A recent project monitoring polar bears will help scientists better understand patterns of energy use in a warming Arctic. The project partners included Polar Bears International, USGS, explore.org, Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources, York University, San Diego Institute for Conservation Research, Exeye (camera inventor) and Arctic Bear Productions.
International Polar Bear Day is February 27th and Polar Bears International (PBI) is once again bringing to light various ways we can all contribute to protecting this iconic species as well as fight against global warming trends affecting polar bears in their Arctic habitat. One initiative you can take is signing PBI’s petition asking Congress and the White House to set fair prices for carbon and thus accelerating the transition to utilize renewable energy sources.
Each year in October and November, travelers make the journey to Churchill, Manitoba with Natural Habitat Adventures to see the world’s greatest concentration of polar bears, which congregate as they wait for the sea ice to freeze on Hudson Bay. Nat Hab partners with World Wildlife fund (WWF) to educate people about polar bears and climate change through a unique partnership—Nat Hab’s Polar Bear Expedition Leaders, who have been guiding bear tours for an average of more than 10 years each, receive training and resources from WWF’s top scientists, ensuring the best interpretive experience available.
Here are some of the top polar bear photos from this past season in Churchill to inspire everyone to contribute to the ongoing fight for their survival!
Polar bears in the snow in the Churchill Wildlife Management Area. Photo by Katie de Meulles.
Polar bear playing peek-a-boo with a Polar Rover. Photo by Nat Hab guide Justin Gibson.
A curious bear says hello to guests. Photo by Nat Hab guide Brad Josephs.
Polar bears in the sun. Photo by Natural Habitat Adventures.
Polar bear sow and cub in the willows in the Churchill Wildlife Management Area. Photo by Nat Hab guide Brad Josephs.
April is sea-ice melt month in traditionally ice-covered Arctic waters and regions in the north. Since satellite measurements began in 1979, this past April was recorded as the second-lowest level. Data shows that multi-year thicker ice also is declining. Second and third-year ice declined by 30% and 10% respectively. Data was compiled by the National Snow and Ice Data Center in Boulder, CO.
Sea-ice coverage has become the harbinger of the global warming issue and often portrayed as evidence that the situation in the Arctic is foreshadowing the coming serious repercussions of carbon emissions and human-caused pollution. The polar bear population in the Hudson Bay region will see direct affects from continued sea-ice melting and earlier thawing. Conservation groups such as World Wildlife Fund and Polar Bears International are working tirelessly to create awareness and action movements to recognize and implement ways to curb carbon emissions and control global warming.
Here’s a very informative video about polar bears for kids by Polar Bears International, a group dedicated to preserving and studying the mighty polar bear. Enjoy and get excited for polar bear season…just around the corner!