Polar Bears (Grade 4)

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Polar Bears

Polar bears live in the Northern Hemisphere. They are largely found in Alaska, Canada, Greenland, Norway, and Russia. Polar bears rarely stay in one place. They travel to find a mate and to find food. Often polar bears also follow the ice north in the spring. In the fall, they follow the ice south.

What Do Polar Bears Look Like?
Polar bears are incredibly large bears. Male polar bears can grow to be up to 11 feet tall. Female polar bears can grow to be up to 8 feet tall. Polar bears may seem a bit skinnier than other polar bears because they have longer heads and skinnier necks.

Polar bears also look like they have white fur. However, a polar bear's fur is not white. A polar bear's fur is actually made of small, hollow tubes. The tubes are all clear. When the light from the sun reflects off of them, they look white. This helps polar bears blend into their environment. In the snow, the white fur looks like camouflage. This makes it easier for a polar bear to hunt for its prey.

What Do Polar Bears Eat?
Polar bears are carnivores. This means they eat meat. A polar bear's favorite food is the ringed seal. Some polar bears also like to eat whale carcasses and walruses.

Polar bears often catch their dinner while swimming. They can swim up to 6 miles per hour. They can also dive up to 15 feet under water. Once a polar bear catches its meal, it eats the fat and blubber. The rest of the seal becomes food for other animals.

The Future of Polar Bears
Polar bears are a protected species. People like to kill them as food and for their fur. The ice in the polar bears' habitat is also melting. All of these make it difficult for polar bears to survive.
1. 
Why do polar bears move north in the spring?
  1. to follow the ice
  2. to find warmer weather
  3. to catch food to eat
  4. to find a mate
2. 
What causes a polar bear's fur to look white?
  1. its hollow tubes
  2. the reflection of the sun
  3. the snow in its habitat
  4. the proteins in seal fat
3. 
How does the white fur help polar bears?
  1. It makes them cooler.
  2. It attracts mates.
  3. It helps provide camouflage.
  4. It gives them more energy.
4. 
The polar bear only eats the fat and blubber of a seal. How does this help other animals?
  1. It means they are safe from polar bears.
  2. It provides them with food to eat.
  3. It helps them keep warm in the cold.
  4. It gives them protection from seals.
5. 
What effect does melting ice have on polar bears?
  1. It makes it hard for them to stay alive.
  2. It makes it easier for them to find food.
  3. It makes them warmer in the winter.
  4. It makes their journey north easier.

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