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Polar bear chased away with flares after wandering close to a secondary school at Chukotka

By The Siberian Times reporter
14 September 2020

Bear Patrol in remote village of Ryrkaipiy on high alert as predators gather by a walrus rookery.

Polar bear chased away with flares after wandering close to a secondary school at Chukotka. Picture and video below: WWF Russia 

At least nine polar bears were noticed by the village of Ryrkaipiy in Russia’s easternmost region of Chukotka.

They are attracted by a major walrus rookery at Cape Kozhevnikov which is only a kilometre away from the village. 

‘Cape Kozhevnikov is turning into the main attraction site for dozens of polar bears at Chukotka.

'Most of predators choose to stay here until there is strong ice on the sea which allows them to hunt seals. The timing of ice formation is increasingly shifting due to global climatic changes, which means that bears stay until December or January’, said Mikhail Stishov, coordinator for Arctic biodiversity conservation projects at WWF Russia.

He stressed the importance of work of the local Bear Patrol - a team of Ryrkaipiy residents working full-time to ensure there is no conflict between people and animals.

In December the village, home to 766 people faced a siege from 63 polar bears.

Recent climate changes leading to late formation of ice have caused bears trespassing close to living settlements in Chukotka, searching for food. 

Video from Cape Kozhevnikov 2019 walrus rookery filmed by Tatiana Minenko

Comments (1)

I remember noting that Tatiana Minenko and her dedicated team had left a heap of dead walruses on the perripheral outskirts for the bears to feed on; rather than letting them encroach into the village. An extremely wise move and visionary solution in my opinion...

Judging by the massive overflow of the walrus population; more of them than bears and villagers alike!!! the older and weaker ones should be culled and left (as in 2019) for the hungry bears to feast on. This is a win win situation for both bears and the village inhabitants.
Anonymous, Switzerland
15/09/2020 23:51
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