Q:

How do polar bears protect themselves?

A:

Quick Answer

Polar bears protect themselves and their young with powerful forearms, sharp claws and strong jaws. Polar bears use their claws for hunting and gaining traction on the ice as well as for protection.

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How do polar bears protect themselves?
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Full Answer

According to Polar Bears International, polar bear claws measure up to 2 inches or 5.1 centimeters in length. Polar bears use their claws to hold down prey for their powerful jaws to rend. They also use this tactic when warding off other predators.

Polar bears also protect themselves from the cold and the elements as well as from other threats by digging into the snow. Female polar bears have specially curved claws which they use to dig down into snow drifts in order to build dens. According to National Geographic, polar bears usually give birth to twin cubs during the winter. The mothers then teach the children how to protect themselves from both the elements and other predators. Polar bears don’t tend to be afraid of humans, so they can be dangerous when near human settlements. They often pick through garbage and develop a taste for it. This causes the bears to hang around human camps. Since the bears have such strong adaptations for fighting in close quarters, this is often dangerous for humans.

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Related Questions

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    What is the lifecycle of polar bears?

    A:

    Polar bears are usually born in a maternity den between November and February and spend the next 2.5 years with their mother; by the age of 5 years, they are fully mature and ready to mate. Adult polar bears usually live to the ages of 15 to 18 years, but some polar bears have lived into their 30s.

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    Why do polar bears live in the Arctic?

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    Polar bears live in the Arctic because they are well suited to thrive in freezing temperatures. Polar bears are insulated by an ample layer of fat and a double layer of thick, white fur that camouflages them from being detected by predators and prey. The furry feet of the polar bear have a network of bumps that gives the animal traction on ice and snow.

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    How many polar bears are alive today?

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    As of 2008, scientists estimate there are approximately 20,000 to 25,000 polar bears. Polar bears are considered endangered as their environments are at risk from climate change. This is primarily due to warming conditions that cause sea ice to melt.

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    How big do polar bears get?

    A:

    The male polar bear measures 8 to 9 feet and weighs between 550 and 1320 pounds, while the female measures 6 to 7 feet and weighs between 200 and 700 pounds. Polar bears are the largest terrestrial carnivores, and the only other bear of similar size is the Kodiak bear.

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