Wolves, wild boars, deer, or chamois With nearly 6,000 hectares stretching through green hills and rugged rocky landscapes, the O Invernadeiro National Park in north-west Spain is frequented by many animals. But it’s another species that is making headlines today – the brown bear (Ursus arctos) – which disappeared from circulation more than a century ago. One of these predators was indeed spotted a few days ago.
The specimen, according to a press release, is a young “male, 3 to 5 years old”. It is the first film in the area and “probably the first to have crossed this region in the past 150 years”.
According to park officials, the bear probably arrived in the Sierra de O Courel mountains a few months ago (a little further east) before hibernating in the area.
These images were obtained thanks to photographic traps scattered all over the park by the filmmaker Pela del Álamo, who is preparing a film on the surrounding fauna (Mountain of Death, produced by Zeitun Films).
The number of bears on the rise in the Pyrenees
As a reminder, the Fundacion Oso Pardo (Brown Bear Foundation), a member of the cross-border management of the bear population, published its latest census of these animals in the Pyrenees on April 21. In 2019, at least 52 bears were identified across the entire massif, three more than the previous year, the report said.
On the basis of observations, fingerprints, photos, and genetic analyzes, NGO officials were also able to observe the expansion of the territory of these animals. Indeed, the total area of bear presence in the Pyrenees is today estimated at 10,400 km2, which is 3,000 km2 more than in 2018 and 5,400 km2 more than in 2017.
These data were also revealed a few days after the death of a bear named Cachou, a 6-year-old male known for his aggressiveness, whose remains were found on April 9 in Les, in Catalonia.
If the first conclusions of the autopsy suggest the possibility of a fight with another male followed by a fall of 40 meters, some environmental associations suggest that the bear may have been poisoned, before falling from it. ‘a cliff.