US, WASHINGTON (ORDO NEWS) — Intraspecific predation, or cannibalism, is found in more than 1,300 species of animals, including both fish or insects, and mammals such as dogs or monkeys. One study of cannibalism among polar bears, conducted by Steven C. Amstrup of the Alaska Science Center,deals with similar cases on the south coast of the Beaufort Sea since 2004.
Noting that from year to year more and more cubs become victims of adults, the scientist blames global warming, as a result of which the ice area has noticeably decreased. Meanwhile, the bears get their own food from under it, or they hunt seals lying on a frozen surface.
Many subsequent studies confirm this conclusion. And recently, members of the Arctic National Geographic expedition had the opportunity to witness the bloody hunt. In a shocking video shot at the scene, you can see a bear chasing a female with a teddy bear, beating off the baby from the mother and then proceeding to the meal.
Experts explain that in the world of wildlife such a model of behavior can be one of the tools of natural selection. With the disappearance of ordinary food sources, the predator will naturally turn its attention to any accessible object. And eating a representative of his kind, he at the same time reduces the number of competitors.
As a result, cannibalism – along with poaching and oil spills – also affects the size of the polar bear population. According to the International Union for Conservation of Nature, there are now about 30,000 individuals in the world; the view is assigned the status “vulnerable”. If the environmental situation does not improve, after three generations (34.5 years) the number of polar bears on the planet will decrease by 30%.
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