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The Polar Bear


The Polar Bear The polar bear is a mighty hunter of seals. The most carnivorous of the bears, it is also the most patient. They will sit near a seal blow-hole for hours, waiting, until the animal surfaces. When it does, it is all over for the seal. One powerful blow from a forepaw brings a swift meal for the bear and a swifter death for the seal.

The conditions of the polar north are harsh, with temperatures well below freezing almost constantly. In order to survive, the polar bear has to be an expert survivalist, able to cope with the grueling conditions of his environment. Like a giant solar panel, the skin of the bear is black to draw every bit of possible heat from the sunlight. The hairs if the pelt appear to be white, but are actually transluscent and transmit the light down to the skin. Below these hairs are "underhairs" of orange or yellow.

Like those of other bears, the ears of the polar bear are round. They are, however, smaller and closer to the head. This, along with the overall shape of the animal help to make it a formidable swimmer. The paws are large, and slightly webbed, which also contribute to the bear's abilities as a swimmer.

There is a great degree of sexual dimorphism among the bears as well. The males are huge, the heaviest of them weighing as much as 1300 pounds. The females are smaller, the largest of them being only about 600 pounds.

The boars do not generally hibernate, but remain active for most of the year. The pregnant females are the exception to this, however. They go through a denning and hibernation period, just like that of the black, brown, and other bears.

Polar bears are more agressive than other bears. Even in captivity.

Bears
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