A Picture of a Polar Bear

Polar Bear Facts

  • Name: Polar Bear
  • Binomial Name: Ursus maritimus
  • Lifespan: Up to 25 years
  • Diet: Carnivorous
  • Range: U.S. (Alaska), Canada, Russia, Greenland, and Norway (Svalbard).
  • Population: Between 20,000 to 30,000 (estimate)
  • Conservation Status: Vulnerable

18 Polar Bear Facts for Kids

  1. A polar bear is a member of the Ursus genus.
  2. The polar bear’s binomial name is Ursus maritimus.
  3. Polar bears can be found in the U.S. (Alaska), Canada, Russia, Greenland, and Norway (Svalbard).
  4. Polar bears are hypercarnivorous and the most carnivorous member of the Ursus genus.
  5. Because polar bears spend most of their life in the water, they’re considered a marine mammal.
  6. The diet of a polar bear mostly consists of ringed and bearded seals.
  7. Polar bears are still-hunters, they lie and wait for their prey, sometimes for many hours.
  8. A polar bear can live up to 25 years, with wild bears reaching a record of 32 years and a captive one reached 43 years.
  9. Polar bears are sexually dimorphic, males are large than females.
  10. A male polar bear can reach a weight between 772 to 1,543 pounds.
  11. A female polar bear can reach a weight between 386 to 772 pounds.
  12. An adult polar bear has 42 teeth.
  13. A female polar bear is called a sow.
  14. A young polar bear is called a cub.
  15. A polar bear can swim up to 6 miles per hour.
  16. A polar bear can smell its prey up to one mile away.
  17. A female polar bear was recorded swimming for 9 days straight. She swam over 1,100 miles and lost around 22% of her entire body mass.
  18. The International Union for Conservation of Nature lists polar bears as vulnerable.

Additional Resources on Polar Bears