Polar bears are critically important in balancing the Arctic food chain, and much of the ecosystem would be thrown out of balance without these unique animals. If we do not take action now to save the polar bears, their population will decline by at least 30% by 2050, according to new research.
Why are polar bears so important?
As one of the largest land carnivores in the world along with grizzly bears, polar bears are known as a keystone species, the apex of the ecosystem. They keep biological populations in balance, a critical component to a functioning ecosystem. … They’re also a sign of health for the ecosystem.
What would happen if polar bears went extinct?
If polar bears were to go extinct, the population of walruses, seals, whales, reindeer, rodents and birds would increase and get out of control. … Since seals create breathing holes, in about 100 to 200 years this will break up the ice and split the arctic circle.
Do we need polar bears to survive?
Importance of polar bears. Polar bears are at the top of the food chain and have an important role in the overall health of the marine environment. Over thousands of years, polar bears have also been an important part of the cultures and economies of Arctic peoples.
What do polar bears need to survive?
Polar bears need an average of 2 kg (4.4 lb.) of fat per day to obtain enough energy to survive. A ringed seal weighing 55 kg (121 lb.) could provide up to eight days of energy for a polar bear.
What are 5 interesting facts about polar bears?
Top 10 facts about polar bears
- Polar bears are classified as marine mammals. …
- Polar bears are actually black, not white. …
- They can swim constantly for days at a time. …
- Less than 2% of polar bear hunts are successful. …
- Scientists can extract polar bear DNA from just their footprints. …
- They face more threats than climate change.
What year will polar bears go extinct?
The study links the animal’s demise by 2100 in Arctic regions to the complete melting of summer ice under a scenario of high greenhouse gas emissions, making it near impossible for ice-dependent polar bears to survive by the end of the century.
What will happen to polar bears in the future?
Polar bears will be wiped out by the end of the century unless more is done to tackle climate change, a study predicts. Scientists say some populations have already reached their survival limits as the Arctic sea ice shrinks.
How do polar bears adapt to their environment?
The polar bear
Their adaptations include: a white appearance – as camouflage from prey on the snow and ice. thick layers of fat and fur – for insulation against the cold. a small surface area to volume ratio – to minimise heat loss.
How are polar bears being protected?
Polar bears are protected under the U.S. Marine Mammal Protection Act (MMPA). The primary objective of the MMPA is to maintain the health and stability of the marine ecosystem and to obtain and maintain an optimum sustainable population of marine mammals.
How will polar bears adapt to global warming?
While polar bears have shown some ability to adapt to changes in their surroundings – for example, by foraging for food on land – scientists project polar bears will become more food-stressed as sea ice diminishes and populations will decline. … There are other impacts of climate change on polar bears, too.