Posted on January 18, 2013 by Bob Berwyn
Arctic foxes in Svalbard will feel the effects of global warming, as rain-on-snow events change the abundance of prey animals. Photo by Brage B. Hansen, NTNU Centre for Conservation Biology.
Norwegian researchers document cascading environmental impacts
By Summit Voice
FRISCO — Norwegian scientists say they’ve observed how climate-linked extreme weather events have affected not just single species, but an entire ecological community in the Arctic.
Rain-on-snow events caused synchronized population fluctuations among all vertebrate species in a relatively simple high arctic community, the scientists said after documenting how populations of three species crashed at the same time.
These findings, published in the Jan. 18 issue of Science, may be a bellwether of the radical changes in ecosystem stability that could result from anticipated future increases in extreme events. Continue reading
Filed under: Arctic, climate and weather, Environment, global warming, seasons, snow, Snow and weather | Tagged: Arctic, Arctic fox, climate change, Conservation biology, global warming, Reindeer, Rock Ptarmigan, Svalbard, wildlife | Leave a comment »
Posted on September 16, 2012 by Bob Berwyn
Arctic foxes. Photo courtesy Yvonne Cox.
Study shows impacts to Arcit fox populations
By Summit Voice
FRISCO — It’s very likely that human-caused global warming will disrupt the natural cycles of glaciation that have prevailed in recent millennia, and that could spell trouble for species that have relied on bridges of sea ice to maintain genetic diversity.
That includes Arctic foxes that were able to colonize Iceland during the Little Ice, according to research by scientists at the UK’s Durham University, who said that Arctic foxes were able to migrate to Iceland from Russia, North America and Greenland when such a bridge formed, between 200 and 500 years ago.
Iceland’s population of about 10,000 arctic foxes is not at risk, the researchers said, but explained that increasing isolation from the rest of the Arctic, caused by warmer temperatures and a lack of sea ice, could further differentiate the island’s population from their mainland relatives. Continue reading
Filed under: biodiversity, climate and weather, Environment, global warming | Tagged: Arctic, Arctic fox, climate, global warming, Iceland, Little Ice Age, Natural Environment Research Council, Sea ice | Leave a comment »