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Join us for Polar Bear Weekend 2024 as we will be celebrating these amazing animals and raise awareness of the shrinking habitat they live in on Saturday, February 24 and Sunday, February 25 in honor of International Polar Bear Day (Tuesday, February 27). This event is free with Zoo admission. Meet us inside Rocky Coasts Gallery to learn about Anoki’s daily care and the Zoo’s partnership with Polar Bears International (PBI) and find out what you can do to help save polar bears and the Arctic sea ice they depend on. There will be games/activities, informative materials, and Anoki’s family tree gallery!

The Zoo is also partnering once again with the Rochester Americans to help create awareness for polar bears and the sea ice they depend on as part of Defend the Ice Month

Schedule for Live Enrichment Demos:

Make plans to come to the Zoo to watch as Anoki’s keepers provide her with enrichment food/exercises to stimulate her physically and mentally (and of course treats!).

When: Saturday & Sunday at 11:00 am and 2:00 pm

* Live enrichment is always subject to change/cancellation without prior notice due to unforeseen circumstances that may arise

 

Support polar bear conservation and raise awareness of the shrinking habitat they live by donating to our fundraiser that will go to our partners who do great work in the field, Polar Bears International. They are the the only conservation organization dedicated solely wild polar bears in nature. We are proud of the work we do and are able to help through our support of PBI. We even have three Arctic Climate Ambassadors on our staff (Assistant Curator Kellee, Zoo Keepers Heidi & Randi! Learn about the recent trip Heidi went on to Churchill, Canada last year to work with PBI in the field here. 

For every $5 donated you will also be automatically entered to win a polar bear prize bundle, which includes some PBI swag (polar bear plush, water bottle, and reusable bag).

 

Virtual Content: 

Welcome to Polar Bear Weekend! Check out these awesome and informative graphics from our friends at Polar Bears International!

See Polar Bears Roam! You can watch polar bears as they travel across the sea ice to hunt seals with this Polar Bear Tracker from PBI.

Q&A with PBI’s Director of Field Operations, BJ Kirschhoffer, on the Svalbard Maternal Den Study

The Quest for New Den-Detection Technology – Learn about PBI’s fieldwork with artificial dens. Being able to find and map polar bear dens hidden under the snow will help ensure moms and cubs aren’t disturbed.

On the Blog: 

Check out this blog on our site by Dr. Karyn Rode, Research Wildlife Biologist with U.S. Geological Survey – Alaska Science Center for a summary of one study we are currently taking part in with Anoki on estimating the importance of land-based, human-provisioned foods in polar bears affected by sea ice loss. This is a great example of how animals in conservation care can have a direct impact on research and projects being done to help their counterparts in nature.

Zoos Support Polar Bear Conservation Research in the Wild – This guest essay contributed by Dr. Thea Bechshoft, Conservation Programs Associate and Staff Scientist Polar Bears International, first appeared in our January 2023 edition of ZooNooz.