Bears in the forests and mountains of Russia’s southern Caucasus have stayed human-friendly this winter despite having trouble with going into hibernation.
Brown bears in the region have been rendered sleepless because of uncharacteristically warm weather and a lack of snow, the state-owned Rossiiskaya Gazeta newspaper cited researchers at the Caucasus State Biosphere Reserve as saying.
“It’s worth noting that, despite the lack of hibernation, bears haven’t become aggressive ‘insomniacs’ as it often happens in other regions,” the reserve’s chief researcher, Anatoly Kudaktin, was cited as saying by Rossiiskaya Gazeta.
“A rich food supply in the south contributes to the fact that these animals eat well, remain peaceful and don’t attack people even if they meet them,” Kudaktin said.
Up to 700 brown bears roam the steep hills of the Caucasus Biosphere Reserve, which stretches from Mount Elbrus to the Black Sea in southern Russia, the outlet cites researchers as saying.
“In my 46 years of observing large predators, this is only the second time when the bears didn’t go into hibernation,” Kudaktin said.