A ONE-YEAR-OLD girl miraculously survived three nights alone in a forest infested with wild bears and wolves.
Lyuda Kuzina wandered away from her mother as she played in her unfenced garden near Obninsk in Smolensk region, Russia.
Some 500 searchers joined a massive rescue effort for the girl and hope was fading when she was suddenly found alive.
Lyuda, the 22-month-old daughter of a nuclear physicist, was eventually located in the thick forest around two-and-a-half miles from her home.
“One of the groups stopped to rest after searching for a long time, and suddenly they heard a faint squeak,” said a spokesman for SALVAR rescue group.
“They called again and heard another squeak.”
The rescuers added: “Lyuda immediately stretched out her thin arms and snuggled tightly to her rescuers….
“Everyone cried – experienced and first time volunteers, local residents, everyone was sobbing.”
She was found in an area of fallen trees amid forest where wild animals including brown bears and wolves roam.
Temperatures at night were unusually warm, around 20C, which helped her astonishing survival.
“She was weak, bitten all over by insects, but most importantly she was alive,” the rescuers said.
A video shows the girl as she was reunited with her relieved mum at the search HQ.
She was well enough to drink from a water bottle on her own.
The girl was shown wearing nothing on top, but reports did not say what she wore when she wandered into the forest.
Her mum – not named in reports – had gone to speak to a neighbour, and Lyuda went after her and ended up lost.
“Rescuers carried the girl to the edge of the forest,” said the Kremlin’s children’s ombudswoman Anna Kuznetsova.
She is conscious, and trying to speak
“An ambulance was already waiting for her there. Now the baby is in a local hospital, she is being examined by doctors.
“She is conscious, and trying to speak.”
Lyuda was taken for checks at Special Children’s Clinical Hospital in regional capital Smolensk.
A helicopter had been on standby to fly her for urgent treatment in Moscow, but her condition was assessed as not needing a top hospital in the capital.
Regional health minister Olga Stunzhas said: “The child’s condition today is assessed as moderate, and there is no threat to her life.”
“The girl is on an intravenous drip to boost her strength.”
It comes after a Russian woman was killed by a bear after wandered off from a wedding party in Sverdlovsk.