on thin ice. a warming climate means less ice coverage for the polar bears, which leaves them with less time and area for hunting seals. notes andrew derocher, professor of biological sciences at the university of alberta, who has spent his decades long career studying polar bears, “we probably won’t have polar bears here once we get out to midcentury… they could be gone in a couple of years.”
the hudson bay area is home to about two thirds of the estimated 20 to 25 thousand polar bears in the world. but derocher adds, “if we had a very early melt, and a very late freeze, we could see up to 50 percent mortality in a single year.”
photos by (click pic) keenan ward, thomas d. mengelsen, and the late michio hoshino on the hudson bay. also note the 22º radius halo and parhelia in the fifth photo.