Annnnnnd…another Canadian polar bear subpopulation is increasing

Posted on May 31, 2020 |

In case you missed it buried in the details of my rebuttal two weeks ago about Facebook labeling a short PragerU polar bear video as “false information”, in his review of the video (18 May 2020) Canadian polar bear biologist Ian Stirling revealed that a recent survey of M’Clintock Channel polar bears documented a population increase. The problem is we have no scientific details about the survey – apparently completed four years ago, in 2016 – because the final report has not been made public (COSEWIC 2018, pp. 42-43; Crockford 2020).


Stirling stated in the review:

“…a couple [subpopulations] are doing OK, such as Foxe Basin and Davis Straight, and one seems to be increasing (M’Clintock Channel).

This good news about M’Clintock Channel is not a huge surprise: in 2019, the Polar Bear Specialist Goup assessed the M’Clintock Channel population in 2019 as ‘very likely increased’ since the previous estimate calculated in 2006 (Taylor et al. 2006) but without any recent publication cited to support that determination.

Taylor et al. 2006 M'Clintock Channel polar bears fig 1

Clearly, the revised status of M’Clintock Channel polar bears has been known within the polar bear research community since at least September 2019 (when the PBSG status table was publish online) but the report has been withheld from the public and the rest of the scientific community. Despite the good news and with all due respect to lead researcher Markus Dyck, polar bear population estimates are infrequent enough without it taking more than four years to complete a report.

NOTE: See previous post here Global polar bear population larger than previous thought – almost 30,000

(discusses the polar bear subpopulation estimates that were not
included in the 2015 IUCN Red List assessment because they had not yet
been published, which will now have to be adjusted to include the
M’Clintock Channel numbers, whenever those are made public)


Crockford, S.J. 2020. State of the Polar Bear Report 2019. Global Warming Policy Foundation Report 39, London. PDF here.

COSEWIC. 2018. COSEWIC assessment and status report on the Polar Bear Ursus maritimus in Canada. Committee on the Status of Endangered Wildlife in Canada. Ottawa. PDF here.

Taylor, M.K., Laake, J., McLoughlin, P.D., Cluff, H.D., and Messier, F. 2006. Demography parameters and harvest-explicit population viability analysis for polar bears in M’Clintock Channel, Nunavut, Canada. Journal of Wildlife Management 70:1667-1673.;2/abstract

0 0 votes
Article Rating
Newest Most Voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
June 1, 2020 10:14 am

What’s the old saying “Bad news circles the globe while good news is getting it’s shoes on” Always.

Reply to  troe
June 1, 2020 2:01 pm

What about the seals? This is not good news for them. It was only 13000 years ago that all of Canada was under a massive ice pack….the mega fauna were about to have a very bad day….what happened to the bears then?

Gary Pearse
Reply to  T. C. Clark
June 2, 2020 2:27 pm

T.C. They moved south!

June 1, 2020 10:34 am

Maybe it takes 4+ years to publish the results ‘cos the Polar Bears ate the results.
Maybe they ate the researcher as well.

Ron Long
Reply to  Oldseadog
June 1, 2020 11:22 am

That’s what it is Oldseadog, they finished eating all of the penguins and now have turned on the people.

Henning Nielsen
Reply to  Ron Long
June 1, 2020 1:11 pm

It’s just the balance of nature; as polar bear population increases, polar bear field researcher population decreases.

June 1, 2020 11:00 am

From the link:

“despite the dramatic loss of summer sea ice since 2007 that we hear about endlessly.”

There has been no dramatic loss of summer sea ice since 2007. In fact, there’s a slight increase which, I suspect will manifest itself even more this September.

Jack Dale
Reply to  philincalifornia
June 1, 2020 11:23 am
Reply to  Jack Dale
June 1, 2020 11:45 am

Your chart bears no resemblance to the graphs of sea ice area or extent posted on the Sea Ice page. It appears somewhat similar to the Sea Ice volume graph. There is a very great difference between the two. Do you care to explain?

Jack Dale
Reply to  john harmsworth
June 1, 2020 12:46 pm

The graph is from this page.

The side bat to the graph has this text:

Through 2020, the linear rate of decline for April extent is 2.65 percent per decade (Figure 3). This corresponds to a trend of 38,900 square kilometers (15,000 square miles) per year.

This is ice volume:


Reply to  Jack Dale
June 2, 2020 8:34 pm

Run a trend analysis since 2007 and see what you get.
The contention is that post 1979s ice losses levelled off after 2007.
Do the post 2007 analysis and let us know.

Jack Dale
Reply to  tetris
June 2, 2020 8:36 pm

Why would I use you cherry picked date?

Reply to  Jack Dale
June 3, 2020 1:47 pm

Sea ice decreased until 2007, but has been stable since then.

Here is another “cherrypick” from NSIDC:

Jack Dale
Reply to  tty
June 3, 2020 2:07 pm

MASIE is also from NSIDC and you are misusing it. It should be used for trends

“When should I use MASIE and when should I use the Sea Ice Index?
Use the Sea Ice Index when comparing trends in sea ice over time or when consistency is important. Even then, the monthly, not the daily, Sea Ice Index views should be used to look at trends in sea ice. The Sea Ice Index documentation explains how linear regression is used to say something about trends in ice extent, and what the limitations of that method are. Use MASIE when you want the most accurate view possible of Arctic-wide ice on a given day or through the week. More accurate pictures of ice extent on any given day might be possible on a regional basis and from other international centers. See the IPY Ice Logistics Portal for access. If you have a question about intended and appropriate use of the data, please contact NSIDC User Services.”

Javert Chip
Reply to  Jack Dale
June 1, 2020 12:05 pm

Jack will be back shortly (maybe); he’s out picking cherries…

Reply to  Jack Dale
June 1, 2020 2:24 pm

Ah yes, the old trick of starting the graph in 1979, the year sea ice was at its greatest extent in the century.

Jack Dale
Reply to  Graemethecat
June 1, 2020 2:29 pm

Really – according to whom?

comment image

Reply to  Jack Dale
June 1, 2020 6:00 pm

You might want to compare that to the AMO. There is always the possibility that the behaviour is cyclic.

Jack Dale
Reply to  gdt
June 1, 2020 6:03 pm

Show me.

Rainer Bensch
Reply to  Jack Dale
June 2, 2020 3:07 am

Jack, just wait.

Jack Dale
Reply to  Rainer Bensch
June 2, 2020 6:14 am

For what am I waiting?

Reply to  Jack Dale
June 2, 2020 8:37 pm

You’re missing the big picture: over the past 500 million years the earth has had ice at both poles approx 10% of the time.
Now is part of the 10% percent and 1 MM sq km more or less is not going to change that reality.

John F. Hultquist
Reply to  philincalifornia
June 1, 2020 12:51 pm

Note the publication date: Feb. 2010

PASADENA, Calif. – In 2007, the Arctic lost a massive amount of thick, multiyear sea ice, contributing to that year’s record-low extent of Arctic sea ice. A new NASA-led study has found that the record loss that year was due in part to the absence of “ice arches,” naturally-forming, curved ice structures that span the openings between two land points. These arches block sea ice from being pushed by winds or currents through narrow passages and out of the Arctic basin.

Reply to  philincalifornia
June 1, 2020 1:48 pm

I didn’t cherry pick. I used the 2007 date from the link, but then comprehension skills aren’t your strong point are they?

Reply to  philincalifornia
June 1, 2020 1:51 pm

PS Did you see where it says “summer sea ice”? Obviously not.

Jack Dale
Reply to  philincalifornia
June 1, 2020 2:18 pm

That is the very definition of cherry pick.

Cherry picking is the act of pointing at individual cases or data that seem to confirm a particular position, while ignoring a significant portion of related cases or data that may contradict that position.

The trend line clearly slows a decline.

Reply to  Jack Dale
June 1, 2020 4:17 pm

My my, you’re having a very bad “comprehension” day today aren’t you?

I didn’t write ” the dramatic loss of summer sea ice since 2007″, I responded to it and refuted it, so pretty much exactly the opposite of a cherry pick.

I would say you’re also having a pretty bad “deflection” day too, given where you’re posting and the fact that your deflection after you f-kd up on your comprehension is rather obvious to all.

Hint 1 – summer sea ice

Hint 2 – 2007

Jack Dale
Reply to  philincalifornia
June 1, 2020 6:00 pm

Show me your summer ice extent data.

Jeff Alberts
Reply to  philincalifornia
June 1, 2020 7:41 pm

Show me why we should worry about sea ice at all.

Jack Dale
Reply to  Jeff Alberts
June 1, 2020 7:58 pm

Arctic sea ice loss tied to unusual jet stream patterns
By: Dr. Jeff Masters, 2:40 PM GMT on April 02, 2012

Earth has seen some highly unusual weather patterns over the past three years, and three new studies published this year point to Arctic sea loss as a potential important driver of some of these strange weather patterns. The record loss of sea ice the Arctic in recent years may be increasing winter cold surges and snowfall in Europe and North America, says a study by a research team led by Georgia Institute of Technology scientists Jiping Liu and Judith Curry. The paper, titled “Impact of declining Arctic sea ice on winter snowfall”, was published on Feb. 27, 2012 in the online early edition of the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. “Our study demonstrates that the decrease in Arctic sea ice area is linked to changes in the winter Northern Hemisphere atmospheric circulation, said Judith Curry, chair of the School of Earth and Atmospheric Sciences at Georgia Tech, in a press release. “The circulation changes result in more frequent episodes of atmospheric blocking patterns, which lead to increased cold surges and snow over large parts of the northern continents.”

Read more here:

Reply to  philincalifornia
June 1, 2020 8:38 pm

Jack Dale June 1, 6:00pm Pacific

It’s in the sea ice sidebar here on this site. Scroll down to the graph entitled ICE-EXT , NORSEX SMMR/SSMI

Jeff Alberts
Reply to  philincalifornia
June 1, 2020 11:57 pm

Right, so global warming causes more cold weather.

The problem is, we haven’t seen anything unusual. And three years? Please.

Do you expect the climate anywhere to be static, never changing??

Jack Dale
Reply to  Jeff Alberts
June 2, 2020 12:17 pm

Science can be counter-intuitive. Pay attention to the jet stream. It is slowing down and meandering.

BTW – Tony Heller noticed increased snowfall and colder temperatures.

Reply to  Jack Dale
June 1, 2020 5:15 pm

Not to pile on, but the trend line appears to be a slope of about 45 degrees to illustrate about a ten percent decline over a forty year period. Note that the y-axis starts at 13 and only goes up to 16.

It may be trending down, on average, y-o-y, but dramatic? At that rate, how long will it take to hit zero?

Reply to  jtom
June 1, 2020 9:20 pm

The perturbation factor, and it’s not progressive, April is an anomaly.

June 1, 2020 11:11 am

…and if it had decreased…the entire world would know

June 1, 2020 11:15 am

Just curious why results of the research should take 4+ years to be made available?
Are they *that* slow at writing their paper?

Just wondering from the Almost Frozen North.

Bryan A
Reply to  LetsGoViking
June 1, 2020 12:23 pm

Simple enough…
The results are being embargoed until such time as a reassessment of the data can be made in an effort to try and make the data fit the desired narrative
RDCV…The SPIN DOCTOR has a hold of it

Reply to  LetsGoViking
June 1, 2020 8:31 pm

Brain death from COVID-19 is the only logical answer.

I know, I know, the SARS-CoV-2 virus goes for the lungs, and that still works, because prolonged hypoxia causes brain death.

… and combined with all that HUGE increase in atmospheric CO2, … well, … it’s the perfect storm for stupid delaying tactics.

Crispin in Waterloo but really in Carrying Place
Reply to  Robert Kernodle
June 7, 2020 6:21 pm

Robert K

Covid-19 is a disease of the lungs but SARS-Cov-2 is a disease of the epithelial cells and red blood cells. This misdiagnosis as a lung disease has killed thousands of people unnecessarily. After creating havoc by attacking the ACE2 receptor pathway, the body responds with a cytokine storm which causes the lung damage.

The modelers of the disease impact were working on a misdiagnosis from the beginning.

If you have lung problems caused by the cytokine storm, inhale hydrogen gas at 5% concentration. It turns them into water, essentially. Takes less than 8 hrs.

June 1, 2020 11:25 am

Polar bears a cuddly, not so brown bears

Bryan A
Reply to  Vuk
June 1, 2020 12:24 pm

I thought it was a race thing…Polar Bears are White after all

Reply to  Bryan A
June 1, 2020 10:19 pm

No. Black skin, they just look white. But yeah, it’s a race thing. 😇

June 1, 2020 11:43 am

Great, now the seals and walruses are at risk because of [catastrophic] [anthropogenic] climate cooling… warming…change. That said, apparently, thirty-years follows a chaotic path (“evolution”).

Tom Gelsthorpe
June 1, 2020 11:44 am

“Despite the dramatic loss of doomsday propaganda media can exploit, polar bears are thriving.”

A normal wildlife lover like yours truly, interprets this as good news. Western civ haters, and Fundraisers for Flogging view this news as cause for despair.

June 1, 2020 12:45 pm

Off topic, but I just noticed that the WUWT Search is totally non-functional. I was doing a simple search for a common topic and came up with nothing. I then tried several other searches for topics or words I know are common at WUWT, with no results returned.

June 1, 2020 1:01 pm

If pretending the increase in population is not happening by failing to publish a full report on the population, then the following strategies are available from other areas of climate research:

Select an appropriate casually related measurement that can be used to adjust the polar bear data, such as increasing seal population, which of course means that bear numbers are falling. Alternatively use bristlecone pine ring thickness, that always works.

If this doesn’t work, homogenize the polar bear data with areas where no polar bears currently live, Antarctica should serve this purpose admirably.

As a last resort, the population will need to be physically adjusted, such that it matches the prediction.

Tom in Florida
June 1, 2020 1:08 pm

This past weekend I saw an ad on TV from WWF asking for people to adopt a polar bear.
For $8 a month I guess you get a picture of your bear along with its location, family history, education history and current economic status. You also get a once a month letter from the bear thanking your for providing food and shelter and for saving it’s life . Maybe you also get a certificate suitable for framing.

Reply to  Tom in Florida
June 1, 2020 3:15 pm

Tom, I always thought people were told, “DO NOT FEED THE BEARS!” Why is a wildlife group feeding them? Also, what kinds of shelters are they building for the polar bears, igloos? Come to think of it, why do polar bears need shelters anyway?
Makes one wonder who the money is really feeding and sheltering.

Rainer Bensch
Reply to  Tom in Florida
June 2, 2020 3:18 am

They talk about those held in zoos?

Bob Hunter
June 1, 2020 1:18 pm

Talk about a failure in scientific integrity, one of many, Dr. Ian Stirling. Dr. Stirling was very critical of Dr. Susan Crockford’s studies (i.e. did not agree with his conclusions made in his 2012 paper –

The point, it isn’t that a scientist can be wrong, but that they delay or bury results that prove they were probably wrong.

Reginald Vernon Reynolds
Reply to  Bob Hunter
June 1, 2020 4:49 pm

And Dr. Susan Crockford, blogger of polarbearscience.scom, lost her job at the University of Victoria.

Jack Dale
Reply to  Reginald Vernon Reynolds
June 1, 2020 5:58 pm

Crockford was an unpaid adjunct professor in anthropology. Her stated area of expertise is the evolution of dogs.

“An adjunct professorship is an unpaid position with a few responsibilities that in return allow a scholar to operate as a qualified member of the academic community, such as making applications for research funding. However, an adjunct has no rights. Adjunct status must be renewed every three years or so, at the discretion of the individual department. I was first appointed as an adjunct in the Department of Anthropology in 2004, shortly after I had successfully defended my Ph.D. dissertation at UVic.”

Reply to  Jack Dale
June 1, 2020 11:11 pm

A typically misleading bromide against Doctor (Zoology degree) Crockford.

Ooops, she has a doctorate in Zoology, thus can indeed follow Polar Bear research.




Zoology, branch of biology that studies the members of the animal kingdom and animal life in general. It includes both the inquiry into individual animals and their constituent parts, even to the molecular level, and the inquiry into animal populations, entire faunas, and the relationships of animals to each other, to plants, and to the nonliving environment.

Reply to  Sunsettommy
June 5, 2020 9:41 am

Thanks for sharing. Could you link me to some actual published research of Susan Crockford’s? I see all this stuff on her blog, but can’t seem to locate anything that’s been fact-checked and validated for publication, at least not by any accredited scientific foundation or organization in any developed country anywhere on the face of the planet. Any additional info you could supply would be terrific. Thanks

Jack Dale
Reply to  DW
June 5, 2020 10:14 am

Google scholar lists her publications and citations.,5

Very little of her peer-reviewed research covers polar bears. Most of it is about dogs.

June 1, 2020 3:03 pm

Antarctic sea ice extent tracked close to the median line from mid-March until the first week of April when the rate of growth fell below the median rate and the trend returned to the lower end of the observed 41-year range. However, it remained within the interdecile range. Sea ice extent is near average in most sectors, but is slightly below average in the Ross Sea, parts of the Weddell Sea, and off the coast of Dronning Maud Land.

Reply to  n.n
June 1, 2020 4:26 pm

It’s a pretty tight range, but as of yesterday, not close to the lower end, which is happily provided:

Click the Antarctic button.

Jack Dale
Reply to  philincalifornia
June 1, 2020 6:05 pm

There are no polar bears in the Antarctic. No penguins in the Arctic.

Reply to  Jack Dale
June 1, 2020 8:18 pm

Of course there are; the ones WWF wants to have adopted.

Jeff Alberts
Reply to  Jack Dale
June 1, 2020 8:22 pm

Thank you captain obvious.

Jack Dale
Reply to  Jeff Alberts
June 1, 2020 8:31 pm

You are welcome, caption oblivious.

Reply to  Jack Dale
June 1, 2020 10:21 pm

Because the polar bears ate all the arctic penguins?

June 1, 2020 3:30 pm

Is Facebook still mis-labeling the PragerU video as false information?

Tiger Bee Fly
June 1, 2020 6:35 pm

At the end of the day there is no “need” for a species to exist forever, and the idea is so idiotic as to cause despair in any rational human being. Anyone who understands the natural history of our planet knows this. Imagining a species existing in a vacuum, in perpetuity like some kind of museum specimen, is no different from imagining the climate shouldn’t change and must remain stable – stable by our current definition, of course.

Nature is unimaginably brutal and disposes of its inhabitants in all the horrific ways urban dwellers don’t want to think about constantly, an endless torrent of death on an enormous scale, up to and including extinction, and always has, and always will. Photogenicity is no guarantor of survival, the wishes of environmentalist pinheads notwithstanding, and so the polar bear will one day be no more.

One day we may too be no more, but the odds of our long-term survival as a species are far greater than most thank to our ability to transform our environment, insulate ourselves from its depredations, treat injury and disease, and continually develop our understanding of our bodies’ processes – environmentalist pinheads’ wishes to the contrary notwithstanding, may they and all their human-hating ilk rot in the lowest dungeons of Hell.

June 1, 2020 9:19 pm

However, the ice edge remained more extensive than average for this time of year in the Barents Sea between Svalbard and Novaya Zemlya, as well as in the northern East Greenland Sea. Ocean heat transport has been a good predictor of winter sea ice variability in this general region. Over the past five years, ocean temperatures have cooled in this area because of a smaller transport of warm Atlantic water from the North Atlantic. Thus, it is not surprising that the winter ice cover in this region has slowly returned from near-average to slightly above-average conditions.

Ben Vorlich
June 2, 2020 1:13 am

Population not declining? File report under pending.

Tiger Bee Fly
Reply to  Ben Vorlich
June 2, 2020 6:41 am

America is auto-cannibalizing, and people are worried about polar bears? The stupid, it burns.

Screw polar bears. Just in case I didn’t make myself clear enough.

Reply to  Tiger Bee Fly
June 2, 2020 10:50 pm

I take it the push for International Walrus Day is on the backburner again?

Tiger Bee Fly
Reply to  observa
June 3, 2020 7:12 am

Screw walri sp? too. It occurs to me that Prince Philip, the Duke of Edinburgh, must’ve been over the moon when he heard about coronavirus, since he’s on record saying that if he could be reincarnated it would be as a killer virus to reduce the human population.

Must be feeling very disappointed now, the thought of which just brightened my morning considerably.

%d bloggers like this:
Verified by MonsterInsights