What YOU Can Do:
- Change some simple every day habits. Recycle more and save energy by: using less hot water, using energy safe light bulbs, buying seasonal and locally grown food, using public transportation, switching off the light when you leave a room…. Little daily actions will go a long way and make the difference.
–1Frame4Nature is a collection of images and stories from around the globe of your personal connection to nature. However small, when combined with the actions of others, your individual actions can impact real and tangible outcomes for the preservation of our planet. Submit your story now!
iLCP Fellow Daisy Gilardini‘s 1Frame4Nature: Voices from a Melting World
Polar bears’ habitat is the Arctic. They are the only bear species classified as marine mammals as they spend most of the time hunting on the ice-covered waters of the circumpolar Arctic.
I have been photographing polar bears since 1999 when I first visited Wapusk National Park in Manitoba Canada. After that my love for the Polar Regions led me to the Russian Arctic including Wrangel Island, then to Greenland, the Svalbard Archipelago and the Canadian High Arctic.
Polar Bears are the only bears to be truly carnivorous; with seals representing 90% of their diet they are also at the very top of the Arctic food chain. Scientists distinguish 19 different subpopulations throughout the ice-covered waters of the circumpolar Arctic. For many of these populations their life has two seasons: winter is the feasting season when they hunt seal while roaming on the pack ice, while summer is the fasting season when the absence of ice pushes the bears on to land with scarce food resources.
Today the most serious threat to polar bears is the loss of habitat due to climate change and the melting of the Arctic sea ice.
NASA has recorded the minimum extent of the arctic ice in September since 1979. In the last 36 years 40% has melted away.
The ice is forming later and melting earlier and as a result scientists are reporting more frequent events of cannibalism, death by starvation and death by drowning. Further stress on this species is caused by the presence of anthropogenic toxic pollutants in the Arctic food chain which culminates in the apex predator causing serious health issues like cancer and malfunction in the immune and reproductive system.
Documenting the life of these incredibly fascinating creatures is extremely important in order to raise public awareness. Photography is an extremely powerful tool to deliver messages. It is an universal language understood by everybody, no matter which country you are from, no matter your age, and no matter the level of education. While science provides the data to explain issues and suggest solutions, photography symbolizes these issues. Science is the brain, while photography is the heart that engages people’s emotions and can move them to action.
This article is brought to you by the 1Frame4Nature Campaign. Share a picture and story on Instagram with the hashtag #1Frame4Nature, of your personal connection to nature and tell us what action you’ve taken on behalf of our planet.