Category Archives: Polar Bear Research

Polar Bear Blog – Earth Day Update

Well, since its Earth Day (and also since I accidentally renewed by Internet Hosting Package for another 3 years…), its probably time for a Polar Bear Alley update. Its been an eventful winter for Churchill’s polar bears.  First, they had a late start to the season; the bears didn’t leave Churchill until early December and the ice wasn’t really locked for some time after that…  Things got a bit ‘weird’ in that last week of waiting but the coast emptied out pretty quick once the ice did show up. You could see open water from Churchill for … Continue Reading ››

Polar Bear Blog – December’s Here and So Are The Bears

Well, finally 'fixed' my blog... it sort of got put on the backburner since there's been bears all over the place for the last two weeks.  Basically, around the time that the last tourists left, the bears started their annual 'migration' along the coast. Each year, in early October, there's one day that a huge wave of bears start walking along the coast, heading west towards Button Bay where some of the first ice forms and some of the first seal hunting can be found.  This year, that wave showed up about three weeks late, starting … Continue Reading ››

Polar Bear Blog – Adaptation Day

Still no break in the weather and even the bears have settled down, with a couple singles and one family - a mother with one cub - nestled along the Churchill coast.  A lot of the ice on the roads is melting now, giving the feeling that the season has started lurching backwards - kind of like the United States! (ahem, just kidding... sort of). But given the current weather and political conditions, its probably a good time to talk about how bears have adapted to a changing climate over the last decade or so.  First of all, … Continue Reading ››

Polar Bear Blog – Groundhog Day

This bear season is shaping up to be a bit of a tricky one…  When we arrived on November 1st, it felt as thought the season was about a week late.  One week later and it feels like its two weeks late, judging by the forecast with an average 8-10C above normal for the next week, we could be three weeks late.  Its almost like we’re stuck on October 21st or something.  And October 21st isn’t really prime bear season. With gray and drizzle, the bears keep moving.  A couple new family groups have moved … Continue Reading ››

Polar Bear Blog – Bit of a Late Start

Its a late start this year, for both the ice and the blog.  It looks like it might be a late finish too.  The El Nino that was predicted last year may finally have hit.  Almost no shore ice can be seen along the Churchill coast line, a few of the small bays showed signs of freezeup but today’s spike in temperatures, a high of +1C, has melted a good chunk of that ice.  There is ice moving, along with the occasional bear riding the floes, in the Churchill River but for now it remains … Continue Reading ››