Polar Bear Facts
|Size||Up to 10.1 ft (3.1 m) long|
|Speed||Up to 24.8 mph (40 km/h) (short distances, on land)|
|Weight||Up to 1,984 lb (900 kg)|
|Food||Seals, salmon, lemmings|
|Scientific name||Ursus maritimus|
|Characteristics||White fur, webbings|
The polar bear is one of the biggest bears in the world. Only the brown bear and the Kodiak bear in Alaska reach a similar size.
Actually, the Polar Bear is not White
Although the coat of the polar bear appears to be white, its hairs are actually transparent and hollow inside.
There is a good reason for this: The warmth of the sunlight can directly reach the skin, which is actually black to optimally absorb the heat. To clean their coat, polar bears simply wallow in the snow.
Polar Bears Sweat
In the Arctic, temperatures range from -58 degrees Fahrenheit (-50 degrees Celsius) (winter) to sometimes 68 degrees Fahrenheit (20 degrees Celsius) (summer).
During the winter, the coat with hairs up to 30 cm long keeps the bear cozily warm. Yet, during the Arctic summer, the animals have to cool down from time to time.
To achieve this, they lie down in the snow or on the ice on their backs and lift their feet up in the air. This allows them to cool down the largest possible part of their body surface.
They lie down again and again, even when only walking short distances. Sometimes they even jump into the icy (!) waters to refresh themselves.
Smells Like Seals
Polar bears can smell seals, even if the are still 20 miles (32 km) away.
Polar bears cannot swim faster than 10 km/h, but they are able to cover distances of 62 miles (100 km) without pausing.
All polar bears are „left-pawed“.
Two Birds With One Stone ...
Female polar bears combine their pregnancy with their winter rest.
Many people think that polar bears live in caves. Yet, only female polar bears withdraw into caves to give birth to and protect their babies.
After the mating season it takes about 8 months until the little polar bear babies come into the world. About one month before giving birth, the female polar bear digs a cave as a retreat.
Normally there are 1-4 little bears weighing about 1.1 lb (0.5 kg) at birth. At first they are still blind and deaf. After 4 months they are ready to leave their cave.
- Watch now on animalfunfacts.net:
- Video: How Do Animals Survive in the Arctic? - especially the polar bear
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