A Polar Bear with triplet yearlings – Svalbard 2017

A Polar Bear with triplet yearlings. Our fifth trip to these amazing Arctic Islands. This was a very special trip: a private charter aboard the M/S Malmo for twenty nights. This gave us the maximum time possible in the pack ice as we searched for Polar Bears. We had the most amazing encounters. We first came upon a female Narwhal carcass and five bears feasting on it. Narwhal are rare around Svalbard so we were most surprised to find another Narwhal carcass some distance from the first. This time it was a male and there were upwards of 10 bears enjoying the carcass. We spent several days just watching the spectacle unfold. When the carcass was finished and the bears had dispersed we went onto the ice floe and rescued the skull and 2m tusk for the museum at Longyearbyen.

We moved on and encountered more bears, some with cubs. We even saw one female with triplets: two females and a larger male cub.  It seems likely that the male cub had been adopted from another family since he was the only one of the group with an ear tag. This film captures that experience.