Polar Bear Swim Day 2018 is on Monday, January 1, 2018: how did global warming effect polar bears?
Monday, January 1, 2018 is Polar Bear Swim Day 2018. New Year's Day Adrenaline Rush: Polar Bear Plunge [50 PICS] 102. Two brave girls
Make the leap just like a polar bear on Polar Bear Swim Day, hurling yourself into wintry waters for any chilly dip one of the ice and snow. Does that seem like fun? Whether it’s for charitable organisation, for any challenge or just to test different things and memorable, 1000's of individuals worldwide decide to try water in the winter months. Polar bear swims usually occur within the ocean, however the venue could also be a lake or perhaps an outside pool.New Year’s Day is frequently the selected date for any polar bear go swimming, possibly because next, anything 2012 throws to you will appear easy. Some swimming clubs run regular winter periods.Remember, people do not have the body fat and fur that safeguard polar bears in the Arctic cold. Go into the water gradually so it’s little of the shock, have dry clothes ready and warm-up later on with something to consume along with a hot drink.
Is Global Warming Killing the Polar Bears?
By JIM CARLTON
Staff Reporter of THE WALL STREET JOURNAL
December 14, 2005
It may be the latest evidence of global warming: Polar bears are drowning.
Scientists for the first time have documented multiple deaths of polar bears off Alaska, where they likely drowned after swimming long distances in the ocean amid the melting of the Arctic ice shelf. The bears spend most of their time hunting and raising their young on ice floes.
In a quarter-century of aerial surveys of the Alaskan coastline before 2004, researchers from the U.S. Minerals Management Service said they typically spotted a lone polar bear swimming in the ocean far from ice about once every two years. Polar-bear drownings were so rare that they have never been documented in the surveys.
But in September 2004, when the polar ice cap had retreated a record 160 miles north of the northern coast of Alaska, researchers counted 10 polar bears swimming as far as 60 miles offshore. Polar bears can swim long distances but have evolved to mainly swim between sheets of ice, scientists say.
The researchers returned to the vicinity a few days after a fierce storm and found four dead bears floating in the water. "Extrapolation of survey data suggests that on the order of 40 bears may have been swimming and that many of those probably drowned as a result of rough seas caused by high winds," the researchers say in a report set to be released today.
While the government researchers won't speculate on why a climate change is taking place in the Arctic, environmentalists unconnected to the survey say U.S. policies emphasizing oil and gas development are exacerbating global warming, which is accelerating the melting of the ice. "For anyone who has wondered how global warming and reduced sea ice will affect polar bears, the answer is simple -- they die," said Richard Steiner, a marine-biology professor at the University of Alaska.
The environmental group Greenpeace began airing a 30-second commercial yesterday in New York, Los Angeles, Atlanta and other cities showing an animated adult polar bear and a cub on a cracking ice floe. The two bears, nowhere near land, slip underneath the water. "Polar bears may soon be extinct because of global warming," the voice-over states. It ends with "Global Warming: It's the Real Thing," a takeoff of a Coca-Cola Co. commercial featuring polar bears.
Some experts say that climate change may indeed be shrinking the ice pack, but they dispute that emissions are the main culprit or that significantly cutting greenhouse gases would really make a difference. "Whether humans are responsible for some, most, or all of the current warming trend in the Arctic, there is no proposal on the table that would actually prevent continued warming or reverse present trends," said Sterling Burnett, a senior fellow at the National Center for Policy Analysis, a nongovernment organization based in Dallas. "The question is how to adapt to future changes in climate, regardless of the direction or the cause."
In addition to documenting polar-bear deaths, the Minerals Management Service researchers, Chuck Monnett, Jeffrey Gleason and Lisa Rotterman, also found a striking shift in the bears' habits. From 1979 to 1991, 87% of the bears spotted were found mostly on sea ice. From 1992 to 2004, the percentage dropped to 33%. Most of the remaining bears have been found either in the ocean or on beaches, congregating around carcasses of whales butchered by hunters. In the past, polar bears were rarely seen at such kill sites, because they spent their time hunting their favorite meal -- seals -- on sea ice.
Marine experts consider the findings -- to be presented at a marine-mammal conference this week in San Diego -- an ominous sign. Some have warned for years that a rapid thawing of the Arctic from global warming could endanger species like the polar bear. Already, a warmer Alaska over the past half-century has been linked to increased erosion of rivers and streams, insect infestations and the undermining of pipelines and roads as the permafrost thaws.
Alarmed by the swift changes, the Alaska Inter-Tribal Council, a consortium of the state's tribes, earlier this month passed a resolution urging that the U.S. government enact a mandatory program to reduce global warming.
Some scientists predict polar bears could become extinct within the next century because they have adapted over the millennia to only hunting on ice. If they try to swim in disappearing ice conditions to catch seals, more are likely to tire and drown, scientists say. Polar bears that stay onshore aren't adapted to hunting land animals like caribou, which are preyed upon by more-aggressive grizzly bears. Polar bears also require more fat intake than most food on land offers them, experts say.
what color are polar bears?
Polar bear fur is transparent.
Despite what we think, a polar bear's fur is not white. Each hair is clear hollow tube. Polar bears look white because each hollow hair reflects the light. On sunny days, it traps the sun's infrared heat and keeps the bear warm at 98 degrees F (when they're resting).
Polar bear fur is oily and water repellent. The hairs don't mat when wet, allowing the polar bears to easily shake free of water and any ice that may form after swimming.
How have polar bears adapted?
A polar bear lives in cold, arctic regions of the world; it had many features that enable it to survive:
1. Polar bears are strong swimmers; they swim across bays or wide leads without hesitation. They can swim for several hours at a time over long distances. They've been tracked swimming continuously for 100 km (62 mi.) (Stirling, 1988).
2. A polar bear's front paws propel them through the water dog-paddle style. The hind feet and legs are held flat and are used as rudders.
3. A thick layer of blubber (fat), up to 11 cm (4.3 in.) thick, keeps the polar bear warm while swimming in cold water (Stirling, 1988).
4. Polar bears can obtain a swimming speed of 10 kph (6.2 mph) (Stirling, 1988).
5. The hair of a polar bear easily shakes free of water and any ice that may form after swimming.
6. A polar bear's nostrils close when under water.
A polar bear's front paws propel it through the water dog-paddle style. The hind feet and legs are held flat and are used as rudders.
1. Polar bears make shallow dives when stalking prey, navigating ice floes, or searching for kelp.
2. Polar bears usually swim under water at depths of only about 3 to 4.5 m (9.8-14.8 ft.). They can remain submerged for as long as two minutes (Domico, 1988).
3. No one knows how deep a polar bear can dive. One researcher estimates that polar bears dive no deeper than 6 m (20 ft.).
1. Body temperature, which is normally 37C (98.6F), is maintained through a thick layer of fur, a tough hide, and an insulating layer of blubber. This excellent insulation keeps a polar bear warm even when air temperatures drop to -37C (-34F) (Stirling, 1988).
a. Polar bears are so well insulated they tend to overheat.
b. Polar bears move slowly and rest often to avoid overheating.
c. Excess heat is released from the body through areas where fur is absent or blood vessels are close to the skin. These areas include the muzzle, nose, ears, footpads, inner thighs, and shoulders.
d. Polar bears will also swim to cool down on warm days or after physical activity.
Hope that helps!