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Polar bears (Ursus maritimus) live throughout the ice-covered waters of the circumpolar Arctic, particularly in near shore annual ice over the continental shelf where biological productivity is highest. However, to a large degree under scenarios predicted by climate change models, these preferred sea ice habitats will be substantially altered. Spatial and(More)
Understanding how seasonal environmental conditions affect the timing and distribution of synchronized animal movement patterns is a central issue in animal ecology. Migration, a behavioural adaptation to seasonal environmental fluctuations, is a fundamental part of the life history of numerous species. However, global climate change can alter the(More)
Changes in the abundance and distribution of wildlife populations are common consequences of historic and contemporary climate change. Some Arctic marine mammals, such as the polar bear (Ursus maritimus), may be particularly vulnerable to such changes due to the loss of Arctic sea ice. We evaluated the impacts of environmental variation on demographic rates(More)
Previous studies have reported alarmingly high levels of organochlorines (OCs), particularly polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), in free-ranging polar bears (Ursus maritimus). In this study plasma concentration of PCBs ranged from 14.8 to 200 ng/g wet weight. The aim of the study was to investigate associations between OCs and lymphocyte proliferation after(More)
This study was undertaken to assess if high levels of organochlorines (OCs) are associated with decreased ability to produce antibodies in free-ranging polar bears (Ursus maritimus) and thus affect the humoral immunity. In 1998 and 1999, 26 and 30 polar bears from Svalbard, Norway, and Churchill, Canada, respectively, were recaptured 32-40 d following(More)
Recent unidirectional climatic trends and changes in top predator population ecology suggest that long-term modifications may be happening in Hudson Bay, Canada. Effects of such changes on ice-obligated seal populations are expected but long-term studies are required to differentiate climate-induced changes from natural variation. We conducted(More)
Sea ice in Hudson Bay is melting earlier and freezing later as the climate warms, resulting in declines in the condition, survival, and population size of polar bears (Ursus maritimus) in the Western Hudson Bay population. The objective of this study was to analyse temporal variation in polar bear distribution on the sea ice in Hudson Bay to determine how(More)
Polar bears (Ursus maritimus) have adapted to an annual cyclic regime of feeding and fasting, which is extreme in seasonal sea ice regions of the Arctic. As a consequence of climate change, sea ice breakup has become earlier and the duration of the open-water period through which polar bears must rely on fat reserves has increased. To date, there is limited(More)