Climate change is real and happening — but of course anyone with a modest grasp on reality knows that. While its impact has been evident to humans and animals equally, the problems it’s causing are way beyond what we perceive.
Grizzly bears in Alaska and Canada are now forced to move to colder areas as the climate in the nearby areas warms up. However, their relocation is bringing them in contact with polar bears already living on the coastline. As a result, a new species of bears is coming into existence, which is the grizzly-polar bear hybrid.
A picture captures a bear shot near the Hudson Bay by hunter Didji Ishalook, who says he initially thought he had got hold of a small polar bear, but soon realized the animal was actually a “half breed.”
“It looks like a polar bear but it’s got brown paws and big claws like a grizzly,” Ishalook said. “And the shape of a grizzly head.”
However, this is not the first time a bear like this one has been spotted and the sighting of this hybrid species has recently become increasingly common over the last few years.
“The combination of warmer temperatures and vegetation growth means there is more overlap between the species and I’d expect that overlap to increase,” Chris Servheen, a grizzly bear expert at the University of Montana, said.
Rapid ice melting forces polar bears to spend more time on land, causing them to mate with grizzly bears. The new species has dark fur rings around their eyes and their paws or toes are often dark too. Their fur coat, however, is a little darker than that of a polar bear and of course much lighter than a grizzly bears.