A report from the CBC this morning (with video) of a large polar bear wandering about the village of Tuktoyaktuk on the (Canadian) shore of the Eastern Beaufort Sea on Thursday (29 September) that got very close to a group of children playing outside. Fortunately, no one was hurt.
That this was a rare event is evident in the awe and excitement in the voices of the residents as someone recorded the movements of the bear through town (picture quality is not the best, but clear enough).
As I’ve said before, with more bears we can expect more interactions with people and more sightings like this that haven’t happened in decades. Map and quotes below.
Posted in Polar bear attacks, Sea ice habitat
Tagged attacks, Beaufort Sea, conflicts, declining sea ice, encounters, polar bear, sea ice, sighting, summer, thick spring ice
A polar bear female accompanied by a cub recently attempted to board a small sailboat anchored in a remote harbour off central Labrador – giving the two American boaters below deck a mighty big surprise.
‘He said ‘it’s a bear, it’s right on the boat, make some noise.'” – Nancy Zydler
The encounter occurred south of the same national park where a much-publicized attack occurred in July 2013 (see previous posts here and here) but had a happier ending. See more below from a CBC report released this morning (based on a radio interview) and some ecological context for the sighting not mentioned by the reporter.
Posted in Polar bear attacks, Population, Sea ice habitat
Tagged attacks, Davis Strait, encounters, harp seals, Labrador, Meltdown, polar bear, prey, problem bears, sailboat, sightings, summer, summer fast, swimming, Torngat Mountains National Park
Sea ice breakup is always a little bit different year to year but since I have the maps archived, take a look at the differences and similarities at this date for this year compared to 2014…
Is there evidence that any polar bears – say Western Hudson Bay bears, for example – were negatively affected by sea ice levels in 2014? Not that I’ve heard. In fact, quite the opposite.
Polar bear guide and blogger Kelsey Eliasson, writing from Churchill, Manitoba, had this to say about the condition of bears and freeze-up that year (16 Nov. 2014):
“With these families appearing [heading out to the ice], it really sums up at just what a productive season this has been for the western Hudson Bay population. Any guide who knows their stuff will tell you this was a banner year for cubs, one we haven’t seen in a long time.”
Meanwhile, bears are starting to come ashore and cause a bit of grief:
Southern Hudson Bay (two days ago): “Polar bear shot after wandering through Kashechewan” [see map below for location: the bear shot was a cub that appears to have been separated from its mother and sibling, who were spotted several km away not causing any trouble]
Iqaliut, Baffin Island (this morning): “Polar bear rips 6 tents pitched in Iqaluit park”
Posted in Conservation Status, Polar bear attacks, Sea ice habitat
Tagged attacks, breakup, Churchill, encounters, polar bear, problem bears, sea ice, summer, threatened, western hudson bay
This is a follow-up to a post on my book blog that I wrote this morning because it’s relevant to the scenario I describe in my novel, set in the year 2025 in northern Newfoundland. I’m cross posting it for the benefit of regular readers here.
It appears that most of the blame for this phenomenon of multiple sightings of hungry bears onshore in the dead of winter (creating havoc and roaming among houses in the coastal Labrador communities of Black Tickle and Charlottetown) has been placed squarely on…climate change. By a government minister. You have to hear this man’s words to believe it.
Posted in Advocacy, Polar bear attacks, Population
Tagged Black Tickle, Charlottetown, climate change, Davis Strait, encounters, facts, Labrador, Newfoundland, Perry Trimper, polar bears, population increase, range contraction, sea ice, sightings
Activist polar explorer Børge Ousland’s told National Geographic that more polar bear encounters on land are due to reduced sea ice – without any reference to population changes over that time or revealing when or where these observations were made.
More vague anecdotal observations and opinions posing as scientific evidence.
Posted in Advocacy, Population, Sea ice habitat
Tagged activist, climate change, encounters, explorer, glaciers, Ice Legacy, Kara Sea, National Geographic, polar bear, population size, problem bears, sea ice, Severnaya Zemlya