Bear attacks are on the rise, and the rural people in Romania are demanding immediate action. Although there is an Action Plan for Brown Bears and Wolves in place, only certain parts have been implemented, and the permit process is slow and discouraging. Most notably, there is no clear quota in place to properly manage the population.
On June 6, the Romanian government organized a conference, as part of their program for the presidency of the Council of the EU. As the result of the items discussed, the CIC and FACE issued a joint statement calling for the urgent actions by the decisionmakers of Romania and other EU countries.
The statement concludes as follows:
It is the opinion of the CIC and FACE that the Action Plans should be implemented in full and harvest quotas issued as a matter of urgency.
The CIC and FACE urge the Government of Romania, to mobilize the EU Large Carnivore Platform, including existing regional platforms, to better fulfil its’ role as mediator and to act as a credible partner in mitigating conflict situations between humans and large carnivores.
Bears have caused many injuries and have taken 3 human lives already in 2019. At one time, Romania was the exemplary case for the coexistence of viable large carnivore monitoring. CIC and FACE hope that the challenges and solutions they have put forward will speed up the necessary organizational changes.
Two of the most recent human-bear encounters in the news from Romania include:
“German Hiker Fights off Bear in Romania” a German hiker suffered a serious leg injury from a bear encounter on a mountain hike with his girlfriend.
“Video Shows Young Girl Feeding Bear” – a young girl stopped to feed and pet a wild bear at an area of road that has become an unofficial tourist stop to interact with the bears.
Source: FACE, CIC, and Romania Insider