Polar Bears Can’t Thrive on Land-Based Diet

Posted by Mike Confino, April 3, 2015

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Polar bears are increasingly feeding on land-based foods instead of their traditional marine prey as climate change reduces the sea ice they use as hunting platforms — a dietary change that has contributed to declining health and survival rates among the species, a team of scientists led by the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) has found.

“While it’s tempting to think that polar bears could survive by switching to a terrestrial diet, this paper establishes in no uncertain terms that land-based foods do not offer any hope of polar bear salvation,” said Steven Amstrup, the chief scientist for conservation group Polar Bears International (PBI), who is a co-author of the study, which was published Wednesday in Frontiers in Ecology and the Environment. Scientists with the USGS, PBI and Washington State University participated in the research.

via Polar Bears Can’t Thrive on Land-Based Diet | Al Jazeera America.

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