Global Range: (>2,500,000 square km (greater than 1,000,000 square miles)) Polar bears have a circumpolar distribution in the northern hemisphere, including the East Siberian, Laptev, Kara, and Barents seas of Russia; Fram Strait (the narrow strait between northern Greenland and Svalbard), Greenland Sea and Barents Sea of northern Europe (Norway and Greenland); Baffin Bay, which separates Canada and Greenland, through most of the Canadian Arctic archipelago and the Canadian Beaufort Sea; and the Chukchi and Beaufort seas west and north of Alaska (Amstrup 2003, USFWS 2008). The range encompasses portions of northern Canada (Northwest Territories to Labrador and Newfoundland), Greenland, Norway, northern Russian Federation (Krasnoyarsk, North European Russia, West Siberia, Yakutiya), Svalbard and Jan Mayen, and the United States (northern Alaska). Distribution in most areas changes with the seasonal extent of sea-ice cover. The species in now excluded by humans from some parts of the historical southern portion of the range.
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