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While the Great Lakes’ near-record ice cover continues to draw interest from satellite images and its affect on the environment in the months to come it’s also giving rise to an urban myth featuring a very frozen Lake Erie.

Snopes.com, which tackles such tales, is debunking a Facebook post circulating this month that appears to feature the seal for the Michigan Department of Natural Resources. In bold red letters near a picture of a polar bear was: “WARNING!” In all caps: “Lake Erie is frozen and polar bears are now in Michigan. Polar bears that have crossed the ice from Canada.”

The message went on in more crimson letters: “Bring your pets in immediately! Do not go outside! Polar bears have been walking a long time and are very hungry!”

Snopes pointed out that the warning was a hoax.

“There was no warning about an influx of polar bears posted on the Michigan DNR's website or Facebook page, and the image was easily dismissed as a piece of poorly executed Photoshop,” the website read. “Polar bears are arctic animals that live in the northernmost parts of Canada, Greenland, Russia and Norway. The only state in the United States that regularly provides a home to polar bears is Alaska.”

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