Europe

Mother bear cuts off Dracula's Poenari Castle in Romania

An Alaskan brown bear mother takes her cubs for a walk in Katmai National Park. Image copyright BBC/Tony Campbell/Shutterstock
Image caption The four bears (not pictured) are likely to be caught and moved elsewhere

What's more scary than a world-famous vampire? An angry mother bear, if you ask the Romanian authorities.

Poenari Castle, which draws tourists through its Dracula connections, has been declared off limits after visitors had close encounters with the animal.

The mother bear is understood to be protecting three cubs.

"The environment ministry has given us the green light for the four bears to be captured and moved elsewhere," local official Emilian Dragnea said.

"But we still have to decide where to remove them to," he added.

Poenari Castle stands on a cliff overlooking the Arges River, in the foothills of the Carpathian Mountains.

The 15th Century fortress was spruced up by prince Vlad the Impaler, the inspiration for Bram Stoker's 1897 gothic novel Dracula.

Image copyright Getty Images

Since 1970, it has been accessed via 1,480 stone steps.

Police have blamed tourists for attracting the bears by leaving picnic food at the site.

Around 6,000 brown bears live in Romania, making up 60% of the European population.

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