NEWS

Dozens of polar bears gather at whale carcass near Clyde River

11/04/2014 03:10 EST | Updated 01/04/2015 05:59 EST
After a successful bowhead whale hunt last August, people in Clyde River, Nunavut, are being treated to another natural spectacle.

While most of the meat and muktuk from the whale was used, blubber on the bowhead carcass has left a bonanza for hungry polar bears.

Polar bears are now congregating at a beach at Cape Christian, or Pinguaqjuit, about 16 kilometres from the community.

Local photographer, Niore Iqalukjuak, says he saw 35 bears at one time.

“I went and tried to take a picture of them late last night and it was completely different than taking pictures in the day,” he says.

“You can’t see them, but you can hear them growling, so it’s scarier.”

Iqalukjuak says hunters are seeing many bears in the area and they all look well-fed.

He suspects they will disperse once they have eaten their fill.

He says foxes, ravens and seagulls are also feasting from the carcass.

This summer's bowhead whale hunt was the first for the community in over a century. 

Commercial whalers depleted the bowhead whale population to near extinction by the early 1900s.

The hunt is now heavily regulated.

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