From Polar Bears With Love: Happy Holidays

December 9th, 2011 Permalink

We love polar bears at any time, even sad times like when we did a tribute to superstar Knut, but most of these shots are of polar bears roaming and surviving in the wild. While these polar bears may have nothing to do with Coca-Cola polar bear marketing, the holidays gave us an ‘excuse’ to focus on the world’s largest carnivores and our favorite type of bears. [46 Photos]

polar bear snuggle love

While not a traditional holiday mascot, ever since Coca-Cola paired polar bears with Christmas marketing, it gives us another reason to post these beautiful white bears. Did you know that female polar bears prepare small dens, normally on sea ice or on the mainland, where they will
give birth to usually two cubs which are born in December or January? The cubs are born blind, hairless, and are no bigger than squirrels. Polar bear cubs remain with their mother for about 2 1/2 years. Photo #1 by HDWallpapers

Polar bear on ice flow in Wager Bay

Polar bear on ice flow in Wager Bay, Canada. The polar bear is the largest carnivore in world and is more than twice as big as the Siberian tiger. While not this bear, the largest polar bear ever recorded was estimated to weigh approximately 2,210 pounds. The average adult male weighs around 770–1,500 lb (350–680 kg) and stands about 8 – 11 feet tall;adult females are about half that weight and reach a height of about 8 feet. Photo #2 by Ansgar Walk

Not in the wild, but awwww -- Aquarium du Québec, Québec

Not in the wild, but awwww — Aquarium du Québec, Québec. Photo #3 by Luie Provencher

Polar bear resting but alert

This largest predator in the world is resting but remains alert. Photo #4 by Susanne Miller / USFWS

Rude bear, Isispynten, Nordaustlandet

Rude bears? Polar bears have a dark blue/black tongue, dark brown eyes and a short tail. Photo #5 by Amanda Graham

Polar bear walking along the coast

Polar bear walking along the coast. This huge carnivore can travel great distances in search of prey and feed almost exclusively on ringed seals. However they will also eat bearded seals, walrus, beluga whale and bowhead whale carcasses, birds, vegetation and kelp. Photo #6 by Susanne Miller / USFWS

Ursus maritimus by Steve Amstrup USFWS

Female polar bears can have five litters in their lifetime, making it one of the lowest reproductive rates of any mammal. When the cubs are born, they are about the size of a rat, 12 to 14 inches (30 to 35 centimeters) long and weigh little more than a pound (half a kilogram). Photo #7 by Steve Amstrup via United States Fish and Wildlife Service

Two polar bears in the distance

Two bears in the distance probably wishing the sea would turn to ice for seal hunting. Polar bears can swim 100 miles (161 kilometers) at a time in the hunt for food. When swimming, they use their giant front paws to propel themselves through the water and use their back feet for steering. Photo #8 by Steve Hillebrand / USFWS

Fish Out of Water -- Svalbard Polar Bears

As the photographer noted, seeing the bears like this is like seeing fish out of water. Photo #9 by Stefan Cook

Svalbard Polar Bear ready for a nap

Svalbard Polar Bear ready for a nap. The photographer noted, “When they’re not eating, they’re sleeping. Polar bears apparently sleep for about the same amount of time as we do, and in between times they take naps to conserve energy.” Besides a bluish-black tonuge, these bears have 42 teeth and up to 12-inch-wide paws with curved, non-retractable claws. Photo #10 by Stefan Cook

coke polar bears

Christmas Coke polar bears. According to Coca-Cola, “Coca-Cola’s first polar bear print advertisement appeared in France in 1922, and for the next 70 years, polar bears appeared sporadically in print advertising. In 1993, The Coca-Cola Company made a dramatic shift in its advertising by introducing the ‘Always Coca-Cola’ campaign. The campaign by Creative Artists Agency and later Edge Creative was diverse in nature.” While we aren’t pimping Coke products, “white Coca-Cola cans” are “are part of a marketing campaign aimed at protecting white polar bears and polar bear habitats.” It’s rumored Coke has pulled the idea and the cans since there was this-is-diet coke confusion. More Coca-Cola arctic polar bear info here. Photo #11 by Coca Cola

Polar Bear Mother and Cubs

A momma and her cubs. The female does not leave her cubs or her den until about March or April. Polar Bears International states, “During her time in the den, the mother does not eat, drink, or defecate. Cubs grow rapidly, thanks to the calories in their mother’s rich milk, which is about 31% fat. In their first year of life, cubs are called coys, which stands for cubs of the year.” Photo #12 by Alastair Rae

Polar Bears (Cubs), Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, Alaska

Cubs at the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, Alaska. Photo #13 by Alan D. Wilson (

Polar Bear Shake

Polar Bear Shake. Photo #14 by Tom Conger

Sailing south, we meet wonderful polar bears on the ice

Bear being casual on the ice and snow as seen during a cruise. Photo #15 by Martha de Jong-Lantink

Walking among the dead

Walking among the dead. Photo #16 by Mario Davalos

polar bear roaring USFWS

Polar bear roaring up at a USFWS (U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service) photographer. Photo #17 by USFWS

Svalbard Polar Bear

Svalbard in the northern most part of Norway is an archipelago in the Arctic where polar bears are often photographed. Polar bears live in Canada, extending from the northern arctic islands south to the Hudson Bay area, in Greenland, on islands off the coast of Norway, on the northern coast of Russia, and on the northern and northwestern coasts of Alaska. Photo #18 by Stefan Cook

Polar bear with cub

Momma polar bear will teach her cubs to hunt and to survive in the arctic climate which is one of the earth’s harshest environments. Photo #19 by Scott Schliebe / USFWS

Polar bear female with young

female with her ‘young’ which will be classified as ‘subadults’ when they leave her at about 2 1/2 years old. In the wild, these bears live about 15 – 18 years. In captivity like a zoo, they might live to the age 30. Sadly that was not the case for polar bear superstar Knut. Photo #20 by Susanne Miller / USFWS

Between the gulls

Between the gulls. Photo #22 by Mario Davalos

polar bear enjoying the water

Polar bears enjoy the water in the wild and in captivity. Photo #24 by sayan23in

Polar bear cubs

Cubs venturing right outside the den. Photo #25 by U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

A cub munches on bow whale carcass in Kaktovik, Alaska

The photographer said this cub is munching on a bow whale carcass in Kaktovik, Alaska. Photo #26 by Mario Davalos

Ursus maritimus on sea ice close to Svalbard

Ursus maritimus is the scientific classification/name for this species. If this polar bear goes for a swim, it can reach an average swimming speed of 6 mph. On land, its average walking speed is 3.5 mph and it has an estimated maximum running speed of 25 mph. Photo #27 by Hannes Grobe

Alaska polar bear in the wild

As seen in the wild in Alaska. Photo #28 by Steven Amstrup / USGS

3 Polar bears approach fast attack submarine near North Pole

Three Polar bears approach the starboard bow of the Los Angeles-class fast attack submarine USS Honolulu (SSN 718) while surfaced 280 miles from the North Pole. Sighted by a lookout from the bridge (sail) of the submarine, the bears investigated the boat for almost 2 hours before leaving. Commanded by Cmdr. Charles Harris, USS Honolulu while conducting otherwise classified operations in the Arctic, collected scientific data and water samples for U.S. and Canadian Universities as part of an agreement with the Arctic Submarine Laboratory (ASL) and the National Science Foundation (NSF). Photo #29 by Chief Yeoman Alphonso Braggs, US-Navy

Sow Polar Bear near Kaktovik

Sow Polar Bear near Kaktovik, Alaska. Photo #30 by Alan Wilson

Cuddling polar bears in Kaktovik, Alaska

Cuddling polar bears in Alaska. Eskimos call these bears “Nanuuq.” Photo #31 by Mario Davalos

Party of Six Polar bears sharing a whale carcass

Party of six sharing a whale carcass. Photo #32 by Stefan Cook

Polar bear (Wapusk National Park, Manitoba, Canada)

Polar bear at Wapusk National Park, Manitoba, Canada. Churchill has been called the “Polar Bear Capital of the World.” Photo #33 by Ansgar Walk

looking back

Looking back. Could that be because only humans prey on polar bears? Photo #34 by Valerie

Death can taste good

“Death can taste good,” wrote the photographer. Photo #35 by Mario Davalos

Male polar bear near Kaktovik, Alaska

Male polar bear near Kaktovik, Alaska. Photo #36 by Eric Regehr / USFWS

sniffing the air -- IJsberen op Spitsbergen -- Polar bears on Svalbard

Sniffing the air on Svalbard. Photo #37 by Martha de Jong-Lantink

Polar Bear at Cape Churchill (Wapusk National Park, Manitoba, Canada)

Polar Bear at Cape Churchill (Wapusk National Park, Manitoba, Canada). Photo #38 by Ansgar Walk

Polar Bear Mother and Cubs hanging out

Polar Bear mother and cubs hanging out before a swim. Photo #39 by Alastair Rae

polar bear love

Awww, polar bear love. Photo #40 by trasroid

Churchill Polar Bear and Cubs

The bears love the ice at Churchill, population 914, which sits on the edge of Hudson Bay and is where the ice first forms every winter. Photo #43 by Travel Manitoba

tundra polar bears

On the tundra. Photo #44 by Emma

cub hopping over ice

Cub hopping over ice. Photo #45 by Polar Cruises

think he's looking for a coke?

Think he’s looking for a coke? Cute enough to star in a commercial. Photo #46 by tableatny

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