This is the moment a tiny bear cub manages to flee for its life after a male bear attacked its mum and began feeding on the carcass.
The startling incident took place in the Cantabrian Mountains in northern Spain and was recorded by members of the Brown Bear Foundation.
The incident began on 20th May, when the mother and her cub were spotted on a rocky outcrop in the mountains.
Credit: Newsflash/Fundacion Oso Pardo
On 27th May a male bear was spotted close by, seemingly trying to attack them but not managing to reach the inaccessible area they were in.
However, the male managed to reach the mother and cub on 31st May, with the male reportedly fighting the female, killing her and the video shows it feeding on the carcass.
The cub managed to escape and in the video it can be seen climbing on the rocks alone, just a few feet from the male feeding on its mother’s carcass.
The male bear tried to attack the cub but could not reach it on the rocks.
According to the foundation, “infanticide of bear cubs, which could be seen as hard and incomprehensible, is part of nature, and in the case of bears, we have managed to find it is the main cause of mortality in cubs in their first years of life”.
Local media report the incident usually occurs during mating season, when a male bear will find a mother with a cub to kill the infant so the mother goes into heat again.
However, on this occasion, the mother bear defended her offspring and ended up dying in the fight.
The foundation said male bears will often avoid fighting the mothers, and that in Europe female bears being killed like this has only been seen three times in Scandinavia and once in the Italian Alps.
The experts said the male bear was seen feeding on the carcass for nine days, covering the body with soil and heather so that other animals could not find it.
The cub was last seen on 3rd June, with its current location unknown.
The foundation said “it is not a surprise the bear is taking advantage of the female bear’s body” and they are still searching for the cub.
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