Afternoon in the Arctic Ring in the Copenhagen Zoo

Sep 14th, 2019 | By | Category: Ralph's reports

14.9.2019 by Ralph Morton

In the afternoon on the 13th of August I returned to the Arctic Ring as the small enclosure was now empty.



I soon found Imaq and Lynn at the back of the terrain in the Arctic Ring. Imaq was trying to reach a blue canister while Lynn was enjoying a roll in the mulch.


A little later the pair moved round the corner to the bank of the big underwater pool, so I had to follow the long tunnel to the viewing screen. You can see Lynn is carrying a carrot in her mouth and Imaq is following her, looking muddy.


Lynn looked as if she was going to go into the water.


Lynn and Imaq did not seem very interested in the water. I think Imaq was hoping to be fed, but Lynn has very firm views about feeding and only does so at set times.


Lynn is very playful and a ball was sufficient to get her into the water.



Lynn soon persuaded Imaq to join her in the water and then they began to play with each other.


Like much of Copenhagen Zoo the Arctic Ring is a wonderful venue for both animals and visitors.


Lynn and Imaq swim so fast that it is hard to capture them except on video. You can see in this still how many bubbles their swimming is creating. It also shows how big Imaq has grown.


The two bears are very close and Lynn enjoys playing with Imaq.


Playfighting is an important skill for a young female bear, as she will one day use it, even in a Zoo, to test a male Polar Bear but also to show him that she is a strong potential mother.


In this shot you can see the characteristic triangular head and ears of a female Polar Bear. Lynn is a very lovely bear.


Swimming just below the surface mother and cub twisted and turned.


Lynn of course still has much longer and more powerful legs than Imaq.


But Imaq also has pretty impressive paws and claws.


Imaq was soon taking an interest in the visitors. Her sense of fun and curiosity delighted the visitors.


Like all stars, Imaq has learnt that posing for photos is part of the job.


At times Imaq reminded me of the astronauts practising spacewalks in a big water tank in Houston. In the gravity free water she hovered effortlessly.


Imaq in free fall delighted this young Polar Bear fan.


Getting close up to a real Polar Bear was making this person very happy.


Imaq seemed to agree and the two soon had a real rapport.


An even younger visitor was also having a good time with Imaq.


Imaq dived again and again.


She also hovered in the water opposite visitors, checking us all out.


Like her mum, Imaq is a very pretty Polar Bear.


All too soon it was time to leave the Zoo. Imaq gave me this lovely farewell shot of her, rear paws tucked up, front paws powering her along.

The first day in Copenhagen had been amazing. This was my third visit and the difference in Imaq was very clear. Lynn had been able to turn a brave little furball into a young Polar Bear able to dive and swim all day long.

I left the Zoo and went to Tivoli where I re-visited a very special bear, but that is another story. Then it was the excellent Danish Railways overnight train to Aalborg.

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  1. Lieber Ralph,

    es sind dir viele schöne und ausdruckstarke Fotos von deinem Besuch in Copenhagen gelungen und alle zeigen vielfältige Aktionen von Mutter und Sohn in ihrem Gehege und vor allem im Wasser beim
    Schwimmen und Tauchen.

    Eisbären scheinen sich ihrer großartigen Wirkung vor dem großen Schaufenster bewusst zu sein
    und machen damit besonders den ganz kleinen jungen Besuchern eine besondere
    Freude, die diese wohl lange nicht vergessen werden.

    Auch dein Farewell Foto ist sehr berührend.
    Wer weiß, wann und wo du Imaq vielleicht eines Tages wieder besuchen kannst.

    Vielen Dank für deinen ausführlichen Bericht und die klasse Fotos!
    Liebe Grüße

  2. Liebe Britta Gudrun
    Tatsaechlich ein Wiedersehen kam fast gleich. Am letzten Tag meines Daenemarkbesuches. Aber der Bericht muss ein bisschen warten, als naechstes kommen die Tage in Aalborg.

  3. Dear Ralph,

    How wonderful to see Lynn and Imaq in the Arctic Ring! I know how difficult it is to take photos of them when they’re swimming and diving but you’ve managed very well! I like all your pics but maybe the favourite this time is that of the ‘astronaut Imaq’. 🙂 Even the photo of the paws is great.

    It’s also great to see how Imaq wants to say ‘hello’ to the visitors. Seeing a polar bear so close is always an incredible experience.

    Thank you so much for this arctic report!

    Hugs from Mervi

  4. Dear Ralph,
    the underwater pictures are very nice.

  5. Dear Ralph!
    It is obvious that you had a great day and many delightful experiences with the Copenhagen polar bears though the weather gods weren´t very kind…
    You managed to take quite atmospheric and vivid photos. I like all of them!
    My favorites are the underwater pics, especially those with the little girl and her teddy bear, the big paws behind the pane and the beautiful farewell shot. Well done!
    Lynn and Imaq look marvellous.


  6. Lieber Ralph,

    danke für die neuesten Bilder aus Copenhagen.
    Ich mag besonders die Unterwasser-Aufnahmen.
    Mutter und Sohn sind ein tolles Team.

    Liebe Grüße

  7. Dear Ralph

    You brought great pictures from Copenhagen.
    I also always think that the bears are very aware of the visitors on the other side and are looking for their encouragement. Because without an audience it’s only half as much fun 🙂