Debut of Twin cubs
Not so long ago the Hellabrun Zoo visitors in Munich were finally able to see two white cubs that were born on December 9, 2013. The twins have no names yet and they stay close to their mother, the bear Giovanna.
The birth of polar bears was a welcome and exciting event for the zoo since this has happened first time in the last 20 years.
During the courtship period for the cubs in the den, the she-bear may not eat, drink or defecate for several months. Female polar bear is able to bear up to 5 cubs throughout life.
Pregnancy lasts 8 months and the bear can bring from 1 to 3 cubs at a time. The birth period occurs between November and January. She-bar and her cubs leave their den at the end of March or early April.
Polar bears living in low temperature conditions have no problems with hypothermia, but they often overheat when running.
Polar bear can smell the seals that are on the ice surface at a distance of up to 30 kilometers.
Only the 2 percent of cases the polar bear hunting ends up with a success.
The Inuits in Canada treat polar bears with great respect and call them "Nanook".
Today the polar bear is the largest one among bears.
Polar bears appeared about 200-500 thousand years ago and they come from grizzly bears.
Polar bears live 15-18 years in the wild and up to 30 years in captive conditions.
A thick layer of subcutaneous fat that can reach up to 10 centimeters, as well as two layers of fur (smooth water repellent and dense undercoat) help the bear to retain heat even in the worst frosts.
Small ears and tail also contribute to the saving the body heat.
The hillocks on the soles do not allow them to slide on the ice.
White fur perfectly shields polar bears, makes them invisible for both hunters and prey.
Thanks to webbed feet, polar bears can swim more than a dozen kilometers searching for food.
A large amount of fat in the body allows them to stay well on the water and stay in the icy water for a long time.
Polar bears mainly chase the ringed seal and sea hares. The biggest treat for them is fat. Its high caloric content allows the bears to accumulate their own fat, which helps them to cope with hunger during period when there is no food.
Unlike other representatives of bear, polar bears do not fall into hibernation in winter. Their metabolism is adapted to long periods of hunger: 10 days after the last meal, it slows down until the animal catches a new prey. This allows the bears to survive in conditions of severe lack of food.
Newborn cubs are very tiny: only 30 to 35 centimeters long and weigh about 0.5 kilograms. But they grow very fast when staying with a she-bear up to 2.5 years.