What am I talking about? How come when humans wander in nature and enter the habitat's of wild animals (http://www.cnn.com/2011/WORLD/europe/08/05/norway.polar.bear.death/...) and a human casualty results - subsequently they kill the animal? It is like this with mountain lions, bears, etc. I don't understand - we wander in their turf, what do we expect? These things are going to happen from time to time.

There was one exception - recently in Yosemite there was an attack in which the bear was simply defending its cubs so they didn't kill the bear as the visitors seemed to encroach into the bear's territory - but I just don't understand why the first knee-jerk reaction is to kill the wild animal. I actually find it sad and abhorrent. I don't know...am I getting upset over nothing??

Tags: Beat, Polar, animals, attack, life, wild, wildlife

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I completely agree with you. It’s so sad. It’s like someone breaking into my home and the cops coming and shooting me. There are very few scenarios where I think this is even in the realm of being acceptable.

meghan - it honestly is not like this: I've commented below further but the expedition organisers go to really extreme lengths to avoid having to come into contact with bears.  Spitzbergen is a big place with a fair bear population.  If people go there (and there are a few mining settlements, including the 'capital' Longyearbyen) then they will run into bears.  I don't see many alternatives to the occasional incident like this, without banning travel to places where polar bears live.

The response in this case has been thought about very carefully, and what appears to have happened here is exactly what the Norwegian Government mandates. ie a bear attacked and it was shot.  If you allow travel to the area, then what else can they do once a bear is in a tent and killing a teenager?

I accept that they need to see why the trip wires and flares didn't work.  And I suspect that there will be more thought there now...but the solutions are really not easy.

 

Me too - the only acceptable scenario is if they killed the bear during the attack to save lives - but I find it absolutely sad and ludicrous when after the fact park rangers or other equivalent agencies go and hunt the animal down - there is no situation where that is acceptable - at the worst case, relocate the animal if it is a threat to humans.

It’s unfortunate that a lot of places opt to have bears killed, because it’s too costly to relocate them. I like animals more than people. It drives me crazy.

me too - I love animals and am a wildlife lover :( lol....but yes, I am an animal and so is everyone else :)

Shouldn't that be "I am an animal. And a wildlife lover.?

lololol

yep. all of this.

I also agree. Do people expect animals to not be territorial or something?

Obviously because they are just stupid animals and humans are nothing alike them in slightest bit. /end sarcasm. I agree with you completely.  Technically were entrenching on their territory, so they will do what comes naturally and in this case its survival of the fittest.  If someone goes in to the woods, expect to find wild creatures, some that are much bigger and more powerful than you.  If the person does this knowingly understanding the risks and are unprepared, they deserve to be eaten.  If they don’t know that dangerous animals live in the forest, then they have no business being there in the first place.

 

I think its an instinct that once served us well when we lived short lives in small tribes. basicaly the impulse to destroy anything that threatens or scares us

It just was not like that.  Really - please go and read about the organisation and the young people on the trip.  Killing a bear is a very last resort: in this case there is a dead teenager, and 4 others seriously mauled.  It is also very rare for the summer BSES expedition to kill a bear.  I'm not aware that it has ever come to that before and they have put thousands of teenagers into that environment over decades.

So I don't think the reactions here are entirely fair.

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