Polar Bears Ö the long summer wait.
Iíve just had the privilege to visit two VERY remote locations in the Canadian Arctic in Nunavut, Canada. To be more specific, for those interested in looking at a map, we were in the Lower Savage Islands (located between Frobisher Bay & Hudson Strait) as well as well as in the Qikiqtaaluk Region, at Akpatok Island, (The largest uninhabited island in the Ungava Bay.) What makes both these locations special, is that they tend to be good place to find stranded polar bears.
What I mean when I say stranded, is that after the spring ice melts, polar bears get stranded too far out to sea to swim to the mainland. Even though polar bears are officially classified as marine mammals and can swim over 100 miles, if they HAVE to, often thatís not far enough to get from the melting pack ice to land. Thus, itís very common to find them stranded on remote islands in arctic Canada.
While ďstuck,Ē they are often forced to go without food for 4-5 months, living only on their stored fat (OK, no comments about how long I could live on my fat reserves after a cruise but I bet I could give that bear a run for its money!) When on land, they will eat grass, kelp, scavenge on dead birds (or whatever they can find!) but thatís like us trying to survive on a jelly bean for 3 weeks. So, the bears that we saw were a bit skinny and dirty, but impressive never the less.
Note: shooting was a bit tricky ...shooting from a small zodiac with high seas ... at a bear well away on the beasch ... used 300mm f4 and 80-400 Nikon ... tossed out about 60%!