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8 avril 2010 4 08 /04 /avril /2010 19:36

    The polar bear

The Polar bear (Ursus maritimus) lives only in the northern Arctic where it spends most of its time on ice caps. It’s the largest land meat-eater in the world and the largest of the bear family. It has evolved to occupy a narrow ecological niche, with many body characteristics adapted for cold temperatures, for moving across snow, ice, and open water, and for hunting the seals which make up most of its diet.

 

                                          

Some characteristics:

  Weight and size :

- Adult male between 350 and 680 kg for 2,6 metres,

- Adult female around 250 kg for 2 meters.

Color: Off-white fur with black nose, eyes and mouth.

They are great swimmers and they can swim at an average of 6 miles per hour. 

They may live 25 to 30 years.

 

endangered-eating-bear.jpg

 

 

 



 Polar bears eat mostly seals. They find a seal air hole and sit there until a seal comes up to breathe and then they scoop him right out of the hole.

They will occasionally eat other mammals, eggs or vegetation.


                                     endangered polar family

 

 

           

Why is the polar bear endangered?

 

Industrialization has a profound impact on species all over the world.

Hunting is prohibited; polar bears are particularly at risk because their habitat is increasingly threatened by global warming.

When pack ice forms, it melts more quickly, and tends to be thinner as well. In 2004, several polar bear deaths by drowning were recorded.

 

Polar bears have adapted to a high fat diet from ocean-going animals, and their main prey, seals, are contaminated with Persistent Organic Pollutants.

When the seals are eaten, the POPs are absorbed by the bears, and their reproductive ability is being affected as a result.


endangered polar bear-copie-1

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