Posted on February 8, 2016 by Bob Berwyn
Last year, mild winter conditions eased foraging conditions for ungulates, but this year’s cold temps and deep snow could result in increase mortality. @bberwyn photo.
‘Wildlife has been experiencing and surviving severe weather for eons without human intervention’
Harsh winter conditions in northwestern Colorado may take a toll on already struggling mule deer herds, state biologists said last week, explaining that they’ve started a limited feeding program to try and keep ungulates from invading cattle grazing areas.
The recent storms have created conditions ranking among the most extreme in the past 35 years. Temperatures dropping well below zero and deep powder snow atop brittle crusts are making it harder for deer and elk to forage and could lead to increased wildlife mortality in portions of the region unless the weather moderates significantly, according to Colorado Parks and Wildlife. Continue reading
Filed under: climate and weather, Colorado, Environment, Snow and weather, wildlife | Tagged: Colorado, Colorado parks and wildlife, elk, Mule deer, mule deer feeding, wildlife, winter mortality | 1 Comment »
Posted on January 22, 2016 by Bob Berwyn
Can snowshoe hares survive global warming? Photo courtesy Kim Fenske.
‘That mismatch does indeed kill’
For millennia, snowshoe hares have camouflaged themselves from predators by blending in with their surroundings, turning pure white in the winter to blend in with the snow, then brown in the summer.
But climate change is shifting the timing of the snow season, and the hares may not be able to adapt in time, according to a North Carolina State University study published in the journal Ecology Letters.
Based on field research with radio-collared snowshoe hares in Montana, mismatched snowshoe hares suffer a 7 percent drop in their weekly survival rate when snow comes late or leaves early and white hares stand out to predators like “light bulbs” against their snowless backgrounds. Continue reading
Filed under: biodiversity, climate and weather, climate change, Environment, global warming, Snow and weather | Tagged: biodiversity, climate change, evolutionary adaptation, global warming, snowshoe hares | 3 Comments »
Posted on January 17, 2016 by Bob Berwyn
From the archives
Dawn light on the Gore Range.
Along the road …
Morning light warms up the broad flanks of Buffalo Mountain.
There’s pure magic in the deep, cold heart of winter, especially during the golden hour, when the rising or setting sun can be playful, mysterious and perplexing. The images in this set capture a bit of that magic, but there’s so much more. #getoutside #explore and don’t forget your camera! If you want to support independent journalism, visit our online gallery to buy a fine art print, with proceeds supporting Summit Voice.
Filed under: climate and weather, Morning photo, photography, seasons, Snow and weather, Summit County snow and weather | Tagged: Colorado, mobile photography, Rocky Mountains, winter, winter light | Leave a comment »
Posted on January 8, 2016 by Bob Berwyn
Will the storm door stay open?
El Niño has been generous to Colorado this winter, favoring all of the state with near- to above-normal precipitation since the beginning of winter. As of Jan.1, nearly all the state’s river basins were above average, with only the North Platte and the Yampa drainages lagging slightly below normal.
Some past El Nino events have been known to leave the northern half of the state high and dry.
“Statewide snowpack is 118 percent of normal, considerably better than last year’s start” said Brian Domonkos, Colorado Snow Survey Supervisor with the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service. Continue reading
Filed under: climate and weather, Colorado, El Niño, Snow and weather | Tagged: climate, Colorado, Colorado snowpack, cowx | Leave a comment »
Posted on January 4, 2016 by Bob Berwyn
New data is changing the understanding of the water cycle in Antarctica. @bberwyn photo.
Climate models may need revamping after scientists measure snow loss
Winds howling across the vast, frozen Antarctic plateaus are scouring the region of moisture by vaporizing most of the airborne snow, scientists said in a new study that could shift estimates of how much the ice-covered continent is contributing to sea level rise. Continue reading
Filed under: climate and weather, climate change, extreme weather, Snow and weather | Tagged: Antarctica, climate, katabiatic winds, sea level | 3 Comments »
Posted on December 29, 2015 by Bob Berwyn
Best of 2015
Recapping some of our favorite winter scenes from the Colorado high country in this end of the year set …
Filed under: Morning photo, photography, snow, Snow and weather, Summit County snow and weather | Tagged: mobile photography, photography, seasons, snow, winter | Leave a comment »
Posted on September 8, 2015 by Bob Berwyn
Could heavier snowfall over Greenland slow the meltdown? @bberwyn photo.
New research project to assess how Greenland ice sheets responded to past changes in precipitation
FRISCO — There’s little question that global warming will drive significant melting of the world’s ice sheets, but it’s not clear exactly how fast that meltdown will happen.
Some climate models suggest that warmer ocean temperatures will lead to more snowfall over the Arctic — and that could slow the rate melting of glaciers and the rate of sea level rise, according toJason Briner, an associate professor of geology in the University at Buffalo College of Arts and Sciences. Continue reading
Filed under: Arctic, climate and weather, climate change, global warming, Snow and weather | Tagged: climate change, global warming, Greenland ice sheets, snowfall | 1 Comment »