Photograph by Daisy Gilardini
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In Manitoba’s Wapusk National Park, a polar bear and her four-month-old cub nestle by a willow tree. Hungry mothers and cubs exit their birthing dens each spring—at the same time seal pups are born on pack ice in nearby Hudson Bay.

Photograph by Daisy Gilardini

The Most Stunning Visions of Earth

See phenomenal photos of the world’s wonders from the February 2017 issue of National Geographic magazine.

This story appears in the February 2017 issue of National Geographic magazine.
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Braids of frost adorn beech and spruce trees on a ridge in the West Beskids. The discontinuous range—part of the ecologically important Carpathian Mountains—also spans Poland and Slovakia. This section has been protected since 1973.

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What’s black and white and bred all over? Pléneau Island, where gentoo penguins mate each spring. Here, a thousand or so ofthe big, flightless birds—average size: 12 pounds, 2.5 feet tall—get acquainted during a snowstorm.