Today I am sharing a photograph I took less than a week ago in Svalbard whilst I was on a scouting trip to photograph Polar Bears in winter from snow mobile. I watched and photographed this magnificent Polar Bear play around this piece of blue ice against the backdrop of the glacier in Tempelfjorden in Svalbard for several hours only days ago. The teenage bear had been in the fjord for days and had been hunting seals at breathing holes along the edge of the frozen ice. I photographed the same bear two days before this image as it lay on a fresh seal kill under the polar winter sunset.
I was deeply saddened and moved to tears today to learn that this Polar Bear is now Dead. Shot dead because of the ignorance and arrogance of tourists who travelled to Svalbard to witness the Solar Eclipse. From what I have been able to piece together from the various news reports now popping up online it seems a tourist suffered minor injuries when the polar bear attacked the tent where he was sleeping. An area where the bear was known to be hunting and where these tourists irresponsibly set up their camp. Police spokesman Vidar Arnesen said the man was among a group of six that was on a combined ski and snow scooter trip on the remote islands more than 800 kilometers (500 miles) north of the Norwegian mainland. The group was camping north of the main town of Longyearbyen.
The man, Jakub Moravec, told local media he hoped to be out of the hospital later Thursday.
“Now I am fine. I have some scratches in the face, on one arm and on the back. But I feel fine,” he told the Svalbardposten newspaper.
Jakub Moravec I am glad you feel fine. You don’t deserve to feel fine. It is because of you and your friends ignorance and stupidity that this beautiful Polar Bear had to be killed. Tent camping in an area a Polar Bear is known to be currently in is not only incredibly stupid, but its incredibly ignorant. Shame on you. I hope the life of this bear that you and your friends caused the death of haunts you for a very long time.