By Daniel Herda
Polar bears are the largest land carnivore on earth, feeding on seals and located in the Arctic Circle and sometimes as far south as Newfoundland.
They are known to drift across ice shelves at great distances when traveling from one place to the other and can live on a frozen water source for several months as long as the sustenance of seals is plenty and catchable.
Biologists have estimated about 20,000 to 25,000 polar bears in the world, which is decreasing every year. A suspected reason for these bears vanishing is the impact of climate change and how the ice breaking can predict early hibernation routines.
University of Alberta’s polar bear research in Hudson Bay revealed that polar bears are returning to shore earlier in the summer (around June) and later in the fall (around November) to return to the ice masses.
Since seals are mostly hunted on sea ice, the more time the polar bears stay on land the more time they have to go without food.
Some cubs do not survive to adulthood.
Which means the extinction of this species is inevitable if climate change continues to alter the lives of these bears.
Seth Cherry, University of Alberta lead researcher, compiled over 10 years of data measuring and monitoring polar bear movement patterns across sea ice. Cherry’s research discovered how the melting sea ice predicts polar bear migration.
“These are precisely the kind of changes one would expect to see as a result of the warming climate,” said Cherry.
The population of the Hudson Bay polar bears has declined since the ‘90s, numbering around 900 bears today. The polar bear’s diet is also changing.
Cherry said climate-induced change causing sea ice to melt affects the overall health of the polar bears.
The research was published on March 19, 2013, in the British Ecological Society’s Journal of Animal Ecology.
Unfortunately, in my opinion, the bears cannot verbally express the feelings of starvation to mankind and have no way to communicating their plea for help.
The mothers who lose their cubs to starvation only experience confusion, loneliness and fear, because they do not know what is happening to them.