I am honored that two of my photographs were chosen as contribution for an important book, published in 2019 (see cover and the related images above). On 239 pages, the book comprehensively presents the scientific context and consequences of the dramatic changes in the arctic and the particular impact on the polar bears. The author Rinie van Meurs is a known expert for polar bears and has lead hundreds of expeditions in the High Arctic for 30 years, especially around Spitsbergen (Svalbard). I had joined several of these excellent trips, especially focused on polar bears. The pictures of some of those expedition voyages are not edited for galleries on this website yet. The co-author of the book, Louis Beyens, is a biologist and professor emeritus who has specialized in polar ecosystems and the effect of climate change.
The images were captured 2014 in the pack ice of the Russian Arctic north of Franz Josef Land as we encountered a seriously wounded and obviously traumatized female polar bear lying on an ice floe (right image). At first, we could’t determine the reason until we sailed further and approached the almost completely skeletonized carcass of a yearly polar bear cub (image in the center above). We also spotted a big male in the distance. So it became clear that the female was injured after a hard fight with the male polar bear to defend her cub earlier that day.