11 February 2019 17:30

Russia Polar bear Arctic

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Russian region declares emergency over polar bear "invasion"

A state of emergency was declared in the Novaya Zemlya archipelago, located in the Arctic Ocean in the northern Russian Arkhangelsk region, after groups of polar bears recently invaded human settlements in the area and started attacking people, according to a press release. "The emergency situation was caused by the mass invasion of polar bears in residential areas," a statement released by the regional government said, Russian news agency TASS reported. Alexander Minayev, the deputy head of Novaya Zemlya administration, said that between December and February, at least 52 polar bears were spotted near the settlement of Belushya Guba, a settlement in Novaya Zemlya district, some of which entered residential buildings and offices and attacked residents. Although most of the wild animals were no longer wandering near the settlements, around six to ten polar bears still remained in the area. Novaya Zemlya head Zhigansha Musin said it was unusual for so many polar bears to show up near human settlements and the emergency will only be called off once the government was able to determine the area safe and secured.

polar bears

Russian Authorities Declare State of Emergency After 'Mass Invasion' of Polar Bears in Remote Settlement

I recall that over five polar bears are in the [military] garrison chasing people and entering residential buildings. Ilya Mordvintsev, a lead researcher at the Severtsov Institute of Ecology and Evolution, Moscow, told TASS that the reason so many polar bears had appeared near human settlement was because of the easy availability of food sources detected during their seasonal migration. They migrate through Novaya Zemlya heading north, where the ice is solid," Mordvintsev said. Efforts to drive away the wild beasts, including using patrol cars and dogs, failed as the polar bears appeared not scared of those measures. (CNN) Parents in a remote Russian archipelago are scared to send their children to school after a "mass invasion" of polar bears into residential areas, state news agency TASS reported.

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Novaya Zemlya, located off Russia's northeastern arctic coast, has been swarmed by dozens of polar bears since December. The region's largest settlement, Belushya Guba, with a population of about 2,500 people, has reported more than 50 sightings. Local administrator Alexander Minayev said bears had attacked people and entered buildings. Polar bears roaming in the Russian town of Novaya Zemlya. Social media users shared pictures of the polar bear invasion in Russia's remote archipelago in the Arctic Ocean, Novaya Zemlya.


Earlier, authorities declared an emergency in the Novaya Zemlya archipelago due to the massive polar bear invasion. Authorities in Russia's remote Arctic archipelago of Novaya Zemlya have taken measures to chase away a band of polar bears that had established a reign of terror over locals in recent days. Photos and videos on social media showed polar bears entering apartment blocks and other living quarters and rummaging through garbage in the settlement of 3,000. Authorities in the Arkhangelsk region, which oversees Novaya Zemlya, declared a state of emergency on Saturday due to the mass invasion of at least 52 polar bears. Efforts to drive out the polar bears from the human habitat have partly paid off, Zhigansha Musin, the head of the municipal administration, told Russian media on Monday.

novaya zemlya islands

Musin's deputy Alexander Minayev told regional authorities that some of the invading polar bears had attacked people, Agence France Presse reported on Saturday. Although Russia classifies polar bears as endangered species and bans their killing, regional authorities reportedly entertained the idea of shooting down the animals as "the only possible forced measure." The aggressive beasts have been disturbing the Arctic settlement of Belushya Guba on the Novaya Zemlya archipelago. The head of the local settlement said that Russia's nature conservancy agency Rosprirodnadzor - which bans slaughtering the endangered animals - is sending a team to the remote islands to sedate and move the animals. Mikhail Stishov, WWF coordinator for Arctic biodiversity projects, said: "There are many more polar bears on shores because of [a] lengthy absence of ice. Musin said: "I have been in Novaya Zemlya since 1983, yet I've never seen such a massive polar bear invasion." Russian authorities have declared a state of emergency in the remote, sparsely populated Novaya Zemlya islands in the Arctic Ocean, the BBC reported this weekend, after "dozens" of polar bears whose food sources are limited due to climate change started rooting through homes and other buildings near the settlement of Belushya Guba looking for something to eat.

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According to the BBC, officials said that the bears no longer fear either police patrols or the signals used to keep them away from humans, and that they have even crossed onto the grounds of the local air defense garrison. Though the animals are considered endangered by Russia (the IUCN Red List classifies them as "vulnerable," with a decreasing population), officials said that if non-lethal means fail to drive the bears away, they may be forced to cull the animals, the BBC added. Videos circulating on social media and posted by the Russia-based Siberian Times appeared to show bears rummaging through parts of the settlement, as well as sort of wandering around and staring at people through windows, though these videos were not independently verified by Gizmodo. Deutche Welle reported that Russian leadership in Moscow said they have sent a team of investigators to look into the situation, while deputy chief of the local administration Alexander Minayev said in a report to regional officials that some 52 polar bears have been spotted since December, Agence France-Presse wrote. "I've been on Novaya Zemlya since 1983 and there's never been such a mass invasion of polar bears," local administration head Zhigansha Musin added, AFP wrote.

belushya guba

In a statement to the state-run media agency TASS, Severtsev Institute of Ecology and Evolution lead researcher Ilya Mordvintsev said that the bears are migrating north, but were lured to the settlement of Belushya Guba by the likelihood of finding food: They migrate through Novaya Zemlya heading north, where the ice is solid," the expert said. As the New York Times reported in 2017, the worldwide population of polar bears (estimated at 26,000 or so) is expected to decline due to climate change. A photo posted to Instagram on Feb. 10, 2019 by user @muah_irinaelis (Irina Elis)in the remote town of Belushya Guba, on Russia's Novaya Zemlya peninsula, shows a group of polar bears looking for food. The region declared a state of emergency over a "mass invasion" of polar bears. A Russian Arctic archipelago on Saturday declared an emergency situation over an "invasion" of dozens of aggressive polar bears that have entered homes and public buildings.

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Russia's northeastern Novaya Zemlya archipelago, which has a population of around 3,000 people, has appealed for help to tackle "a mass invasion of polar bears into inhabited areas," regional authorities said in a statement. Polar bears are affected by global warming with melting Arctic ice forcing them to spend more time on land where they compete for food. Since December, 52 polar bears have regularly visited the archipelago's main settlement, Belushya Guba, with some displaying "aggressive behavior," local official Alexander Minayev said in a report to regional authorities. This included "attacks on people and entering residential homes and public buildings," said Minayev, the deputy chief of the local administration. The head of the local administration Zhigansha Musin said that the numbers of polar bears were unprecedented.

russia polar bears

"I've been on Novaya Zemlya since 1983 and there's never been such a mass invasion of polar bears," he told regional officials. Some residents of Belushya Guba took to social media to show their own video and photos of the bears, and express their shock. Bears are constantly inside a military garrison and "literally chase people" he said as well as going into the entrances of apartment buildings. The Arkhangelsk regional authorities, which oversee Novaya Zemlya, said that if all else failed "shooting the animals could be the only possible forced measure." In January, a defence ministry official said that hundreds of disused military buildings had been demolished on Novaya Zemlya because polar bears were settling inside them. Novaya Zemlya is a Russian archipelago stretching into the Arctic Ocean.

At least 52 bears were massed near Belushya Guba, the main settlement on the island territory, which is still used as a military garrison, with restricted access to the public. Warning of the "mass invasion of polar bears in residential areas," local officials vowed action in response to "numerous oral and written complaints demanding to ensure safety in the settlement." "I have been in Novaya Zemlya since 1983, but there has never been so many polar bears in the vicinity," said Zhigansha Musin, a local administrative head, according to TASS, Russia's state news agency. Polar bear invasion on Novaya Zemlya as 50 wild animals besiege remote town, and chase people. Russia's Novaya Zemlya is considering a cull to repel a "mass invasion" of polar bears, like this 1 in a young family's hallway. Scientists also pointed to climate change as the reason for the aggressive behavior of a sloth of polar bears that surrounded a weather station in the Arctic in 2016, threatening a team of Russian researchers.

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