Aggressive Bear and Her Cub Shot Dead after Climbing on Board Russian Nuclear Submarine

A bear and her cub were shot dead after climbing on board a Russian nuclear submarine docked at a military port in the country's far East. According to a military spokesperson, the bear was behaving aggressively and had been spotted several times in the region over recent days.

The pair had swum across the Krasheninnikov Bay off Vilyuchinsk, Kamchatka, before boarding the vessel, a statement from the press service of the Eastern Military District for the Pacific Fleet said, according to state media.

"A female bear with a bear cub entered the pier zone on the deck of one of the nuclear submarines," the statement said. The bears were believed to pose a risk to people and that as a result, an expert instructor "using specialized hunting weapons" shot both bears dead.

What species of bear the mother and cub was not stated, although the Kamchatka brown bear, sometimes known as the Far Eastern brown bear, is native to the region.

Footage of the bears was released by local news site Kamchatka news. The bears in the video are seen swimming up to the submarine and climbing onto the deck. They are then seen sitting on board before a shot is fired and one of the bears, believed to be the cub, falls into the water.

According to a translation by the news site, the man in the video says there was no other way to get rid of the bear. He said if the military had taken action to drive the bear from the boat, she and the cub would have returned to one of the nearby villages. "This is how you have to fight bears in Kamchatka," he is quoted as saying.

Generally bears tend to avoid humans, but they will venture into built up areas in search of food.

It is estimated that between 10,000 and 14,000 brown bears live across the Kamchatka peninsula and they are occasionally seen in the military town of Vilyuchinsk, which foreigners are banned from entering.

Last November, a bear was filmed running around the streets of the town before being chased out by police. It is thought the same bear returned a week later after being spotted near the town's hospital, Kam24 reported. One resident said the bear had been living in a nearby residential building and had also been spotted at a playground.

The forestry agency of the Kamchatka Territory told Russian news agency Interfax that since the start of 2020, more than 50 aggressive bears had been killed in the region.

Kamchatka bear
Stock image showing a brown bear in Kamchatka. A cub and its mother were shot dead after climbing on board a Russian nuclear submarine. iStock