Explore.org has this polar bear cam based at Cape Churchill inside Wapusk National Park. It won’t be long before even these polar bears are heading to the ice in this incredibly late polar bear season. North winds and frigid temperatures have returned to the region and the hungry polar bears will migrate out as soon as the ice supports them. This is the latest polar bears have been on land around Churchill in many years!
Here are the polar bear stats for the past week in Churchill. There’s still good numbers of bears in the Polar Bear Holding Facility. South winds might add a twist to the polar bear numbers on the coast and out at Cape Churchill. We will keep everyone posted on the affect the weather has on the polar bears in Churchill over the next couple of weeks!
Polar bear season in Churchill has been steady this year though the Manitoba Conservation report indicates there are numerous polar bears out at Cape Churchill. They should start to migrate along the coast west towards Churchill in the next week or so. The temperatures have been pretty mild so bears are isolated in certain areas at the moment. Stay tuned for more action from the CWMA!
Polar bear surveying the Hudson Bay. Brad Josephs photo.
Caribou grazing on the tidal lowlands out at Cape Churchill seem content and calm. Arctic summer is the greatest time of year in Churchill in my opinion as various wildlife moves into the region and everywhere you look there’s some kind of action. Polar bear season has the big draw here though the bountiful Churchill Arctic summer is by far the most exhilarating time for seeing the abundance of northern life forms. From tundra, to hundreds of migratory birds, to the Hudson Bay, incredible experiences are there for any nature enthusiast! Journey to Churchill this summer!
The Churchill River remains unfrozen due to the reoccurring southerly winds that have maneuvered the Hudson Bay pack ice in and out of the Churchill coast. This constant shifting at just the right times has left the Churchill River in a state of flux. Unfrozen water flows in and out of the mouth of the river, a not so unusual and the coast out at Cape Churchill, traditionally the final jump off location for polar bears, is still just scattered ice floes.
Churchill River still unfrozen. Alex De Vries – Magnifico photo.
Unfrozen Churchill River to date. Alex De Vries – Magnifico photo.
Even with the current ice conditions, the vast majority of polar bears in the area are floating on ice and hunting seals. Manitoba Conservation released all bears from the holding facility around the 25th of November and a few stragglers have been sighted around Churchill as evidenced by bear traps just outside some housing facilities.This is not completely uncommon for the odd bear to still be around though lack of consistent ice in the bay has enabled some bears to remain on land until the pack ice returns.
Bear trap outside of housing in Churchill. Heather Bekar photo.
This El Nino year has provided some unusual affects in Churchill. Before long the cold winter will set in and we all will be preparing for another phenomenal northern lights season beginning in late January. Stay tuned for the latest new from Churchill!