J.B. Stone wrote:B....B...But, they're so LOVABLE....!!!
Knox wrote:Polar bears can swim 2 kilometers non-stop. So they weren't stranded unless the photographer was using a very strong lens.
Welcome to the future boomers, you''ll be lucky if we don''t euthanize you at 70. I am the voice of the coming generation, and you will be the subject of our righteous anger. You have destroyed the earth, now history will blame you, your generation will be as reviled as the Germans and Japanese who are in their eighties and nineties now.
<a href=http://www.independent.co.uk/environment/nature/the-incredible-shrinking-polar-bear-1651315.html>The incredible shrinking polar bear</a> - Animals lose weight and size as melting ice limits hunting - Polar bears are shrinking, along with the ice on which they live – and are turning to cannibalism – as global warming increasingly stops them getting enough to eat.
Scientists say the animals are now only two-thirds as big as they were 30 years ago as melting ice makes it harder for them to catch seals, and that they have begun to hunt each other instead.
The news comes as Arctic nations agreed at a special summit in Norway last week to draw up an action plan to try to save the highly endangered species. (Geoffrey Lean, The Independent)
Don’t reporters check anything anymore? - How hard would it have been for the reporter to plug in a simple search (like "’polar bear’ +cannibalism", maybe?) and then up would pop items like:
Factors affecting the survival of polar bear cubs (Ursus maritimus) are poorly understood (Derocher and Stirling, 1996). Low food availability and accidents on the sea ice may be the main sources of cub mortality (Uspenski and Kistchinski, 1972; Larsen, 1986; Derocher and Stirling, 1996). Intraspecific predation, infanticide, and cannibalism have been reported in polar bears (Belikov et al., 1977; Hansson and Thomassen, 1983; Larsen, 1985; Lunn and Stenhouse, 1985; Taylor et al., 1985). However, some of the instances have followed human activities such as harvest or immobilization (Taylor et al., 1985). Regardless, intraspecific predation has been suggested as a regulating feature of ursid populations (e.g., McCullough, 1981; Young and Ruff, 1982; Larsen and Kjos-Hanssen, 1983; Stringham, 1983; Taylor et al., 1985). <a href=http://pubs.aina.ucalgary.ca/arctic/Arctic52-3-307.pdf>(Infanticide and Cannibalism of Juvenile Polar Bears (Ursus maritimus) in Svalbard</a>, ARCTIC, VOL. 52, NO. 3 (SEPTEMBER 1999) P. 307–310)
Wouldn’t they then have wondered about the list of references 1977-1985 specifically on intraspecific predation (in case reporters don’t know, intraspecific means existing or occurring within a species — in this case bears eating each other or practicing cannibalism), infanticide, and cannibalism (a term some references used rather than the cumbersome intraspecific predation)?
So which is it? Were ice conditions similar 20-30 years ago or do bears simply act this way normally? Either way there doesn’t seem to be anything new here, does there? In fact there has been a veritable explosion in the number of polar bears over the period, perhaps this is a food availability/population pressure thing. Sheesh! What a lot of nonsense about bears you see printed lately: Beaufort Sea polar bears starving to death, scientist finds - Desperate animals resorting to cannibalism, wandering south to find food (CBC News) Perhaps they are, maybe the population has simply maxed out for the available habitat and food resource. Perhaps mechanical transport and more efficient hunting methods are selectively culling the biggest bears and leading to reduced average mass as happens in other wild species harvested by people.
Whatever the case, people's fixation with climate is hardly likely to help the bears any.
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