Animalia > Chordata > Mammalia > Carnivora > Ursidae > Ursus > Ursus maritimus

Ursus maritimus (Polar Bear)

Synonyms: Ursus maritimus marinus; Ursus maritimus maritimus
Language: French

Wikipedia Abstract

The polar bear (Ursus maritimus) is a carnivorous bear whose native range lies largely within the Arctic Circle, encompassing the Arctic Ocean, its surrounding seas and surrounding land masses. It is a large bear, approximately the same size as the omnivorous Kodiak bear (Ursus arctos middendorffi). A boar (adult male) weighs around 350–700 kg (772–1,543 lb), while a sow (adult female) is about half that size. Although it is the sister species of the brown bear, it has evolved to occupy a narrower ecological niche, with many body characteristics adapted for cold temperatures, for moving across snow, ice, and open water, and for hunting seals, which make up most of its diet. Although most polar bears are born on land, they spend most of their time on the sea ice. Their scientific name means
View Wikipedia Record: Ursus maritimus

EDGE Analysis

Uniqueness Scale: Similiar (0) 
 Unique (100)
Uniqueness & Vulnerability Scale: Similiar & Secure (0) 
 Unique & Vulnerable (100)
ED Score: 12.22
EDGE Score: 3.97


Gestation [3]  7 months 20 days
Hibernates [1]  Yes
Litter Size [3]  2
Litters / Year [3]  0.4
Maximum Longevity [3]  44 years
Snout to Vent Length [5]  7.38 feet (225 cm)
Water Biome [1]  Coastal
Weaning [3]  10 months 3 days
Adult Weight [2]  854.296 lbs (387.50 kg)
Birth Weight [3]  1.466 lbs (665 g)
Female Weight [2]  496.043 lbs (225.00 kg)
Male Weight [2]  1,212.549 lbs (550.00 kg)
Weight Dimorphism [2]  144.4 %
Diet [4]  Carnivore (Vertebrates), Piscivore
Diet - Endothermic [4]  90 %
Diet - Fish [4]  10 %
Forages - Ground [4]  100 %
Female Maturity [3]  4 years 9 months
Male Maturity [3]  4 years 9 months

Protected Areas

Emblem of


Prey / Diet

Prey / Diet Overlap

Competing SpeciesCommon Prey Count
Odobenus rosmarus (Walrus)2
Orcinus orca (Killer Whale)4
Somniosus microcephalus (gray shark)2
Vulpes lagopus (Arctic Fox)1


Homo sapiens (man)[6]
Somniosus microcephalus (gray shark)[6]
Ursus maritimus (Polar Bear)[6]


Parasitized by 
Ancylostoma caninum[10]
Taenia ursimaritimi <Unverified Name>[10]
Trichinella nativa <Unverified Name>[10]
Trichinella spiralis (pork worm)[10]

Institutions (Zoos, etc.)

Range Map


Europe & Northern Asia (excluding China); North America;

External References



Alaska Zoo Polar Bear Camera
Cam Time:
Hours: - ( - )

San Diego Zoo's Polar Bear Cam
Cam Time:
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Toledo Zoo Polar Bear Cam
Cam Time:
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Attributes / relations provided by
1Myers, P., R. Espinosa, C. S. Parr, T. Jones, G. S. Hammond, and T. A. Dewey. 2006. The Animal Diversity Web (online). Accessed February 01, 2010 at
2Ursus maritimus, Douglas P. DeMaster and Ian Stirling, MAMMALIAN SPECIES No. 145, pp. –7 (1981)
3de Magalhaes, J. P., and Costa, J. (2009) A database of vertebrate longevity records and their relation to other life-history traits. Journal of Evolutionary Biology 22(8):1770-1774
4Hamish Wilman, Jonathan Belmaker, Jennifer Simpson, Carolina de la Rosa, Marcelo M. Rivadeneira, and Walter Jetz. 2014. EltonTraits 1.0: Species-level foraging attributes of the world's birds and mammals. Ecology 95:2027
5Nathan P. Myhrvold, Elita Baldridge, Benjamin Chan, Dhileep Sivam, Daniel L. Freeman, and S. K. Morgan Ernest. 2015. An amniote life-history database to perform comparative analyses with birds, mammals, and reptiles. Ecology 96:3109
6Jorrit H. Poelen, James D. Simons and Chris J. Mungall. (2014). Global Biotic Interactions: An open infrastructure to share and analyze species-interaction datasets. Ecological Informatics.
7Diet composition of polar bears in Svalbard and the western Barents Sea, Andrew E. Derocher, Øystein Wiig, Magnus Andersen, Polar Biol (2002) 25: 448–452
8Alaska Wildlife Notebook Series, Alaska Department of Fish and Game
9Alopex lagopus, Alexandra M. Audet, C. Brian Robbins, and Serge Larivière, MAMMALIAN SPECIES No. 713, pp. 1–10 (2002)
10Gibson, D. I., Bray, R. A., & Harris, E. A. (Compilers) (2005). Host-Parasite Database of the Natural History Museum, London
Protected Areas provided by Biological Inventories of the World's Protected Areas in cooperation between the Information Center for the Environment at the University of California, Davis and numerous collaborators.
Specially protected natural territories of the Russian Federation, Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment of the Russian Federation
Abstract provided by DBpedia licensed under a Creative Commons License