What Eats Polar Bear? Polar Bear Predators

Polar bears are one of the most elegant and dangerous predators of the Arctic region and in Animals Kingdom. Every other animal is scared to get near these large, hypercarnivorous species of bears. In the North Pole region, they are also in the top food chain position. 

Polar bears are very strong and powerful animals, but few other predators exist that also eat or hunt them. So, what eats polar bear? Or polar bear predators. Let’s find out.

Polar bears’ most dangerous and top predators are their kind. It may surprise you that male polar bears kill and eat their kind (other polar bears). They do it due to various different reasons. However, females and cubs are the number one candidates for these attacks. However, some other polar bear predators exist, which include humans, Greenland sharks, wolves, and killer whales. 

One more thing, in the food chain, no natural predator of polar bears exists in the world. Adult bears are very aggressive and brutal in their hunting; usually, they are the ones that dominate.  But, it does not mean that polar bear is not hunted or eaten by other animals. So, now you think about what animals kill or eat polar bears. 

What Eats Polar Bear? Polar Bear Predators


human kill polar bear
Image source: nbcnews.com

Many top predators like lions, tigers, sharks, and polar bears have different strengths, like large size, sharp teeth, powerful bites, and others. All these predators have one common predator, which is humans. 

Throughout history, humans have eaten and killed all these animals and polar bears included in it. Humans use their organs to make traditional medicines. Humans also use their claws, teeth, and other body parts for commercial pursuits. However, today, humans kill polar bears for meat and clothing. 

However, polar bears are not the comes into the diet of humans, yet we have killed them for centuries for different purposes. The main reason behind polar bears’ hunting is their fur. Humans sell their fur worldwide at high prices. For example, if you want to buy a jacket that made up of polar bear fur, the price will be between 12 to 14 thousand USD. 

In many countries, polar bear hunting is legal. In Canada, 500 to 600 polar bears are hunted every year. However, some countries like USA and Russia banned the hunting of these bears. 

On the other hand, polar bears also do not fear the humans. However, in all bear species, polar bears mostly attack humans. It means they are also the predators of the humans. 

Polar Bears

polar bear kill cubs

Polar bears have cannibalism behaviour that continuously increases due to climate change. Male polar bears do not have a good reputation in their kind because of their attacks and killing the other female polar bears and their cubs.

Male polar are larger (8-10 feet in length) than the females (6-8 feet in length), and the males easily kill the females. Males also hunt the cubs; they usually do it above the ice. They kill the female and their cub to eat them. Males hunt the cubs under one year old. 

Usually, they kill the female and cubs when they are not able to find food. Sometimes, female bears try to fight with males to protect their cubs; however, the male is the winner in most cases. Males also fight and kill each other; usually, they do it to mate with a female bear.


Wolves are another predator of polar bears, but they always target polar bear cubs. They don’t have enough strength to kill adult male polar bears. However, polar bear cubs do not come in their diet. 

At the end of July, when wolves come towards the land of ice, they particularly hunt and eat the cubs of polar bears, and many reports also come about these attacks. 

Wolves always attack in packs; one wolf tries to distract the mother and pulls her attention from the cubs, and then the other members of the pack snatch the cubs from the mother. However, if the pack are larger, then the mother doesn’t show enough aggression for the protection of the cubs.

However, the most common prey of wolves are deer, hares, moose, beaver, bison, elk, rodents, and others. But now, we can assume that the polar bear cubs are added to their prey list. So, wolves are the third one in our today article, which title is “what eats polar bears?”

Greenland Shark

Greenland sharks, also called gurry sharks, are the family Somniosidae’s largest shark species. This shark has no natural predators exist in the world. The most giant shark of this specie length was 21 feet. However, an adult Greenland shart is about 11 to 16 feet long. 

The most common diet of these sharks comes from apelin, char, halibut, herring, lumpfish, salmon, and other fishes. Polar bears do not come in the list of their prey.

But, in 2008, a Greenland shark ate a young polar bear. However, no proof is available of whether the shark hunted the bear or just found it dead and ate it. 

Killer Whales

The orca, also called the killer whale, is one of the dolphin species. Like Greenland sharks, killer whales also do not have any natural predators. Usually, these 8-meter-long whales get their diet from different marine mammals. Polar bears also do not come in the list of their primary prey.

However, if they get the chance, they eat the polar bears’ cubs. If the mother is not around the cubs, these whales attack them and eat them. However, the mother rarely leaves her cubs. However, sometimes, the ice melts rapidly, and the cubs get stuck on the ice, and the mother separates from them. 

In these situations, the orca also around and drags the cubs from the ice sheet into the water and then eats them. The orca is at the top of the list of apex predators in the ocean and contains equal strength as polar bears contain on land. But killer whales always target cubs instead of adult polar bears. 

How Do Polar Bears Protect Themselves?

Polar bears use different strengths, such as strong forearms, sharp claws, and jaws to protect themselves and their cubs. Polar bears use their powerful claws for hunting and for protection. 

They use claws to hold down the predator and use jaws to fall it apart into pieces. Their white fur helps them a lot to disappear in the arctic ice, and predators do not to see them, so they efficiently hunt them.

They also dig in the snow to protect themselves from the coldness and other threats. Female polar bear uses their curved claws to build dens in the snow. According to verified sources, a female birth twins in the winter. 

The mothers also teach their cubs how to protect themselves from different natural problems and predators. 

Are Polar Bears Afraid Of Anyone?

Polar bears are on of these apex predators that do not afraid of anyone. They are very brave and dangerous animals. The male weight is about 900 – 1,600 lbs, and the height is about 5.3 feet. 

Except for grizzly bears, they are the most powerful carnivore animals in the world. There are no natural predators of polar bears exist, and are considered as killing machines.

Polar bears’ hunting skills are just magnificent, and they also do not afraid of humans. So, if you see polar bears and you don’t have anything to defend, then try to escape from them and do not go too near. 

Final Words

Polar bears are one of the world’s most apex predators, with no natural predators. They are very powerful animals with strong forearms, claws, and jaws. However, their cubs are killed and eaten by a few animals, which include the orca, wolves, and other polar bears. 

However, humans are the ones who kill adult polar bears by using different weapons, but they also are not their natural predators. So, “what eat polar bear?” you have the answer. 

Read more interesting facts about the animals by checking out our other articles and increase your knowledge about the animals.

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