Bears and Human Coexistence

There have been lately quite a few calls for either shooting or capturing the almost 20 year old female bear Daniza in the Trentino area. Lets remember that Daniza has lived in the park for more than 14 years with no problem. In August a lone mushroom collector surprised her and her cubs. Daniza did what mothers always do, regardless of their breed, and protected its cubs by briefly attacking the hiker. She did not maim him or kill him but hurt him so that he would not pose a threat to her family anymore. Even though this behaviour is totally normal, Daniza was quickly labeled as a problem bear. Such a stigma is in this case not only inappropriate but it totally ignores the facts and misses the key issue at stake here.

If the lone mushroom collector would have either walked in a group or would have worn a bear bell Daniza would have been alerted of his presence and would have moved. She would not have been surprised and hiker would have not even noticed that a bear was in his vicinity.

We have to slightly modify our behaviour if we enter bear country. First if all we need to announce our presence so that the bear is not surprised. We should walk in pairs or groups. We need to prevent garbage from lying around and we need to show respect to the bears and never approach them too close.

We have collected two videos which show, that wild bears never attack humans unless they are challenged to do so, or are threatened or are surprised or feel cornered.

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