Scarface, Yellowstone National Park’s most photographed and studied grizzly bear, was shot dead last November. The bear had roamed around the protected area of the park for the past 25 years.
But despite wildlife protection effort implemented in the area by park authorities, the 25-year-old male bear fell at the hands of still-unidentified hunters. Although the bear’s shooting happened in November, the park only announced Scarface’s death late April after validating the identity of the recovered carcass, the Washington Post reported.
Scarface, also known as bear No.211 by wildlife rangers, got his nickname from the scar on his face and right ear. The bear was said to have acquired the scars not only from hunting preys, but also from fighting other male bears in his 25 years in the wild during mating season.
In a statement, the Montana Fish, Wildlife, and Parks said that an investigation is underway to determine who killed the famed bear. The investigation is headed by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, the statement added. There have been no update as to the identity of the suspects as of writing.
It was reported that Scarface had been captured 17 times in the past 25 years for research purposes. In his prime, Scarface weighed 600 pounds, but during the bear’s last capture in 2015, it only weighed 338 pounds. Over the last years, wildlife researchers have noticed Scarface’s significant weight loss, attributed mostly to old age.
Despite federal and state laws that protect grizzly bears, their population remained at risk by hunters. Scarface was actually fortunate enough to even reach the age of 25, since records show that less than five percent of grizzly bears’ population reaches the age of 25 in the wild.
Also Read: Astronaut Scott Kelly Quits NASA For Good