There were plenty of stories about critters and reptile wreaking havoc on the fairways this year. Montana’s problem this week, however, may have been the most dangerous yet.
The situation started at the Whitetail Golf Course close to Stevensville, Montana when some of the club pros noticed a few of their flag poles had been snapped. Originally, they believed this was just run of the mill vandalism but when the incidents kept happening and were accompanied by large footprints and droppings, they assumed it must be an animal. The course then called the Fish and Game Warden who set up a trap on the course.
A few days after the trap was set up, one of the course’s pros showed up and saw that they had something in the trap. He couldn’t believe his eyes when he got a good look at it.
“I knew right away that it was a grizzly,” Jason Lehtola said. “Its claws were really big. Its head was massive. It was standing in there and I could see the hump on its back.”
That’s right, the animal that was breaking flagsticks all over the course was a Montana Grizzly Bear. While they have a solid population in the wild, they typically don’t come down into civilization all that often, making it a surprise to everyone that the bear showed up on a golf course. This is especially troubling for golfers, as this bear could have been around them and attacked at any time during their rounds.
According to the fish and game commission, the bear was a little over 250 pounds and approximately 2 and a half years old. After taking the bear off of the course, it was then released safely back into the wild but far from the course. Perhaps one day the bear will wander back to Whitetail and gain as big of a reputation as Chubbs the alligator.
This just goes to show that you never know what you’re going to find on the golf course. For all golfers in areas frequented by bears or alligators should make sure to prepare in the future, just in case they won into a peace of wildlife during their round.
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