The wilds of Lac qui Parle County attract hunters, and the hunted

The Lac qui Parle Sheriff's Office posted a photo of a black bear spotted roaming lands on the west side of Lac qui Parle Lake.

The Lac qui Parle County Sheriff's Office posted this photo of a black bear spotted crossing a road June 7 on the west side of Lac qui Parle Lake. Submitted

MADISON — The wilds of Lac qui Parle County attract hunters from many miles away, and sometimes, the hunted as well.

A black bear has been spotted roaming lands on the west side of Lac qui Parle Lake. A photo of the bear crossing a road on June 7 was posted by the Lac qui Parle County Sheriff’s office on its Facebook page, and attracted lots of comments, including from others who have spotted the visitor.

Sheriff Allen Anderson said he hasn’t had any calls recently about the bear, so he can’t be sure if the bear has stayed put or moved on. He suspects that the bear could easily have taken up residence in the Louisburg Bottoms and stayed out of sight.

The sheriff said it’s not unusual for his office to receive calls about unexpected animals making their way through the county. In recent years, he and his officers have received reports of the occasional moose and in one case, an elk, that wandered from northern woodlands to the prairie grasslands and farm fields of the county.

Notably, in recent years county residents have been spotting a lot of fishers in the county, he said.


Curt Vacek, Appleton area wildlife manager with the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources, said that reports of bears roaming through the county are infrequent but do occur. He said it’s really anybody’s guess what may have brought this bear to the area. Based on the photos, it appears to be a mature, young adult bear.

Two days after the Sheriff’s Office posted the bear’s photo, Vacek said a beekeeper found his hives destroyed near Lac qui Parle Lake. He moved his hives and has not had any issues since.

The wildlife manager said it is not unusual for wild animals to roam beyond their normal range. He has not heard any reports of the bear causing problems since the beehive incident. Black bears generally avoid human contact, he said.

Vacek said the DNR is asking the public’s assistance in tracking the state’s bear population by reporting sightings. Sighting can be report on the DNR website at .

The Lac qui Parle bear’s visit to Lac qui Parle Lake is recorded on the site, as is a bear sighting in eastern Renville County on June 11.

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