An eco-activist trying to prove loggers had forced a brown bear out of its den was attacked by the animal

A bear before attacking an eco-activist in Poland.
A camera captured the moments before the bear attacked an eco-activist in Poland.Michał Gzowski/X
  • A German eco-activist traveled to Poland to prove loggers had forced a bear out of its den.

  • Instead, the brown bear mauled the activist.

  • A Polish official said that the incident was an "irony of fate."

An eco-activist who was trying to prove loggers had forced a bear out of its den was attacked by the animal in what a Polish official described as an "irony of fate."

The German protester had traveled to Poland's Carpathian Mountains along with another activist to prove that the bear had abandoned the den, The Telegraph reported.

But instead, the bear emerged from its den and surprised the pair before chasing them through the woods.

One of the activists stumbled and fell, and the animal mauled him. The Telegraph said he was airlifted to a hospital in serious condition.

A spokesperson for the Polish State Forests, Michał Gzowski, shared images of the bear approaching the activist, taken by a camera set up to monitor the lair.

A grown male European brown bear can weigh up to 1,000 pounds and stand at over eight feet tall.

"Quite an irony of fate — pseudo-ecologists were attacking foresters, mountain rescue and policemen, and now these people are saving their lives," he said.

"Will there be a Darwin Award?" he said, referencing a tongue-in-cheek prize for "those who tip chlorine into our gene pool, by accidentally removing their own DNA from it," as the equally tongue-in-cheek Darwin Awards website says.

The Wild Carpathians Initiative, which the activists were part of, said they should not have disturbed the bear preparing for hibernation, The Telegraph reported.

Activists have expressed concern about deforestation in the Carpathian Mountains and how it might affect the Polish bear population of about 150.

The Wild Carpathians Initiative spokesperson noted that a bear had previously attacked a forester in the same location and said the forestry service had failed to prevent further deforestation.

Earlier this year, the independent-campaigning organization Greenpeace said it had monitored 40 trucks loaded with timber leaving the region each day on just one road.

Marek Józefiak, the environmental policy officer for Greenpeace, said that only 3% of the forest is protected, while the rest can be logged or built on, The Telegraph reported.

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