Polar bears are one of the most well-known animals in the world, but many people don’t know that they’re endangered. In order to raise awareness for these bears, we’ve answered your questions about their endangerment and we’ve also covered what you can do to help (even if you’re not an expert on polar bears).
Is It True That Polar Bears Are Endangered?
Yes, it’s true. The polar bear is the first animal listed on the US Endangered Species Act because climate change is fundamentally altering their habitat.
In 2006, polar bears were listed as a federally threatened species and that same year the US Fish and Wildlife Service adopted recovery plans for more than 1,000 species.
As a result of these efforts, many protections have been enacted for the arctic ecosystem, including regulations for offshore oil drilling and changes to wastewater practices of nearby communities.
The polar bear is the largest bear in the world. Its population fluctuates from year to year, but scientists estimate their numbers at 20,000 to 25,000. Due to climate change and rising sea levels, polar bears are facing threats from coastal towns in Canada and Alaska.
These changes have already drastically affected the bears’ ability to hunt seals for food. If we continue using fossil fuels as quickly as we do now, there is a significant likelihood that we will damage this ecosystem’s ability to support polar bears.
How Can I Help Polar Bears?
We’ve come up with 10 ways you can help this endangered animal. You can…
- Support the Endangered Species Act
- Reduce your carbon footprint
- Adopt a polar bear
- Speak up for polar bears at rallies and meetings in Washington, D.C.
- Visit the arctic to see polar bears in their natural habitat
- Spread the word that polar bears are endangered so others will help them too!
- Donate to organizations like Polar Bears International or WWF to support research and conservation efforts for polar bears
- Hold a fundraiser. Consider fundraisers for polar bears and raise money for this endangered species.
- Invite a polar bear expert to your school or community group to attract more attention to polar bears
- Get involved with other organizations or groups that are interested in protecting the polar bear and its habitat as well
Will Polar Bears Go Extinct?
We don’t know if polar bears will become extinct or not, but many scientists and organizations are working hard to make sure that doesn’t happen.
There are many who are concerned with the polar bear’s future and have developed methods of helping them by working with local communities to create conservation areas where seals can feed themselves in relative safety while also limiting human impacts on the ecosystem as a whole.
If we all work together we can find ways to protect this endangered species. Donate, join a charity or start taking action yourself, to help stop climate change and save the polar bears from extinction – future generations of both polar bears and humans will thank you.