Warmth Prevents Siberian Bear Hibernation
In southwestern Siberia, reports of bears groping sleeplessly through the forests are piling up. Apparently, the weather, which is much too mild for the time of year, prevents the usual date for hibernation, which is otherwise often as early as October.
Constant surveillance by local rangers is intended to prevent people from being endangered by the furry animals, which are not tired during the winter, explains the nature conservation authority of Kemerovo, a city of half a million people about 3500 kilometers south-east of Moscow. "At the moment the animals are finding enough food and are therefore not causing any damage," reassured expert Tatiana Maslova to the Reuters news agency.
Bears have to eat up to 180 kilograms of winter fat in order to sleep through the winter with these reserves. Apparently, the animals saw no reason to hurry to store fat. In the region around Kemerovo, which is often snow-covered at this time of the year, according to local reports, trees have only recently budded, while some flowers have already started to bloom for the second time this year. After all, the weather forecast for the coming days gives hope for calmer times for Master Petz: A drop in temperature to minus 15 degrees Celsius and snowfall have been announced for the weekend. (yo)