New bear species discovered: Ursus Bogus

I had been avoiding this photo issue, because well, the whole thing is stupid no matter how you look at it and it’s been been heavily covered elsewhere. But when Tim Blair coined the clever headline “Ursus Bogus“, in the Daily Telegraph, I knew I had to pass it on to American readers. WUWT readers may also recall NOAA/NCDC using photoshopped pictures of a flooded house in their big whoop-de-doo climate impacts report last year. They had to pull the report. Heh.

Blair writes:

Science magazine is deeply disturbed:

We are deeply disturbed by the recent escalation of political assaults on scientists in general and on climate scientists in particular. All citizens should understand some basic scientific facts.

To illustrate its item about scientific facts, Science chose this image of a doomed poley bear:


One small problem.

As James Delingpole reveals, that poley bear image is fake. It’s been photoshopped. Science subsequently admitted:

The image associated with this article was selected by the editors. We did not realize that it was not an original photograph but a collage, and it was a mistake to have used it.

As Science says: “There is always some uncertainty associated with scientific conclusions.”


I wonder how they missed the description here at the source of the photo?

It reads:

Stock photo description

A polar bear managed to get on one of the last ice floes floating in the Arctic sea. Due to global warming the natural environment of the polar bear in the Arctic has changed a lot. The Arctic sea has much less ice than it had some years ago. (This images is a photoshop design. Polarbear, ice floe, ocean and sky are real, they were just not together in the way they are now)

So much for peer reviewed editing. Maybe next time they’ll use the penguin version.


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Bruce of Newcastle

Small correction from us parochial convict types: Aussie Telegraph not the UK one Anthony.
REPLY: Yeah, bungled that out of habit, fixed. -A


AGW, forlorn on a floe of melting ironies.


It’s interesting that the name of “Science” is associated with the use of a photoshopped picture. Very interesting.

Steve in SC

Well, considering the ethics and honesty of the source, it is certainly in character.

James Beatty

Even if the “Poms” wish to claim Tim Blair as their own, he remains an Australian journo (and AGW skeptic) writing for the Sydney “Daily Telegraph”
-and we are proud of him!


Fake is the new Science.
Should we call the climate “scientists” “fakists” now?

Michael Ronayne

If you like the background it is also available with one penguin:
Or three penguins:
Please note the touching titles on the photographs. The lunatic left now has an industry devoted to fabricating fake evidence of global warming. Our stolen tax dollars at work!
Michael Ronayne
Nutley, NJ

Alan Simpson

James Beatty says:
May 12, 2010 at 3:27 pm
Even if the “Poms” wish to claim Tim Blair as their own, he remains an Australian journo (and AGW skeptic) writing for the Sydney “Daily Telegraph”
-and we are proud of him!
Oh Bugger! Why can’t we have him?
Tchoh! You colonials are so selfish. 🙂

Al Gore's Holy Hologram

They’re called Science and they can’t tell that an obvious Photoshop composition is impossible in nature and doesn’t resemble any region on Earth.


So did they ask Paul Nicklen/National Geographic/Getty Images if that one was a “collage”?!
Or did they leave that up to the unavoidable uncertainties of Science, and of National Geographic’s conclusions?

Ursus Bogus????? Thanks, Anthony. I enjoyed that.


For some reason the penguin version doesn’t have a reflected image of the penguin in the water. Must be a vampire penguin.


hi guys, so far I’ve had no response to the emails I sent to cryo and nansen asking for their sea ice data in text (date – quantity) format.
Can the WUWT community help me get the data if we need to resort to FOIA?
I’m a uk national, and I think to FOI request data from cryo, you need to be a US citizen. Same with nansen – you neeed to be nowegian?
here’s the email I sent nansen
Wed, 5 May, 2010 0:32:26
arctic sea-ice data request

James Grist [Chat now]

Add to Contacts
Hi, I’ve been looking for time seriesdata for arctic sea ice extent and
area in numeric form. Ideally it would be in a simular form to the jaxa
sea-ice data here.
i.e. Date and a value for the ice area on that date.
I looked for the data on your website but in was in graphical form, with some of the data abstracted as an average.
My use for the data is purely as a hobby, spured by the mass-media focus
arctic sea ice.
Can you make available to me the numeric data in (
date – quantity ) format from 1978 to present on arctic sea-ice extent and
area please?
Other issues :
– I think they might block the request on the grounds that ( date – quantity ) is not raw data, it’s an ( their ) interpretation of the satelitte data. Are they allowed to block on these grounds?
– it’s only been a week since I sent. Maybe they are busy.

What next? Save the zebronkey?

D Caldwell

“We are deeply disturbed by the recent escalation of political assaults on scientists in general and on climate scientists in particular.”
An entirely self-imposed wound.

Eric (skeptic)

“Collage” is a scientific term meaning that the polar bear was overlaid onto the ice photo so we can see the relative size of the remaining ice pack. This is very similar to the way the instrument record is shown bright red on top of the proxy “record” for comparison purposes.


Ha! Well that certainly puts the nail in it. Now, Roy Spencer otoh…

Sam Hall

Even if that picture was true, the bear is not in trouble since they can swim for hours.


If only Phil had thought to say that his most famous graph was actually ‘a collage’.


The picture has been replaced by one taken in the Hudson Strait, a passage to Hudson Bay which is ice free every summer, the ice being from a glacier. Science neglects to reveal this however, despite the embarrassment of the first picture. The cheap tricks continue. They deserve to be assaulted, and the signers should be ashamed to be part of it.
“Mother bear and two-year-old cub drift on glacier ice. Hudson Strait, Nunavut, Canada.”
One picture there appears to show the Arctic Ice has turned into solid ground.


Science magazine says:

We are deeply disturbed by the recent escalation of political assaults on scientists in general and on climate scientists in particular. All citizens should understand some basic scientific facts.

Oh Science magazine, I for one very clearly understand your “scientific facts” (and your subtle lies).
Got caught, didn’t you.

Layne Blanchard

Maybe we can suggest they put the Bear AND the Penguin on the ice floe. That would be especially heartbreaking. … and realistic….

Russ Hatch

I’ve heard of a cross between a Grizzly and a Polar bear before. Is Ursus Bogus a cross between a Polar bear and a Teddy bear?


It’s good to see you’re not getting involved in this nonsense. Oh wait!


I had a nice altered version of that, after seeing the penguin one in another post. I got rid of the bear and put Al Gore on the float instead, cleaned away the stock photo watermark… it looked pretty good! (I hesitated and then decided to not post it here, due to the copyright issue)

Lots of details on the polar bear story 🙂

John Silver

The penguin version is even more stupid.
(Antarctica is land, not sea)


Should you not have said;
“To illustrate its item about scientific facts, Science chose this image from science fiction


Maybe somebody can PhotoShop a picture of Professor Jones standing on an ice flow, looking forlorn as his funding melts away.


It’s been more than six months since climate gate broke and there doesn’t yet seem to be a definitive study debunking CAGW. Is that not enough time? I’ve seen lots of little incriminating things here on WUWT, but there doesn’t seem to be a devastating and solid study finally exposing where the errors lie. The closest I’ve seen to that was a few months ago when someone looked at the thermometer temperatures and found a serious divergence. But oddly the divergence seemed to only begin in the sixties. The result seemed dubious and maybe it was, because nobody seems to be talking about that study anymore. I’m surprised Anthony doesn’t have a summary of the important evidence somewhere on his site. Wikipedia is nearly worthless for learning the skeptic side of the story.
The thing I’m surprised about most is the widespread support of the hide the decline method. It seems like blatantly bad science, but I’ve seen no repudiation of it by major scientific societies. It’s hard to believe they’re all without honest scientists. Or am I missing something? They seem to have two defenses. One is that other studies like those on sediments have given similar results. But this seems to be like saying “Yea, our methods were fraudulent, but our friends who desperately want the medieval warm period to go away and have been defending our fraudulent methods, are getting similar results, so it’s ok that we used fraudulent methods.” They’ve also claimed that only some tree rings show a divergence. But it seems like you would need an awfully powerful incentive to include data in your calculations that would dramatically undermine the credibility of your study. If they actually had tree ring data without divergence, that could give similar results but without the problems, then why would they include data from the trees that give false temperatures?


Either that emperor penguin is at the north pole…
…or the polar bear is at the south pole
Either way, that piece of ice was at the south pole, which has even more ice…
I love hollywood!


Funny thing is, the real picture is of a larger ice floe with 2 bears.
Not much of a difference.
Not much of interest here.

kadaka (KD Knoebel)

Daddy, why are the ripples going right through the ice?
That’s rotten Arctic ice, darling. Nearly everything goes right through it, some people say it’s not even really there. About the only thing it does support is funding for those Caitlin explorers.


It’s funny, because you don’t have to photoshop up a picture of people snowed into their houses in May, but you do you to photoshop up a picture of a Polar bear on a melting ice floe.
What does that say about the state of the evidence?
And doesn’t anyone realise the Polar Bears are powerful and skilled swimmers?

Virtual polar bears have rights to, ya know!

Craig Moore

Maybe it’s one of those global warming grolar pizzly bears.

Amino Acids in Meteorites

“I wonder how they missed the description here at the source of the photo?”
Because they’re crack investigative journalists.
They’ve missed the point of what was written in ClimateGate emails. They’ve missed all the errors in Al Gore’s movie. They can’t understand that the IPCC reports are framed by politicians and not scientists. They can’t see all the corrupt money in global warming. They’ve never stopped to ask why Al Gore would buy property on the ocean, or why he flies to all of his speaking engagements on a Gulf Stream jet rather than just doing a web cast from where he lives. They call superlative scientists like Richard Lindzen, William Happer, Freeman Dyson, Antonino Zichichi, and Roy Spencer “deniers”.
I mean ya, how could they have missed it was a faked photo?

Jeff L

It says a lot about your cause when you can’t use a real photo but have to use a photoshopped version to make a point….. like your cause has no basis in reality.

old construction worker

Another AGW OPPS moment. They kept getting their hand caught in the “Cooking Jar”.


REPLY: Yeah, bungled that out of habit, fixed. -A
oh oh… does that mean you are actually touring the UK and not Australia? 😉


The Icon of CAGW “science” …. The photoshopped polar bear on a photoshopped ice flow, drifting upon a photoshopped sea.
It’s sorta like poetry really:-)

David Corcoran

Someone needs to create a version of the photo with Al Gore looking forlornly out to sea.

Paul Daniel Ash

tooooooooooooooootally scientific picture, by way of comparison:
Matthew 7:3, yo.

But remember you heard it first on WUWT!

Jim Greig

Is there any part of the ‘science’ that the AGW folks haven’t forged, faked or cherrypicked? If they can’t even find something as simple as an actual photograph, it’s no wonder they can’t find any actual data to support their positions.


Heh, it took a WUWT post to get their attention. They’ve replaced the image, with a very weak correction about a “collage” being used. Collages look like collages, photoshops look like photographs.
Then there is the matter of their claims about AGW “science” and persecution thereof. Their scientific claims are counterfactual, and the rest is opinion. The credentials of this small minority of the NAS are most underwhelming. Awaiting the Bishop’s arrival 🙂

istockphoto says Polarbear, ice floe, ocean and sky are real
I wouldn’t be too sure about the ocean, especially the waves. The related penguin photo at has different fake waves. The original fake waves are in
I would have loved to have been a fly on the wall for some of the discussions about what to do with unscientific (and fake!) photo.
Ah well, we should be “keenly focused on the central points of the” letter. 🙂

Alex Buddery

Holy carp, that’s one gigantic penguin, did it eat the polar bear?


What is really amusing about all this is that these images never go away. Check this out:
That old photoshoped propaganda piece is still being used by NASA to brainwash our kiddies, even after it has been exposed as a fraud. Of course everyone is careful to not mention that Polar Bears have no difficulty swimming hundreds of miles! They used to be considered an aquatic mammal, but that was before the discovery of their utility for use in propaganda!

Paul Daniel Ash says:
May 12, 2010 at 5:51 pm
Oh, I thought you were linking to the PB & penguin “photo” at