Do polar bears eat humans?

In this article we are going to answer: do polar bears eat humans, what are polar bears, what are men-eaters, what polar bears eat, and how polar bears are kept in captivity. 

Do polar bears eat humans?

No, polar bears do not eat humans. Humans can be killed by polar bears if they feel treated by humans or if they are scarce in food but humans are not part of their main diet. They usually eat fish and other sea mammals that are commonly found in their natural habitat. 

From 1900 to 2014 there have been about 75 attacks by polar bears on humans and only 20 have resulted in deaths. 

There have been cases in which humans have been killed and eaten by polar bears. These attacks are more common during the summer when their food is scarce and their fat reserves are low. 

Polar bears are known as opportunistic hunters. This means that if a human is in its path when they are hungry, the chances of being killed and eaten are very high. They have a very good sense of smell, they can smell their prey up to 32 km away from them. 

What are polar bears?

Polar bears are known as hypercarnivorous bears that usually live in the Arctic Circle. They are covered with enough fur to keep them from the cold weather and have a high reserve of fat. Polar bears can weigh about 300 to 700 kg. Polar male bears are bigger and stronger than polar female bears. 

Polar bears are closely related to brown bears but they have evolved to survive in their natural habitat. They have adapted to survive the cold, move across the snow, ice, and cold water, and have special abilities to hunt. 

Polar bears are a vulnerable species because of climate change. There are 5 known territories where the polar bear lives including Greenland in Denmark, Svalbard in Norway, Alaska in the United States, and Canada. 

They are marine mammals but they can spend a lot of time on land. Compared to other bears, polar bears are not territorial and are very cautious. They avoid confrontation and choose to escape instead of fighting. 

What are men-eaters?

Men-eaters are animals that prey on humans. Man-eaters do not include animals that can attack humans by mistake or by self-defense. These animals have included eating human flesh as part of their diet and actively hunting and killing humans. 

The most common man-eaters involved lions, leopards, and crocodiles. Other species that have adapted humans as part of the usual prey include

  • Various species of bears
  • Tigers
  • Leopards
  • Jaguars
  • Cougars
  • Komodo dragons
  • Spotted and striped hyenas 

What do polar bears eat?

Polar bears usually feed themselves on ringed seals, bearded seals, harp seals, hooded and harbor seals. Walrus, narwhal, and beluga can also be eaten by polar bears when they are available as prey. 

Other foods that polar bears tend to eat are fish, birds, vegetation, kelp, and berries from trees, especially during the summer when other animals are not available. 

Polar bears eat more during the winter and are more active because during the summer they depend on the fat reserve and stay inactive. 

How polar bears are kept in captivity?

Polar bears that are kept in captivity are kept in small areas that mimic the area where they live in the wild. They do not hunt for prey, instead they wait for humans to feed them similar food they would eat if they were free. 

Polar bears are not animals to keep in captivity because they usually travel large distances and are animals that are very active, especially during the winter. 

There are about 300 polar bears in captivity or in zoos. These polar bears can’t ever be released to the wildlife because they would not survive.

Follow this link for more information on how polar bears are kept in captivity

Conclusion

This article answered: do polar bears eat humans, what are polar bears, what are men-eaters, what polar bears eat, and how do polar bears are kept in captivity.

Citation

https://www.worldwildlife.org/species/polar-bear

https://polarbearagreement.org/polar-bear-biology/diet

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