Wednesday, May 03, 2023

Brown Bear Fatal Attack in Italy price of Expanding Bear Populations Worldwide

 Image of grizzly bear  by Troy Nemitz, used with permission. 

In Italy, Andrea Papi, a young man, running for exercise, was killed by an aggressive European brown bear. European brown bears are essentially the same species as American grizzly/brown bears. From Nature World News:

Fear and rage spread throughout the area after Andrea Papi was
fatally attacked by the aggressive bear while jogging above the town of
Caldes in the Brenta Dolomites on the slopes of Mt. Peller. Papi is the
first Italian reported to have died in the last few years at the hands
of a bear.

In Italy, bears are a protected species, and since they were
reintroduced to the area two decades ago, their population has been
growing recently.


 JJ4's biological parents had been transported from Slovenia to northern
Italy as part of the "Life Ursus" European conservation project. On
Mount Peller in 2020, it had already attacked and hurt a father and son
who were hiking.

For most of the history of homo sapiens, bears have been known to be dangerous. There are accounts of problems with bears in the Old Testament. Bears, especially brown/grizzly bears have been a danger to humans and their food supplies in Eurasia throughout recorded history. The Eurasian brown/grizzly bears are a relatively recent immigrant to North America south of Canada, appearing somewhat after early human immigrants to the same area, about 15,000 - 16,000 years ago. Only recently have bears been considered harmless or necessary.

As humans developed more effective agriculture and came to dominate the land, bears were driven away from human population centers. The hunting team of humans armed with stand-off weapons, such as spears and bows, with the tracking and holding ability of dogs, is a combination bears find difficult to overcome. The productivity of agriculture allowed a sufficient population density of humans to eliminate the danger of bears from an area.

Wild bears were eliminated from England during the medieval period. In the rest of Europe west of the Ural mountains, they persisted only in areas remote from human population centers. With the advent of cartridge firearms, a single human became effectively able to defend against European brown bears. The European brown bears became reclusive and wary of  human contact.  The bears who were not reclusive and wary did not survive. By the end of the 20th Century European brown bears were reduced to a few hundred in remote mountain areas in Western Europe, and a few thousand in forest reserves in Eastern Europe. Intense hunting pressure had selected for wary, reclusive brown bears.  Attacks by bears on humans, or even human food sources, became nearly non-existent in Western Europe.

Prosperity and safety brought about complacency and the myth of the harmless bear.  Bored urban Europeans and Americans who chaffed at the sexual restrictions of Judeo/Christian morality, restarted pagan worship of the Earth as goddess, Gaia.  Near worship of wild animals followed. With this worship came the movement to return dangerous large predators to areas from which they had been eliminated at great cost and effort. Some support the movement out of a desire to destroy Western civilization. Many students of history and human nature warned a price would be paid in blood and treasure. Fatal bear attacks are on the rise around the world.

Andre Papi has paid part of that price. The father and son, attacked in 2020 also paid in blood, pain, treasure and time. Wild animal worshipers are willing to sacrifice as many Andre Papis as it takes for the public to demand the removal of the danger among them.

In the United States, humans who venture where there are large, wild, predators are able to legally arm themselves. The right to defend against animal attack is part of the right to keep and carry arms in defense of self and community, so dearly fought for and paid with Revolutionary and Civil war blood and treasure.

Western Europeans are re-learning the lessons of the dangers of wild brown/grizzly bears among them. Those dangers were well known in Roman and medieval Europe.  If bears are aggressively hunted, the bears learn or are selected, to be wary of humans.  When bears are wary of humans, bear/human conflict and the threat of bear attack, is minimized.

©2023 by Dean Weingarten: Permission to share is granted when this notice and link are included.

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