By Tim Binnall
Residents of a remote Russian town say that they are afraid to leave their homes because their community has been invaded by hungry polar bears. The bizarre incursion has reportedly been unfolding over the last few weeks in the town of Dikson. Sitting on the coast of the Arctic Ocean, the town has apparently become a destination, of sorts, for polar bears being driven inland due melting ice.
Although the small town boasts a population of around 500 people, the community has been brought to its proverbial knees by around six polar bears which have descended upon Dikson in search of food. Fortunately, for now, the animals seem content to scavenge through the trash of the townspeople rather than the residents themselves. That said, the polar bears are growing increasingly brazen in their behavior and are now openly approaching people that they encounter.
Since polar bears are a protected species in Russia, officials in Dikson have been left with little recourse but to try and scare the bears away with loud noises like gunshots. So far, the effort hasn't been particularly successful and so it seems that the only other option is to simply wait for the creatures to leave the town in a few weeks when it is expected that the icy areas they call home will be replenished. That is, of course, provided that polar bears don't take too much of a liking to the town and decide to settle down there.