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Polar bear (Ursus maritimus)

Polar bear
Polar bear Polar bear Polar bear Polar bear

Personal Information
The Seneca Park Zoo is home to two polar bears. Our male, Zero, was born at the Milwaukee Zoo in 1989 and joined us in February of 2010. Our female Aurora was also born in 1989 and has resided at the Zoo since 1991. She and her former mate Yukon (who died in 2008) had four cubs together. Both bears are very intelligent and love to play in the water with ice blocks and new enrichment items the keepers give them.

Status in the Wild
International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Red List status: Vulnerable. The IUCN lists global warming as the most significant threat to the polar bear, as melting of its sea ice habitat reduces its ability to find sufficient food. The Seneca Park Zoo is part of the Species Survival Plan for the polar bear.

Found on sea coasts, islands, ice floes and in open water in Arctic regions including the U.S., Canada, Greenland, Norway and Russia.


The polar bear eats ringed and bearded seals, whale carcasses, caribou, rodents, sea birds, fish, eggs, berries, and unfortunately, human garbage.

  • A male polar bear can be up to 11-feet-tall and weigh up to 1,400 pounds. The females weigh between 660 to 770 pounds.
  • Hairs on a polar bear reflect light, giving polar bears a white coloration. But, the truth is, a polar bear’s hair is translucent.
  • The large paws on a polar bear act as snowshoes, spreading out the polar bear’s weight and adding extra gripping ability.
  • A polar bear has blubber up to 4-inches thick.
  • A new born polar bear cub weighs about 1 pound.