21 Nov, 2010 @ 08:55
1 min read

Grizzly death

THE death of the last female brown bear in the Spanish Pyrenees marks the end of the species.

Camille, who was thought to be about 20 years old, has not been sighted since February 5, and is now “almost certainly dead”.

Her death has been described as “the blackest of omens” for the endangered species, by Ecologistas en Accion.

The group blames the French and Spanish authorities for failing to offer adequate protection to the few remaining animals.

The group confirmed that despite keeping a close eye on the bear population for the last 30 years and investing tens of millions of euros into saving the endangered animal, numbers have been steadily decreasing.

In fact the entire population of European brown bears (Ursus arctos) in the Pyrenees is thought to number between just 19 and 22, following the relocation of bears from Slovenia and Croatia to help boost the native species.

Earlier this year the French government caved in to pressure from shepherds who claimed the bears were killing their livestock.

It announced it would abandon a 20-year initiative to repopulate the Pyrenees with brown bears.

The last native female bear living on the French side was shot by hunters in 2004.

Jon Clarke (Publisher & Editor)

Jon Clarke is a Londoner who worked at the Daily Mail and Mail on Sunday as an investigative journalist before moving permanently to Spain in 2003 where he helped set up the Olive Press. He is the author of three books; Costa Killer, Dining Secrets of Andalucia and My Search for Madeleine.

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  1. That is incredibly sad and doesn’t say much for humanity as a whole does it. That ‘hunters’ think shooting a bear like this is remotely acceptable shows the depth of some so-called ‘humans’ self-involved depravity.

  2. This sickens me. I can’t believe that people think because they trap other animals on their property for food, they can kill off species so they can’t get to the animals they imprison. It’s just a sick, sick way of thinking. All animals have a right to be free and live happily just like us.

  3. Most of my local neighbours in Spain have guns. Many Saturday nights they are out there and the local coffee shops on a Sunday morning are full of hunters coming back after being out for the night. I expect with the recession they are out there even more and they do not seem to worry about decreasing the animal population.
    I am not against hunting but they will shoot anything that moves for a free meal. It is a bit like overfishing the sea, there are not many left.

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