2500 - 100,000 individuals
Comments: Total population now on the order of 11,000-12,000, including nonbreeding individuals. In 2001, the western Arctic (Bering-Chukchi-Beaufort) population was estimated at about 10,000 (95% C.L. 7700-12,600) (George et al. 2002), and the other populations were estimated to be only in the tens or hundreds of individuals (DeMaster et al. 2000).
In the mid-1990s, total population size was 6000-9000 (D. DeMaster, pers. comm., 1995). The number of mature individuals would have been considerably fewer, probably 3000-6000. Earlier in the 1990s, the total population was estimated at 7,800 and increasing (Science 263:26, IUCN 1991).
Individual stock numbers: 1. Western Arctic: about 10,000 (see above). 2. Hudson Bay: unknown, but certainly under 1000 (IUCN 2000) and most likely in the 'low hundreds (Finley 2000); surveys in mid-1990s estimated about 250-280 in the northern Foxe Basin (Cosens et al. 1997) and about 75 and northwestern Hudson Bay (Cosens and Innes 2000), but these conclusions are disputed (Finley 2000). 3. Davis Strait: fewer than 250 breeding individuals (IUCN 2000); in the 'low hundreds (Finley 2000). 4. Spitsbergen: fewer than 100, probably fewer than 50 mature individuals (IUCN 2000). 5. Sea of Okhotsk: Berzin et al. (1990) estimated this population to be at least 250-300 animals., and Vladimirov (1994) estimated 300-400. However, both these estimates are not backed up by quantitative data (Berzin et al. 1995; Brownell et al. 1997).