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Video Of Polar Bear Starving To Death Illustrates How Climate Change Is Affecting Wildlife

Video Of Polar Bear Starving To Death Illustrates How Climate Change Is Affecting Wildlife

There are plenty of people around the world who don't believe climate change, and they have their reasons. But it's hard to argue against the topic when videos like this surface, showing just how badly wildlife is being affected by the evolving planet.

Credit: Paul Nicklen/Caters

National Geographic photographer Paul Nicklen captured the heart-breaking footage of a starving polar bear struggling to stand up properly and scavenging through a rusted bin.

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It's strange to see a polar bear situated in the environment that it was in. We're used to seeing them hanging around glaciers or swimming through Arctic waters, but this one was walking through a grassy, rocky terrain that seemed devoid of food.

Paul wrote on Instagram: "My entire Sea Legacy team was pushing through their tears and emotions while documenting this dying polar bear.

Polar Bear
Polar Bear

Credit: Paul Nicklen/Caters

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"It's a soul-crushing scene that still haunts me, but I know we need to share both the beautiful and the heart-breaking if we are going to break down the walls of apathy. This is what starvation looks like. The muscles atrophy. No energy. It's a slow, painful death.

"When scientists say polar bears will be extinct in the next 100 years, I think of the global population of 25,000 bears dying in this manner. There is no band aid solution. There was no saving this individual bear.

"People think that we can put platforms in the ocean or we can feed the odd starving bear. The simple truth is this-if the Earth continues to warm, we will lose bears and entire polar ecosystems.

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"This large male bear was not old, and he certainly died within hours or days of this moment.

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Credit: Paul Nicklen/Caters

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"But there are solutions. We must reduce our carbon footprint, eat the right food, stop cutting down our forests, and begin putting the Earth-our home-first."

It's a harrowing look into how different parts of the world are dealing with the changing climate. It was captured on Canada's Baffin Island which is usually covered in snow during the winter.

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Paul says he definitely wanted to feed the polar bear, but he was restricted on both legal and moral terms. It's against the law to feed wild polar bears in Canada and the photographer understood that whatever food he could have given, he would have only lengthened the bear's life by a few hours or days.

Researchers have explained the future is grim for polar bears if current trends continue. A 2016 study explained how continued ice melts will see the global population drop from 26,000 to 17,000 in as little as 35 years.

According to the Daily Mail, one of the issues plaguing them is the lack of ice in the sea, as that's what they use as a platform to catch their prey.

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Featured Image Credit: Caters/Paul Nicklen

Topics: polar bear, climate change, Video, Canada, National Geographic

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Stewart Perrie

Stewart Perrie is a Trending Journalist at LADbible. His first job was as a newsreader and journalist at the award winning Sydney radio station, Macquarie Radio. He was solely responsible for the content broadcast on multiple stations across Australia when the MH17, Germanwings and AirAsia disasters unfolded. Stewart has covered the conflict in Syria for LADbible, interviewing a doctor on the front line, and has contributed to the hugely successful UOKM8 campaign.