Tourists travelling on an Arctic cruise were in for the treat of a lifetime when they passed by Wrangel Island. What they thought was a flock of sheep turned out to be something incredible...

Tourists spot a polar bear's picnic

The small white specks seen on Wrangel Island turned out to be not sheep but polar bears. 230 of the Arctic animals had gathered together to eat a bowhead whale after it had become beached.

Polar bears normally spend half their time hunting and may only catch one to two seals out of every 10 they hunt. It is evident that these polar bears were very lucky to enjoy the whale feast.

1% of the world’s polar bear population

This type of gathering is not a normal occurrence. Polar bears are an endangered species; with only approximately 25,000 polar bears left in the wild, this polar bear meeting included almost 1% of all polar bears in the world.

Gathering 1% of the world's human population would see 10 million people in the one place. This is about equivalent to the entire population of Sweden.

Polar Bears International says that as climate change is causing the polar ice to melt, polar bears are fast losing their habitat and have reduced access to prey. They add that the animals could face extinction by 2100.

Photo credit: Wrangel Island

Have you ever been lucky enough to see a polar bear?

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