Polar bears are survival specialists in an extreme environment—the Arctic, where winter lasts six months and temperatures average -30ºF. Their large body size, layers of thick, hollow hair, and three to four inches of blubber provide insulation from the cold, in and out of the water.
Polar bears depend completely upon the sea for their existence, spending most of their time on the pack ice from which they hunt their preferred prey. The polar bear is a skillful predator of seals, with the help of a keen sense of smell, powerful paws, and sharp claws.
Learn more: Through the use of assisted reproduction and sound scientific technologies, CREW scientists in the Animal Research Division are Saving Species with Science®.
Help us make International Polar Bear Day a global day of action for the bears by taking part in our Thermostat Challenge at home, work, or school. It’s simple: just lower your thermostat up on February 27th to reduce your carbon emissions and help polar bears. And then make every day a polar bear day by buying and installing a programmable thermostat or taking extra steps to reduce your energy consumption throughout the year.
Scientists at the Zoo’s Lindner Center for Conservation and Research (CREW) have developed a way to predict when polar bearshave ovulated and may be pregnant by measuring hormones, which enables zoos to properly care for expectant mothers.
Our two polar bears, Little One (male) and Berit (female) are always “beary” happy to see their visitors.