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What to do when meeting a wild beast: Life Stories

Every person walking in the forest will surely meet with the inhabitants of the forest, whether it be a squirrel, a bird or even a bear. Even meeting with deer can be dangerous, especially if it is a female with a cub. As huntsmen, hunters, fishermen, mushroom pickers recall their unexpected encounters? What should be done when meeting with forest inhabitants, how do people and animals behave, how do the meetings with wild animals end?

How to behave when meeting a bear
If you came to the territory of the bear, let us know about you. Noise, sing, talk loudly or tie a bell to your backpack. Avoid thick bushes. Like humans, bears use paths and roads. Do not pitch a tent near the trail. Go around those places where you smell the dead fish, animal, or see animals that eat carrion. Do not push the bears! It is foolish and dangerous to feed the bears, as well as leave food or garbage that attracts them. If you saw a bear, try to leave him slowly. Attacks are rare. Most bears are interested in protecting their food, cubs or their personal space. When the threat has passed, they will pass by.

Bear hunting is allowed twice a year:

summer-autumn bear hunting from August 1 to November 30;
spring bear hunting from April 1 to May 31.
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Life Stories – Meetings on Forest Paths
Mushroom pickers, hunters, fishermen, huntsmen – all people wandering through the forest sooner or later meet with the forest inhabitants. Someone with luck: some with a mouse, some with a fox, and some with a master – Mikhailo Potapych. They meet, of course, unexpectedly, often disperse hastily. For example, I still remember running away with a loud scream, lifting my legs high from a snake, presumably an adder, which I almost stepped on. The snake basked peacefully in the sun. Maybe it was already. But in order to see the yellow spots on my head, I would have to approach him with my nose. Moreover, with my nearsightedness, we must first determine where the head, where the tail.

But what an indescribable pleasure you feel when you go out into the forest glade, and there, deer, grazing by the oblique rays of the morning sun, graze. And such silence, such an idyll around … This picture still stands before my eyes. I saw her in Karelia.

But in the Altai forest I had a chance to meet with deer. More precisely, we got in the way of a red deer with a small calf. We came from the leeward side, so she noticed us late when we appeared from behind the trees. They went out and opened their mouths: maral madonna and baby. A moment later, neither her, nor the baby, only the crack of branches and swaying tree branches.

Later I read that deer are nervous animals, although shy, they are quick-tempered and aggressive. And females are even more aggressive than males, especially during the offspring. An enraged red deer is quite capable of driving wolverine, lynx, and even a wolf from a cub. Well, we met the meek.

Predators – no bears, no boars, no wolves – in their natural environment have not met, fortunately, not once. Although I wandered along the same paths with them. And I saw all the evidence of both the boar and the bear presence. Yes, and wolf, perhaps. The skeleton of the same deer on one of the passes in the Altai mountains, well crafted, with bones scattered in different directions, could appear after a team of gray robbers worked here. But, presumably, healthy, well-fed predators, smelling the fire, hearing the crack of branches, with which we climbed animal paths with backpacks behind us, wisely hid in the depths of the forest and did not show our eyes.

Meetings with Forest Residents
But I always ask with interest those who spend a lot of time in the forest, and whether they had such meetings. This question I asked Mikhail Oreshet when we spoke with him about the nature of Rybachy. He told several cases.

Meeting with the bear

“I myself am not a hunter,” he says, “but I somehow went for a company for a bear. Friends with carbines, I’m with a camera. They came to the place where before that someone had seen bear tracks, and for sure, they stumbled upon his fresh litter. Friends bravely rushed into the thicket in the footsteps of the beast. But how beautifully they jumped out of these thickets in a short time, – says Mikhail Grigoryevich with a laugh, – laced with branches, in torn clothes and already without carbines. And it so happened that the hunters met with the object of their hunt nose to nose. Forgetting about the guns hanging on their shoulders, without saying a word, turned around and fled. Knotted carabiner belts and dangling. For a long time then the three of us scoured these shrubs, shouted, warned the teddy bear that they were supposedly walking here, looking for carbines.

“But you feel a bear, if you don’t even see it, but it’s nearby,” notes Oreshet. – In the morning you feel.

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