PETROPAVLOVSK-KAMCHATSKY, October 20 (Itar-Tass) — As many as 51 brown bears have been shot dead because of aggressive behaviour since spring 2011 on Russia’s Far Eastern Kamchatka peninsula, a spokesman for the local forestry agency told Itar-Tass on Thursday.
According to the spokesman, game keepers had to kill these bears because the beasts had already attacked humans and any other measures to ensure safety of local residents were to no avail.
Three persons were killed by brown bears in Kamchatka this summer. The beasts came close to populated localities. One bear showed up on the territory of an army unit and attacked a soldier.
Specialists say the wild animals are driven to human settlements because of heaps of garbage, where they can easily find something to eat. This winter, specials say, insomniac bears may roam the territory and appear in settlements.
To ensure safety of local resident, the authorities have been recommended to set up special teams of hunters, police and rescuers.
The Kamchatka brown bear, also known as the Far Eastern brown bear, is the largest subspecies in Eurasia, with a body length of 2.4 metres, to 3 metres tall on hind legs and a weight of up to 700 kilograms. Fur colour is predominantly dark brown with a violet tint. Light coloured individuals are rarely encountered. In the summer period, they feed on blueberries, crowberries, humpback salmon, and salmon trout. In autumn, they eat nuts from nut-pines and mountain ash, and fish. In times of famine, they eat dead fish or marine mammals, berries and graminoid vegetation. Kamchatka brown bears are generally not dangerous to humans, and only a small percentage of encounters result in attack.