A brown bear was recently spotted feeding on a muskox behind the Icy View Subdivision in Nome. In the interest of public safety, the bear was killed by Alaska Wildlife Troopers and the Department of Fish & Game.
Troopers report the bear was defending a partially buried musk ox carcass near a well-traveled recreational trail by Icy View. Letty Hughes with Fish & Game said the bear was described as “being on a kill.” Fish & Game staff found the bear attempting to cache the dead muskox—and when troopers arrived on scene, the animal was actively feeding.
Many attribute last year’s upswing in “nuisance muskox” near town to muskox attempting to avoid bear predation. Last spring, Fish & Game observed brown bears around several groups of muskox during calving, documenting predation on calves, and the movement of muskox herds from outlying areas around Nome into city limits.
Hughes said that to reduce nuisance muskox situations in town, Fish & Game is permitted to take game to promote public safety—which was done last Thursday when an offending bear was killed. The public is encouraged to report bear sightings or bears causing problems in and around town. When reporting a bear, please give a description of the animal to the Alaska Department of Fish & Game, State Troopers, or Nome Police.