Do you enjoy the magnificent sight and splendor of the polar bear, isolated in it’s northern habitat, minding it’s own business and living it’s life as it has for years? Do you thrill to the sight of these beautiful animals adapting to some of the coldest, harshest terrain in the world, raising it’s young and living and thriving in a perfect symbiosis with the extant wild life in these remote places ?
If so, better brace yourself for some bad news….According to my Google sources, these beautiful animals are in danger of extinction because of the continued emission of greenhouse gases by the industrialized countries…
Here is a newspaper story summarizing the latest government reports:
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) – “Polar bears are at risk of dying off if humans don’t reverse the trend of global warming, a blunt U.S. government report filed Thursday said.”The single most important step for polar bear conservation is decisive action to address Arctic warming,” the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service said in a draft recovery plan, part of the process after the agency listed the species as threatened in 2008.”
“Short of action that effectively addresses the primary cause of diminishing sea ice, it is unlikely that polar bears will be recovered. If humans don’t reverse global warming and stop the loss of sea ice, it’s unlikely polar bears will continue as a species.”
“Greenhouse gas emissions contribute to global warming, which is reducing the amount of summer sea ice in the Arctic. Polar bears use sea ice for feeding, mating and giving birth. The Office of Naval Research said the past eight years have had the eight lowest amounts of summer sea ice on record. The worldwide population of polar bears is estimated to be between 20,000 and 25,000 animals, and they live in five Arctic nations. Alaska is the only U.S. state with the iconic white bears.”
“The polar bear group that Alaska shares with Russia and Norway faces the first threat. This group makes up about a third of the world’s population. Under either scenario, it could begin seeing global warming’s ill effects as soon as 2025 because of the dramatic loss of sea ice in this part of the Arctic.”…here are some facts about polar bears:
How big are polar bears?
Very big! Adult males normally weigh 350 to more than 600 kilograms (775 to more than 1,300 pounds). Adult females are smaller, normally weighing 150 to 295 kilograms (330 to 650 pounds). Researchers in Canada estimated one male bear at 800 kilograms (1,700 pounds)!Scientists usually refer to how tall bears are by measuring them at the shoulder when on all fours. Those heights are typically 3.5-5 feet for adult polar bears. An adult male may reach over 10 feet when standing on its hind legs..
How do polar bears survive in the arctic environment?They’re built for it! Polar bears are designed for the arctic climate, where winter temperatures can plunge to -45º C (-50º F). Polar bears are insulated by two layers of fur that help keep them warm. When in good body condition, they also have a thick fat layer. In addition, their compact ears and small tail also prevent heat loss. In fact, polar bears have more problems with overheating than they do from the cold—especially when they run.
What do polar bears eat?
Polar bears have evolved to feed on ice seals, specifically seal fat, the highest calorie food source possible. When an adult bear is in good shape, polar bears eat only the blubber in order to build up the fat reserves they need to sustain themselves between meals. They leave the carcass for scavengers, such as arctic foxes, ravens, and other bears.”
What is the polar bear’s place in the food chain?
“Right at the top of the arctic food chain. Polar bears balance nature by preventing an overpopulation of seals. As with most species that are or will be vulnerable to climate change, habitat is key in the case of the polar bear. Climate change is warming the Arctic along with the rest of the planet — and in the Arctic, that means sea ice is melting. And sea ice is crucial for polar bears survival. Why?
Because polar bears’ main prey — seals — are best hunted on sea ice. Without sea ice, polar bears cannot catch enough seals to eat — and without enough seals to eat, they are unlikely to gain enough weight to survive their autumn to summer fast.
In addition, longer periods between successful hunts decrease polar bears’ reproductive success. A female polar bear who has not gained sufficient weight may not produce cubs; may produce less milk (leading to smaller, less viable cubs); or may abandon cubs — all behaviors that, if they become prevalent enough, will impact a population’s viability.”
One of the most important things that we can do — and that we should do anyway because of all the other impacts climate change will have on people and nature — is to start cutting our carbon emissions, right now! The science says that significant reductions in greenhouse gas emissions alone could be enough to protect northern populations of polar bears indefinitely and to give southern populations a chance of survival”
Well there you have it folks, in chillingly cold concise government facts,figures and predictions…The good news is that we can do something to preserve the polar bears, with the added benefit of saving ourselves and our own food chain and viability as humans, by continuing to press for the overall reduction of green house gases being released into the atmosphere…
Don’t let the greedy industrialists and the spin doctors for the 1% fool you into thinking this is a “natural” event…This is an evil, unnecessary and deadly invasion and take down of the ecosphere of the entire planet…Today the polar bear, tomorrow the human race…
Remember, never ask “For Whom The bell Tolls,” as Ernest Hemingway titled his book, because of course:
It tolls for thee!