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Yellowstone Wolf Pack Surrounds Huge Grizzly in Face Off

Written by Angie Menjivar
Published: August 7, 2022
Image Credit Alan Jeffery/
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BrushBuck Wildlife Tours is the largest Yellowstone tour company that has been in operation for over a decade. In a video, the tour guide, Daniel Bradford, captures a common scene during an unusual time.

The video was taken on December 29, 2019, when grizzlies are usually hibernating. However, the grizzly in this video decided to stay awake, alert, and hungry. As the video starts, you can hear a crowd murmuring behind the tour guide.

In the center of the scene, you can see a massive grizzly atop what looks like a rather recent kill. The white snow has turned to a dark brown and red mess beneath the grizzly’s paws as it brushes the snow around the carcass.

A few wolves can be seen on either side of the bear, walking about as if also interested in what the bear is pawing at. It’s not apparent at first, but this grizzly is taking something that doesn’t belong to it.

The Junction Butte Wolf Pack has previously taken down this elk, and the grizzly has come in to lay claim over the carcass. Understandably, the wolf pack wants what’s theirs.

At first, you can only see a few wolves trying to approach. The grizzly starts defending the carcass as if it belonged to it all along. It charges at several wolves and spins in circles, attempting to defend itself from every angle.

More wolves appear on the scene in the blink of an eye, and suddenly, this grizzly is working against a pack of 5 then 14 wolves at once. Although outnumbered, this grizzly’s hunger is much stronger. It keeps its stance over the carcass, even though the wolves are circling all around it.

It bites and lunges at any wolf that gets too close. Different wolves try sneaking toward it, but none of them are willing to fight the grizzly for the elk’s carcass.

The grizzly lunges at the wolves a few more times before the wolves collectively decide to accept their loss. They begin walking away from the grizzly and from the prey they’ve managed to kill as the grizzly remains atop the carcass, gathering snow on top of it the way a cat gathers litter on top of its waste.

In Yellowstone, about 80% of wolf kills are stolen by grizzlies. Even when it was supposed to be time for bear hibernation, this wolf pack had to take another loss.

Up next, more wolves and bears caught on camera:

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About the Author

Angie is a writer with over 10 years of experience developing content for product and brand reviews, focusing much of her time on animals of all types. A cat owner herself, she enjoys writing articles on beloved pets that both inform and entertain her audience.

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