Photo: Polarbear - Asgeir Helgestad / www.visitnorway.com
Fjord Tours Facts / 25 Nov 2019

Animals in the Arctic

It should come as no surprise that the Arctic region is one of the toughest places on earth for wildlife to live. Humans have been able to adapt fairly well to living in this part of the world due to the ability to wear clothing and reside in heated structures throughout the majority of the winter. However, for the animals that are forced to stay outside and venture through the Norwegian fjords and other areas of the Arctic, the climate is much more inhospitable. 

But for those of you who are thinking about things to do in Norway and are upset that watching wildlife will not be one of the activities, think again. The Arctic region actually contains a thriving ecosystem of many different species of animals. Here are some of the animals that you are likely to see living in the Arctic. 

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Photo: Ørjan Bertelsen/ www.Nordnorge.com

Caribou/Reindeer

Seeing a herd of majestic reindeer roaming the Arctic tundra might be the closest you ever get to seeing Santa Claus. These large cousins of deer can weigh as much as 650 lbs when fully grown, which includes their massive set of antlers. The Arctic region is the only area on Earth where these animals can be found, which gives you a pretty good chance at spotting one when going on a Northern Lights tour in Tromsø.

Photo: Polar bear - Roy Mangersnes /Wildphoto.No/Www.Nordnorge.Com

Polar Bears

If it is your goal to see a polar bear in person at least once in your life, then your best bet is to book a trip to Svalbard-Norway, since these giant predators are only located above the northern tree line in the Arctic. Their white color and diminished population of only about 20,000 make them slightly harder to spot. However, the best bet to catch a glimpse of one is to go where the biggest seal populations are since they are known to be the main source of food for polar bears.

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Photo: Whale, Asgeir Helgestad/ www.visitnorway.com

Orcas/Narwhals/Beluga Whales

There are many different varieties of whales that can be found within the frigid Arctic waters. The main three that can be expected to be seen when taking one of the Norwegian cruises are orcas (killer whales), narwhals, and beluga whales.

All of these animals have different positions within the ecosystem food chain, although they all survive off a diet that almost entirely consists of fish. Within the ocean, the orcas are known as some of the best hunters, hence their name “killer whales.” They are sometimes even known to kill and eat beluga whales and narwhals.

Photo: Polar fox in Svalbard - Roy Mangersnes /Wildphoto.No /Www.Nordnorge.Com

Arctic Foxes/Arctic Wolfs

Although both of these species are known to go by a variety of names, they can both only be found wandering around the Arctic region. Their diets consist of various other Arctic animal species, which they are able to track and kill due to their elusive nature and stunning white color that allows them to easily camouflage. While Arctic foxes tend to be a bit smaller, only growing to a maximum of 17 lbs, Arctic wolves are much larger, with the males reaching a maximum weight of 155 lbs.

Photo: Walrus - Roy Mangersnes /Wildphoto.No /Www.Nordnorge.Com

Seals/Walruses/Sea Otters

In addition to six different species of seals, the Arctic seas also contain walruses as well as furry sea otters. Depending on where you travel throughout Northern Norway, you may have an opportunity to see the spotted seal, ringed seal, ribbon seal, hooded seal, harp seal, or bearded seal. All of these animals spend the majority of their time swimming, lounging, and living off of the dense fish Arctic fish population.

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Photo: Puffins - Marten Bril / Www.Visitvesteralen.Com

Puffin/Snow Goose

Although these three species of birds are very different in appearance and habits, they are all varieties of birds that can be found living in the Arctic region. The three types of birds can each be found active during the daytime, which is a rarity for any type of owl, and are perfectly capable of flying. The puffins even have the ability to briefly swim underwater. Although the snowy owl and snow goose are almost entirely white, the puffin is mostly black with patches of white.

If you are a lover of wildlife, then you need to book some of the Norway tours today. This will allow you to get a glimpse of all of the majestic wildlife found within the Arctic region.