A bear cub was shot dead by most probably a poacher in the region of Florina in northern Greece. Wildlife protection organizations urge authorities to investigate the killing of the cub.
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The cub was born last year and was still at an age where it has not been separated from its mother,Bear protection NGO ARKTUROS said in a statement. Next to the dead cub fresh traces of an adult animal were found, probably from the mother bear that was with him.
A local farmer spotted the body of the young animal near Xino Nero and informed ARKTUROS and the forestry service.
ARKTUROS representatives rushed to the point indicated by the sensitized farmer, while also representatives of the Forestry Service of Florina went to the area.
Examination of the cub revealed two wounds and that the baby animal had been shot in the abdomen and the chest.
Environmental organizations Arkturos and Kallisto described the killing as another serious crime against biodiversity, noting that a year ago three more bears were killed in the same area by persons unknown.
The two organizations are participants in an EU-funded project “LIFE Bear-Smart Corridors,” an international collaboration between the Netherlands, Italy and Greece that aims to conserve brown bear populations in Central Italy and Greece, by maintaining and ensuring important corridors of movement and connections between bear populations and the creation of “smart communities of coexistence” of humans and bears.
The bear is strictly protected under Greek and EU legislation.
It is a valuable species of our natural wealth and cultural heritage with an important role in the functioning of the forest ecosystem.
The two organizations call on the competent authorities not to underestimate the importance of this event and to proceed immediately with extensive investigations to identify the perpetrator.