• Catalonia: The complex Pyrenean reconquest of the brown bear
  • Environment: This way the brown bear mocks hunters taking advantage of a legal vacuum
  • Goiat.The brown bear of endless controversy

Nearly a thousand people have demonstrated on Thursday in the town of Aínsa in Oscense to protest the presence of bears in the Pyrenees.

The protesters were mainly farmers from various parts of Aragon, Navarra, Catalonia and France, as well as beekeepers.

With the motto 'For the defense of our peoples and extensive livestock', most protests have been directed against the reintroduction of the brown bear in the Pyrenees. A European program that in 25 years has achieved that in the Cordillera now live 43 copies against the three that were in 1996.

The demonstration, with numerous flags and banners, has run through the streets of Aínsa, amid the noise of cowbells and shears, and has culminated with the reading of a manifesto.

On the banners you could read messages such as "Bears no, Pyrenees safe", "Yes to extensive livestock, not the reintroduction of the bear and the wolf", "Bears, the ruin of the rural world and extensive livestock", "Montes abandoned, burned mountains "or" No to the wolves! ".

In the final communiqué the survival of the peoples and the rural world has been claimed: "Enough of regulations issued from Brussels from an office. Enough since the Ministry of Ecological Transition tell us what we have to do in the villages. peoples have a future, they will remain inhabited as long as we are present in the most important decisions. "

The mobilization had been convened by the agricultural organizations UAGA, Asaja, UPA, Araga and the Agrifood Cooperatives, with the support of more than 55 organizations from Spain (Aragon, Navarra and Catalonia) and France.

Joaquín Solanilla, provincial secretary of UAGA, highlighted the success of the demonstration, the most important of those held so far in the Aragonese Pyrenees against the bear.

He added that the summoners hope that it will serve to convince the different administrations that the reintroduction of the bear and the wolf will not continue, "because they are not compatible with livestock." "We must not condemn mountain villages, threatened by the presence of large carnivores," according to Solanilla.

He recalled that also in France and Catalonia, who signed the reintroduction program, have made demonstrations against the presence of the bear, "because it has failed and has not had the desired success."

The Goiat Bear

This Thursday was the second demonstration against the bland this summer, after which it took place in Plan (Huesca) in July, following the attacks in the area of the Goiat bear.

The presence in Aragon of this bear, considered a great predator, with an unusual behavior, has been the straw that has filled the vessel with the patience of the farmers.

They have urged the Government of Aragon to request the Government of Catalonia to withdraw Goiat from the Aragonese territory and take responsibility for the damages caused.

This issue, reintroduced in 2016 by Catalonia, has already motivated protest actions to scare it away in neighboring territories.

In Aragón its presence was confirmed earlier this summer in the Castanesa valley and later in the Gistaín valley.

Between April and June of this year, the bears starred in Aragon five attacks on as many herds with six goats, three sheep and a ram killed in the municipalities of Hecho, Aragüés del Puerto, Campo and Montanuy. Some in charge of bears that roam in these areas, but also of animals from neighboring territories.

The latter is the case of Goiat, which this summer has sown concern among farmers in the Aragonese Pyrenees. The concern is justified by its history, since between the months of April and August last year, the technical team responsible for its monitoring recorded 27 attacks, 12 in Catalonia and 15 in France.

Before the attacks perpetrated in Aragon, the autonomous Government demanded that the Generalitat of Catalonia "take charge" of said bear "of anomalous behavior" and "desist from the reintroduction policy".

In Navarra, farmers have reported 22 animals killed by bear attacks, but the Foral Government only recognizes 17. Something similar happens in Aragon and Catalonia when assessing and recognizing the action of the bear.

For example, according to the farmers, the last action of Goiat has been the attack on a 500 kilos calf in the town of Gistaín in Oscense, but the Aragonese government rules out that the wounds were caused by a bear.

European program

Goiat starred last year 27 attacks on livestock in the Catalan and French Pyrenees. The casualties caused by the plantigrade (22 sheep, a goat, nine horses and eight bee hives), represent between 30 and 40% of the brown bear attacks in the area.

Goiat was captured in Slovenia and released in 2016 in the Alt Pirineu Natural Park in Isil (Lleida) under the European Pyroslife brown bear reintroduction program 2015-2018.

A program that, after 25 years, has saved the bear from extinction in the Pyrenees. Currently, there are 43 specimens in the area, while in 1996 there were only three, according to official sources.

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