Tuesday, 28 April 2015

Estonia: Bear Population Spread into Western Estonia

This article is a few years old but I was drawn to it by this fascinating photograph. I have never seen a family of bears before, it's quite a sight to behold!

If there were no bear litters in Estonia’s Laane County as early as six years ago, then four females with cubs had arrived there in accordance with a recent count, the daily Eesti Paevaleht reported.

Peep Mannil from the game monitoring center of the Environmental Information Center said that growth in the bear population could be noticed both in Laane County and in the western areas of Harju County. “This was apparently due to hunting. Hunting pressure has been modest until the present and no adult female bears have been shot there,” he said.

But bears have not permanently populated two Estonian counties, Voru and Valga. The reason for this is hunting.

In accordance with the recent population assessment, there are 650 to 700 bears living in Estonian forests. If in the previous hunting season 53 bears were shot in Estonia then this year the number of bears shot was 55.

The development plan of the protection and restraint of large carnivores foresees keeping the bear population at at least 60 litters with cubs and 600 individuals.