Do you know what animal left these footprints?

tracks on the sea ice

© Elisabeth Kruger / WWF-US

A polar bear!

Polar bears are as elusive as they are majestic. Their habitats are massive, and finding polar bear tracks is significantly easier than finding an actual bear.

A fascinating, new technique gives scientists a cost-effective and efficient way to gather data about polar bears without actually interacting with them. By collecting cells from the bears’ tracks in the snow, scientists can retrieve environmental DNA—known as eDNA.

This marks a big leap forward in the conservation of this vulnerable species—and the wildlife that share their Arctic habitat.

Find out more about this exciting innovation.