• Spain's news in English
 
app_header_v3
Spain's mild winter is waking bears from hibernation early
Screenshot taken from Canal de l'usuari catterritori YouTube page.

Spain's mild winter is waking bears from hibernation early

The Local · 14 Jan 2016, 15:48

Published: 14 Jan 2016 15:48 GMT+01:00
Updated: 14 Jan 2016 15:48 GMT+01:00

Warmer than average temperatures in Spain this winter have caused bears living in the Pyrenees mountains in Catalonia to wake up and postpone their hibernation, according to the regional Department of Territory and Sustainability

The department reported on Wednesday that a team of scientists monitoring bears in the mountains recorded video of a mother bear with three cubs roaming around looking for food as recently as Tuesday.

"At this time of year, the whole family should be hibernating inside of a cave," the sustainability department wrote.

The mother, known as Caramellita, had been known to the researchers since May 2014.

In the video, the bears can be seen scaling a mountainside, probably in search of acorns on the ground near the village of Lladorre, according to the report. 

The report said that it seemed the mild temperatures and little snowfall had made the bears decide to delay hibernation.

"It is possible that they may have started to sleep, but due to favourable weather conditions and the availability of food, they woke up and came out to eat and walk," the department stated. "When it definitively starts to snow, they will begin their hibernation again."

And the snow is expected to fall quite vigorously in mountainous parts of the country, according to an alert by Spain's Commission for Civil Defense and Emergencies on Thursday.

Story continues below…

The commission reported that both Cantabria and Navarra in the north were expected to experience "heavy snowfall" of up to 20 centimetres. The Basque country, northeast Catalonia and León could also see such snowfall on Friday.

"If you're going to drive, especially in mountainous areas, inform yourself about the weather conditions and the status of the roadways," the commission advised. "Always bring snow chains or mountain tires, a full tank of gasoline and don't forget to bring your cell phone with its charger."

The warmer temperatures so far this winter have also prompted almond trees to bloom too soon, raising concerns about climate change, experts said this week.

For more news from Spain, join us on Facebook and Twitter.

The Local (news@thelocal.es)

Your comments about this article

Today's headlines
Madrid LGBT group takes action over ‘gay cure therapy’
Madrid introduced anti-homophobic laws earlier this month. Photo: AFP

A Spanish pressure group that fights against homophobia has filed a complaint against a therapist who offers “to cure homosexuality”.

Expat Spain: Warm, friendly and brilliant for family life
Spain is one of the best nations for expats. Photo: theinterngroup.com/ Flickr

A great climate and friendly locals make up for the lack of career opportunities in Spain, according to a survey ranking the quality of life for expats around the world.

La Tomatina: Everything you need to know about epic fiesta

Every year on the last Wednesday in August the town of Buñol prepares to get seriously messy when it stages what has become the world's biggest food fight.

Costa del Sol beach closed over shark fears
The Civil Guard patrolled the beach looking for the shark. Photo: Pedrator_desert/ Twitter

Thought jellyfish were a nuisance? Fuengirola just got a lot scarier.

The Local List
15 amazing Unesco World Heritage sites to visit in Spain
The town of Ávila. Photo: Chroniron/Wikimedia Commons.

Spain has an impressive 45 locations listed as Unesco World Heritage sites for their cultural significance or natural beauty, including some that are entire towns. Here's a look at some of the most stunning.

Rajoy says forming new government ‘a wish’
Spain has been subject to a political deadlock for the past eight months. Pierre-Philippe Marcou / AFP file picture

Spain's acting Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy warned Saturday ahead of parliament's confidence vote for a second term in office that the formation of a new government remained "more of a wish".

Spanish police smash Chinese immigration ring
The Chinese nationals paid the ring about €8,000 to get a fake work contract. Photo: Cristina Quicler /AFP

Spanish police said Saturday they had smashed a major ring allegedly providing Chinese nationals living illegally in the country with fake contracts as domestic staff so they could get residency permits.

Gallery
10 super Spanish drinks everyone should try
Photo: Ignacio Palomo Duarte/Flickr

While we've all been tempted by the Spanish holiday classic of a chilled glass of sangria, Spain has much more to offer when it comes to tantalizing tipples.

Property
Buy your own Mediterranean island paradise for just €5m

Got a spare €5 million? Then this Mediterranean island paradise could be yours.

Vamos a la playa! These are Spain's top ten beaches
Playa de Ses Illetes, Formentera, Europe's best beach. Photo:Photo: Ismail Mia/Flickr

Spain has five beaches in Europe's top ten. The Local gives you a tour.

Sponsored Article
Life in Jordan: 'Undiscovered treasure'
National
Shocking video shows torture of young calf during fiesta
Sponsored Article
Why you should attend an international job fair
Police launch appeal for Costa Blanca hit and run driver
Politics
What political deadlock? Spain economy forges ahead
Sponsored Article
Jordan: where history meets adventure
Features
Eight reasons to spend your gap year exploring Spain
Sponsored Article
Five things Americans should know about voting abroad
International
'We won't ban burqinis on our beaches' insists Barcelona
National
British dad drowns saving daughter on red flagged beach
National
11 Spanish words that English must adopt right now
Sponsored Article
Why expats choose international health insurance
Lifestyle
Justin Bieber just bought an amazing new pad in Lanzarote
Sponsored Article
Why you should attend an international job fair
Lifestyle
Recipe: How to make Andalusian Ajo Blanco soup
Travel
Keep passports safe: Typical pickpocket scams revealed
Sponsored Article
Jordan Pass: your ticket to the experience of a lifetime
Travel
Ten touristy types you'll meet in Spain: Which one are you?
Sponsored Article
Why expats choose international health insurance
Lifestyle
Ten top tips to avoid looking like a guiri when in Spain
International
Don't miss this spectacular meteor shower over Spain
Travel
Desperate Ryanair passenger chases after missed flight
Travel
What's on in Spain: August 2016
National
Get your kit off! Spain's ten best nudist beaches
National
German firestarter blames blaze on 'toilet paper mishap'
National
Flashmob prank sparks 'terror attack' panic in Spanish resort
Culture
Croquemon Go: Spain invents twist on game to 'eat 'em all'
Technology
Six free apps to simplify your summer in Spain
National
Spanish parents fight for right to name their son 'Wolf'
National
Beach closed after shark attack in southern Spain
National
Spain ups security at tourist spots as terrorism fears grow
3,251
jobs available