A pair of polar bear sisters named Nora and Amelia Gray happily rolled around in a tub of ice during playtime at the Oregon Zoo.
The two polar bears are half sisters, born a year apart. They have access to chilled saltwater pools and heated indoor dens year round, but sometimes they like to mix it up in an ice tub!
The two sisters, who were born a year apart, have a particularly close relationship with each other and are part of the zoo’s conservation program, which works on rescuing the polar bear population from the devastating designation of a threatened species under the Endangered Species Act.
Polar bears were listed as a threatened species across their range under the Endangered Species Act in May of 2008 because of the melting of their sea ice habitat. The current worldwide population of 20,000 to 25,000 is projected to rapidly decline. If climatic trends continue, polar bears will be gone from most of their range within 100 years.