Polar bears

Rising temperatures push polar bears closer to humans

September 17th, 2009 Polar bears are coming into increasingly conflict with humans as melting ice is pushing them to search for food on land. “Hungry bears don’t just lie down – they go looking for an alternate food source,” says zoologist Ian Stirling at the University of Alberta in Edmonton, Canada. “In many cases this brings them into human settlements and hunting camps.” The team found that the number of bears reported as attacking humans, homes and hunting camps in Churchill on the shores of Hudson more than tripled between 1970 and 2005, from 20 to 90 per year, despite a 20% fall in the bear’s population since 1980. The researchers note that shorter the sea ice season, the greater the reports of problem bear activity. New Scientist I’m sure this is true, but I wonder if humans are also occupying more and more territory and so increasing the amount of potential contact…

Polar bears attacking submarine

September 9th, 2009

Three Polar bears approach the starboard bow of the Los Angeles-class fast attack submarine USS Honolulu (SSN 718) while surfaced 280 miles from the North Pole.

This is a remarkable image. Three Polar bears are approaching the the submarine USS Honolulu 280 miles from the North Pole. The bears investigated the boat for almost 2 hours before leaving. More here

How to save the polar bear

July 20th, 2009 New York Times editorial. “Interior Secretary Ken Salazar has upheld a Bush administration finding that the Endangered Species Act is not a suitable tool for restricting carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases threatening the polar bear and its habitat. We agree, with this codicil: There are steps Mr. Salazar can and must take under the act — steps that the Bush White House would not — to protect the bear..”