Category Archives: Canadian Arctic

Polar Bear Family

Polar Bear Blog – As El Nino Goes

This winter has been interesting to see how media and online sources are talking about not just El Nino but the Arctic Oscillation as well.  For me, this is pretty neat.  When I started driving Tundra Buggy in 1999, no one really had any idea what an El Nino was or what effect it would really have, Arctic Oscillation was actually something only talked about by 'climate change deniers' ha.  The 1999 era was taken as proof that global warming was here and the polar bears were doomed. So, its nice to see that climate is … Continue Reading ››

Polar Bear Blog – Radio Collar Update

We spent the day talking to a variety of management stakeholders in the Churchill area and here's where we stand with Xena's collar.  It sounds like Environment Canada (Canadian Wildlife Service) appears to be the only agency that is authorized to collar bears in the Churchill area.  All of this activity takes place within Wapusk National Park in September.  Polar Bears International then utilizes these collars as a means of fundraising for their organization and other research projects. So, here's the tricky part...  Parks Canada issued the permit to collar this bear, however, they cannot handle … Continue Reading ››
Mom with single cub

Polar Bear Blog – Northwinds

North winds have finally hit after a month of south and west winds. Ice built up in late October but was all dispersed by wind and warm temperatures of November. There is some ice build up around Seal River, Arviat and Button Bay but its still a tough year for most bears. The last wave of mothers and cubs have arrived and are trying to lay low waiting for the ice. It’s a tall order though, these last family groups have spent most of the season hiding out in the willows and at the treeline, preferring … Continue Reading ››
mom and cub

Polar Bear Blog – Bears Ready, Ice Not So Much

On this day last year, bear season was over.  Enough ice had packed onto shore that most of Churchill's bears left en masse, heading back out to try their luck at early season seal hunting.  Other than a stressed out reality film crew, everyone was pretty excited about yet another early freeze. This year holds a much different story.  El Nino has finally arrived and its really almost t-shirt weather in Churchill, possibly even naked sun bathing.  The Churchill River is still open and south winds have washed the shore ice back into the bay.  Early … Continue Reading ››
Waiting for the Ice

Polar Bear Blog – The Northwest Passage Lost

In the race of northern shipping routes, its becoming pretty clear that the Northwest Passage has lost.  Still clogged with ice, we are entering yet another year of poor navigation across the Canadian Arctic.  Hudson Strait has had heavier ice than normal, Iqaluit's breakup was weeks later than normal and, well, its just not a great season for commercial shipping in northern Canada. The Northeast Passage, on the other hand, has been open for some time and traffic just seems to be gathering steam over there.  This is a bit of a mixed bag in terms … Continue Reading ››