The US Geological Survey recently released a video of a female polar bear hunting in the Beaufort Sea and interacting with a potential mate. The video is believed to be the first ever taken from a wild polar bear in the Arctic Sea and is part of a new study to see how the animals respond to sea ice loss.
“We deployed two video cameras in 2013, but did not get any footage because the batteries weren’t able to handle the Arctic temperatures,” said USGS bear researhcer Dr. Todd Atwood in a press release. “We used different cameras this year, and we are thrilled to see that the new cameras worked.”
Scientists have been monitoring bears with radio collars for decades, but the cameras allow researchers a more intimate look into the day-to-day life of a polar bear.
“Ultimately, this information will help scientists examine the energetic rates and nutritional demands of these animals and the potential effects of declining sea ice conditions,” said USGS biologist Anthony Pagano, who is leading the study.
For the rest of us, it gives a brief peak into the life of these majestic—and powerful—animals.