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Title of the project

Bears and Hunting


to achieve coexistence between bears and hunters and farmers, facilitating the population growth of Spanish brown bears

rangers and hunters cooperated to tackle poaching, clear vegetation and monitor bear numbers;
delivered more than 1,400 electric fences to hunters, beekeepers and gamekeepers to prevent damages to their livelihoods;
use of transmitters;
training activities and information campaigns to reduce bear-human conflict during the hunting period;

Hunters cooperated with conservationists and farmers, and provided on-the-ground support


The Cantabrian bear population has grown in recent years from 70 individuals to over 230. The project won the 2015 Natura 2000 award for the Reconciling interests/perceptions category


Country Spain
Level Regional
Region Cantabrian Mountains

Starting date


Habitat Types

Farmland, Forest/Woodland

Protection status of the areas

Natura 2000


Species Caracteristics Huntable species, Protected species
Species Type Large carnivores
Name(s) of main species Brown bear - Ursus arctos

Conservation action(s)

Management of habitats and wildlife (e.g. conservation and restoration activities), Research and data collection (e.g. monitoring, bag data), Communication and education (for different target audiences e.g. hunters, the wider public), Enforcement (e.g. of hunting legislation, codes of conduct)


Leading partners FUNDACIÓN OSO PARDO (http://eng.fundacionosopardo.org/)
Other partners Spanish Environmental Ministry (http://www.magrama.gob.es/en/)

Estimation of Human Resources needed

more than 4.500 hunters were involved (farmers and other conservationists were also involved and are not included in this figure)