Siberian bears said 'better behaved' after this winter's hibernation

May 10, 2013 at 4:21 PM
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TOMSK, Russia, May 10 (UPI) -- Bears waking after winter hibernation in Siberia must have slept well as they are better behaved this year than last year, officials said.

"Compared to this time in previous years, things are somehow calmer now, there were times when about a dozen [bears] had to be shot between the end of April and beginning of May," Konstantin Osadchy, head of a nature protection committee in Siberia told RIA Novosti.

This year there has been only one incident in which a bear in Tomsk Region had to be shot, he said.

Hungry bears waking after winter hibernation often head to areas of human habitation in search of food. They are shot if local forest rangers or other officials deem they pose a danger to the human population or livestock, officials said.

In Russia's Far East, bears were recently sighted digging up corpses in a cemetery, RIA Novosti reported. Three bears were killed in that incident.

The bear population in the Tomsk Region of Siberia is growing, from 2,800 in 1997 to 8,800 in 2011.

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