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Old 05-07-2008, 03:39 PM
 
Location: Barrow, Alaska
3,539 posts, read 6,564,615 times
Reputation: 1829

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Barkingowl View Post
Floyd I appreciate you taking the time to explain about the bears habitat to me, but I guess I'm wondering where exactly it is that they live. Do they just float around on the pack ice for most of their lives?
Something pretty close to that!

They are marine mammals, and water is a very natural environment for a polar bear. They essentially live on the icepack and make temporary excursions to land. The females tend to den up on land, though some of them do so on the icepack, to give birth. They go into something very similar to the state of hibernation, when they den up to give birth, that brown bear do. Males do not hibernate at all, as such.

Polar bears subsist on the blubber from seals (with regularity), walrus (rarely), and whales (when they can scavange a dead one). They will try to eat almost anything, but they must have blubber to survive because it is the only food that provides them with enough calories to build up their own fat reserves. Typically a well fed bear eats only the blubber, leaves the rest behind.

In the Hudson Bay area of Canada the Polar bears cannot hunt for seals during the summer months when the ice on Hudson Bay is gone. That particular population lives on the Bay, not on the Arctic Ocean icepack. They fatten up in the spring when the seals are giving birth, and then when the ice melts they go without sufficient food until fall when the ice returns. Some bears simply eat nothing, and their body adjusts to a metabalism that is very similar to that of a hibernating bear. Other bears attempt to eat berries and anything else they can find, and that keeps them from going into the near hiberation state. Some of these bears lose half their weight during the time when there is no ice.

Other odd facts about Polar bears are interesting too. Here in Barrow when the icepack used to recede only 100 or so miles away during the summer months the bears would swim back and forth with regularity. As the distance became greater in the past decade it has reduced the number of bears here in the summer. We had bears swimming ashore when the ice was 200+ miles away, and they did it with cubs. The bears would come ashore and plonk down for a 2 day nap! But now that the ice is 250-300 miles away, it doesn't happen.

 
Old 05-07-2008, 03:44 PM
 
Location: Barrow, Alaska
3,539 posts, read 6,564,615 times
Reputation: 1829
Quote:
Originally Posted by Majik_Imaje View Post
floyed has to see what wiki and google say first before he can give you a half truth answer
I helped write the Wikipedia article on Polar bears.

Perhaps you should read it!
 
Old 05-07-2008, 04:00 PM
 
Location: um....guess
10,478 posts, read 13,868,789 times
Reputation: 1825
Quote:
Originally Posted by Floyd_Davidson View Post
I helped write the Wikipedia article on Polar bears.

Perhaps you should read it!
Oh you two boys, such competition!
 
Old 05-07-2008, 04:07 PM
 
11,836 posts, read 25,482,883 times
Reputation: 2781
Quote:
Originally Posted by Floyd_Davidson View Post
We had bears swimming ashore when the ice was 200+ miles away, and they did it with cubs. The bears would come ashore and plonk down for a 2 day nap! But now that the ice is 250-300 miles away, it doesn't happen.
Wow! That's impressive.
 
Old 05-07-2008, 05:30 PM
 
Location: Currently living @ the Top of the World in Barrow Alaska
144 posts, read 651,897 times
Reputation: 66
yes that is very impressive !! Polar bears & their cubs are expert swimmers.. now scientists are saying that they drown !! ??

Mod Cut

he is not talking about me because I do not go near wiki !!

it is like swiss cheese ; full of holes " !!!

Last edited by Rance; 05-07-2008 at 05:46 PM.. Reason: Use DM's, this had better end here and now or I will ban you.
 
Old 05-07-2008, 06:57 PM
 
Location: alaska
471 posts, read 1,164,212 times
Reputation: 344
Thanks for the great picts and stories!!!
You know when I listen to my grandpa tell stories of when he was young growing up on the reservation I know not all the facts are true, but thats not why I ask questions and listen to his stories. If you want "accurate" facts about polar bears ask a scientist. I like hearing from locals that live there. Just my 1 1/2 cents.
 
Old 05-07-2008, 07:18 PM
 
Location: Currently living @ the Top of the World in Barrow Alaska
144 posts, read 651,897 times
Reputation: 66
Well I assure you that the stories I post here are accurate. I like the recent statement and comment a hunter from Greenland said to me. He hit the nail right on the head. I am proud to say,, he thanked me for the information I posted.

I watched a scientist last night on channel two news make his report about the plight of the polar bears. this is nothing new, it has been in the news for the last two years. Are they endangered? they had been put on the endangered list, and then quickly taken off, Now a year later they still do not know, so research continues. The whole top of the world ice pack thing. which has been in constant motion and changing, for thousands of years. is a vast huge area. far more than 100 scientists could ever cover. that area is just too huge.

I know what I see up here, in Point Hope and in Barrow, and other coastal villages. Every story I have typed is easily verifiable.
 
Old 05-07-2008, 09:45 PM
 
Location: alaska
471 posts, read 1,164,212 times
Reputation: 344
What time of year do the bears come into the village. Seems like it would be realy hard to spot a white bear in the snow when its dark 24/7 for the time during the winter when the sun never rises. Do barren ground grizzlies make it that far north.
 
Old 05-07-2008, 09:57 PM
 
11,836 posts, read 25,482,883 times
Reputation: 2781
I remember Rance saying that the drilling platforms have signs cautioning everybody to make sure that there aren't any bears under the stairs when they exit.
 
Old 05-07-2008, 09:58 PM
 
Location: Currently living @ the Top of the World in Barrow Alaska
144 posts, read 651,897 times
Reputation: 66
First of all, it is never dark 24 / 7 at any time in the winter. close.. but not quite. We always have some light each day, light enough to read a news paper outside. That amount of light does not last long. A couple of hours at most.

Things are different in Point Hope and different in Barrow. but light is essentially the same.

Polar Bear weather is very cold. sometimes they wander into the villages from teh ocean ice pack, during the winter time.

In Point Hope we see them Feb- April more in the begining of the year than in May. It is too hot by then.

The only animal that can harm a polar bear, is man or a walrus, The walrus wins every time. this is what I have been told by counltess hunters. The walrus can drown that bear very easily, that is one of the main reasons bears are drowning.

I do not know where you get the idea we have darkness 24 / 7 there is no place in alaska that meets or comes close to that description.

you have heard about six months of darkness and six months of light perhaps. In upper Greenland that may be true, but not for ALASKA.

We have six months where we have more darkness than light. We do however have SUN 24 / 7 for 3 1/2 months in the summer time, but we nver have 24 / 7 of darkness.

Point Hope sticks out into the Chukchi sea some 40 miles.. it is a very tiny penninsula that some animals wander into from the HUGE ocean ice pack.
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