As the weather is up and down, cold one day and then extremely hot the next, no matter the short changed in weather, climate is a huge deal breaker for the future of the polar bear. Are humans responsible for the future of the big white bears that roam around on ice all day trying to survive? Maybe we are, maybe we are not, but polar bears are diminishing due to fluctuating environmental changes, gas and oil activities like drilling in the Atlantic Ocean, and their survival rate is decreasing as a result of starvation. Climate change has been one of the top leading causes of sea ice loss. According to Polar Bear International a study found from satellite pictures starting from the 1900s to now show major sea ice loss.
As the ice continues to melt, some polar bears are drowning because they have to swim longer distances to reach the ice sheets. The U.S. Geological Survey has predicted that two-thirds of today’s polar bear population will be gone by 2050 due to the melting of the Arctic ice cap (New England Aquarium, 2013; USGS, 2007). Researchers of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service said, “Without enough sea ice, the bears’ disappearance probably take place as young cubs failed to survive to adulthood and females were unable to reproduce successfully” (Zabarenko, 2013). Animals that live on ice are not the only ones who affected by global warming.
With the gap increasing, the conditions of the water have become hazardous for the Polar bears, making it harder for them to journey across. “A female polar bear reportedly swam for nine days - nonstop-across the Beaufort Sea before reaching an ice floe, costing her 22 percent of her weight and her cub” (PolarBearsInternational, n.d.). Nine days –nonstop is too much swimming for a Polar Bear, and in no way good for her health. In the process of swimming for those nine days she lost almost 1/4th of her body weight, which won’t be easy for her to gain back, and her cub. According to
Marine and terrestrial fauna at the earth’s polar regions are negatively impacted by global climate change due to the increase in temperatures most of which are now listed as endangered species due to the destruction of their habitat and alteration of their food web. The earth’s polar regions are the ice-covered areas located at the northern and southern ends of the globe known as the Arctic and Antarctica respectively. Life in these regions are incredibly difficult thus there are few and specific species living there. The north pole; the Arctic is affected most by the increasing temperatures as it has been proven to be heating up twice as fast as the rest of the world. This heat is therefore resulting in the melting of the ice.
In 2002 the Ward Hunt Ice Shelf, which has been in the Artic for 3,000 years, split in half. (http://www.brighthub.com). The shelf keep braking into smaller pieces, which also serves as natural home to polar bears. If the shelf continues to break then the polar bears in the artic will eventually won’t have a habitat to live in. This is also affecting the food that they eat.
Polar bears have created at series of adaptations such as their coats, paws, and feeding patterns to help combat the subzero temperatures. Reproducing is necessary for a species to survive. Polar bears have learned the most efficient method for raising their young in the artic environment. They serve as the main predator for many of the artic animals, but their only predators carry a different caliber. Global warming and starvation are the only competitors for polar bears in the arctic.
With the climate change and the decrease of sea ice, the number of polar animals is decreasing and their health is threatened. For example, the average weight of female polar bears in 1980 was about 650 pounds, but the number reduced to about 500 pounds in 2004 (Djoghlaf 15). The earlier breakup and later condensation of sea ice shortens the hunting season of polar bears. Polar bears mainly feed on seals that indwell icy land. The melting ice reduces the number of seals and food intake of polar bears.
Compared to other bears, polar bears are more willing to consider humans as prey. Most likely the person attacked is killed, unless the polar bear is killed first. Polar bears can live up to 20 to 30 years, but only a few of the polar bears live past 15 to 18 years. The oldest known polar bear in the Arctic lived 32 years. And the oldest polar bear in a zoo lived 41 years.
Global warming has caused much damage to the polar bear population due to the warming of their habitat. To begin with, the melting of polar ice caps has caused polar bears to swim long distances. According to Bryan Walsh of TIME Magazine the melting of the ice caps have caused polar bears especially the young cubs to swim longer distances which has caused a “ forty-five percent mortality rate” (Walsh). In the article Walsh, writes about a study that showed that younger cubs because of low fat and strength were more likely to die due to the long di...
Humans will not be able to survive the results of human activities due to land degradation, lack of water management skills, pollution, and increasing carbon footprints. In 1750, a revolution started globally. This revolution was called the Industrial Revolution; it changed agriculture, manufacturing, mining, transportation & technology forever. It has even changed lives economically and culturally, but most importantly, the great effects it has on the environment. “A glacier in the high Andes 5,200 meters above capital, Lima, where one of the main water supplying glaciers has shrunk by more than a kilometer over the last decade...Eskimo villagers are going hungry because global warming has changed the migration patterns of seals and walruses, an important part of the Eskimo diet,” (Humanity’s Future.