Prince Emanuel of Liechtenstein under investigation for killing Romania’s biggest bear – Royal Central
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Prince Emanuel of Liechtenstein killed Europe’s biggest bear by mistake. An investigation is underway after the prince killed Europe’s largest bear during a trophy hunt in Transylvania in March this year. The brown bear, Arthur, was 17 years old and probably the largest of its kind in Europe. Arthur was shot dead a month after a local farmer complained that a female bear was harassing her animals.
Prince Emanuel, who lives in Austria, was reportedly given a permit to kill a bear following complaints from the farmer in the village of Ojdula in Transylvania about the animal attacking his cattle. Instead, he took down what turned out to be a giant male bear. Conservationists criticized him. Gabriel Paun of the environmental organization Agent Green told the BBC that they had nothing against the prince personally, but they believe the Romanian Hunters Association made a mistake in organizing the hunt.
Females are much smaller than males. Campaigners believe the bear Arthur was shot on purpose because he has high trophy value. According to Austrian environmental group VGT, Arthur has a trophy value of 592.8 out of a possible 600 points which the group said would be the highest ever recorded on a single European bear.
Trophy hunting for bears was banned in Romania in 2016 after the brown bear was protected by an EU directive. Hunting is only permitted in cases where bears injure other animals.
The Romanian Minister of the Environment has confirmed that a hunting permit has been granted, but it is not known who received the permit. A local hunting team in Covasna is said to have received the permit, but it is not documented that the prince was authorized to kill bears in Romania. Romanian environmental authorities have now opened an investigation.
According to the BBC, the prince has not responded to their attempts to reach him, but the prince’s office says he is concerned about ecology and sustainability. The office of the Hereditary Prince of Liechtenstein said in a statement to AFP: “The royal court did not know the context of this private and personal visit to Romania. However, the Royal Court would like to stress that respect for nature has been one of the House’s fundamental concerns and is a central part of the family’s commitment to ecological and social sustainability ”.