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Grizzly kills man in northern Montana, fellow hunters say

By the CNN Wire Staff
updated 8:13 PM EDT, Fri September 16, 2011
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • NEW: The attack was on the Montana side of Buckhorn Mountain, an Idaho official says
  • A man was hunting near the Canadian border when a bear attacked him, an official says
  • By the time the two others in his hunting party arrived, the man was dead, they say
  • One of those hunters shot and killed the grizzly bear, they say

(CNN) -- A grizzly bear attacked and killed a hunter Friday in a remote part of northwestern Montana before being gunned down itself, authorities said.

The man who was killed had been part of a hunting party of three men, said Mike Weland, a spokesman for Boundary County, Idaho, which borders Canada and abuts the area where the attack took place.

By the time the other two hunters -- one of whom witnessed the attack -- arrived on the site, the man was dead, Weland said.

One of the victim's hunting partners eventually shot and killed the grizzly, according to the sheriff's office.

Authorities received a cell phone call about 10 a.m. reporting the incident near Buckhorn Mountain, the sheriff's office said. Officials from multiple government agencies were at the site by Friday evening, Weland added a short time later in an e-mail to reporters.

At that point, authorities determined that the incident -- initially believed to have happened in northern Idaho -- actually occurred on the Montana side of Buckhorn Mountain, according to Weland. Boundary County sheriff deputies remain on site, but jurisdiction was being transferred to authorities from Lincoln County, Montana.

Weland said earlier Friday that authorities were talking with the two survivors and could see the attack site from a distance as they climbed.

The sheriff's offices, the Idaho Fish and Game Department, and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service are investigating.

The name of the victim, who was not from Boundary County, was not being released until authorities could notify his next of kin.

The incident follows a series of bear attacks in recent months in the United States.

Two men were killed this summer in Yellowstone National Park by grizzly bears, Park Superintendent Dan Wenk said. In August, a lone 50-year-old man was bit by a grizzly bear in Montana's Glacier National Park but was able to continue hiking until he found help, the National Park Service said.

And earlier this month, two young campers were injured when they were attacked by a black bear at Stokes State Forest in northwestern New Jersey, the state's Department of Environmental Protection said.

CNN's Anna Rhett Miller contributed to this report.

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