Marine Animals

The Arctic Ocean is home to algae and fish and to marine mammals like seals, polar bears and whale. The Arctic also has an abundance of plant life, birds, and land animals.


Blackfish are remarkable. They are amazingly hardy, capable of living without oxygen for a day and without food for a whole year. They can withstand a temperature of -20 degrees Celsius for 3/4 of an hour because of a special type of antifreeze in their blood that lowers their freezing temperature. They are a type of mudminnow, meaning they live in low-lying mossy ponds with soft bottoms. These fish are dark brown and black colored with dark speckles and are about 30 centimeters long. Blackfish feed mainly on crustaceans, but also on insects and worms.


There are a wide variety of seals living in the Arctic, six different ice-inhabiting types in all. There are also seals in the Antarctic. The largest hair seal of the Arctic is the bearded seal, reaching 2.5 meters in length. Seals are one of the most mysterious animals, possessing many talents that have yet to be explained. Seals are well adapted to the Arctic habitat. They give birth to their young on the sea ice, but feed in the ocean. Leads in the ice provide a perfect habitat for seals, open ice to rest on, and sea to feed in and escape predators such as polar bears.

Polar Bear

Polar Bears are one of the major predators in the Arctic and one of the few animals that openly preys on humans. They are twice the weight of a tiger and are the size of an Alaskan brown bear. They are the top of the food web. The eat a wide variety of large animals, such as seals and caribou. In order to eat seals, polar bears depend on sea ice that allows them to go out into the water where the seals normally live and feed. Their fur is so thick that water will hardly ever reach their skin. They are one of the two Arctic animals that range all of the Arctic. Females give birth in the winter every three to four years, and have two cubs at a time.

Beluga whale

This white whale is one of the many whales involved in the Arctic food web. They are primarily carnivores, eating invertebrates, fish and squid. These animals are also known as "sea canaries" because of the many sounds they admit under water. They are highly maneuverable and can even swim backwards by sculling with its flukes. They often travel in groups of hundreds, but are really classed socially in tens. They can be identified by their white color.