Humans and Polar Bears
Relation Between Humans and Polar Bears
The interactions between humans and Polar Bears have a long existence. Some of them have been good relationships and others seem to threaten the well being of the other. Early writings and oral stories passed along from generation to generation indicate that many cultures were very respectful of Polar Bears. They understand these large creatures were dominant in their world. They also believed that human souls could take on the form of Polar Bears. Many of their rituals involved honoring the Polar Bears as well.
On the other side of that you have those cultures that found Polar Bears to be a great source of food. They would hunt them and use all but the liver from these animals for their survival. They too were very thankful for the Polar Bear, and only used what they needed to in order to survive.
It wasn’t until much later that Polar Bears and humans started to have huge conflicts. As humans began moving into the territory of these animals, the fights ensued. Humans have always felt they could take over any area they wanted regardless of the natural habitat it would destroy in the process. The Polar Bear was willing to stay and fight for their own survival. Even when they did move to other locations, they often found themselves stepping on the toes of humans in that region too.
The commercial hunting of Polar Bears almost drove them to extinction. The misconception was that there were very powerful bears with a taste for human blood. Therefore they were to be hunted and destroyed so they couldn’t kill humans. With advanced tools and hunting techniques, these efforts were successful at slaughtering huge numbers of them. Many avid hunting fans took part in such expeditions simply for the challenge of killing such a large animal.
Today Polar Bears have found their way to the list of Endangered Animals. However, most humans don’t see to care that they are on there. They would like to see such conservation efforts go towards other animals. They don’t like the fact that such a predator is out there being protected. Yet we need to understand that the Polar Bear remains at the top of the food chain. Should they be destroyed that entire pyramid of balance will come crashing down.
Humans have inadvertently affected the lives of Polar Bears through pollution and global warming as well. As a result of this their natural habitat continues to be destroyed. For example the icy waters of the Arctic region continue to melt. The waters are full of toxins and chemicals that can destroy the seals they depend on for food.
Contrary to popular belief, Polar bears aren’t out there hunting humans. In fact, they are more likely to turn and run than to attack. They have been known though to attack humans when they feel threatened or when they are extremely hungry. Due to the instinctive nature of them, most people attacked by one won’t survive it.
It is believed that humans and polar bears can find a way to live a happy existence with each other. In order for this to happen, education has to take place for all age groups. That way awareness of the needs of Polar Bears is something all are aware of. At the same time efforts have to be made to protect the natural environment of these animals. It is important to remember their status in the world is just as important as ours.