Operation Spring Trail comes underway

Operation Spring Trail comes underway

25 March 2014

WWF Russia is launching its annual polar bear conservation campaign, Operation Spring Trail, on 28 March, the eve of Earth Hour, with bear patrols sent to watch polar bears on the Russian Arctic coast until the end of April.


The monitors – volunteers from Arctic villages and nature watchers – will inspect the coast of the Republic of Sakha (Yakutia) and the Chukotka Autonomous Area and register the polar bears they meet, their traces and maternity den locations.


Four expeditions equipped with satellite telephones will set to work on a strip of coast stretching from the mouth of the Indigirka River (Yakutia) to the Behring Strait.


“Late March and April is a very important period for the polar bear,” WWF Bear Patrol chief Viktor Nikiforov says. “She-bears and cubs are leaving their winter dens to travel in the boundless expanses of the Arctic. It’s gratifying that each year, there are more Arctic villages and polar stations joining this project. Environmental education is an important part of our work.”


To locate maternity dens, the monitors will focus on female and cub traces. Aside from registering the traces, they are supposed to protect the animals from potential poachers.


(Photo © by Viktor Nikiforov)

2 photos