Postcard from... Milan
Italy's tiny population of brown bears has suffered a double whammy this month.
First, the bear known as M14 was run over and killed by an SUV in the Italian Alps. And now his brother, M13, has been shot dead by rangers on the Swiss side of the border, prompting protests from the World Wide Fund for Nature and 10,000 animal lovers on a dedicated Facebook page.
Petitions prior to M13's demise had insisted that the bear was no danger to the public after the young animal broke a window and crawled into an unoccupied cabin near the mountain town of Poschiavo in Switzerland close to the Italian border last November.
But following the incident, Swiss mountain rangers tagged the animal, which was often seen on both the Italian and Swiss sides of mountain, with an electronic tracking device. And on Tuesday this week, they shot and killed it.
The authorities claimed the animal's "lack of inhibition when near inhabited areas" represented a danger, according to Ansa news agency.
"I hope one of the Bern bears escapes and runs amok in the criminal court house... to deal a real blow of justice," said one fan on Facebook.
The social-network page's banner with a picture of M13 in a tree has been replaced with a bloody paw print.
If careless SUV drivers and overzealous rangers weren't enough of a threat, Italy's brown bear population, which is thought to number less than 50 in total, is also threatened by some northern Italians' liking for bear stew.
- 1 I was a Woman Against Feminism too
- 2 Fifty Shades of Grey movie trailer released: First look at Jamie Dornan as Christian Grey
- 3 Is Gideon Levy the most hated man in Israel or just the most heroic?
- 4 Students offered grants if they tweet pro-Israeli propaganda
- 5 The Tory donor whose firm is one of Britain’s biggest tax avoiders - with HMRC's blessing
Vladimir Putin employs a full-time food taster to ensure his meals aren't poisoned
Peaches Geldof: Her final day – and her fatal decision
Students offered grants if they tweet pro-Israeli propaganda
Israel-Gaza conflict: Israel may have committed war crimes, says UN human rights chief
Taiwan plane crash: Typhoon Matmo could have caused TransAsia Airways disaster, airline suspects
Malaysia Airlines MH17 crash: Vladimir Putin is given 'one last chance' to end hostilities in Ukraine
The 'scroungers’ fight back: The welfare claimants battling to alter stereotypes
The truth about conspiracy theories is that some require considering
Arizona execution lasts two hours as killer Joseph Wood left 'snorting and gasping' for air
Malaysia Airlines MH17 crash: Ukrainian military jet was flying close to passenger plane before it was shot down, says Russian officer
Malaysia Airlines MH17 crash: Massive rise in sale of British arms to Russia
£30000 - £38500 Per Annum + 25 days holiday, pension, subsidised restaurant: C...
£34000 - £37000 Per Annum + excellent benefits: Clearwater People Solutions Lt...
£40000 - £45000 per annum + Pension, Holiday, Flexi-time: Progressive Recruitm...
£280 - £320 per day: Progressive Recruitment: C#, WinForms, Desktop Developmen...