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Human and Yellostone Grizzly Conflicts Down Last Year

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BILLINGS, Mont. (AP) — Conflicts between humans and grizzly bears in the greater Yellowstone region dropped last year.

But that wasn’t enough to reverse a long-term trend of more potentially dangerous interactions as populations of both bruins and people increase. A new report shows 252 grizzly run-ins documented during 2013 by the Interagency Grizzly Bear Study Team.

Almost two-thirds occurred in northwest Wyoming. They ranged from bears attacking livestock and damaging property in search of food, to surprise backcountry encounters. Six people were injured by grizzlies — the same as 2012.

Study team leader Frank van Manen said conflicts decreased from an average of 270 over the prior three years. That’s almost double the number of conflicts seen on average between 1992 and 2009. The region also includes portions of Montana and Idaho.

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