• A California woman camping in Montana was pulled from her tent by a grizzly bear and killed Tuesday
  • The woman was on a long-distance bicycling trip when she was attacked
  • The estimated 400-pound bear also ate several chickens in a coop before running away

A 65-year-old woman was dragged by a grizzly bear out of her tent in the middle of the night Tuesday in Montana and killed.

Leah Davis Lokan, of Chico, California, was on a long-distance bicycling trip and set up her tent near a post office in the western Montana community of Ovando, Fox News reported, citing wildlife officials. She was killed by the bear at around 3:30 a.m.

About half an hour prior to the attack, the bear had stumbled across the site where Lokan and an unnamed couple were camping, according to Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks (FWP) officials. The three campers woke up due to the noise, causing the bear to run away. Lokan and the couple removed food from their tents and secured it before going back to sleep.

However, the bear was captured in surveillance footage about 15 minutes later lurking less than a block away from the post office. At some point during the night, the animal also got into a chicken coop and ate several chickens, officials said.

Officials are still searching for the bear, which is said to be approximately 400 pounds (181 kilograms). According to Greg Lemon, spokesperson for FWP, the bear will be killed if it is found.

The investigators were able to retrieve DNA from the bear at the crime scene and will compare it with other bears that they can trap, KLFY reported.

“At this point, our best chance for catching this bear will be culvert traps set in the area near the chicken coop where the bear killed and ate several chickens,” said Randy Arnold, FWP regional supervisor in Missoula.

Lemon said that bears that attack people are not always killed, especially if it was a surprise encounter or if the bear was protecting its young. However, the grizzly bear involved in Lokan's attack is regarded as a public safety threat due to the circumstances surrounding the incident.

While the forests and mountains north of Ovando are home to around 1,000 grizzly bears, fatal attacks are rare in the region. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service said there have been three in the last 20 years, including Tuesday’s mauling.

Lokan, a registered nurse, had looked forward to the bicycle trip for months, her friend Mary Flowers told Fox News. Lokan had been on previous bike trips and was accompanied by her sister and one of her friends for this latest one.

“She loved these kinds of adventures. A woman in her 60s, and she’s doing this kind of stuff — she had a passion for life that was out of the ordinary,” Flowers said.

Representation. A bear. Pixabay