Polar bears losing crucial sea ice: study

September 14, 2016 by Mariëtte Le Roux
The global population of polar bears—scientific name Ursus maritimus—is estimated at about 25,000, according to a study

Polar bears are losing life-sustaining sea ice crucial for hunting, resting and breeding in all 19 regions of the Arctic they inhabit, a study warned on Wednesday.

As climate change pushes up Arctic temperatures, ice is melting earlier in spring and re-freezing later in autumn, a team of researchers reported in The Cryosphere, a journal of the European Geosciences Union.

Satellite data revealed that the total number of ice-covered days across the 19 regions declined at a rate of seven to 19 days per decade from 1979 to 2014, the researchers said.

"Their dependence on sea ice means that climate warming poses the single most important threat to (polar bears') persistence," wrote the team.

The global population of polar bears—scientific name Ursus maritimus—is estimated at about 25,000, said the study.

The bears, which have become emblematic of the ravages of global warming, spend most of their time on sheets of frozen ocean water, which melt and recede in warmer months, and then reform in winter.

When the ice melts, the animals come ashore and survive on stored fat until it refreezes—a period that for some has become longer and longer.

Scientists say the Arctic is warming at nearly double the global rate as a result of climate change fuelled by mankind's burning of fossil fuels, a process that emits heat-trapping greenhouse gases.

With longer iceless periods, polar bears have to swim further and further to find solid ground.

According to environmental group WWF, the retreating sea ice is more frequently bringing polar bears into confrontation with humans who live on land

Last year, the International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN) said the creatures could see their numbers dwindle by nearly a third by mid-century.

Biggest threat

Their status on the IUCN's Red List of endangered species is currently listed as "vulnerable".

The bears need sea ice for hunting as they cannot outswim seals, their preferred prey.

They get around this by waiting near holes in the ice and ambushing the seals as they come up for air.

Male and female bears also meet on ice sheets to mate.

"Changes in sea ice have been shown to impact polar bear abundance, productivity, body condition, and distribution," said the study.

According to environmental group WWF, the retreating sea ice is more frequently bringing polar bears into confrontation with humans who live on land.

With more water to navigate, Arctic shipping activities have increased, as well as opportunities for oil and gas development, further threatening the animals' habitat.

Experts say Arctic sea ice melt will in turn contribute to sea level rise, and feed back into global warming—ice reflects warming sunlight away, while water absorbs the heat.

Explore further: Climate change could slash polar bear numbers 30% by 2050

More information: Harry L. Stern et al. Sea-ice indicators of polar bear habitat, The Cryosphere (2016). DOI: 10.5194/tc-10-2027-2016

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thefurlong
3.9 / 5 (19) Sep 14, 2016
"The Polar bears will be fi-- ...oh f*ck." -Freeman Dyson
jeffensley
2.3 / 5 (16) Sep 14, 2016
So absolutely nothing new here. We observe ice is melting and suggest bears MAY be in danger, assuming they don't adapt their feeding behavior. This has been going on for decades now.
thefurlong
4.4 / 5 (13) Sep 14, 2016
We observe ice is melting and suggest bears MAY be in danger,

Not "MAY". "ARE"
They are in danger, because their habitat is being threatened. I don't know how they could be in more danger, unless a 10 mile wide asteroid were headed for the North Pole.
assuming they don't adapt their feeding behavior.

Do you know how long it takes macroscopic organisms to adapt to anything? Do you understand that for major changes to occur in a population, in evolution, it takes many generations (and many lives)? Evolution is not some magical fairy that saves you from imminent destruction.
This has been going on for decades now.

A generation of polar bears is measured in 11.5 years https://polarbear...on-time/

How many generations do you think Polar bears have had to deal with their dwindling habitat? It sure as hell isn't enough to begin adapting.

Also, there are ~30k polar bears. Think about how little that number is in terms of evolution.
MR166
1.9 / 5 (17) Sep 14, 2016
These purposeful scientific frauds will never end. The polar bears are at near record levels.
RealityCheck
2.7 / 5 (19) Sep 14, 2016
Hi jeffensley and MR166. :)

You two are not keeping up with the science research and info now available for improving the relevance and correctness quotient of your opinions. This link:

http://phys.org/n...tml#nRlv

will explain how the dietary requirements of Polar Bears (who have to survive arctic winters and cold seawater and windchill conditions in open ocean and land margins all year round) are distinctly different from land bears. The land based food is not nutritious and fat forming enough to build up the insulating fat layers and energy reserves for Polar Bear forays into cold open water and ice to hunt more nutritious and energy dense food (ie seals, and increasingly, dolphins).

Also, Polar bear CUBS will be more vulnerable to other predators if on land and not camouflaged in ice/snow while mother hunts/nurses.

Ok, guys? Isn't it high time you two give up your uninformed and biased beliefs. Cheers! :)
cantdrive85
1.9 / 5 (11) Sep 14, 2016
Well the bears better be able to "evolve" and adapt to the changes.
aksdad
2.4 / 5 (14) Sep 14, 2016
Unexpectedly, polar bears continue to thrive despite declining Arctic sea ice.

Nowhere in the study did they actually correlate polar bear mortality to sea ice extent or melt period. You would think counting the number of starving polar bears, or the total population, or sampling the body condition of a few to see if they're not putting on enough fat, would be important to making predictions of sea ice loss affecting them. But no, too much trouble. It's more fun to play with math, statistics, and the (famously inaccurate) computer models to predict doom for the poor polar bears, who obviously have survived ice-free Arctic conditions in the past several hundred thousand years.

Here is a recent assessment of polar bears and the effect of declining sea ice on their population by a polar bear expert:

https://polarbear...edicted/

Enjoy!
leetennant
4.4 / 5 (13) Sep 14, 2016
By that you mean something three years old from somebody who is not in the region and does not actually study polar bears? Oh, but she has "qualifications in zoology", is "interested in polar bears" and "runs a consulting firm".

She actually says, without irony, and I quote "I am a different kind of polar bear expert than those that study bears in the field but having a different background means I know things they do not and this makes my contribution valuable and valid."

Here is her site blogroll
Bishop Hill
Climate Resistance
Climateaudit
Dan Botkin
Friends of Science
Jo Nova
Nofrakkingconsensus
Polar Bear Alley
Polar Bear Specialist Group
Rational Optimist
Ross McKitrick
The View from Here
Tom Nelson
World Climate Report
WUWT

Thanks again, aksdad. You've outdone yourself. You really are the purveyor of mushroom food.
aksdad
1.9 / 5 (13) Sep 14, 2016
For those of you who don't know much about polar bears, low sea ice extent in the summer has little effect on them because their primary feeding period is in the spring when they gorge on seals then fast most of the summer on the fat reserves they built up in the spring. They hardly eat at all from around June to around November when sea ice is at its lowest. So as long as there is plenty of sea ice in the spring, polar bears are just fine.

Predictions of an ice-free Arctic by mid-century are for the end of summer (September), not year-round, and they're based on inaccurate global climate models. I'm betting there will still be plenty of sea ice in September, 2050, and certainly enough for polar bears to feed in the spring of that year.

For more on polar bear biology and habitat see https://polarbearscience.com/
leetennant
4.3 / 5 (11) Sep 14, 2016
Yes, so says the denier blog run by somebody who doesn't actually study polar bears.

But then she links to Jo Nova and WUWT - climate blogs run by people who don't actually study the climate. What's next? Developmental psychology from the Food Babe?

Find me a source from somebody studying the impact of the changing climate on polar bears in the field and I will accept it. But I could sit here and make shit up too if I wanted to. Just because it's on a blog doesn't make it true.
aksdad
2.5 / 5 (13) Sep 14, 2016
Leetenant, the blog is from yesterday, not 3 years ago. And I actually read it. Did you? Clearly not.

And if you read Susan Crockford's bio, her statement makes perfect sense. Are climate scientists who only sample sediment, tree rings, or ice cores the only ones who understand climate science? Or the statisticians who interpret the data gathered by the field scientists?

Your dismissal of Crockford without actually reading her blog post and the references to numerous studies (by biologists "in the field") seems shortsighted. Or perhaps you're biased.
aksdad
2.6 / 5 (10) Sep 14, 2016
leetennant, if you had read the links I provided to polarbearscience, you would have found numerous links in her blog post to peer-reviewed studies about polar bears that refute the notion that declining summer sea ice extent is decimating polar bear populations.

And, fyi, Jo Nova is a science writer, just like, well, Mariëtte Le Roux who wrote this article. And just like Le Roux, Nova includes references to original studies. Just because she his skeptical of the mainstream media consensus on climate science doesn't make her blog any less valid than the numerous blogs devoted to convincing people that humans are causing devastating global warming. Same with Wattsupwiththat. You don't have to like it, but they point to numerous published (peer reviewed) studies in science journals that contradict the belief that humans are the primary cause of recent warming.
leetennant
3.7 / 5 (12) Sep 14, 2016
I said it before and I'll say it again. Show me research from people who actually study polar bears that shows no link between declining sea ice extent and declining polar bear populations and I will accept it. If it's so obvious, you should have plenty to give me.
aksdad
2.7 / 5 (13) Sep 14, 2016
leetennant, read the blog. You will find oodles of "research from people who actually study polar bears" in other words, scientists. Lots of references to research at the bottom, buy you have to read the whole blog, which is rather long. Expand your mind a little. Here it is once more:

https://polarbear...edicted/

And fyi, Susan Crockford is a zoologist with a Ph.D, 35 years experience, and has published several peer-reviewed studies in science journals. I don't know what more you need to qualify as a "scientist". See the bottom of her bio here:

https://polarbear...about-2/

Just because she doesn't agree with your uninformed notion that declining summer sea ice extent is killing polar bears, doesn't make her any less of a scientist. She's certainly more of one than you are.
leetennant
4 / 5 (12) Sep 14, 2016
I read the blog. She says
climate change is causing record ice loss
The polar bear population is x
She doesn't think climate change will impact that population because of [you said this already].
There is nothing in there about research demonstrating that declining sea ice has no potential impact on polar bear populations other than her editorialising.
In particular, there is nothing in there that impacts this article. I know from your previous comments that you are the king of cherry picking and you seek out sources that re-enforce your preconceptions. But i have no preconceptions on this. So find me some facts.

I never said she wasn't a scientist. I said she wasn't an Arctic-based polar bear researcher. She does not study polar bears. By her own admission.
leetennant
4.1 / 5 (13) Sep 14, 2016
Let's look at your original comment

Unexpectedly, polar bears continue to thrive despite declining Arctic sea ice.


She has no historical records of polar bear populations in that piece that would demonstrate they're "thriving". What she says is she doesn't believe the melt will impact their populations.

You would think counting the number of starving polar bears, or the total population, or sampling the body condition of a few to see if they're not putting on enough fat, would be important to making predictions of sea ice loss affecting them.


And yet your source didn't do this either. She included no information on polar bear mortality or specifically polar bear body conditions. Also no historical analysis of polar bear populations over time or modelled projections either

by a polar bear expert


And not a polar bear expert. By her own admission
guptm
2.2 / 5 (11) Sep 14, 2016
This is how new species evolve and species incapable of adapting disappear with changing environment. Darwin was great.
philstacy9
1.7 / 5 (6) Sep 15, 2016
Polar bears are loyal Trump supporters.
antigoracle
2.3 / 5 (15) Sep 15, 2016
WAIT! There is ice in the Arctic. You Chicken Littles need to have a sit down with your revered False "Profit" Al, since he and his CO2 filled crystal ball predicted no ice by now.
antigoracle
1.8 / 5 (15) Sep 15, 2016
cantdrive
Well the bears better be able to "evolve" and adapt to the changes.
And if they don't - they go extinct. With the great apes, lions, tigers, orangutans, elephants, rhinos etc. etc. etc. etc. Right cantdrive - we should not study our earth - and try to figure out if 11 billion of us can live here - and also share the planet with millions of other species. Your stupid attitude says fuck it all - so what if there are no great apes etc. etc. etc. for future generations to share the planet with. So what if we all go extinct. Dumb ass.
--onionTard
The retarded jackass brays. Did any of this cross your feeble mind when you went on that 2 day, 1200 mile jaunt, spewing over half a ton of CO2? Of course not, so bray jackass, bray...hee...hawwww....heee.....haawwww.
leetennant
4.1 / 5 (14) Sep 15, 2016
I said it before and I'll say it again. Show me research from people who actually study polar bears that shows no link between declining sea ice extent and declining polar bear populations and I will accept it. If it's so obvious, you should have plenty to give me.


No, you are the one screaming, so show us your data. Without it we will continue to assume (and probably correctly) that polar bears are fine.


Once again, you're showing a fundamental misunderstanding of how this science things works. I'm not the one making the claim. The polar bears live and hunt on the ice. The ice is receding. The extraordinary claim is that the loss of ice won't matter. So prove it. All I'm asking.


Mike_Massen
2.1 / 5 (14) Sep 15, 2016
jeffensley with selfish sentiment un-characteristic of his claim as an "Environmental Scientist" (ES)
So absolutely nothing new here
So you missed Physics/Math lectures @ Vriginia Tech re "Rate of Change" (RoC) - you asleep or f..king around - again ?

jeffensley wrote
We observe ice is melting and suggest bears MAY be in danger, assuming they don't adapt their feeding behavior
So you definitely haven't learned importance of RoC, sad :-(

jeffensley confirms
This has been going on for decades now
Yes indeed, worst in last 3 with decreasing albedo too - you did study that as part of your ES degree @ Virginia Tech ?

What was your mark ?

Who's hiring ES' these days that show minimal Physics/Math & cognition of habitats changing equilibrium conditions ?

As I wrote here:-
http://phys.org/n...rth.html

You sure don't write quantitatively like *any* Environmental Scientist of their chosen career !
jeffensley
3.1 / 5 (10) Sep 15, 2016
jeff
This has been going on for decades now.
But I thought it was all a hoax! Dusty, Shootist, MR166 all made that exact claim in the last couple of days. If AGW is a hoax, why wont any of you deniers answer - when asked for an explanation of the current warming trend? lting ice sheets is a feature of a warming trend right?


Maybe you shouldn't assume I hold the exact same opinions as others simply because I'm aware of the sensational ways climate-related studies are presented and the weaknesses inherent in models, prediction, and observation on a planetary scale.
Windchaser
2.9 / 5 (15) Sep 15, 2016
What's funny is that when the polar bear populations start plummeting, the deniers will say "well, we couldn't have known".
antigoracle
1.9 / 5 (14) Sep 15, 2016
Maybe you shouldn't assume I hold the exact same opinions as others
Just basing my view on your obvious characteristics as a science denier. It is so interesting how you guys jump all over every article - spreading you own personal opinions. So what if this has been "going on for decades?" Does that make it OK? But when asked to actually provide an explanation for the current warming trend - you all have nothing to offer.

Just basing my view on your obvious characteristics as a braying jackass. Tell us that 2 day, 1200 mile jaunt, spewing over half a ton of CO2, could it be responsible for the warming trend? Of course not, because it was a braying jackass who did it.
jeffensley
2.2 / 5 (10) Sep 15, 2016
So what if this has been "going on for decades?" Does that make it OK? But when asked to actually provide an explanation for the current warming trend - you all have nothing to offer.


It's not good, it's not bad it just IS... but what it's certainly NOT is new information. If an obvious die-off was occurring, that information would certainly have been included in an article based almost solely on fears of what MAY happen to polar bears in the future. It just boils down to human nature.. something changes and we obsess about the possibilities.
Windchaser
2.5 / 5 (16) Sep 15, 2016
scientists, watching polar bear habitat decline: "based on past experience and common sense, we would expect the decline of their habitat to be bad for polar bears".

Deniers: "Well, you don't *know* that it will be bad."

Everyone else: /facepalm.

Deniers, later, after the polar bear population declines: "Well, who could have guessed that would happen?"
Windchaser
2.8 / 5 (16) Sep 15, 2016
It's not good, it's not bad it just IS... but what it's certainly NOT is new information. If an obvious die-off was occurring, that information would certainly have been included in an article based almost solely on fears of what MAY happen to polar bears in the future. It just boils down to human nature.. something changes and we obsess about the possibilities.


A denier, immediately after lighting himself on fire: "Hey, let's wait and see what happens. Right now it just feels like a warm tingle. No point in needlessly obsessing over this yet".
Mike_Massen
2.1 / 5 (14) Sep 15, 2016
jeffensley as a claimed "Environmental Scientist" (ES) wrote
.. and the weaknesses inherent in models, prediction, and observation on a planetary scale
No, you're completely disingenuous (as you demonstrated here before) because, you as a claimed ES should know full well the education, training of an ES includes:

1. Physics, especially Radiative Heat Transfer & Enthalpy
2. Maths, especially integration re Heat as well as Probability & Statistics
3. Chaotic patterns re movement of Heat
4. Psychrometry in respect of water vapour being lifted by CO2 radiative transfer
5. Measurement Methods, especially instrument calibration & error bars
6. Experimental Methods re 1-4

Environment relates to several equilibria all essential education gleaned from 1-6

Yet you often mouth off obfuscation re climate models with are *within* their error bars (re 5), you're betrayed as an errant Liar, therefore you are NOT an Environmental Scientist !

Why the hell are you here ?
TrollBane
3.2 / 5 (9) Sep 16, 2016
@antilogical's ravings have been on thin ice for years.
antigoracle
2.1 / 5 (11) Sep 16, 2016
Well - according to the researchers - if you care about polar bears - it is bad.
--onionTard
It's a good thing the braying jackass cares so much about the polar bears, instead of going on a 2 day, 1200 mile jaunt, spewing over half a ton of CO2, imagine what he would have done.
jeffensley
2.6 / 5 (10) Sep 16, 2016
scientists, watching polar bear habitat decline: "based on past experience and common sense, we would expect the decline of their habitat to be bad for polar bears".

Deniers: "Well, you don't *know* that it will be bad."

Everyone else: /facepalm.

Deniers, later, after the polar bear population declines: "Well, who could have guessed that would happen?"


So when I see data suggesting many polar bear populations have actually seen steady increases despite the shrinking ice, I'm still supposed to go with what MAY happen? You guys are addicted to fear and pessimism... so much so you choose not to allow un-sensational facts get in the way of your doom narrative.
leetennant
4.3 / 5 (12) Sep 16, 2016
Ah yes, this would be the extensive polar bear population dataset showing that their numbers are "steady" or "thriving" that we keep hearing about but mysteriously never see.

Maybe it's because the actual data show that:

1. We have no numbers for the majority of the polar bear population due to insufficient data
2. Of the populations we have numbers for, those numbers have high error bars due to the difficulty of counting bears in the field
3. Bears are easier to count on land then on ice so any apparent increase in certain small population groups in certain areas could be due to them being driven onto land rather than an actual increase
4. Research so far has shown that polar bears do NOT switch to terrestrial sources of food when on land, meaning the ice loss is impacting their body condition and
5. The proportion of cubs that survive to adulthood is materially less in low-ice years.

But by all means, stun us with your "data". I can't wait.
leetennant
4.2 / 5 (10) Sep 16, 2016
And may I also add, in the world's best example of 'begging the question' every single denier who continually tries to argue that global warming isn't happening and Arctic ice isn't melting at all, have all en masse accepted both warming and ice loss during this argument. It's almost as if they know they're actually happening.

Weird.
antigoracle
2.1 / 5 (12) Sep 17, 2016
So it's not so stupid seeing you deniers as all singing from the same song book - is it?

--da onion retard.
How many deniers, unlike you, boasts about going on a 2 day, 1200 mile gas guzzling jaunt, spewing over half a ton of CO2. That's more than a tenth of the annual average. Bray jackass....bray.
Shootist
1.6 / 5 (13) Sep 17, 2016
"the polar bears will be fine" - Freeman Dyson

Go argue with the greatest living polymath.
gkam
2.3 / 5 (13) Sep 17, 2016
anti, please go away.

You achieve nothing with your nasty filthy words.
jeffensley
2 / 5 (9) Sep 17, 2016
Perhaps you could reference this data for us jeff - so we could all rejoice.


http://www.canadi...ar-bears

" In Davis Strait, between Greenland and Baffin Island, the polar bear population has grown from 900 animals in the late 1970s to around 2,100 today. In Foxe Basin — a portion of northern Hudson Bay — a population that was estimated to be 2,300 in the early 2000s now stands at 2,570. And in specific areas of western Hudson Bay, the most-studied, most-photographed group of bears on Earth seems to have been on a slow but steady increase since in the 1970s."

http://www.npolar...ard.html

"The scientists now estimate that there are around 975 polar bears in the Norwegian region, whereas they estimated a number of 685 in 2004."

TrollBane
4.6 / 5 (10) Sep 17, 2016
The real question is, will @shootist's ability to minimize the cognitive dissonance be fine?
antigoracle
1.7 / 5 (11) Sep 17, 2016
So you are able to read such an interesting article - and conclude that you are not going to worry about the bears - even though the majority of bear scientists say we should. Because you of course know better than they do. Now why not re-read the section at the end of the article "Where's that bear?" You are a cherry picking denier - bent on spreading rubbish on the internet.
-- onion retard
The braying jackass who went on a 2 day, 1200 mile, gas guzzling jaunt, spewing over a tenth of the annual average CO2 emissions. Not only did he boast about that, he has the audacity to berate others about caring for the Polar bears. Bray jackass....bray... you'll save the bears.
SteveS
4.6 / 5 (11) Sep 18, 2016
"the polar bears will be fine" - Freeman Dyson

Go argue with the greatest living polymath.


The facts are already doing that for us.

http://onlinelibr...6.1/full
leetennant
5 / 5 (8) Sep 18, 2016
Perhaps you could reference this data for us jeff - so we could all rejoice.


http://www.canadi...ar-bears

"The scientists now estimate that there are around 975 polar bears in the Norwegian region, whereas they estimated a number of 685 in 2004."



Thanks, Jeff. Now explain where that article contradicts any points I've made in my previous comments on this issue.
howhot3
5 / 5 (4) Sep 19, 2016
"the polar bears will be fine" - Freeman Dyson

Go argue with the greatest living polymath.


Dyson was a NUT!
jeffensley
1.7 / 5 (6) Sep 19, 2016
Let me quote for you -
On balance, the majority of polar bear scientists agree that even if the current state of things looks shakily stable, the future for bears is poor.
So you are able to read such an interesting article - and conclude that you are not going to worry about the bears - even though the majority of bear scientists say we should.


No, my point (which I've proven on several issues related to climate change) is that some people are more interested in the language related to fearful predictions than they are the reality. The reality is polar bears have been "losing" what science considers prime hunting ground for decades and their numbers in many of those populations are stable or have grown. So maybe you should consider the possibility that scientists are just people who don't possess the capacity to predict the future, especially with regards to something "unpredictable" like animal behavior. (cont'd)
jeffensley
1.8 / 5 (5) Sep 19, 2016
If polar bear numbers were falling across the board, you most certainly would be using that as proof of their imminent demise due to AGW. Why can't stability or growth of populations be used to at the very least to raise questions about our ability to predict the outcome of complex scenarios? If I say "don't worry" it's not because I know everything will be fine with polar bears though there is positive news to consider. If I say it it's because their future is something that's simply not under our control.
antigoracle
1 / 5 (7) Sep 19, 2016
jeff - the reason we have world wide wild life conservation programs - is because it is obvious that we have a serious global problem re: the competition between humans and other species in terms of global habitat. Much research is being done regarding this problem. It is pretty clear right? That as we expand human settlements - we reduce the available habitat for wild life - and the top rung species such as lions, rhinos, elephants, polar bears etc. etc. cannot co-exist openly. We don't like being eaten - right? Scientists are studying this problem - and then we will have to determine policy - that hopefully threads the needle that will allow us to co-exist. Each time the scientists report on the topic - you know better than they do. Interesting - right?
-- da onion jackass brays.
Tell us jackass, did you do any "research" before going on that 2 day, 1200 mile jaunt, spewing over half a ton of CO2. That is over a tenth of the annual average. Interesting - right?
jeffensley
2 / 5 (8) Sep 19, 2016
Their future certainly is under our control - it is up to us if we value other species such as polar bears, lions, tigers, great apes etc. etc. etc. It is of course no problem if you personally don't give a shit - but as a species - it is very problematic if we don't give a shit. We are at a very serious inflection point in time - and have to decide if we give a shit about other species, or not.


My point must have been clearly made for you to resort to such an irrational outburst. Nowhere did I suggest I didn't care... change is sad sometimes but it's incredibly naive to demand that plant and animal life remain unchanged even after their environments have altered. The reason life still exists at all is BECAUSE it changes in unison with its environment. Also, how do you not see the glaring difference between ice melting and something like deforestation or encroachment? We actually do have some control over the latter but most certainly not the former.
leetennant
5 / 5 (9) Sep 19, 2016
My point must have been clearly made for you to resort to such an irrational outburst.

To an objective reader, your point was made very well. You provided scientifically backed conclusions ... and then backed it up with hard data regarding population counts.


And today in opposite world, we have considerable unicorn sightings and the sky is its best shade of purple.

As I said, the data show that:

1. We have no numbers for the majority of the polar bear population due to insufficient data
2. Of the populations we have numbers for, those numbers have high error bars due to the difficulty of counting bears in the field
3. Bears are easier to count on land then on ice so any apparent increase in certain small population groups in certain areas could be due to them being driven onto land rather than an actual increase

1/2
leetennant
5 / 5 (9) Sep 19, 2016
Cont...

4. Research so far has shown that polar bears do NOT switch to terrestrial sources of food when on land, meaning the ice loss is impacting their body condition and
5. The proportion of cubs that survive to adulthood is materially less in low-ice years.

What Jeff has shown has neither disproved those points nor does it in any way counter the points of this article. In fact, when challenged, Jeff could neither provide a comprehensive population dataset nor demonstrate that ice loss has not impacted body conditions. Nor could he show the way in which his source contradicted the main points in this article.

Jeff's argument is the equivalent of saying "You're not at risk of lung cancer because you're not dead yet. And anyway your kidneys look fine to me!"

It is his usual pattern of cherry picking, distortion and disingenuousness. If you can't see that, you need to go and do some more reading on the subject yourself.
Mike_Massen
2.5 / 5 (8) Sep 20, 2016
leetennant observed re jeffensley
.. his usual pattern of cherry picking, distortion and disingenuous
Indeed & well said

Shortly after jeffensley's appearance he tried "Appeal to Authority" claiming to be an Environmental Scientist (ES) from Virginia Tech & cast doubt of many basic Science; Physics, Math, Measurements, Modeling, especially predictions re aspect of chaos theory.

Fact is ES is specifically trained in all these aspects. I've known ES's skill set & they know Radiative Heat Transfer, thermal/chemical equilibria issues re food/shelters/populations, their movements how to monitor etc All issues jeffensley has raised to obfuscate are well within the trained skill set of an ES !

Therefore jeffensley can't be an ES, completely disingenuous & far more likely a plant & a Liar !

Since jeffensley claims studies at Virginia Tech but, doesn't know the science & is false, he's denigrating that university & likely should be reported...

jeffensley caught !
antigoracle
1.5 / 5 (8) Sep 20, 2016
So no - it is not being scientific to cherry pick some bear populations that are increasing - and declare nothing to worry about.

Aww.. the braying jackass is worried about the Polar bears. Imagine if he wasn't what he would have done instead of going on a 2 day, 1200 mile, gas guzzling, CO2 spewing, jaunt. In just 2 days onionTard, spewed over a tenth of the annual average CO2, emitted in the US.
antigoracle
1 / 5 (5) Sep 20, 2016
So the fact that you and Jeff don't give a shit - changes nothing.
-- onionTard
The braying jackass who cares so much. Imagine if he didn't give a shit, imagine how much more CO2 he would have spewed on that 2 day, 1200 mile jaunt he boasted about. That's more than a tenth of the annual average in the US. Good thing the braying jackass cares so much.
jeffensley
1 / 5 (6) Sep 21, 2016
Funny to see the faithful become skeptics when they see data that shows something they don't like... in this case polar bears not dying fast enough for them to make a point. You're right, the data IS incomplete so maybe science should knock it off with the "OMG the polar bears are dying!" BS.... or is that principle only for making counter-points and is not be used to look at your own "evidence" (in this case nothing but human prediction) or lack thereof?
BackBurner
1 / 5 (3) Sep 21, 2016
By that you mean something three years old from somebody who is not in the region and does not actually study polar bears?


Susan Crockford is an internationally recognized expert on polar bears. Yes, she is a zoologist. What did you expect, psychology? She studies animals, specifically polar bears.
BackBurner
1 / 5 (4) Sep 21, 2016
polar bears live and hunt on the ice. The ice is receding. The extraordinary claim is that the loss of ice won't matter. So prove it. All I'm asking.


What's to prove Lee? You act like this is a recent development, that's crazy. Polar ice on Earth has been receding for over 10,000 years, there are still polar bears.

Polar bears have very obviously survived extended periods of reduced sea ice, they didn't evolve since the end of the Holocene optimum. They've been through this before. What sort of proof are you looking for?
leetennant
5 / 5 (5) Sep 21, 2016
Funny to see the faithful become skeptics when they see data that shows something they don't like... in this case polar bears not dying fast enough for them to make a point. You're right, the data IS incomplete so maybe science should knock it off with the "OMG the polar bears are dying!" BS.... or is that principle only for making counter-points and is not be used to look at your own "evidence" (in this case nothing but human prediction) or lack thereof?


And the end is the beginning as Jeff takes us home with the same strawman he started this with. Makes me wonder why I wasted a week on this for. This is what the ignore button is for after all. Hasta la vista.

But at least he's finally conceded that all his "polar bear populations are stable" and "polar bears are thriving" BS is actually BS. So we can chalk up one small victory in this marathon to nowhere.

Mike_Massen
2.6 / 5 (5) Sep 21, 2016
BackBurner shows immense ignorance of simple Physics & Math with
You act like this is a recent development, that's crazy. Polar ice on Earth has been receding for over 10,000 years, there are still polar bears
Haven't you heard of Rate of Change (RoC) & havent you read that they are under threat ?

BackBurner wrote
Polar bears have very obviously survived extended periods of reduced sea ice, they didn't evolve since the end of the Holocene optimum. They've been through this before. What sort of proof are you looking for?
Learn Physics especially Radiative Heat Transfer & significance specific heat of Oceans in total 4000 X more than atmosphere in respect of RoC !

Why can't you scientifically join the dots - you write "that's crazy" - isnt it crazy to jump on a Science reporting/agglomeration site & not learn/appreciate basic Science such as in Physics AND be able to connect this with Rate of Change ?

Why are you here ?
Mike_Massen
2 / 5 (4) Sep 21, 2016
jeffensley wrote
Funny to see the faithful become skeptics when they see data that shows something they don't like... in this case polar bears not dying fast enough for them to make a point. You're right, the data IS incomplete so maybe science should knock it off with the "OMG the polar bears are dying!" BS.... or is that principle only for making counter-points and is not be used to look at your own "evidence" (in this case nothing but human prediction) or lack thereof?

Tell us about your claim to be an "Environment Scientist" yet nothing you've every written is in any way consistent with that claim ?

Why didn't you learn Physics in your ES course at Virginia Tech ?

Why do you lack the basic intellect to join the dots - just the same as BackBerner ?

Ice is in decline at large rates Eg
http://phys.org/n...nds.html

Why can't you understand simple conjunctives indicative of Environment re observations/reporting ?
Mike_Massen
2 / 5 (4) Sep 22, 2016
greenonions with appropriate sentiment
... And then the deniers so glibly dismiss all this knowledge - effectively saying - thanks scientists for all your hard work - and now a big fuck you - because I can take all of your tirelessly earned work - and turn it on it's head - because I have a computer and an internet connection...
I've these sensations too of abject disappointment re thinking processes of the likes of the deniers ugh !

Fortunately enough data to assess jeffensley & few others are *only* here to obfuscate & cast doubt working to an agenda & with robotic narrow political overtones :/

Its clear from his pattern of comments jeffensley can't be an Environment Scientist as claimed, especially not from Virginia Tech especially as his comments aren't consistent with VT training, ugh !

Then we have dweebs like return of Water_Prophet whos agenda coming back here seems mere uneducated ego for esteem

All have egos but, helps to think on a base education
antigoracle
1 / 5 (5) Sep 22, 2016
Supreme arrogance I guess. So if Jeff is waiting until the data is complete - why is Jeff arguing on Physorg? The data is not complete Jeff. Wait another million years - to form your opinion. Oh right - you have already formed it. And it contradicts with the collective view of the science community - but hey - Jeff knows best. So - final point - the deniers are happy to take all the work of the scientists in the field (how else do the deniers know that SOME bear populations are increasing) - at the same time of course as other populations are in decline
--onion retard
The braying jackass is at it again. Speaking of arrogance, the braying jackass boasts about his recent 2 day, 1200 mile, CO2 spewing jaunt, in which he emitted over a tenth of the average annual US amount. But hey, the jackass has a computer and internet, so he can come and bray like the jackass he is and PRETEND to care.
jeffensley
1 / 5 (4) Sep 23, 2016
Jeff does not know that the data is of course - always incomplete. How can someone not know that - and want to affect the course of the world? Supreme arrogance I guess. So if Jeff is waiting until the data is complete - why is Jeff arguing on Physorg?


No actually I KNOW the data (especially in regards to climate change) has always been incomplete. I've been arguing in an attempt to get people to acknowledge that... and to highlight data/studies that flies in the face of the doom and gloom predictions that often pass for science these days. That you have indirectly acknowledged that makes me feel like my life is complete now. Thank you.
No actually I've been argui
jeffensley
1 / 5 (4) Sep 23, 2016
Can you explain why data on rhinos wouldn't be far more complete than for polar bears, whose habitat we have difficulty accessing? Rhinos are consistently being poached... I think the data and the DIRECT threat posed to them are pretty solid. However, considering that many populations of polar bears are increasing (and some declining) with estimates currently showing them at greater numbers than in 1970... and the rest of the populations simply a big question mark... isn't it jumping the gun to declare their imminent demise scientifically speaking? It's ok to say you are worried, but to substitute worry for facts is the problem here. Trying to compare the threat to rhinos that we are DIRECTLY responsible for to the POTENTIAL threat to polar bears due to melting ice is like comparing apples and charcoal.
jeffensley
1 / 5 (5) Sep 26, 2016
Thanks for not answering my pertinent question. If you are too stubborn to acknowledge the difference between the threats to rhinos vs. polar bears, see that the perceived threat to polar bears is not based on actual observation, and recognize that there is no law we can pass to change the melting point of sea ice then we really have nothing to say to each other. You seem quite attached to your fantasy that humans are in control.
Mike_Massen
2 / 5 (4) Sep 26, 2016
jeffensley proves nil education in Radiative Transfer & means to ameliorate with
Also, how do you not see the glaring difference between ice melting and something like deforestation or encroachment? We actually do have some control over the latter but most certainly not the former.
First of all, a claimed "Environmental Scientist" should know whats meant by control - is there any evidence he does ?

jeffensley needs a simple reminder in Environmental Science:-

- Humans (as confirmed by radiological data) have emitted massive amounts of CO2 by way of fossil fuel combustion which, some 3 years ago, was estimated by the oil companies to be the equivalent of approx 230,000 Litres of petrol each & every second 24/7

- This CO2 has radiative forcing properties. Humans emitted this and are therefore in control of such emissions & thankfully although the rate has declined very little it is still rising.

ie. Humans have controlled the emission & can reduce it !
antigoracle
1 / 5 (4) Sep 26, 2016
Do we just throw up our hands - and say 'nothing we can do about anything - so why bother doing anything - just all go home - and if the polar bears go extinct (and the lions/tigers/elephants/whales/etc. etc. etc.) so be it?'
--onion retard
The onion jackass brays again. This is the jackass who boasted about his 2 day, 1200 mile jaunt, in he emitted over a tenth of the US annual average CO2. Imagine if this jackass did not pretend to care. Here is a suggestion for you jackass. How about you take a long drive off a short pier.
jeffensley
1 / 5 (3) Sep 27, 2016
The question does not seem pertinent to the point I am making. Scientists are studying wildlife across the globe. Scientists are alarmed by the loss of wild life.


The question is quite pertinent because poaching, over-harvesting, and encroachment (the things most responsible for the threats to wild life) we actually have SOME control over... melting sea ice we do not.

Today's article expresses the concern of the scientists regarding the loss of sea ice - that is crucial to the life cycle of the polar bear.


The flaw with science in this particular case is that it makes the amazingly simplistic assumption that less ice = certain death. Research the ringed seal... other scientists say they are threatened by loss of sea ice as well. Could it be that instead of swimming indefinitely until they drown or starve, that ringed seals will actually go where they need to to rest/reproduce and that said areas will be nearer to shore and polar bears? cont'd
jeffensley
1 / 5 (4) Sep 27, 2016
Might it also be possible that less sea ice, more open water, and more sunlight reaching water will eventually mean greater species diversity and subsequent population increases in Arctic waters and along Arctic shorelines? Time and again, cold/dark conditions have been shown to be the biggest threat to life as we know it here. While the transition may see an initial population decline, polar bears and other Arctic species are survivors of an amazingly harsh and unforgiving environment, unsuitable for most life and to assume they will die as conditions get easier comes from a place of pessimism, not science. Time will tell
antigoracle
1 / 5 (4) Sep 27, 2016
No- it is not pertinent to the point I was making - which is that the scientists who are studying the issues - are telling us that there is cause for concern - regarding the situation with the bears, and with many many other species around the world. You think you know better than all of these scientists.
-- onion retard
The onion jackass brays yet again. This jackass claims he knows better, yet he boasts about his recent 2 day, 1200 mile jaunt, in which he emitted over a tenth of the US annual average CO2. It's a good thing this jackass knows better, otherwise one can't imagine how much more gasoline he would burn.
jeffensley
1 / 5 (4) Sep 27, 2016
although your reasoning and my reasoning count for nothing - against the weight of scientific evidence - and that is the central point.


There IS no evidence in regards to the threat to polar bears.... that's MY point.

Now you go off into what iffs, and all kinds of speculation - not having any understanding that this also counts for nothing against the weight of science.


You do realize that the "evidence" you continue to reference that you believe supports your argument is nothing but what iffs don't you? We agreed actual data on polar bear populations is probably too incomplete, with existing studies showing declines in some populations and increases in others. Beyond this questionable data, all you have is human intuition/speculation. Putting a "PhD" by a person's name doesn't suggest that person is skilled at intuitive reasoning. cont'd
jeffensley
1 / 5 (4) Sep 27, 2016
In the Canadian Geographic article, they discuss a theory that orca will come into Arctic waters as they open up and eat all the seals, further endangering the bears. We continue to operate from the assumption that change automatically means something detrimental. The only thing that seems to be debated is in what WAY will it be detrimental. There's a serious problem with that. Why isn't one of the running theories that seal populations will climb as the opportunistic feeders take advantage of increases in bait fish and shrimp/krill thanks to an increase in sunlight reaching water and thus an increase in phytoplankton, aiding polar bear populations? Why, if the efficient orca move further into Arctic waters, wouldn't seals spend more time on land or land-locked ice where polar bears can hunt them? There are multiple, reasonable scenarios to counter the doom-centric ones currently presented. I see the bias. You seem to choose not to.
antigoracle
1 / 5 (4) Sep 27, 2016
If only you could see your supreme arrogance.
-- onion retard
LOL
This from the braying jackass who boasted about his recent 2 day, 1200 mile jaunt, in which he emitted over a tenth of the US annual average.
jeffensley
1 / 5 (4) Sep 28, 2016
If only you could see your supreme arrogance.


Perhaps, and it would be helpful if you could see your supreme faith in people as flawed as you and I. I'm not saying I have the answer... I AM saying that data is consistently presented in a biased way and that balance is needed.

You presented data of an Alaskan population on the decline as evidence that the demise of polar bears is upon us... I present data of growing polar bear populations as evidence that such a drastic conclusion isn't necessarily well-founded. My stance appears to be more supported than yours.
antigoracle
1 / 5 (3) Sep 28, 2016
There IS evidence regarding the threat to the bears. The Alaska article - and the one you referenced - this one - https://www.carbo...ence-say - and many other scientific sources all attest to that evidence. My confidence is not in people - it is in the scientific process.
-- onion retard
The onion jackass brays again. This jackass preaches to the heretics that, not only does he know the science but has total confidence in it. Yet, this jackass would boast about his recent 2 day, 1200 mile jaunt, in which he spewed over a tenth of the US average annual CO2. Let's all join the onion retard in saving the bears.
jeffensley
1 / 5 (4) Sep 28, 2016
And again I have to say the "evidence" is based on what people fear MAY happen in the future. The actual current data is mixed at best.
MR166
1 / 5 (4) Sep 28, 2016
https://iceagenow...edented/

Three cheers for green power or how to train your citizens to cope with adversity!
Mike_Massen
2 / 5 (4) Sep 28, 2016
MR166 blurts
Three cheers for green power or how to train your citizens to cope with adversity!
What the f..k are you on - dis-ingenuous pr..k ?

Your site link making facile claim not actual news, Premier didn't make that comment re wind turbines !!

Very bad storms toppled high voltage towers - not a turbine issue, Australian Broadcasting Services
http://www.abc.ne.../7885972

Scroll down 1/2, his quotation under his pic at podium

For MR166 & other freak deniers like jeffensley who claims to be a Scientist - FFS !
Yet disparages/snipes at edges instead of facing issues head on

Note:
These extreme weather events were predicted long ago re climate changes since the heat flow patterns have to establish (major) different equilibria, didnt jeffensely say it wouldnt ?

Also affecting West
http://www.abc.ne.../7886546

Apology ?
Mike_Massen
2 / 5 (4) Sep 28, 2016
jeffensley facile unscientific to core as MR166
And again I have to say the "evidence" is based on what people fear MAY happen in the future
Straightforward extrapolation re ice moves as it becomes less static far more dynamic so less stable regions ie thinner & moves regardless of extent for the bears to predate from, geesh aren't you supposed to be an "Environmental Scientist" & didn't know that or even infer it from links greenonions offered - FFS ?

This you ?
https://www.faceb...f.ensley
Doesn't say you ever graduated does it, when did u drop out then ?

jeffensley says
The actual current data is mixed at best
Put on your thinking cap look at how the stable regions in arctic are reducing & shifting, the bears are adapting more to land as base to feed from - doh !

Get a grip MR166 & jeffensley, you're getting less relevant & more obvious f..king plants !

Where is your integrity ? lost between logic, deduction, inference & empathy no doubt !
antigoracle
1 / 5 (3) Sep 29, 2016
jeff
And again I have to say the "evidence" is based on what people fear MAY happen in the future
No - it is evidence - it is happening now, or has already happened. Such as the ice sheets are receding, the bear cubs are not surviving as well as in the past, etc. Point remains - that thousands of specialist scientists around the world - spending their lives looking at this evidence - know more than you do. If you dispute the interpretation of this data - write a paper - get published - take your knocks.
--onion retard.
Would someone feed this braying jackass. This is the jackass who has read all the science and "knows" it's indisputable. Yet, this jackass boasts about his recent 2 day, 1200 mile jaunt, in which he emitted over a tenth of the US annual average CO2.

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