The Chukotsk Sea

The Chukotsk Sea is a marginal sea of the Arctic Ocean with a surface area of 595,000 km2. Through the Bering Strait it connects with the Bering Sea and the Pacific Ocean to the south and through Long strait it joins the East Siberian Sea to the west.

The Chukotsk Sea is considered a shallow sea because more than 50 percent of its area is shallower than 50 m, and its deepest part, in the north, is 1,256 m. For most of the year the sea is covered with ice. The navigation period starts in the second half of July and continues through the first half of October.

The Chukotsk Sea coast is slightly indented. The biggest bays here are the Kolyuchinskaya and Kotsebu. There are few islands in the sea and the biggest one is the Wrangel Island. The biggest port is Uelen. On the Chukotsk Peninsula coast as well as on the islands there is a network of polar stations used for servicing the population, for navigation, for flights and ice surveys and also for the continuous study of the sea’s status.

The Chukotsk Sea is inhabited by a substantial number of walruses, seals, sea hares, polar bears and whales (in the summer). Industrial fishing is well developed and so is seal hunting.