Whenever we have to venture out in really cold weather, humans are sure to layer on many layers of warm clothing. And there’s no way we can safely attempt swimming in extremely cold water without a wetsuit. Polar bears, on the other hand, have bodies especially adapted to living in the intense cold of the Arctic. During warmer weather, polar bears are sometimes even uncomfortable because they are so good at staying warm on their own.

Their heavy fur coat works similarly to the heavy winter clothing humans wear. The hairs that make up polar bear fur are hollow, however, so the sun’s rays can pass through and warm their skin. They also have a rubbery layer of fat, called blubber,  just beneath the skin. The blubber shields the bear’s body from icy cold water. On some parts of the body, polar bears can have up to four inches of blubber!

Advertisements