Alright, alright, so we've all heard about the polar bears. But now it seems their cousins to the south, the grizzlies and black bears, are also under serious threat.
In August, millions of sockeye salmon failed to return to British Columbian rivers to spawn. It was estimated between six and 10 million salmon would show up in the Fraser river, but only 600,000 actually did. BC bears, who depend on the fish to fatten up for winter, are already dying of starvation. Doug Neasloss, a guide with the Kitasoo-Xaixais tribe, stated, "I've never experienced anything like this. There has been a huge drop in the number of bears we see." Experts are calling this "an unfolding disaster," and it seems the problem will only get worse as the winter months unfold.
The disappearance of sea ice is having such an effect on walruses that a petition is circling to get them added to the endangered species list. This year, as in 2007, thousands of walruses have gathered in northwest Alaska, suggesting that the sea ice they normally rest on has been affected by climate change. This congregation can apparently lead to potentially deadly stampedes but also, more importantly, to starvation: walruses, who cannot swim for long periods of time, use the sea ice to fish for clams in shallow waters.
Say goodbye to your fish-sticks, Britons, as it seems North Sea cod are "doomed." And putting stricter restrictions on fishing won't help either - this one's all up to climate change. In the last few decades, the North Sea has warmed by approximately 1 degree Celsius, enough to diminish the amount of plankton the cod fry rely on for survival by 60 per cent. The good news is that the numbers of other species the cod normally feed on, such as jellyfish, are booming. So maybe, as one Catalonian chef suggests, we can eat those instead. No harm done?