On August 1 2014 the Murmansk Ministry of Natural Resources and Ecology held a meeting with the heads of municipalities of Severomorsk, Apatity, Kirovsk, Olenegorsk, and Pechenga of the Murmansk region on the increasing frequency of appearance of bears near “populated points” in the summer of 2014. Among others, the meeting made a recommendation that people get instructed on how to behave in case of bear attack, and arm themselves with flares.
Bear at a cemetery near Apatity, filmed by a local priest about to perform a service there:
It’s been above zero for a number of days. The sort of situation when bears may wake up. Just got a warning not to go into the woods between Kandalaksha and Luvenga no matter how bad is the need to take a leak. It is because of a big hungry bears is rotten mood that in their cute cub days were taught that humans mean food. Now it is “either bring food or I may make **you** my meal”.
Kandalaksha nature experts are asking me to spread the message along English-speaking travellers that bears are not to be fed no matter how small. Otherwise they associate humans with food, with all the ugly bloody consequences. No, gratitude, I’m afraid, is a human trait and not a very common among us either. Animals are merely conditioned to form associations. In this case it between humans and food, which is just one small step to “humans ARE food”.