Dr George Durner Studies Polar Bears in the Southern Beaufort Sea

Video Shot in: 2009

Research zoologist with the US Geological Survey Alaska Science Center, Dr. George Durner discusses his extensive involvement in studying polar bears and their sea ice habitat use. For decades he has researched various aspects of polar bear behavior, health, and reproduction, with a particular focus on their responses to changing sea ice conditions. Dr. Durner also led a project assessing stress hormones using polar bear fur samples collected over the years. He explains the challenges faced by the Southern Beaufort Sea subpopulation of polar bears due to sea ice loss during summer months, leading to a decline in their numbers. He noticed some improvement in survival rates after 2008, and the population has remained relatively stable since then even as the bears face significant changes and challenges in the Arctic environment.