Yukon conservation officers are investigating the roadside shooting of a grizzly bear on the Tagish Road.

The killing has angered residents in the Carcross Tagish First Nation area, but government authorities say they are fairly certain the shooting was legal.

The bear was a four or five year old, big, blonde grizzly, and had become a regular roadside attraction.


A grizzly bear walks across a road near Mammoth, Wyo., in Yellowstone Park. An elder in Carcross, Yukon, is upset that a blonde grizzly, which was a familiar face along the roadside near the community, was recently shot. (AP Photo)

Carcross elder Edna Helm called it the community "spirit bear".

"I know it was bear season and that people go out killing bears and stuff, but this one was so used to people watching him and he never paid attention to anybody. [The] unusual color and the friendliness of that one - that's what gets people are so upset and hurt. It's a crying shame," she said.

Conservation officers investigating say witnesses saw the hunter step off the highway to shoot the bear.

It happened in the evening of May 22, near Chootla Lake.

The spring season for hunting grizzly bears runs until June 21.