Friday, January 28, 2011

Alaska Marine Science Symposium - Polar Bears

Ocean Watch Captain Mark Schrader was recently in Alaska and came across this amazing polar bear story which quite frankly has stretched my imagination to a new extreme. This is the new world of the polar bear...

"Between 26 August and 4 September, 2008, a radio collared adult female polar bear swam 687 km through ice-free waters north from the Alaskan Beaufort Sea coast to offshore pack ice. The bear then intermittently swam or walked on the sea ice surface an additional 1800 km until her recapture on the Beaufort Sea coast on 26 October 2008. During the 687 km swim, collar activity sensors and GPS data showed that the bear swam CONTINUOUSLY without rest for 232 hours. During the 9 day swim her body temperature declined and between her first capture and subsequent recapture she lost 22% of her body weight and lost her yearling cub."

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