Large carnivores require large areas, so contact with people is common.
While beautiful and majestic animals, they can sometimes be difficult neighbours.
In search of food, bears and wolves often come close to humans. When food is available and unprotected, they will often try to get it and cause damage to the people. Causing damage to the crops, breaking bee hives in search of bee larvae and honey, attacking livestock or pets and in some cases when surprised or feeling threatened even people.
Large carnivores carry a cultural history of fear and hate. As a result, there is still prejudice against carnivores that is often expressed through poaching.
Our common interest is to preserve large carnivores in the nature for the future. To do that we need to learn how to share the landscape.
Educating people on proper ways of storing trash so bears can’t get to it, protecting livestock with electrical fencing or livestock guarding dogs and how to behave in forest are just some ways of preventing conflict. Working closely with different groups of people (framers, hunters, breeders) is required so trust and communication channels need to be established. Media also plays an important role by influencing feelings towards large carnivores.
Improving the knowledge and awareness about the importance and ways of coexistence between people and large carnivores is one of the main goals of Interreg project Carnivora Dinarica. During a 2 and a half years, over 280 people from different fields and residents from conflict areas will be trained.