic livestock such as chickens, goats and pigs, as well as beehives, vegetable gardens and fruit trees.