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Close Encounter with a Polar Bear

After photographer Cory Richards joined the Pristine Seas expedition to Franz Josef Land in the Russian Arctic, he spent over a month trying to capture an image of a polar bear from a relatively close distance. On his final attempt, a teammate launched a remote-controlled quadcopter, or drone, and the polar bear ended up right where they wanted him.

Libecki Brothers Explore Vertical Virgin Earth in Greenland

It was close to 1 a.m., and the midnight sun was hiding behind the massive mountains surrounding the Libecki brothers. Before dropping them off, the captain sailed back and forth looking for polar bears. The last time Mike was here, 11 polar bears were seen in the area. Today the coast looked clear so Mike and Andy stepped onto shore.

Paris Climate Talks: The 21st Time Must Be the Charm

We are issuing the Polar Bear Is Not Alone graphic today in support of efforts at COP21. Our graphic depicts how the polar bear, long the symbol warning us about climate change, is not alone. Joining the bear is a farmer in California, communities in Papua New Guinea, the migrating bar-tailed godwit, the quiver tree of Southern Africa, and other forms of life across the globe. Not only must we curtail carbon emissions to slow the rate of climate change; we need to help both wildlife and humans adapt to the impacts of change by ensuring the protection of functioning ecosystems and the services they provide that support all life on our planet. We must be emissions smart and adaptation sharp.

How Not to Get Eaten by a Polar Bear

Renowned polar explorer Børge Ousland has had more than his share of run-ins with polar bears. How does he protect himself from the wild and hungry animals? Check out the MacGyver-esque homemade contraption that’s literally a lifesaver.

No Ice in Sight: Polar Bears Scrabble Onshore to Find Food

On June 4, 1773, English naval officers were dispatched on an expedition to the Arctic. Their goal was to locate a passage from the British Isles to the Pacific Ocean. Instead, on ice floes near Spitsbergen (Svalbard), Norway, they found polar bears. The explorers were the first Europeans to describe the bears as a distinct…

August 3, 2014 Radio Show: Paragliding at 18,000 Feet Above the Earth, Swimming 213 Feet Below the Ocean Without Air And More

This week on National Geographic Weekend, join host Boyd Matson and his guests as they dive 207 feet under the ocean by holding our breath, fight off an aggressive cheetah in Tanzania, measure our feet to find out why a foot is a foot long, use spark plugs as currency in Cuba, travel by parachute for 40 miles at 16,000 feet, spy on polar bears in Norway, colonize the Arctic with North America’s earliest European visitors, and get taken hostage by rebels in a Himalayan valley.

June 22, 2014: Defying Gravity With Our Dog, Stalking Snow Leopards and More

Every week, embark with host Boyd Matson on an exploration of the latest discoveries and interviews with some of the most fascinating people on the planet, on National Geographic Weekend. This week, we soar with dogs, look for a peaceful resolution to Middle Eastern conflicts, recover lost treasures high in the Andes, save snow leopards, venture to the North Pole for the last time, preach the dangers of cheap meat, rehab injured city critters, and ponder our climate future.

Meet the Animals Behind the Mascots of the 2014 Winter Olympics

Organizers of the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia, have picked the leopard, the hare, and the polar to represent the Games as mascots.

Top 25 Photographs from the Wilderness #19

“Okavango”, “Serengeti”, “Masai Mara”, “Zambezi”, “Kruger” and “Kafue”. These are some of the wildest places left and have hidden within them “wilderness” that can take those who visit it back in time on a powerful journey that explores our place on this blue-and-green planet. In this amazing collection of photographs is a glimpse into the…

December 29, 2013: Rescuing Crocs, Navy Seals in Zoos, Swimming with Great Whites, Blackfish and More

Join host National Geographic Weekend host Boyd Matson and his guests as they try to save man-eating crocs from angry villagers, meet a retired Navy seal at Washington’s National Zoo, find out the dark secrets of performing orcas at Sea World, swim face to face with great white sharks, and survive avalanches by avoiding them.

Elvis the Dog Sniffs Out Pregnant Polar Bears

Elvis the beagle is helping North American zoo keepers figure out if their polar bears are pregnant or not.

Top 25 Photographs from the Wilderness #14

It has been a while since the last post… Come again and explore the wilderness with us. We are rediscovering that only through sharing will we save this magnificent planet. Social media gives us the ability to share photographs, thoughts, ideas, and knowledge almost instantaneously with powerful effects. A great example of this is National Geographic’s “The Great Nature Project”. This…

Where will the polar bears go as the Arctic ice melts under their feet

The Arctic regions are home to a variety of wildlife, including polar bears (Ursus maritimus). Polar bears are generally solitary animals. At first glance, more than white, are cream-colored. In fact, the outer coat is hollow and translucent and perfectly fulfills its function of transmitting the sun’s heat to the base of the hair, where…

Best and Worst Animal Mothers

Best and Worst? Mother’s Day is generally reserved for honoring our mothers, wives, and even grandmothers. But since we are National Geographic, why not take some time to honor animal mothers who excel at raising their young? And while we’re at it, why not point out other animal mothers who could use some coaching to do…

Top 25 Photographs from the Wilderness #6

Explore the wilderness with us… Within the next 10-15 years we will see the last-remaining wilderness area on earth dominated by the demands of growing human populations and undermined by accelerated climate change. When the earth’s last wild places are gone, all we will have are fenced off protected areas dependent on constant intervention to persist…