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Brown Bears & Polar Bears: Chat with Mike Fitz & PBI (10/19)

As one bear season comes to an end, another bear season begins. Join us on Friday, October 19th, at 5pm ET/ 2pm PT for a special bear panel. Explore.org fellow, Mike Fitz, will join Alysa McCall from Polar Bears International to explore the similarities and differences between brown bears and polar bears.

Do polar bears hibernate? How many cubs does a polar bear rear vs a brown bear? These questions, and more, will be answered on Friday! Submit your questions below and we will make sure to pass them along to our bear experts. 

When we go live, you can watch here!

  • Kallie

    What is the Polar Bears primary predator? I know the melting ice is a danger to the polar bears, as well as the other wildlife living in those areas. Are we already at a stage that you would call critical with respect to their habitat?

  • Kallie

    I know that the polar bears, as well as many other types of wildlife, live in areas that are experiencing a lot of ice melt. Are we at a stage now that you could call critical? What can be done to mitigate that, if anything?

    • Suzy

      I am in the Arctic and many are misled about ice melt. There is no ice melt here. It is a sham.

      • Jusywho

        If what you say is true, please explain pictures that are taken over the Arctic and Antarctica showing land (ice) mass decreasing. The planet is warming and glaciers/permafrost is melting. Please help me understand what is causing this. Do others who live up in the Arctic believe it is all a sham?

      • http://explore.org explore.org mod

        While bears may be thriving in areas by you, polar bears in Churchill are declining due to ice melt. We encourage you to join us in our live chat tomorrow to discuss this more.

  • Fiona at Ice Bear Quilts

    I read reports that Polar Beras are getting thinner, due to environmental challenges. What effect does weight loss have on polar bears reproductive capabilty? What is the critical weight below which a female bear cannot successfully reproduce and raise her cubs?

  • Susanridd

    I read that as hibernation time for brown bears approaches, the bears’ metabolism starts to get sluggish. Has that slow-down has started? Are the bears acting a little more ‘low key’ and slower?
    Even though polar bears don’t hibernate, do they have metabolism slow-downs?

  • betterthanwatchingwimbledon

    How similar or dissimilar are a brown bear’s paws compared to a polar bear’s (including claws)?

  • betterthanwatchingwimbledon

    How many teeth does an adult polar bear have compared to an adult brown bear? Do both have fewer “baby” teeth?

  • Suzy

    Knut und Thomas forever: So I suspect that polar bears eat fish at sea. Is this true? They are fed good wholesome fish in zoos, so I would think the PB would eat fish at sea. Yes, they eat seals but they can eat fish. Am I right?

  • betterthanwatchingwimbledon

    Are polar bears better insulated to cope with the extreme cold than brown bears? Do they have a similar blood supply?

  • betterthanwatchingwimbledon

    What is the normal body temperature of a polar bear v brown bear?

  • betterthanwatchingwimbledon

    Does a polar bear’s blood hold more oxygen than a brown bear’s blood?

  • http://gazelleproductions.com/ Graham Houghton

    I gather that polar bears are related to brown bears from which line they diverged. How long ago did this take place?

  • Leigh Wiethoff

    I’m aware that there have been instances of hybrids and wonder if the loss of the ice packs that drive the polar bears to land more will cause more interbreeding.

    • http://gazelleproductions.com/ Graham Houghton

      It may be the polar bears’ salvation until the next ice age. Sad, though, if that’s what it takes.

  • annie3tree

    I have read that polar bears have such good insulation that they don’t show up on infrared. Do brown bears show up on infrared?