The Nunavut government is planning two major surveys of polar bear numbers in the coming year. ((Steve Amstrup/U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service/Associated Press))

Two major surveys of polar bear numbers in western Hudson Bay and Baffin Bay-Kane Basin are planned for 2011.

The count should help reconcile differences between local hunters who say the bears' numbers are increasing and biologists who say the animals' numbers are low.

An aerial survey will count polar bears in Western Hudson Bay in the fall.

The survey method for the Baffin Bay-Kane Basin region hasn't been decided yet.

Greenland will work with Nunavut on the survey of Baffin Bay-Kane Basin in the summer and fall of 2011. They will decide on a survey method together.

"It's going to be a joint survey, so there will be Greenlandic polar bear biologists on there, as well as Nunavut, as well as the communities that are affected by the two populations," Nunavut Environment Minister Daniel Shewchuk said.

The information gathered will be combined with an analysis of studies in the last six years by the Canadian Wildlife Service.