A famous white grizzly bear, known locally as Nakoda, has been found dead two days after being injured in a vehicle collision in Yoho National Park in B.C.

Parks Canada said Bear 178 was found deceased on June 8, and is believed to have died from internal injuries sustained in the collision on the Trans-Canada Highway near the Lake O’Hara turnoff.

Nakoda’s two cubs were killed in a separate vehicle incident on the highway earlier that day.

Wildlife management staff witnessed Nakoda run onto the road after being startled by a passing train.

“One vehicle was able to swerve and avoid a collision, but a second vehicle was unable to react in time and struck the bear,” Parks Canada said in a statement.

After the incident, Bear 178 climbed over a fence and was moving with a slight limp. Wildlife officials said they were hopeful she would recover from her injuries, but Nakoda was found dead two days later.

Nakoda, the rare white grizzly bear in Yoho National Park, climbing over a wildlife fence.

Nakoda climbing over a wildlife fence in the Yoho National Park.

Jason Leo Bantle/All in the Wild Photography

Parks Canada had been monitoring the white grizzly bear since 2022, when she was fitted with a GPS collar.

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Officials said wildlife staff spent significant time with her, often from dawn until dusk.

“The team has developed a strong fondness and connection with GBF178 (Nakoda) and her death has been devastating for the team that was so deeply invested in trying to prevent this outcome,” read the statement.

Parks Canada said staff undertook extensive efforts to try keep the bears away from the roadside.

Nakoda’s two cubs were struck and killed in a different vehicle collision earlier on the same day that Nakoda was hit.

Wildlife management staff found the two cubs dead on the Trans-Canada Highway on June 6 around 5:15 a.m. The mother was also on the road, and was hazed back behind a nearby wildlife fence.

Parks Canada said Bear 178 was “very driven” to spend time along the highway, and she had experienced a high level of human interaction, making her “overly comfortable” along the road as she searched for food.

A rare white grizzly bear, also known as Nakoda, on the side of a highway.

The white grizzly bear Nakoda along the side of the highway, with several vehicles pulled over.

Jason Leo Bantle/All in the Wild Photography

“Bears that become habituated to people often have negative outcomes,” Parks Canada said.

“While Parks Canada is working hard to make roads safer for wildlife, we must once again emphasize to visitors of the importance of not stopping to view wildlife, driving cautiously and obeying speed limits.”