The story behind the extraordinary rescue of a brown bear in Spain

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(CNN Spanish) — The Cantabrian mountain vary in northern Spain has seen a unprecedented historical past of wildlife rescue. Right here lives a species that’s nonetheless thought-about endangered, however has skilled exponential progress up to now three many years: the brown bear.

“We noticed that the bear was dying. It was on the verge of extinction. We had been clear that one thing needed to be finished, however one thing applicable,” Guillermo Palomero, president of the Oso Pardo Basis, advised CNN en Español. .

In accordance with the Brown Bear Basis, indiscriminate poaching is likely one of the causes the species practically went extinct up to now. The group began its work in 1992 when the bear was in essential situation. “There have been two separate embryos, certainly one of which had the bottom genetic variation on this planet of brown bears, and between the 2 Cantabrian embryos there weren’t 60, 70 bears,” he remembers.

Brown bears in Cantabria have made a unprecedented restoration. (Courtesy of Brown Bear Basis)

Numerical (and genetic) restoration

The tireless work of the muse, the efforts of regional governments and the respect of residents of “bear zones”, as they affectionately name these locations, have led to a major improve within the variety of bears. In accordance with the newest genetic survey carried out in 2020 by the Autonomous Communities, about 370 brown bears now dwell within the area.

That’s the results of working not simply with the bear particularly, however with the territory and the group. “Though we name ourselves Brown Bear, our need is to work for the bear, however for its territory, for its habitat, and for all of the cultural ties to bears’ territories,” Palomero says.

Within the Cantabrian mountain vary, bear populations have recovered from a demographic and genetic perspective.

“Presently, the 2 beforehand separated populations at the moment are related by way of males, and genetic range has elevated,” explains Juan Carlos Blanco, a researcher on the basis.

Tips on how to Keep away from Bear-Human Encounters

A rise within the variety of bears will increase the variety of encounters between these animals and people.

One of many basis’s targets is to develop methods to keep away from these encounters and supply behavioral recommendation for the uncommon events once they do happen.

“We concentrate on how we are able to cut back sure financial actions reminiscent of bears that enter cities, bears that eat rubbish, for instance, ecotourism, due to the impression they will have or have on the brown bear’s personal safety”, says José Vicente López, devoted to the investigation of huge carnivores on the Larger Council for Scientific Analysis. .

The Brown Bear Basis anticipates the consequences of local weather change on bears.

Coexistence with the bear has develop into a precedence for the inhabitants of those mountains, and yearly the variety of vacationers who come to the area will increase with pleasure, at all times seeing a bear from a distance. Animal and take all crucial precautions.

“We see that tourism is rising and the opportunity of observing bears is encouraging extra folks to return and do that exercise,” says Sofía González, an ecotourism entrepreneur at Somido Expertise.

Anticipating the consequences of local weather change

Brown Bear Basis’s different precedence problem is engaged on tasks to mitigate the consequences of local weather change on animal conduct. Hibernation, based mostly primarily on fruits and berries, is affected by fireplace and even their meals.

The spectacular Cantabrian mountain vary is dwelling to brown bears in Spain.

Local weather change goes to punish some species: blueberries, peaches, Atlantic oaks, however it appears to favor others, Mediterranean oaks, chestnuts. Nicely, we’re going to work to advertise these species and plant as many of those species as we are able to that aren’t negatively affected by local weather change. And, as well as, we’re going to plant them distant from folks. It’s a must to hold the bears out of the inhabitants,” Palomero explains.

The success of this conservation technique is mirrored within the Pyrenees, the place the brown bear inhabitants continues to be low however is slowly recovering.

“We should try for a peaceable and peaceable coexistence between people and bears.”