Polar bears may look cute and cuddly but we all know that is a myth! However, this is not the only myth about polar bears – here we outline the true facts once and for all.
Where do Polar Bears really live?
Polar bears do not live in Antarctica, they inhabit the Arctic regions of five nations: U.S. (Alaska), Canada, Russia, Greenland, and Norway.
Polar Bears Hunt Humans!
Polar bears mainly eat seals with the occasional walrus or whale. However, they are the only animals that will actively hunt humans – they don’t see food very often, so to them everything is prey! There are some towns in Canada that have such a problem with polar bear attacks that they have special Polar Bear Patrol Officers. So ‘cuddly and cute’ definitely is a myth then.
At the same time, humans are the only predator of the polar bear. Apart from us, they are at the top of the food chain.
It's a short busy life for Polar Bears...
In the wild polar bears don’t live very long for their huge size – usually between 15 to 18 years.
It is most common for polar bears to give birth to twins and females only produce five litters in their lifetime. So cubs stay with their mothers for quite a long time (usually about two years). During this time they learn the vital skills needed for surviving in such a harsh climate.
Their fur is white...right?
A polar bear’s fur is not white, it is transparent but appears white because it reflects the snow. This transparency allows their black skin to absorb as much sunlight as possible.
Polar bears are surprisingly good swimmers and are able to swim as far as 100 miles. They use their front paws to people themselves and their back paws to steer. Swimming is an essential skill seeing as most of the sea ice where they live melts in summertime.