Bears in Aragon

Pyrenees bear hunt

October 23rd, 2009

I came across this rather harrowing photo in a book review of Historie de l’ours dans les Pyrénées in El Pireneo Digital. It was taken in 1928 after a hunt in Urdós, Valle de Aspe across the border in France. In 1935, some 200 bears still survived in the Pyrenees and Pre-Pyrenees. The last bear steak was offered in restaurant in French Pyrenees in 1960. A ban on hunting came in Spain in 1967  and in France several years later. Today, with just 20 odd animals in the entire Pyrenees – most of which were brought from the Balkans, further reintroduction is the only way of re-creating a viable population of bears in the range.

Future of Pyrennean bears in doubt

October 21st, 2009 Without further reintroductions, the low number of bears in the Pyrenees (15-20 odd) make the conservation of the species inviable. For the time being, the French government has no plans to continue its reintroduction plans. Public support for bears in Catalonia is as high as 80%, but strong local opposition particularly in the Vall de Aran prevents any reintroduction programme from this side of the mountain range. Fapas from La Mañana de Llerida

Pyrenean bear map

August 28th, 2009

I thought this map from Fapas showing the latest bear numbers in the Pyrenees was interesting

http://fapas.es/images/imagenes_cyc/2009/20090814_esquem_oso_pirineo.jpg