Last known indigenous female brown bear in Pyrenees shot and killed

The last known reproducing female brown bear in the Pyrenees along the French-Spanish border — known as Cannelle, French for “cinnamon” — has been shot and killed by hunters. The whereabouts of her 10-month-old cub, which fled after seeing his mother shot, are unknown. French gendarmes and wildlife officials have sealed off a wide area near the incident, banning dog walking and hunting, and are searching for the orphaned bear. French Environment Minister Serge Lepeltier called the killing an “ecological disaster,” and French President Jacques Chirac joined the widespread outcry over the incident. The boar hunters who shot the bear claimed their dogs were attacked and they were acting in self defense, though enviros say they knew full well that the bear and her cub were in the area. Indigenous Pyrenean mountain brown bears are now effectively doomed to extinction.