A polar bear mom has one of the hardest jobs on the planet. Polar bears are born around December 31st each year in dens, so any of the cubs we see on the cams or from the tundra buggies are approximately 10 months (cubs of the year) or 22 months old (yearlings).
“It is always a great sighting, and definitely very special when a mother is comfortable enough around us to nurse her cubs,” say Cassandra Debets, Polar Bears International’s Citizen Science project MES student. These cubs will grow quickly… their mother’s milk is almost 33% fat!
Polar bear cubs remain with their mother until they’re about 2-1/2 years old—although some bears in the Hudson Bay area wean their young at age 1-1/2. During this time with mom, they learn how to hunt and survive in one of the earth’s harshest environments. Between the time they leave their mother and they are mature enough to mate, they are called subadults. Watch it all live on the Polar Bear Cam here.