Climate change makes polar bears go hungry / News / The Foreigner

Climate change makes polar bears go hungry. Weight loss on the increase as ice starts to thaw. The Arctic ice is breaking up in some areas three weeks earlier than before. There has been a significant decline in the thickness of sea ice and total coverage over the past 10 years, according to a new report published by norden.org. Lack of food The impact of the early thaw is now being felt by the bears. Declining numbers of seals for hunting have meant a 25 percent weight-reduction of the average female in certain parts of the Arctic over the last 20 years. Females now have an average body mass of 225kgs. If this falls below 190kgs, they risk not being able to reproduce at all.

starving, polar, bears, arctic, regions, ice, thawing, weight, reduction, climate, rising, temperatures



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Climate change makes polar bears go hungry

Published on Tuesday, 8th September, 2009 at 14:21 under the news category, by Michael Sandelson   .
Last Updated on 9th September 2009 at 11:50.

Weight loss on the increase as ice starts to thaw.

Polar bear standing on the rocks
Polar bear standing on the rocks
Photo: Kaefer Photo/Shutterstock Images


The Arctic ice is breaking up in some areas three weeks earlier than before. There has been a significant decline in the thickness of sea ice and total coverage over the past 10 years, according to a new report published by norden.org.

Lack of food

The impact of the early thaw is now being felt by the bears. Declining numbers of seals for hunting have meant a 25 percent weight-reduction of the average female in certain parts of the Arctic over the last 20 years. Females now have an average body mass of 225kgs. If this falls below 190kgs, they risk not being able to reproduce at all.

Polar bears are confined to arctic and sub arctic ice-covered seas, especially in areas with annual ice cover over the continental shelves. These areas contain high numbers of ring sealed pups, which are their main source of food, and the bears consume highest amounts in the spring to fill up their body reserves.

Scientists are concerned that should the rising temperatures in the Northern Hemisphere continue, there will be even longer periods without ice. This will reduce hunting possibilities even further, with the bears will becoming increasingly “food-stressed”.

Threatened

Polar bears are the most sensitive to climate change amongst the marine mammal species. Researchers fear a risk of the species disappearing completely from many areas where they thrive today, with remaining populations becoming more fragmented and isolated.

The polar bear is protected by the Agreement on the Conservation of Polar Bears and Their Habitat from 1973.




Published on Tuesday, 8th September, 2009 at 14:21 under the news category, by Michael Sandelson   .
Last updated on 9th September 2009 at 11:50.

This post has the following tags: starving, polar, bears, arctic, regions, ice, thawing, weight, reduction, climate, rising, temperatures.





  
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