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Winters in Russia are always tough, but rarely like this - so warm that bears aren't hibernating and so gray that humans are having trouble waking up.
Much of the European part of Russia has been gripped by an uncharacteristic warm spell this winter, with temperatures generally well above freezing and little if any snow.
It's an astonishing contrast to last year, when it was so cold that even Russians inured to frigid winters complained about temperatures that lurked around 30 below zero for days at a time.
The bears in the Leningradsky Zoo in St. Petersburg certainly would be. Two of the zoo's five bears have come out of hibernation already, weeks ahead of time.
On Saturday, visitors were surprised when, despite a sign reading "The bears are in their den; they are hibernating," a bear named Varya ambled out into view for a snack.
Some of the zoo's hedgehogs also are waking up.
Average temperatures throughout European Russia have mostly been above freezing in December and January, some 11-15 degrees higher than normal, Roman Vilfand of Russia's Hydrometeorological Center said Tuesday.
Originally posted by iori_komei
...I seem to remember seeing a thread awhile back about bears not
hibernating, so if said thread was about the same story as this one,
please fell free to close this one and redirect....