Polar Vortex: Russian Archipelago Bear-ly Able To Maintain Safety

Postado Fevereiro 11, 2019

A Russian Arctic archipelago on Saturday declared an emergency situation over an "invasion" of dozens of aggressive polar bears that have entered homes and public buildings.

Since December, locals have reported a "large accumulation" of polar bears across the isle; a whopping 52 bears were seen in the southwest village of Belushya Guba alone.

"Folk are disquieted, unnerved to head away their homes, their day-to-day routines are being broken, and mother and father are unwilling to let their teenagers race to excessive school or kindergarten", the deputy head of the local administration, Alexander Minayev, said.

"Polar bears are reliant on seals for food and seals rely on sea ice. There's never been such a mass invasion of polar bears", he said.

The bears had lost their fear of police patrols and signals used to warn them off, meaning that more drastic measures were needed, officials said.

"The emergency situation was caused by the mass invasion of polar bears in residential areas", the Archangelsk governor and regional government said in a statement.

He added: "There are constantly six to ten bears inside the settlement".

Ilya Mordvintsev, a lead researcher at the Severtsov Institute of Ecology and Evolution, Moscow, told TASS that the reason so many polar bears had appeared near human settlement was because of the easy availability of food sources detected during their seasonal migration.

These bears are fearless, and they "literally chase people", he said.

Polar bears in Russian Federation are classed as an endangered species.

They are recognised as an endangered species in Russian Federation and hunting them is banned.

Russia's environmental watchdog has also refused to issue licences to shoot the bears, which are an endangered species.

People are "afraid to go outside" and "daily life is in turmoil", said deputy head of the local administration, Aleksandr Minayev.

With global warming melting arctic ice the polar bears are forced to spend more time on the land where they compete for food, according to a report by the polar bear specialist group of the International Union for Conservation of Nature.

Officials said it is hoped that firearms will not be needed to drive the bears away, but they cautioned that culling of the animals can not be ruled out.