Elk NetworkIdaho Archery Hunters Kill Grizzly in Self-Defense

General | September 8, 2023

Below is a news release from the Idaho Department of Fish and Game.

On the evening of Sept. 1, 2023, two archery hunters shot and killed a large adult male grizzly bear in self-defense while hunting for elk west of Island Park Reservoir in southeast Idaho.

The hunters were moving through thick brush when a large grizzly charged directly towards them from a short distance away. Both hunters were able to discharge their sidearms, killing the bear before it made contact with them. No injuries to the individuals involved were reported.

The hunters immediately called into the Fremont County dispatch to report the incident. Idaho Department of Fish and Game responded and conducted a thorough investigation. It was determined that the hunters acted in self-defense during a surprise encounter with the bear from a very close distance.

Grizzly bears are protected under state and federal law, and Fish and Game would like to remind hunters that grizzly bears may be encountered in north Idaho and the Greater Yellowstone areas.

Here are some good reminders when hunting in grizzly country:

  • Carry bear spray and keep it accessible.
  • Hunt with partners and make each other aware of plans.
  • Look for grizzly bear sign, including fresh tracks. Let partners know if you do see sign.
  • Retrieve meat as quickly as possible.
  • Hang meat, food and garbage at least 200 yards from camp and at least 10 feet off the ground.
  • When not hunting, make noise, especially around creeks and thick vegetation. Most attacks occur by inadvertently surprising a bear at close range.

(Photo source: Idaho Department of Fish and Game)