Bears, Lynxes, Wild Horses and Wolves Return to Europe
It’s early autumn, imagine you’re a 200kg Marsican brown bear, looking for something to eat in the middle of the night in the Apennine mountains of central Italy. Trundling through the beech forests, snuffling for smells, suddenly there comes the irresistible aroma of a chicken coop. Only one thought flashes through your bear brain. Supper.
But this September, on the outskirts of the beautiful mountain village of Pettorano sul Gizio, in the Abruzzo region some 110km west of Rome, one particular male bear picked the wrong smallholding and the wrong chicken coop. The owner of the chickens in question was so infuriated by repeated bear raids on his birds that he shot the bear dead. It was only a few days afterwards, when the man’s fellow villagers decided to find the perpetrator, that he admitted his crime.