A remote Russian region has declared a state of emergency over the appearance of dozens of polar bears in several towns and villages in the Arctic. 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.
Russian environmental authorities have deployed a team of specialists to a remote Arctic region to sedate and remove dozens of hungry polar bears that have besieged the people living there. The move came after officials in the Novaya Zemlya archipelago, with a population of about 3,000 people, appealed for help.
Wildlife experts have warned the polar bears’ incursion is the result of shrinking sea-ice, as rising Arctic temperatures due to the global warming cause the ice to melt, reducing the bears’ normal hunting grounds. Unable to hunt on the ice, as usual, the bears are forced to venture inland to human settlements in search of food.
Polar bear invasion on Novaya Zemlya as 50 wild animals besiege remote town, and chase people. State of emergency called, locals are told they cannot shoot endangered species scavenging for food at local dump https://t.co/j7nI40QZOK pic.twitter.com/yv3FYu8Nof
— The Siberian Times (@siberian_times) February 10, 2019