Festival & conference at Baile Tusnad dedicated to coexistence between man and bear

A scientific conference and a festival, which will address the theme of coexistence between man and bear, are taking place at the end of this week, in the resort town of Baile Tusnad, the central Harghita County.

The two events, Tusnad Eco Bear Conf and Tusnad Eco Bear Fest, are part of a large project carried out by the local Accent GeoEcological Organization, in partnership with Vox Iuventutis Association and Baile Tusnad Town Hall, dubbed “WatchBear & AdvoCity – bears and people for common future”, with the financial support of Active Citizens Fund Romania, a programme financed by Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway through EEA Grants 2014-2021.

Biologist Imecs Istvan, representing the Accent GeoEcological Organization, told AGERPRES that, this year, the Tusnad Eco Bear Conf conference will aggregate international participation, with expert presentations from seven countries, including Romania.

“We have 26 speakers, 30 presentations, everything will be in English, with simultaneous translation into Hungarian, Romanian and English. (…) We have presentations from seven countries, including Romania. A single speaker cannot come physically, from Ukraine, from Kyiv, the rest come from Slovakia, Slovenia, the Czech Republic, England, Bulgaria. (…) The general context (of the presentations, ed. n.) is the man-bear coexistence. Those who come from other countries will present the situation and the context from their countries, from the legislative level to the measures put into practice. This is very important, to have a place to learn from, if we can learn from others. From our side there will be presentations starting from shepherd dogs to the most sophisticated technologies through which coexistence can be improved. The whole palette, I can say, is present, both at the legislative level and at the level of active measures and at the level of the hunting sector. So, practically everyone will be present. (…) We consider it very important to build a platform where one can communicate and everyone is invited, that is, we do not separate niches and only talk with those who understand us and are our friends. We want to discuss with everyone and this year we also include others from outside the country, who are interested and who work in these fields,” Imecs Istvan elaborated.

Also, parallel to the specialized conference, a festival dedicated to the coexistence between humans and bears takes place at Baile Tusnad, with thematic tents where specialists are invited to address topics related to climate change, recycling or ecotourism.

Moreover, the fund-raising campaign of the WWF Romania organization will be launched again, for the continuation of the project aimed at the safety of communities in areas with high brown bear densities, which was started last year, at Baile Tusnad.

“The bear will be present at all the events: craft fair, children’s games, stands. For the evening performances, we have invited bands with at least one member from Baile Tusnad, which highlights local values,” the organizers explained.

The project “WatchBear & AdvoCity – bears and people for a common future” aims to improve coexistence between humans and bears and civic involvement in decision-making processes on this issue. Within this, a mobile phone application was launched, which aims to collect information from tourists and locals regarding the presence of the bear in the city, and a visitor point was also opened that wants to present the history of the city in relation to the bear.