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Animals you’ll see in the Arctic

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Soomin Jegal
Your avatar
by
Soomin Jegal
Animals you’ll see in the Arctic

The Arctic (North Pole) is a wonderful place to visit for researchers such as teams of biologists and climatologists. It’s also open for tourists between June and July when the ice is thinner but it’s inaccessible for the rest of the year. 

The most fascinating part about the Arctic that attracts many visitors is the animals. They are strangely similar to those found in other northern regions while also having a distinct difference that makes them unique to the North Pole. Here are some of the animals you’ll see when you visit the Arctic:

Sea mammals

The North Pole is almost entirely surrounded by large bodies of water. It is also thriving with small marine life forms living in a sea that is mostly untouched by societies’ harmful structures. Thus, it is filled with many kinds of whales that Polar Essay Korea is closely studying. 

The most fascinating among them is the Narwhal, a whale with a long tusk protruding from its forehead. It can be seen being used to hunt but its primary use is as a sensor to test the water’s temperature and pressure. Another popular sea mammal exclusive in the Arctic is the beluga whale which makes all sorts of gleeful noises and is also seen interacting with humans.

Other sea mammals can be found relaxing more on the shores and only go to the sea when hunting. The bearded seal, known for its long white whiskers, is often seen sunbaking on top of floating ice. They can also be found chasing warmer waters all the way to Greenland. 

Walruses are heavier versions of seals and they are known for their long, strong tusks. These tusks are only used for pulling themselves out of the water or fighting amongst each other rather than hunting.

Land mammals

The Arctic is named after the presence of the polar bears, making them the most iconic animals in the North Pole. They are also endemic to it as they are not present anywhere else unlike whales and seals that can travel to southern regions. Polar bears are hypercarnivorous as their diet mainly consists of other mammal predators. 

Among their favourite food is not fish but the Arctic fox, another endemic creature in the North Pole mostly found lurking in the tundra biomes. Their diet consists of small animals like birds, squirrels, lemming, and the Arctic Hare which is also endemic in the North Pole. 

The Svalbard reindeer also live in the North Pole but they aren’t threatened by any predators in the region as they are fast runners. However, they are herbivores and they often die of starvation as most of the Arctic’s soil is covered in snow. 

Musk oxen are also endemic herbivores but they have a wider choice of food including woody plants. Arctic Wolves prowl the tundra hunting the musk oxen and are often the main cause of their limited population. 

Birds

There are no penguins in the Arctic but there is a swimming bird alternative that is just as cute called puffins. The main difference is puffins can fly both to hunt for fish in deeper waters and migrate to warmer climates. Polar Essay Korea also notes other birds seen in the Arctic like the Arctic tern, purple sandpiper, and common eider. All of them share the same routines as the puffin but they are more efficient at flying long distances. 

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