The Brown Bear (Ursus arctos) is one of the largest living terrestrial animals inhabiting a large territory in Eurasia and North America. While the species’ range has shrunk, and it has extirpated from its former territories, it remains listed as a Least Concern species. With almost 3,000 individuals, Turkey hosts one of the largest Brown Bear populations in Europe and the Middle East. As a result, conflict with people is high especially in Northern Anatolia. The resulting destruction of property, food, and livelihood causes resentment and anger among farmers and producers. Ten provinces in north Turkey, where brown bear habitat is extensive, experience regular problems with bears.
Although national authorities recognize the problem, due to lack of resources and technical expertise means the issue has not been fully resolved. In 2006, Doğa and the World Society for the Protection of Animals (WSPA) began to implement a comprehensive, long-term conservation programme to address the root causes of conflict between humans and bears through specific, long-term, sustainable measures. As a result of this particular programme crops, beehives and orchards were protected using mitigation measures such as hives on elevated platforms. Tolerance of local communities towards the Brown Bear was increased via improving understanding of the value of the species and promoting the mitigation measures programme on a wider scale.