【Series】 Spirits of the Kamuy landscape
In this series, the transformation of four seasons will be introduced through articles on wild animals that are active in the deep forests, marshes, and ocean as if they were being cradled by “Kamui,” which means deity in the Ainu language. The first installment in the series is the Yezo sika deer of Notsuke Peninsula. (Text and photographs by Tadanobu Shigeru from the Kushiro Branch News Secti
【Series】Spirits of the Kamuy landscape (50) Brown bears --- Highlighting the need for harmony between human society and nature
Driving towards Shibetsu from Konpoku Pass in Eastern Hokkaido on National Route 244, a brown bear mother appeared with cubs in front of the car. The sight of a cub chasing after his mother with his little hindquarters swinging back and forth was amazingly cute.
In Hokkaido, numerous clashes between brown bears and people have been occurring. In addition to the forest plant picking season deaths, in Sapporo a brown bear attacked residents, resulting in both minor and major injuries. In Eastern Hokkaido, numerous attacks on livestock have occurred, and stopping brown bear attacks has become an urgent issue. The Hokkaido government is developing control policies, and local governments are also formulating resolution measures.
Even on a global scale, the areas where large mammals can survive without dying out are almost entirely limited to national parkland and special protection zones. In Hokkaido with its population of 5.22 million, a brown bear population estimated at somewhere over ten thousand bears is an extremely rare phenomenon. This is a testament to Hokkaido maintaining a rich ecosystem and biodiversity.
I am immensely proud of the environment our forebearers bequeathed to us.
(Words and photo: Shigeru Tadanobu)
— Final animal series installment —