Polar Bears are currently listed as a vulnerable species. But what does this mean?
Polar bears currently face many challenges. The majority of these challenges are coming from
- Global Warming
Because of these challenges polar bears are now listed as being a vulnerable species. Being a vulnerable species means it is on the threatened species list and so its on its way to becoming an endangered and extinct species.
Are polar bears endangered
Being a threatened species polar bears are vulnerable in their environment and are on their way to become a endangered species which have a higher risk of extinction. The conservation of animals listing goes all the way from least concern all the way to extinct.
- LC: Least concern – Lowest risk
- NT: Near threatened – likely to become endangered in the future
- VU: Vulnerable – high risk of endangerment in the wild – As of December 2013 this is where polar bears are
- EN: Endangered – high risk of extinction in the wild
- CR: Critically endangered – extremely high risk of extinction in the wild
- EW: Extinct in the wild – only known to survive in captivity
- EX: extinct – no known individuals remaining
As the problems of global warming and pollution in the Arctic increase it is predicted that polar bears will increase up this list and possibly will enter a stage of being critically endangered by 2080. Predictions state that by 2050 two thirds of the world population of polar bears will disappear and by 2080 only dwindling numbers of polar bears would still survive in the interior of the Arctic.
This means that the polar bear populations would disappear entirely from Europe, Asia, Alaska, Greenland and Northern Canada.
It is predicted that polar bears will not be able to adapt to the changing environment. Polar bears have a very long generational time and low reproduction rates which combine with the speeding of global warming seen today to leave them at very high risk. As time moves on things will only get worse for the polar bear unless we act to protect them.
You can read more about the conservation status of animals here
Also check out polar bear endangered