Grizzly conflicts predicted

Conflicts between people and grizzlies in the Yellowstone National Park region are likely to rise this year as more bears try to recolonize areas now inhabited by people, wildlife managers said on Tuesday.

The news comes as federal and state agencies gather beginning on Wednesday in Montana to craft measures they hope will reduce the number of grizzlies they must kill in 2011 for threatening people and livestock.

Problems between Yellowstone area grizzlies and people reached unprecedented levels last year, with bear managers in Wyoming alone grappling with an all-time high of 52 grizzly captures.

But the estimated 600 grizzlies in the park and nearby Wyoming, Montana and Idaho won’t be the focus of renewed efforts to contain conflicts.

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