WorldWideScience

Sample records for alpine tundra

  1. Contexts for change in alpine tundra

    Science.gov (United States)

    Malanson, George P.; Rose, Jonathan P.; Schroeder, P. Jason; Fagre, Daniel B.

    2011-01-01

    Because alpine tundra is responding to climate change, a need exists to understand the meaning of observed changes. To provide context for such interpretation, the relevance of niche and neutral theories of biogeography and the continuum and classification approaches to biogeographic description are assessed. Two extensive studies of alpine tundra, from the Indian Peaks area, Colorado and Glacier National Park, Montana, are combined. The data are ordinated to describe relations. The pattern that emerges is one of a continuum of vegetation, but with the distinctions one might expect from distant sites. The relationships of the similarity of vegetation on all possible pairs of sites to the environmental differences and geographic distances are analyzed using Mantel correlations. Because distance and environmental differences in climate between the two sites are correlated, partial correlations are weak but still significant. More advanced analyses are suggested for this environment prior to interpretation of monitoring efforts such as GLORIA.

  2. 137Cs in alpine tundra habitats

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Allen, D.J.

    1976-01-01

    An experiment is reported that was carried out to determine the relative importance of physical habitat factors such as snow cover, wind, soil contamination and moisture, and certain plant characteristics (gross morphology and specialized morphology) in the contamination of alpine perennial, tundra vegetation by 137 Cs from worldwide fallout. The accumulations of 137 Cs and 40 K found among species of plants and soil samples in major ecological habitats of alpine tundra in Rocky Mountain National Park are shown tabulated. From this study it would appear that the 'scrubbing-out' action of precipitation and moisture in general may have enhanced direct deposition from the air and influenced foliar absorption rate. However, morphology, physiology, longevity, plant-soil interface distance, and species differences seem to play a more dominant role in radionuclide accumulation. It is difficult to accurately predict fallout behavior by monitoring vegetation 137 Cs levels. The soil (habitat) is seemingly a better indicator of 137 Cs fallout accumulation than plant species, especially when 'spot-check' sampling is employed. (U.K.)

  3. [Nitrogen bio-cycle in the alpine tundra ecosystem of Changbai Mountain and its comparison with arctic tundra].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wei, Jing; Zhao, Jing-zhu; Deng, Hong-bing; Wu, Gang; Hao, Ying-jie; Shang, Wen-yan

    2005-03-01

    The nitrogen bio-cycle was discussed in the alpine tundra ecosystem of Changbai Mountain through compartment model. The alpine tundra of Changbai Mountain was compared with Arctic tundra by the common ratio of genus and species in this paper. It was found that the 89.3% of genus and 58.6% of species was the common between Changbai alpine tundra and Arctic tundra while 95.5% of lichen genus and 58.7% lichen species, 82.1% of moss genus and 76.3% of moss species, 93.1% of vascular bundle genus and 40.5% of vascular bundle species were the common, respectively, which made vegetation type or community to be similar between Changbai alpine tundra and Arctic tundra. The total storage of nitrogen was 65220.6 t in the vegetation-plant system of Changbai Mountain, of which soil pool amounted to 99.3%. The nitrogen storage of each compartment was as follows: the vegetation pool, litterfall pool and soil pool were 237.4 t, 145.3 t and 64837.9 t respectively. The transferable amounts of nitrogen were 131.7 t x a(-1), 58 t/a and 73.7 t x a(-1) in the aboveground plant, belowground root system and litterfall of alpine tundra ecosystem of Changbai Mountain.

  4. Geomorphic determinants of species composition of alpine tundra, Glacier National Park, U.S.A.

    Science.gov (United States)

    George P. Malanson,; Bengtson, Lindsey E.; Fagre, Daniel B.

    2012-01-01

    Because the distribution of alpine tundra is associated with spatially limited cold climates, global warming may threaten its local extent or existence. This notion has been challenged, however, based on observations of the diversity of alpine tundra in small areas primarily due to topographic variation. The importance of diversity in temperature or moisture conditions caused by topographic variation is an open question, and we extend this to geomorphology more generally. The extent to which geomorphic variation per se, based on relatively easily assessed indicators, can account for the variation in alpine tundra community composition is analyzed versus the inclusion of broad indicators of regional climate variation. Visual assessments of topography are quantified and reduced using principal components analysis (PCA). Observations of species cover are reduced using detrended correspondence analysis (DCA). A “best subsets” regression approach using the Akaike Information Criterion for selection of variables is compared to a simple stepwise regression with DCA scores as the dependent variable and scores on significant PCA axes plus more direct measures of topography as independent variables. Models with geographic coordinates (representing regional climate gradients) excluded explain almost as much variation in community composition as models with them included, although they are important contributors to the latter. The geomorphic variables in the model are those associated with local moisture differences such as snowbeds. The potential local variability of alpine tundra can be a buffer against climate change, but change in precipitation may be as important as change in temperature.

  5. Snowmelt runoff from northern alpine tundra hillslopes: major processes and methods of simulation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    W. L. Quinton

    2004-01-01

    Full Text Available In northern alpine tundra, large slope gradients, late-lying snow drifts and shallow soils overlying impermeable substrates all contribute to large hillslope runoff volumes during the spring freshet. Understanding the processes and pathways of hillslope runoff in this environment is, therefore, critical to understanding the water cycle within northern alpine tundra ecosystems. This study: (a presents the results of a field study on runoff from a sub-alpine tundra hillslope with a large snow drift during the spring melt period; (b identifies the major runoff processes that must be represented in simulations of snowmelt runoff from sub-alpine tundra hillslopes; (c describes how these processes can be represented in a numerical simulation model; and d compares field measurements with modelled output to validate or refute the conceptual understanding of runoff generation embodied in the process simulations. The study was conducted at Granger Creek catchment, 15 km south of Whitehorse, Yukon Territory, Canada, on a north-facing slope below a late-lying snow drift. For the freshet period, the major processes to be represented in a runoff model include the rate of meltwater release from the late-lying snowdrift, the elevation and thickness of the saturated layer, the magnitude of the soil permeability and its variation with depth. The daily cycle of net all-wave radiation was observed to drive the diurnal pulses of melt water from the drift; this, in turn, was found to control the daily pulses of flow through the hillslope subsurface and in the stream channel. The computed rate of frost table lowering fell within the observed values; however, there was wide variation among the measured frost table depths. Spatial variability in frost table depth would result in spatial variabilities in saturated layer depth and thickness, which would, in turn, produce variations in subsurface flow rates over the slope, including preferential flowpaths. Keywords

  6. Response of rhizosphere soil microbial to Deyeuxia angustifolia encroaching in two different vegetation communities in alpine tundra.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Lin; Xing, Ming; Lv, Jiangwei; Wang, Xiaolong; Chen, Xia

    2017-02-21

    Deyeuxia angustifolia (Komarov) Y. L Chang is an herb species originating from the birch forests in the Changbai Mountain. Recently, this species has been found encroaching into large areas in the western slopes of the alpine tundra in the Changbai Mountain, threatening the tundra ecosystem. In this study, we systematically assessed the response of the rhizosphere soil microbial to D. angustifolia encroaching in alpine tundra by conducting experiments for two vegetation types (shrubs and herbs) by real-time PCR and Illumina Miseq sequencing methods. The treatments consisted of D. angustifolia sites (DA), native sites (NS, NH) and encroaching sites (ES, EH). Our results show that (1) Rhizosphere soil properties of the alpine tundra were significantly impacted by D. angustifolia encroaching; microbial nutrient cycling and soil bacterial communities were shaped to be suitable for D. angustifolia growth; (2) The two vegetation community rhizosphere soils responded differently to D. angustifolia encroaching; (3) By encroaching into both vegetation communities, D. angustifolia could effectively replace the native species by establishing positive plant-soil feedback. The strong adaptation and assimilative capacity contributed to D. angustifolia encroaching in the alpine tundra. Our research indicates that D. angustifolia significantly impacts the rhizosphere soil microbial of the alpine tundra.

  7. Wet meadow ecosystems contribute the majority of overwinter soil respiration from snow-scoured alpine tundra

    Science.gov (United States)

    Knowles, John F.; Blanken, Peter D.; Williams, Mark W.

    2016-04-01

    We measured soil respiration across a soil moisture gradient ranging from dry to wet snow-scoured alpine tundra soils throughout three winters and two summers. In the absence of snow accumulation, soil moisture variability was principally determined by the combination of mesotopographical hydrological focusing and shallow subsurface permeability, which resulted in a patchwork of comingled ecosystem types along a single alpine ridge. To constrain the subsequent carbon cycling variability, we compared three measures of effective diffusivity and three methods to calculate gradient method soil respiration from four typical vegetation communities. Overwinter soil respiration was primarily restricted to wet meadow locations, and a conservative estimate of the rate of overwinter soil respiration from snow-scoured wet meadow tundra was 69-90% of the maximum carbon dioxide (CO2) respired by seasonally snow-covered soils within this same catchment. This was attributed to higher overwinter soil temperatures at wet meadow locations relative to fellfield, dry meadow, and moist meadow communities, which supported liquid water and heterotrophic respiration throughout the winter. These results were corroborated by eddy covariance-based measurements that demonstrated an average of 272 g C m-2 overwinter carbon loss during the study period. As a result, we updated a conceptual model of soil respiration versus snow cover to express the potential for soil respiration variability from snow-scoured alpine tundra.

  8. Metals in Racomitrium lanuginosum from Arctic (SW Spitsbergen, Svalbard archipelago) and alpine (Karkonosze, SW Poland) tundra.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wojtuń, Bronisław; Samecka-Cymerman, Aleksandra; Kolon, Krzysztof; Kempers, Alexander J

    2018-02-19

    Arctic-alpine tundra habitats are very vulnerable to the input of relatively small amounts of xenobiotics, and thus their level in such areas must be carefully controlled. Therefore, we collected the terrestrial widespread moss Racomitrium lanuginosum (Hedw.) Brid. in Spitsbergen in the Arctic moss lichen tundra and, for comparison, in the Arctic-alpine tundra in the Karkonosze (SW Poland). Concentrations of the elements Cd, Co, Cr, Cu, Fe, Hg, Li, Mn, Mo, Na, Ni, Pb, V, and Zn in this species and in the parent rock material were measured. We tested the following hypothesis: R. lanuginosum from Spitsbergen contains lower metal levels than the species from the Karkonosze collected at altitudes influenced by long-range transport from former Black Triangle industry. Principal component and classification analysis (PCCA) ordination revealed that mosses of Spitsbergen were distinguished by a significantly higher Na concentration of marine spray origin and mosses of Karkonosze were distinguished by significantly higher concentrations of Cd, Cr, Cu, Fe, Hg, Li, Mn, Pb, V, and Zn probably from long-range atmospheric transport. The influence of the polar station with a waste incinerator resulted in significantly higher Co, Li, and Ni concentrations in neighbouring mosses in comparison with this species from other sites. This investigation contributes to the use of R. lanuginosum as a bioindicator for metal contamination in Arctic and alpine tundra regions characterised by severe climate habitats with a restricted number of species. This moss enables the control of pollution usually brought solely by long-range atmospheric transport in high mountains as well as in Arctic areas.

  9. Nitrogen deposition but not climate warming promotes Deyeuxia angustifolia encroachment in alpine tundra of the Changbai Mountains, Northeast China.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zong, Shengwei; Jin, Yinghua; Xu, Jiawei; Wu, Zhengfang; He, Hongshi; Du, Haibo; Wang, Lei

    2016-02-15

    Vegetation in the alpine tundra area of the Changbai Mountains, one of two alpine tundra areas in China, has undergone great changes in recent decades. The aggressive herb species Deyeuxia angustifolia (Komarov) Y. L. Chang, a narrow-leaf small reed, was currently encroaching upon the alpine landscape and threatening tundra biota. The alpine tundra of the Changbai Mountains has been experiencing a warmer climate and receiving a high load of atmospheric nitrogen deposition. In this study, we aimed to assess the respective roles of climate warming and atmospheric nitrogen deposition in promoting the upward encroachment of D. angustifolia. We conducted experiments for three years to examine the response of D. angustifolia and a native alpine shrub, Rhododendron chrysanthum, to the conditions in which temperature and nitrogen were increased. Treatments consisting of temperature increase, nitrogen addition, temperature increase combined with nitrogen addition, and controls were conducted on the D. angustifolia communities with three encroachment levels (low, medium, and high levels). Results showed that 1) D. angustifolia grew in response to added nutrients but did not grow well when temperature increased. R. chrysanthum showed negligible responses to the simulated environmental changes. 2) Compared to R. chrysanthum, D. angustifolia could effectively occupy the above-ground space by increasing tillers and growing rapidly by efficiently using nitrogen. The difference in nitrogen uptake abilities between the two species contributed to expansion of D. angustifolia. 3) D. angustifolia encroachment could deeply change the biodiversity of tundra vegetation and may eventually result in the replacement of native biota, especially with nitrogen addition. Our research indicated that nutrient perturbation may be more important than temperature perturbation in promoting D. angustifolia encroachment upon the nutrient- and species-poor alpine tundra ecosystem in the Changbai

  10. Impacts of twenty years of experimental warming on soil carbon, nitrogen, moisture and soil across alpine/subarctic tundra communities

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    M. Alatalo, Juha; K. Jägerbrand, Annika; Juhanson, Jaanis

    2017-01-01

    High-altitude and alpine areas are predicted to experience rapid and substantial increases in future temperature, which may have serious impacts on soil carbon, nutrient and soil fauna. Here we report the impact of 20 years of experimental warming on soil properties and soil mites in three...... contrasting plant communities in alpine/subarctic Sweden. Long-term warming decreased juvenile oribatid mite density, but had no effect on adult oribatids density, total mite density, any major mite group or the most common species. Long-term warming also caused loss of nitrogen, carbon and moisture from...... be important for buffering mites from global warming. The results indicated that juvenile mites may be more vulnerable to global warming than adult stages. Importantly, the results also indicated that global warming may cause carbon and nitrogen losses in alpine and tundra mineral soils and that its effects...

  11. Conifer seedling recruitment across a gradient from forest to alpine tundra: effects of species, provenance, and site

    Science.gov (United States)

    Castanha, C.; Torn, M.S.; Germino, M.J.; Weibel, Bettina; Kueppers, L.M.

    2013-01-01

    Background: Seedling germination and survival is a critical control on forest ecosystem boundaries, such as at the alpine–treeline ecotone. In addition, while it is known that species respond individualistically to the same suite of environmental drivers, the potential additional effect of local adaptation on seedling success has not been evaluated. Aims: To determine whether local adaptation may influence the position and movement of forest ecosystem boundaries, we quantified conifer seedling recruitment in common gardens across a subalpine forest to alpine tundra gradient at Niwot Ridge, Colorado, USA. Methods: We studied Pinus flexilis and Picea engelmannii grown from seed collected locally at High (3400 m a.s.l.) and Low (3060 m a.s.l.) elevations. We monitored emergence and survival of seeds sown directly into plots and survival of seedlings germinated indoors and transplanted after snowmelt. Results: Emergence and survival through the first growing season was greater for P. flexilis than P. engelmannii and for Low compared with High provenances. Yet survival through the second growing season was similar for both species and provenances. Seedling emergence and survival tended to be greatest in the subalpine forest and lowest in the alpine tundra. Survival was greater for transplants than for field-germinated seedlings. Conclusions: These results suggest that survival through the first few weeks is critical to the establishment of natural germinants. In addition, even small distances between seed sources can have a significant effect on early demographic performance – a factor that has rarely been considered in previous studies of tree recruitment and species range shifts.

  12. Distinct soil bacterial communities along a small-scale elevational gradient in alpine tundra

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Congcong eShen

    2015-06-01

    Full Text Available The elevational diversity pattern for microorganisms has received great attention recently but is still understudied, and phylogenetic relatedness is rarely studied for microbial elevational distributions. Using a bar-coded pyrosequencing technique, we examined the biodiversity patterns for soil bacterial communities of tundra ecosystem along 2000–2500 m elevations on Changbai Mountain in China. Bacterial taxonomic richness displayed a linear decreasing trend with increasing elevation. Phylogenetic diversity and mean nearest taxon distance (MNTD exhibited a unimodal pattern with elevation. Bacterial communities were more phylogenetically clustered than expected by chance at all elevations based on the standardized effect size of MNTD metric. The bacterial communities differed dramatically among elevations, and the community composition was significantly correlated with soil total carbon, total nitrogen, C:N ratio, and dissolved organic carbon. Multiple ordinary least squares regression analysis showed that the observed biodiversity patterns strongly correlated with soil total carbon and C:N ratio. Taken together, this is the first time that a significant bacterial diversity pattern has been observed across a small-scale elevational gradient. Our results indicated that soil carbon and nitrogen contents were the critical environmental factors affecting bacterial elevational distribution in Changbai Mountain tundra. This suggested that ecological niche-based environmental filtering processes related to soil carbon and nitrogen contents could play a dominant role in structuring bacterial communities along the elevational gradient.

  13. Moss Mediates the Influence of Shrub Species on Soil Properties and Processes in Alpine Tundra.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bueno, C Guillermo; Williamson, Scott N; Barrio, Isabel C; Helgadóttir, Ágústa; HiK, David S

    2016-01-01

    In tundra ecosystems, bryophytes influence soil processes directly and indirectly through interactions with overstory shrub species. We experimentally manipulated moss cover and measured seasonal soil properties and processes under two species of deciduous shrubs with contrasting canopy structures, Salix planifolia pulchra and Betula glandulosa-nana complex. Soil properties (seasonal temperature, moisture and C:N ratios) and processes (seasonal litter decomposition and soil respiration) were measured over twelve months. Shrub species identity had the largest influence on summer soil temperatures and soil respiration rates, which were higher under Salix canopies. Mosses were associated with lower soil moisture irrespective of shrub identity, but modulated the effects of shrubs on winter soil temperatures and soil C:N ratios so that moss cover reduced differences in soil winter temperatures between shrub species and reduced C:N ratios under Betula but not under Salix canopies. Our results suggest a central role of mosses in mediating soil properties and processes, with their influence depending on shrub species identity. Such species-dependent effects need to be accounted for when forecasting vegetation dynamics under ongoing environmental changes.

  14. Permafrost collapse shifts alpine tundra to a carbon source but reduces N2O and CH4 release on the northern Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mu, C. C.; Abbott, B. W.; Zhao, Q.; Su, H.; Wang, S. F.; Wu, Q. B.; Zhang, T. J.; Wu, X. D.

    2017-09-01

    Important unknowns remain about how abrupt permafrost collapse (thermokarst) affects carbon balance and greenhouse gas flux, limiting our ability to predict the magnitude and timing of the permafrost carbon feedback. We measured monthly, growing-season fluxes of CO2, CH4, and N2O at a large thermokarst feature in alpine tundra on the northern Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau (QTP). Thermokarst formation disrupted plant growth and soil hydrology, shifting the ecosystem from a growing-season carbon sink to a weak source but decreasing feature level CH4 and N2O flux. Temperature-corrected ecosystem respiration from decomposing permafrost soil was 2.7 to 9.5-fold higher than in similar features from Arctic and Boreal regions, suggesting that warmer and dryer conditions on the northern QTP could accelerate carbon decomposition following permafrost collapse. N2O flux was similar to the highest values reported for Arctic ecosystems and was 60% higher from exposed mineral soil on the feature floor, confirming Arctic observations of coupled nitrification and denitrification in collapsed soils. Q10 values for respiration were typically over 4, suggesting high-temperature sensitivity of thawed carbon. Taken together, these results suggest that QTP permafrost carbon in alpine tundra is highly vulnerable to mineralization following thaw, and that N2O production could be an important noncarbon permafrost climate feedback. Permafrost collapse altered soil hydrology, shifting the ecosystem from a carbon sink to carbon source but decreasing CH4 and N2O flux. Little to no vegetation recovery after stabilization suggests potentially large net carbon losses. High N2O flux compared to Arctic and Boreal systems suggests noncarbon permafrost climate feedback.

  15. Impacts of twenty years of experimental warming on soil carbon, nitrogen, moisture and soil across alpine/subarctic tundra communities

    OpenAIRE

    M. Alatalo, Juha; K. Jägerbrand, Annika; Juhanson, Jaanis; Michelsen, Anders; Ľuptáčik, Peter

    2017-01-01

    High-altitude and alpine areas are predicted to experience rapid and substantial increases in future temperature, which may have serious impacts on soil carbon, nutrient and soil fauna. Here we report the impact of 20 years of experimental warming on soil properties and soil mites in three contrasting plant communities in alpine/subarctic Sweden. Long-term warming decreased juvenile oribatid mite density, but had no effect on adult oribatids density, total mite density, any major mite group o...

  16. New York's TUNDRA.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kalinowski, Thomas

    1983-01-01

    Found at the summit of some of the highest peaks of New York State's Adirondack Mountains are low-growing plants similar, and in many cases, identical to plants growing in the Arctic. Describes these plants and the environment in which they are found. Includes a color plate of alpine tundra plants. (Author/JN)

  17. Where do the treeless tundra areas of northern highlands fit in the global biome system: toward an ecologically natural subdivision of the tundra biome.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Virtanen, Risto; Oksanen, Lauri; Oksanen, Tarja; Cohen, Juval; Forbes, Bruce C; Johansen, Bernt; Käyhkö, Jukka; Olofsson, Johan; Pulliainen, Jouni; Tømmervik, Hans

    2016-01-01

    According to some treatises, arctic and alpine sub-biomes are ecologically similar, whereas others find them highly dissimilar. Most peculiarly, large areas of northern tundra highlands fall outside of the two recent subdivisions of the tundra biome. We seek an ecologically natural resolution to this long-standing and far-reaching problem. We studied broad-scale patterns in climate and vegetation along the gradient from Siberian tundra via northernmost Fennoscandia to the alpine habitats of European middle-latitude mountains, as well as explored those patterns within Fennoscandian tundra based on climate-vegetation patterns obtained from a fine-scale vegetation map. Our analyses reveal that ecologically meaningful January-February snow and thermal conditions differ between different types of tundra. High precipitation and mild winter temperatures prevail on middle-latitude mountains, low precipitation and usually cold winters prevail on high-latitude tundra, and Scandinavian mountains show intermediate conditions. Similarly, heath-like plant communities differ clearly between middle latitude mountains (alpine) and high-latitude tundra vegetation, including its altitudinal extension on Scandinavian mountains. Conversely, high abundance of snowbeds and large differences in the composition of dwarf shrub heaths distinguish the Scandinavian mountain tundra from its counterparts in Russia and the north Fennoscandian inland. The European tundra areas fall into three ecologically rather homogeneous categories: the arctic tundra, the oroarctic tundra of northern heights and mountains, and the genuinely alpine tundra of middle-latitude mountains. Attempts to divide the tundra into two sub-biomes have resulted in major discrepancies and confusions, as the oroarctic areas are included in the arctic tundra in some biogeographic maps and in the alpine tundra in others. Our analyses based on climate and vegetation criteria thus seem to resolve the long-standing biome

  18. U.S. Tundra Biome-International Biological Program. U.S. Tundra Biome Publication List.

    Science.gov (United States)

    1983-09-01

    forage. Journal of Mammalogy, 60(4): 740-750. /Bib 35-989/ Batzli, G.O., R.G. White and F.L. Bunnell (1981) Herbivory : A strategy of tundra consum...Treat (1977) Root growth, respira- tion, and carbon dioxide evolution in an arctic tundra soil. Arctic andAlpine Research, 9(2): 129-137. (4020 and...MacLean, Jr. (1974) Ecology and evolution of social organization in arctic sandpipers. American Zoologist, 14: 185-204. (2504) /Bib 32-2828/ " Prentki, R.T

  19. Where do the treeless tundra areas of northern highlands fit in the global biome system: toward an ecologically natural subdivision of the tundra biome

    OpenAIRE

    Virtanen, Risto; Oksanen, Lauri Kalervo; Oksanen, Tarja Maarit; Cohen, Juval; Forbes, Bruce C.; Johansen, Bernt; Käyhkö, Jukka; Olofsson, Johan; Pulliainen, Jouni; Tømmervik, Hans

    2015-01-01

    This is the published version of the article. Published source: http://doi.org/10.1002/ece3.1837. According to some treatises, arctic and alpine sub-biomes are ecologically similar, whereas others find them highly dissimilar. Most peculiarly, large areas of northern tundra highlands fall outside of the two recent subdivisions of the tundra biome. We seek an ecologically natural resolution to this long-standing and far-reaching problem. We studied broad-scale patterns in climate...

  20. How to preserve the tundra in a warming climate?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Käyhkö, Jukka

    2014-05-01

    The warming climate of the polar regions may change much of the current arctic-alpine tundra to forest or dense scrubland. This modification requires adaptation by traditional livelihoods such as reindeer herding, which relies on diverse, seasonal pasturelands. Vegetation change may also trigger positive warming feedbacks, where more abundant forest-scrub vegetation will decrease the global albedo. NCoE Tundra team investigates the complex climate-animal-plant interaction of the tundra ecosystem and aim to unravel the capability of herbivorous mammals to control the expansion of woody vegetation. Our interdisciplinary approach involves several work packages, whose results will be summarised in the presentation. In the ecological WPs, we study the dynamics of the natural food chains involving small herbivorous and the impacts of reindeer on the vegetation and the population dynamics of those arctic-alpine plants, which are most likely to become threatened in a warmer climate. Our study demonstrates the potential of a relatively sparse reindeer stocks (2-5 heads per km2) together with natural populations of arvicoline rodents to prevent the expansion of erect woody plants at the arctic-alpine timberline. In the climatic WPs we study the impact of grazing-dependent vegetation differences on the fraction of solar energy converted to heat. In the socio-economic WPs, we study the conditions for maintaining the economic and cultural viability of reindeer herding while managing the land use so that the arctic-alpine biota would be preserved.

  1. Alpine ecosystems

    Science.gov (United States)

    P.W. Rundel; C.I. Millar

    2016-01-01

    Alpine ecosystems are typically defined as those areas occurring above treeline, while recognizing that alpine ecosystems at a local scale may be found below this boundary for reasons including geology, geomorphology, and microclimate. The lower limit of the alpine ecosystems, the climatic treeline, varies with latitude across California, ranging from about 3500 m in...

  2. Tundra in the rain

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Keuper, Frida; Parmentier, Frans Jan W; Blok, Daan

    2012-01-01

    Precipitation amounts and patterns at high latitude sites have been predicted to change as a result of global climatic changes. We addressed vegetation responses to three years of experimentally increased summer precipitation in two previously unaddressed tundra types: Betula nana-dominated shrub...... tundra (northeast Siberia) and a dry Sphagnum fuscum-dominated bog (northern Sweden). Positive responses to approximately doubled ambient precipitation (an increase of 200 mm year-1) were observed at the Siberian site, for B. nana (30 % larger length increments), Salix pulchra (leaf size and length...... increments) and Arctagrostis latifolia (leaf size and specific leaf area), but none were observed at the Swedish site. Total biomass production did not increase at either of the study sites. This study corroborates studies in other tundra vegetation types and shows that despite regional differences...

  3. Roots in the tundra

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Wang, Peng

    2016-01-01

    Global climate has been warming up for the last decades and it will continue in this century. The Arctic is the part of the globe that warms fastest and is more sensitive to climate warming. Aboveground productivity of Arctic tundra has been shown to increase in response to warmer climates. However,

  4. Tundra, Chapter 5

    Science.gov (United States)

    K. Nadelhoffer; L.H. Geiser

    2011-01-01

    The North American Arctic, comprising the Tundra and Arctic Cordillera ecoregions (CEC 1997, Chapter 2), covers more than 3 million km2 (300 million ha), and accounts for nearly 14 percent of the North American land mass. The North American Arctic also constitutes about 20 percent of the much larger circumpolar Arctic shared by Canada, the United...

  5. The zone of tundra

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Titaeva, N.A.; Taskaev, A.I.

    1983-01-01

    Peculiarities of radionuclide migration in the zone of tundra are considered. High 232 Th content, high 232 Th/ 238 U values at low 238 U and 226 Ra concentrations in rocks are shown to be characteristic for the chosen zone. Data on methods of 238 U and 232 Th determination in natural waters, as well as content of radionuclides in water and bottom sediments are presented. Formation of soils under the conditions of mountain tundra is shown to result in noticeable redistribution of radioactive elements as well as all their isotopes. Data on U, Th, Ra isotope content in different plants and certain organs of plants are presented. Principal statistical parameters both of content of certain U, Th, Ra isotopes and their isotope relations on the whole by soil and vegetation of the investigated region are presented. When characterizing storage of isotopes of different elements in vegetation of the zone of tundra it is necessary to note that the dependence 226 Ra( 228 Ra)> 228 Th> 227 Th> 230 Th> 232 Th> 238 U> 234 U is typical for it. Intensity of radionuclide inclusion in the biogenic migration cycle in the zone of tundra is higher than in the zone of taiga

  6. Shrub expansion in tundra ecosystems: dynamics, impacts and research priorities

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Myers-Smith, Isla H; Forbes, Bruce C; Wilmking, Martin; Hallinger, Martin; Lantz, Trevor; Blok, Daan; Sass-Klaassen, Ute; Tape, Ken D; Macias-Fauria, Marc; Lévesque, Esther; Boudreau, Stéphane; Ropars, Pascale; Hermanutz, Luise; Trant, Andrew; Collier, Laura Siegwart; Weijers, Stef; Rozema, Jelte; Rayback, Shelly A; Schmidt, Niels Martin; Schaepman-Strub, Gabriela

    2011-01-01

    Recent research using repeat photography, long-term ecological monitoring and dendrochronology has documented shrub expansion in arctic, high-latitude and alpine tundra ecosystems. Here, we (1) synthesize these findings, (2) present a conceptual framework that identifies mechanisms and constraints on shrub increase, (3) explore causes, feedbacks and implications of the increased shrub cover in tundra ecosystems, and (4) address potential lines of investigation for future research. Satellite observations from around the circumpolar Arctic, showing increased productivity, measured as changes in ‘greenness’, have coincided with a general rise in high-latitude air temperatures and have been partly attributed to increases in shrub cover. Studies indicate that warming temperatures, changes in snow cover, altered disturbance regimes as a result of permafrost thaw, tundra fires, and anthropogenic activities or changes in herbivory intensity are all contributing to observed changes in shrub abundance. A large-scale increase in shrub cover will change the structure of tundra ecosystems and alter energy fluxes, regional climate, soil–atmosphere exchange of water, carbon and nutrients, and ecological interactions between species. In order to project future rates of shrub expansion and understand the feedbacks to ecosystem and climate processes, future research should investigate the species or trait-specific responses of shrubs to climate change including: (1) the temperature sensitivity of shrub growth, (2) factors controlling the recruitment of new individuals, and (3) the relative influence of the positive and negative feedbacks involved in shrub expansion.

  7. Alpine tourism

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andrea Macchiavelli

    2009-06-01

    Full Text Available The spectacular increase in tourism in the Alps in recent decades has been founded mainly on the boom in skiing, resulting in both strong real estate development and an increasing array of infrastructures and ski runs. Today the ski market seems to have virtually reached saturation point and the winter sports sector needs to diversify its offer through innovation. After a review of the main factors of change in mountain tourism, the paper presents a grid for interpreting the life cycle of alpine destinations, identifying the phases that characterize their evolution. The conditions that may favour innovation in alpine tourism are then identified, as well as the contradictions that frequently accompany them. In most cases, innovation is the result of a process that begins within the alpine community, frequently encouraged and supported by national and international institutions and with whose help structural difficulties are successfully overcome.La forte croissance qu’ont connue les pays alpins dans les dernières décennies a surtout été fondée sur l’offre des activités du ski, avec comme conséquence, un massif développement immobilier et la multiplication d’infrastructures et de pistes. Aujourd’hui, le marché du ski semble arriver à saturation, la Convention alpine a mis un frein à la poursuite du développement des domaines skiables et on observe donc avec intérêt la diversification de l’offre soutenue par l’innovation. Après avoir rappelé les facteurs de changement en cours les plus significatifs dans le tourisme montagnard, l’article présente une grille interprétative de l’évolution des destinations touristiques alpines, identifiant les phases qui ont caractérisé son développement. Ensuite, l’article propose une réflexion sur certaines conditions qui peuvent favoriser l’innovation dans le tourisme alpin, ainsi que sur les contradictions qui accompagnent souvent ces conditions. Dans la plupart des cas

  8. Reindeer grazing and soil nutrient cycling in boreal and tundra ecosystems

    OpenAIRE

    Stark, S. (Sari)

    2002-01-01

    Abstract In northernmost Fennoscandia, grazing by reindeer (Rangifer tarandus L.) has a substantial impact on the vegetation of boreal forests and arctic-alpine tundra heaths, which are reflected in below-ground processes, such as nutrient mineralization and soil organic matter decomposition. In the present thesis, the effects of reindeer grazing on soil nutrient cycling were studied by comparing grazed situation with an ungrazed control area in ten boreal forests a...

  9. Legumes affect alpine tundra community composition via multiple biotic interactions

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Soudzilovskaia, N.A.; Aksenova, A.A.; Makarov, M.I.; Onipchenko, V.G.; Logvinenko, O.A.; Braak, ter C.J.F.; Cornelissen, J.H.C.

    2012-01-01

    The soil engineering function of legumes in natural ecosystems is paramount but associated solely with soil nitrogen (N) subsidies, ignoring concomitant biotic interactions such as competitive or inhibitory effects and exchange between mycorrhizas and rhizobia. We aim to (1) disentangle legume

  10. Alpine dams

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alain Marnezy

    2009-03-01

    Full Text Available Les barrages-réservoirs de montagne ont été réalisés initialement dans les Alpes pour répondre à la demande d’énergie en période hivernale. Une certaine diversification des usages de l’eau s’est ensuite progressivement développée, en relation avec le développement touristique des collectivités locales. Aujourd’hui, la participation des ouvrages d’Électricité De France à la production de neige de culture représente une nouvelle étape. Dans les régions où les aménagements hydroélectriques sont nombreux, les besoins en eau pour la production de neige peuvent être résolus par prélèvements à partir des adductions EDF. Les gestionnaires de stations échappent ainsi aux inconvénients liés à la construction et à la gestion des « retenues collinaires ». Cette évolution, qui concerne déjà quelques régions alpines comme la haute Maurienne ou le Beaufortin, apparaît comme une forme renouvelée d’intégration territoriale de la ressource en eau.Mountain reservoirs were initially built in the Alps to meet energy needs in the winter. A certain diversification in the uses of water then gradually developed, related to tourism development in the local communities. Today, the use of facilities belonging to EDF (French Electricity Authority to provide water for winter resorts to make artificial snow represents a new phase. By taking water from EDF resources to supply snow-making equipment, resort managers are thus able to avoid the problems related to the construction and management of small headwater dams. This new orientation in the use of mountain water resources already affects a number of alpine regions such as the Upper Maurienne valley and Beaufortain massif and represents a renewed form of the territorial integration of water resources.

  11. Alpine research today

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jean-Jacques Brun

    2009-06-01

    Full Text Available Alpine research benefits from several international coordination networks, only one of which – ISCAR (the International Scientific Committee on Research in the Alps – works solely in the Alpine arc. The creation of ISCAR is a consequence of the input and involvement of various Alpine partners around the Alpine Convention. Alpine research now aims to promote an integrated vision of Alpine territories focusing on creating and maintaining spatial and temporal networks of sustainable relationships between humans and the other components of the ecosphere. It combines resource usage with conservation of the biological and cultural diversity that makes up the Alpine identity. This article aims to show: (1 how international Alpine research coordination is organised; (2 the role played by the Alpine Convention as a framework of reference for specifically Alpine research; and (3 the role that the ISCAR international commit-tee and the Interreg “Alpine Space” programmes play in uniting research around territorial challenges relating to biodiversity conservation and territorial development.La recherche sur les Alpes bénéficie de plusieurs réseaux de coordination internationaux dont un seul, le comité international recherche alpine (ISCAR, se consacre exclusivement à l’arc alpin. La création de l’ISCAR est une retombée de la mobilisation des divers partenaires alpins autour de la mise en place de la Convention alpine. Aujourd’hui, la recherche alpine vise à promouvoir une vision intégrée des territoires centrée sur la création et le maintien d’un réseau spatial et temporel de relations durables entre les hommes et les autres composantes de l’écosphère. Elle associe étroitement la mise en valeur des ressources et la conservation des diversités biologiques et culturelles qui constituent l’identité alpine. Cet article a pour ambition de montrer : (1 comment s’organise la coordination internationale des recherches sur les

  12. Distance and environmental difference in alpine plant communities

    Science.gov (United States)

    Malanson, George P.; Zimmerman, Dale L.; Fagre, Daniel B.

    2017-01-01

    Differences in plant communities are a response to the abiotic environment, species interactions, and dispersal. The role of geographic distance relative to the abiotic environment is explored for alpine tundra vegetation from 319 plots of four regions along the Rocky Mountain cordillera in the USA. The site by species data were ordinated using nonmetric multidimensional scaling to produce dependent variables for use in best-subsets regression. For independent variables, observations of local topography and microtopography were used as environmental indicators. Two methods of including distance in studies of vegetation and environment are used and contrasted. The relative importance of geographic distance in accounting for the pattern of alpine tundra similarity indicates that location is a factor in plant community composition. Mantel tests provide direct correlations between difference and distance but have known weaknesses. Moran spatial eigenvectors used in regression based approaches have greater geographic specificity, but require another step, ordination, in creating a vegetation variable. While the spatial eigenvectors are generally preferable, where species–environment relations are weak, as seems to be the case for the alpine sites studied here, the fewer abstractions of the Mantel test may be useful.

  13. TUNDRA IN A CHANGING CLIMATE

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Terry Callaghan

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available Both palaeogeographical reconstructions and general circulation models indicate that global warming is especially strongly manifested in high latitudes. Under a 2°C increase in mean global temperature, almost the entire modern tundra zone would become potentially suitable for tree growth. Nevertheless, palaeobotanic data cannot be applied directly to estimating vegetation response to the global warming expected in the 21st century, as they characterize a quasi-equilibrium state of ecosystems, which takes several centuries to be achieved. Low migration rates of trees, damage caused by fires and insects, processes of soil drying or paludification, and influence of herbivorous animals and human activities may slow down considerably forest spread in tundra. Climate warming will probably cause a decline in the populations of Arctic species and expansion of ranges of some southern animal species into the Arctic.

  14. Deposition of ozone to tundra

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jacob, D. J.; Fan, S.-M.; Wofsy, S. C.; Spiro, P. A.; Bakwin, P. S.; Ritter, J. A.; Browell, E. V.; Gregory, G. L.; Fitzjarrald, D. R.; Moore, K. E.

    1992-01-01

    Eddy correlation measurements of O3 deposition fluxes to tundra during the Arctic Boundary Layer Expedition (ABLE 3A) are reported. The mean O3 deposition velocity was 0.24 cm/s in the daytime and 0.12 cm/s at night. The day-to-day difference in deposition velocity was driven by both atmospheric stability and surface reactivity. The mean surface resistance to O3 deposition was 2.6 s/cm in the daytime and 3.4 s/cm at night. The relatively low surface resistance at night is attributed to light-insensitive uptake of O3 at dry upland tundra surfaces. The small day-tonight difference in surface resistance is attributed to additional stomatal uptake by wet meadow tundra plants in the daytime. The mean O3 deposition flux to the world north of 60 deg N in July-August is estimated at 8.2 x 10 exp 10 molecules/sq cm/s. Suppression of photochemical loss by small anthropogenic inputs of nitrogen oxides could have a major effect on O3 concentrations in the summertime Arctic troposphere.

  15. Plants in alpine environments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Germino, Matthew J.

    2014-01-01

    Alpine and subalpine plant species are of special interest in ecology and ecophysiology because they represent life at the climate limit and changes in their relative abundances can be a bellwether for climate-change impacts. Perennial life forms dominate alpine plant communities, and their form and function reflect various avoidance, tolerance, or resistance strategies to interactions of cold temperature, radiation, wind, and desiccation stresses that prevail in the short growing seasons common (but not ubiquitous) in alpine areas. Plant microclimate is typically uncoupled from the harsh climate of the alpine, often leading to substantially warmer plant temperatures than air temperatures recorded by weather stations. Low atmospheric pressure is the most pervasive, fundamental, and unifying factor for alpine environments, but the resulting decrease in partial pressure of CO2 does not significantly limit carbon gain by alpine plants. Factors such as tree islands and topographic features create strong heterogeneous mosaics of microclimate and snow cover that are reflected in plant community composition. Factors affecting tree establishment and growth and formation of treeline are key to understanding alpine ecology. Carbohydrate and other carbon storage, rapid development in a short growing season, and physiological function at low temperature are prevailing attributes of alpine plants. A major contemporary research theme asks whether chilling at alpine-treeline affects the ability of trees to assimilate the growth resources and particularly carbon needed for growth or whether the growth itself is limited by the alpine environment. Alpine areas tend to be among the best conserved, globally, yet they are increasingly showing response to a range of anthropogenic impacts, such as atmospheric deposition.

  16. Impacts of altitude and position on the rates of soil nitrogen mineralization and nitrification in alpine meadows on the eastern Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau, China

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alpine and tundra grasslands constitute 7% world terrestrial land but 13% of the total global soil carbon (C) and 10% of the global soil nitrogen (N). Under the current climate change scenario of global warming, these grasslands will contribute significantly to the changing global C and N cycles. It...

  17. Chloroform emissions from the Alaskan Arctic tundra

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rhew, Robert C.; Teh, Yit Arn; Abel, Triffid; Atwood, Alyssa; Mazéas, Olivier

    2008-11-01

    Chloroform (trichloromethane, CHCl3) is the second largest carrier of natural chlorine in the troposphere after methyl chloride, contributing to the reactive chlorine burden in the troposphere and to ozone destruction in the stratosphere. Here we report CHCl3 flux measurements from coastal and interior tundra sites in northern Alaska, showing that the Arctic tundra can contribute substantial amounts of CHCl3 to the atmosphere. Emissions were measured during the 2005 and 2006 growing seasons over a range of vegetation types and hydrologic conditions, from wet sedge coastal to upland tussock tundra. Overall emissions averaged 45 nmol m-2 d-1, but fluxes were highly variable, ranging from tundra. Laboratory soil core incubations show that flooded conditions sharply reduce emission rates. A rough extrapolation suggests that the tundra globally could account for 1-2% of the total estimated source of atmospheric CHCl3.

  18. The need for a tundra treatment protocol

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Filler, D.M.

    2000-01-01

    Support services formed an integral part of the oil and natural gas industry in the Arctic. These services include the road transportation of petroleum fuels to supply pipeline pump station generators, work camps, fleet vehicles and others. At times, spill response in the tundra proves to be harmful to the environment. An incident occurred in November 1997. A tanker truck was hauling arctic-grade diesel fuel on Alaska's North Slope when it rolled over at a river crossing, spilling 20,800 liters on the frozen tundra. The in situ burning that followed polluted the subsurface soil-water matrix within the river basin. It was difficult to distinguish between petroleum pollutant and biogenic hydrocarbon contributions in the tundra. A tundra treatment manual was then developed for the proper management of land-based fuel and oil spills in the Arctic. This manual takes into account the sensitive environment of the region. 14 refs., 4 figs

  19. A boreal invasion in response to climate change? Range shifts and community effects in the borderland between forest and tundra.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Elmhagen, Bodil; Kindberg, Jonas; Hellström, Peter; Angerbjörn, Anders

    2015-01-01

    It has been hypothesized that climate warming will allow southern species to advance north and invade northern ecosystems. We review the changes in the Swedish mammal and bird community in boreal forest and alpine tundra since the nineteenth century, as well as suggested drivers of change. Observed changes include (1) range expansion and increased abundance in southern birds, ungulates, and carnivores; (2) range contraction and decline in northern birds and carnivores; and (3) abundance decline or periodically disrupted dynamics in cyclic populations of small and medium-sized mammals and birds. The first warm spell, 1930-1960, stands out as a period of substantial faunal change. However, in addition to climate warming, suggested drivers of change include land use and other anthropogenic factors. We hypothesize all these drivers interacted, primarily favoring southern generalists. Future research should aim to distinguish between effects of climate and land-use change in boreal and tundra ecosystems.

  20. Tundra Rehabilitation in Alaska's Arctic

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lynn, L. A.

    2012-12-01

    Oil exploration in Alaska's Arctic has been conducted for more than 40 years, resulting in over 3,640 ha of gravel fill placed for roads, pads, and airstrips to support the industry. Likewise, tundra disturbance from burying power lines and by tundra vehicle travel are also common. Rehabilitation of disturbed sites began around 2002, with well over 150 ha that has been previously treated or is currently being rehabilitated. Two primary goals of rehabilitation efforts have been 1) revegetation by indigenous species, and 2) limiting thermokarst. Early efforts were concerned that removing gravel and having exposed bare ground would lead to extensive subsidence and eolian erosion. Native grass cultivars (e.g. Poa glauca, Arctagrostis latifolia, and Festuca rubra) were seeded to create vegetation cover quickly with the expectation that these grasses would survive only temporarily. The root masses and leaf litter were also expected to trap indigenous seed to enhance natural recolonization by indigenous plants. Due to the remote location of these sites, many of which are only accessible by helicopter, most are visited only two to three times following cultivation treatments, providing a limited data pool. At many sites, the total live seeded grass cover declined about 15% over the first 5¬-6 years (from around 30% to 15% cover), while total live indigenous vascular cover increased from no or trace cover to an average of 10% cover in that time. Cover of indigenous vascular plants at sites that were not seeded with native grass cultivars averaged just less than 10% after 10 years, showing no appreciable difference between the two approaches. Final surface elevations at the sites affect local hydrology and soil moisture. Other factors that influence the success of vegetation cover are proximity to the Arctic coast (salt effects), depth of remaining gravel, and changes in characteristics of the near-surface soil. Further development of rehabilitation techniques and the

  1. Vegetation shifts observed in arctic tundra 17 years after fire

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Barret, K.; Rocha, A.V.; van de Weg, M.J.; Shaver, G

    2012-01-01

    With anticipated climate change, tundra fires are expected to occur more frequently in the future, but data on the long-term effects of fire on tundra vegetation composition are scarce. This study addresses changes in vegetation structure that have persisted for 17 years after a tundra fire on the

  2. The tundra - a threat to global climate?

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Roejle Christensen, T.

    1997-01-01

    The tundra biome has an important direct influence on the global climate through its exchange of radiatively active 'greenhouse gases', carbon dioxide and methane. A number of suggestions have been raised as to how a changing climate may alter the natural state of this exchange causing significant feedback effects in a changing climate. This paper provides a brief discussion of three different issues relating to the interaction between tundra and climate. It is concluded that release of methane hydrates, permafrost degradation and major biome changes are processes which in the long term may have important effects on further development of the global climate. (au) 32 refs

  3. Le tourisme alpin

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andrea Macchiavelli

    2009-06-01

    Full Text Available La forte croissance qu’ont connue les pays alpins dans les dernières décennies a surtout été fondée sur l’offre des activités du ski, avec comme conséquence, un massif développement immobilier, la multiplication d’infrastructures et l’extension des domaines. Aujourd’hui, le marché du ski semble arriver à saturation, la Convention alpine a mis un frein à la poursuite du développement des domaines skiables et on observe donc avec intérêt la diversification de l’offre soutenue par l’innovation. Après avoir rappelé les facteurs de changement en cours les plus significatifs dans le tourisme montagnard, l’article présente une grille interprétative de l’évolution des destinations touristiques alpines, identifiant les phases qui ont caractérisé son développement. Puis il propose une réflexion sur certaines conditions qui peuvent favoriser l’innovation dans le tourisme alpin, ainsi que sur les contradictions qui les accompagnent souvent. Dans la plupart des cas l’innovation est le résultat d’un processus qui a été lancé et qui s’est développé au sein de la communauté alpine, souvent favorisé et soutenu par des institutions nationales et internationales, et grâce auquel les difficultés structurelles qui ont déjà été abordées précédemment ont pu être surmontées avec succès.The spectacular increase in tourism in the Alps in recent decades has been founded mainly on the boom in skiing, resulting in both strong real estate development and an increasing array of infrastructures and ski runs. Today the ski market seems to have virtually reached saturation point and the winter sports sector needs to diversify its offer through innovation. After a review of the main factors of change in mountain tourism, the paper presents a grid for interpreting the life cycle of alpine destinations, identifying the phases that characterize their evolution. The conditions that may favour innovation in alpine

  4. Reproductive ecology and severe pollen limitation in the polychromic tundra plant, Parrya nudicaulis (Brassicaceae.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Justin R Fulkerson

    Full Text Available Pollen limitation is predicted to be particularly severe in tundra habitats. Numerous reproductive patterns associated with alpine and arctic species, particularly mechanisms associated with reproductive assurance, are suggested to be driven by high levels of pollen limitation. We studied the reproductive ecology of Parrya nudicaulis, a species with relatively large sexual reproductive investment and a wide range of floral pigmentation, in tundra habitats in interior montane Alaska to estimate the degree of pollen limitation. The plants are self-compatible and strongly protandrous, setting almost no seed in the absence of pollinators. Supplemental hand pollinations within pollinator exclusion cages indicated no cage effect on seed production. Floral visitation rates were low in both years of study and particularly infrequent in 2010. A diversity of insects visited P. nudicaulis, though syrphid and muscid flies composed the majority of all visits. Pollen-ovule ratios and levels of heterozygosity are consistent with a mixed mating system. Pollen limitation was severe; hand pollinations increased seed production per plant five-fold. Seed-to-ovule ratios remained low following hand pollinations, indicating resource limitation is likely to also be responsible for curtailing seed set. We suggest that pollen limitation in P. nudicaulis may be the result of selection favoring an overproduction of ovules as a bet-hedging strategy in this environmental context of highly variable pollen receipt.

  5. Consequences for selected high-elevation butterflies and moths from the spread of Pinus mugo into the alpine zone in the High Sudetes Mountains

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Bílá, Karolína; Šipoš, Jan; Kindlmann, Pavel; Kuras, T.

    2016-01-01

    Roč. 4, JUN (2016), č. článku e2094. ISSN 2167-8359 R&D Projects: GA MŠk(CZ) LO1415; GA MŠk LC06073 Institutional support: RVO:67179843 Keywords : hruby jesenik mts * erebia-epiphron * species richness * lepidoptera * population * europe * assemblages * vegetation * gradients * patterns * Afforestation * Alpine tundra * Lepidoptera * Dwarf pine * Postglacial development * Central European mountains * Biodiversity loss Subject RIV: EH - Ecology, Behaviour Impact factor: 2.177, year: 2016

  6. Experimental warming of a mountain tundra increases soil CO2 effluxes and enhances CH4 and N2O uptake at Changbai Mountain, China.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhou, Yumei; Hagedorn, Frank; Zhou, Chunliang; Jiang, Xiaojie; Wang, Xiuxiu; Li, Mai-He

    2016-02-16

    Climatic warming is expected to particularly alter greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from soils in cold ecosystems such as tundra. We used 1 m(2) open-top chambers (OTCs) during three growing seasons to examine how warming (+0.8-1.2 °C) affects the fluxes of carbon dioxide (CO2), methane (CH4) and nitrous oxide (N2O) from alpine tundra soils. Results showed that OTC warming increased soil CO2 efflux by 141% in the first growing season and by 45% in the second and third growing season. The mean CH4 flux of the three growing seasons was -27.6 and -16.7 μg CH4-C m(-2)h(-1) in the warmed and control treatment, respectively. Fluxes of N2O switched between net uptake and emission. Warming didn't significantly affect N2O emission during the first and the second growing season, but stimulated N2O uptake in the third growing season. The global warming potential of GHG was clearly dominated by soil CO2 effluxes (>99%) and was increased by the OTC warming. In conclusion, soil temperature is the main controlling factor for soil respiration in this tundra. Climate warming will lead to higher soil CO2 emissions but also to an enhanced CH4 uptake with an overall increase of the global warming potential for tundra.

  7. Consequences for selected high-elevation butterflies and moths from the spread of Pinus mugo into the alpine zone in the High Sudetes Mountains

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Karolína Bílá

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available Due to changes in the global climate, isolated alpine sites have become one of the most vulnerable habitats worldwide. The indigenous fauna in these habitats is threatened by an invasive species, dwarf pine (Pinus mugo, which is highly competitive and could be important in determining the composition of the invertebrate community. In this study, the association of species richness and abundance of butterflies with the extent of Pinus mugo cover at individual alpine sites was determined. Butterflies at alpine sites in the High Sudetes Mountains (Mts. were sampled using Moericke yellow water traps. The results of a Canonical Correspondence Analysis (CCA indicated that at a local scale the area of alpine habitats is the main limiting factor for native species of alpine butterflies. Butterfly assemblages are associated with distance to the tree-line with the optimum situated in the lower forest zone. In addition the CCA revealed that biotic factors (i.e. Pinus mugo and alpine tundra vegetation accounted for a significant amount of the variability in species data. Regionally, the CCA identified that the species composition of butterflies and moths is associated with presence and origin of Pinus mugo. Our study provides evidence that the structure of the Lepidopteran fauna that formed during the postglacial period and also the present composition of species assemblages is associated with the presence of Pinus mugo. With global warming, Pinus mugo has the potential to spread further into alpine areas and negatively affect the local species communities.

  8. Tundra vegetation effects on pan-Arctic albedo

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Loranty, Michael M; Goetz, Scott J; Beck, Pieter S A

    2011-01-01

    Recent field experiments in tundra ecosystems describe how increased shrub cover reduces winter albedo, and how subsequent changes in surface net radiation lead to altered rates of snowmelt. These findings imply that tundra vegetation change will alter regional energy budgets, but to date the effects have not been documented at regional or greater scales. Using satellite observations and a pan-Arctic vegetation map, we examined the effects of shrub vegetation on albedo across the terrestrial Arctic. We included vegetation classes dominated by low shrubs, dwarf shrubs, tussock-dominated graminoid tundra, and non-tussock graminoid tundra. Each class was further stratified by bioclimate subzones. Low-shrub tundra had higher normalized difference vegetation index values and earlier albedo decline in spring than dwarf-shrub tundra, but for tussock tundra, spring albedo declined earlier than for low-shrub tundra. Our results illustrate how relatively small changes in vegetation properties result in differences in albedo dynamics, regardless of shrub growth, that may lead to differences in net radiation upwards of 50 W m -2 at weekly time scales. Further, our findings imply that changes to the terrestrial Arctic energy budget during this important seasonal transition are under way regardless of whether recent satellite observed productivity trends are the result of shrub expansion. We conclude that a better understanding of changes in vegetation productivity and distribution in Arctic tundra is essential for accurately quantifying and predicting carbon and energy fluxes and associated climate feedbacks.

  9. The unseen iceberg: plant roots in arctic tundra.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Iversen, Colleen M; Sloan, Victoria L; Sullivan, Patrick F; Euskirchen, Eugenie S; McGuire, A David; Norby, Richard J; Walker, Anthony P; Warren, Jeffrey M; Wullschleger, Stan D

    2015-01-01

    Plant roots play a critical role in ecosystem function in arctic tundra, but root dynamics in these ecosystems are poorly understood. To address this knowledge gap, we synthesized available literature on tundra roots, including their distribution, dynamics and contribution to ecosystem carbon and nutrient fluxes, and highlighted key aspects of their representation in terrestrial biosphere models. Across all tundra ecosystems, belowground plant biomass exceeded aboveground biomass, with the exception of polar desert tundra. Roots were shallowly distributed in the thin layer of soil that thaws annually, and were often found in surface organic soil horizons. Root traits - including distribution, chemistry, anatomy and resource partitioning - play an important role in controlling plant species competition, and therefore ecosystem carbon and nutrient fluxes, under changing climatic conditions, but have only been quantified for a small fraction of tundra plants. Further, the annual production and mortality of fine roots are key components of ecosystem processes in tundra, but extant data are sparse. Tundra root traits and dynamics should be the focus of future research efforts. Better representation of the dynamics and characteristics of tundra roots will improve the utility of models for the evaluation of the responses of tundra ecosystems to changing environmental conditions. No claim to original US Government works New Phytologist © 2014 New Phytologist Trust.

  10. Semenic Mountains’ alpine skiing area

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Petru BANIAȘ

    2017-03-01

    Full Text Available The present paper presents, after a short history of alpine skiing which describes apparition, necessity, utility and universality of skiing during time, a comparative study referring to the alpine skiing domain in the Semenic Mountains area. In the paper are also presented general notions about alpine skiing methodology together with an ample description of the plateau area form Semenic Mountains, describing localization and touristic potential. Based on the SWOT analysis made for each slope, was realized a complex analysis of the entire skiing domain, an analysis which includes technical, financial, climatic and environmental aspects, along with an analysis of the marketing policy applied for the specific zone.

  11. THE ROLE OF THERMAL REGIMEN IN TUNDRA PLANT COMMUNITY RESTORATION

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mineral extraction activities in the Arctic regions of the world produce long-lasting ecological disturbances. Assisted recovery from such disturbances may require restoration of the tundra thermal regime. We transplanted plugs of entire root zone and live tundra plants to a dist...

  12. Seed dormancy in alpine species

    OpenAIRE

    Schwienbacher, Erich; Navarro-Cano, Jose Antonio; Neuner, Gilbert; Erschbamer, Brigitta

    2011-01-01

    In alpine species the classification of the various mechanisms underlying seed dormancy has been rather questionable and controversial. Thus, we investigated 28 alpine species to evaluate the prevailing types of dormancy. Embryo type and water impermeability of seed coats gave an indication of the potential seed dormancy class. To ascertain the actual dormancy class and level, we performed germination experiments comparing the behavior of seeds without storage, after cold-dry storage, after c...

  13. Methylocella tundrae sp. nov., a novel methanotrophic bacterium from acidic tundra peatlands.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dedysh, Svetlana N; Berestovskaya, Yulia Y; Vasylieva, Lina V; Belova, Svetlana E; Khmelenina, Valentina N; Suzina, Natalia E; Trotsenko, Yuri A; Liesack, Werner; Zavarzin, George A

    2004-01-01

    A novel species, Methylocella tundrae, is proposed for three methanotrophic strains (T4T, TCh1 and TY1) isolated from acidic Sphagnum tundra peatlands. These strains are aerobic, Gram-negative, non-motile, dinitrogen-fixing rods that possess a soluble methane monooxygenase and utilize the serine pathway for carbon assimilation. Strains T4T, TCh1 and TY1 are moderately acidophilic organisms capable of growth between pH 4.2 and 7.5 (optimum 5.5-6.0) and between 5 and 30 degrees C (optimum 15 degrees C). The major phospholipid fatty acid is 18:1omega7c. The DNA G+C content of strain T4T is 63.3 mol%. The three strains possess almost identical 16S rRNA gene sequences and are most closely related to two previously identified species of Methylocella, Methylocella palustris (97% similarity) and Methylocella silvestris (97.5% similarity). DNA-DNA hybridization values of strain T4T with Methylocella palustris KT and Methylocella silvestris BL2T were respectively 27 and 36%. Thus, the tundra strains represent a novel species, for which the name Methylocella tundrae sp. nov. is proposed. Strain T4T (=DSM 15673T=NCIMB 13949T) is the type strain.

  14. MICROBIAL RESPONSES TO NITROGEN ADDITIONS IN ALPINE TUNDRA SOILS (R823442)

    Science.gov (United States)

    The perspectives, information and conclusions conveyed in research project abstracts, progress reports, final reports, journal abstracts and journal publications convey the viewpoints of the principal investigator and may not represent the views and policies of ORD and EPA. Concl...

  15. LANDSCAPE PATTERNS OF CH4 FLUXES IN AN ALPINE TUNDRA ECOSYSTEM. (R823442)

    Science.gov (United States)

    The perspectives, information and conclusions conveyed in research project abstracts, progress reports, final reports, journal abstracts and journal publications convey the viewpoints of the principal investigator and may not represent the views and policies of ORD and EPA. Concl...

  16. Vegetation of Paektu Mt. alpine tundra and changes of species composition in its ecotone

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Kolbek, Jiří; Jarolímek, I.

    2007-01-01

    Roč. 39, č. 2 (2007), s. 707-725 ISSN 0253-116X R&D Projects: GA ČR(CZ) GA206/05/0119 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z60050516 Keywords : High mountain vegetation * hypsometric vegetation transect * Korean -Chinese boundary Subject RIV: EF - Botanics

  17. Nitrate is an important nitrogen source for Arctic tundra plants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Xue-Yan; Koba, Keisuke; Koyama, Lina A; Hobbie, Sarah E; Weiss, Marissa S; Inagaki, Yoshiyuki; Shaver, Gaius R; Giblin, Anne E; Hobara, Satoru; Nadelhoffer, Knute J; Sommerkorn, Martin; Rastetter, Edward B; Kling, George W; Laundre, James A; Yano, Yuriko; Makabe, Akiko; Yano, Midori; Liu, Cong-Qiang

    2018-03-27

    Plant nitrogen (N) use is a key component of the N cycle in terrestrial ecosystems. The supply of N to plants affects community species composition and ecosystem processes such as photosynthesis and carbon (C) accumulation. However, the availabilities and relative importance of different N forms to plants are not well understood. While nitrate (NO 3 - ) is a major N form used by plants worldwide, it is discounted as a N source for Arctic tundra plants because of extremely low NO 3 - concentrations in Arctic tundra soils, undetectable soil nitrification, and plant-tissue NO 3 - that is typically below detection limits. Here we reexamine NO 3 - use by tundra plants using a sensitive denitrifier method to analyze plant-tissue NO 3 - Soil-derived NO 3 - was detected in tundra plant tissues, and tundra plants took up soil NO 3 - at comparable rates to plants from relatively NO 3 - -rich ecosystems in other biomes. Nitrate assimilation determined by 15 N enrichments of leaf NO 3 - relative to soil NO 3 - accounted for 4 to 52% (as estimated by a Bayesian isotope-mixing model) of species-specific total leaf N of Alaskan tundra plants. Our finding that in situ soil NO 3 - availability for tundra plants is high has important implications for Arctic ecosystems, not only in determining species compositions, but also in determining the loss of N from soils via leaching and denitrification. Plant N uptake and soil N losses can strongly influence C uptake and accumulation in tundra soils. Accordingly, this evidence of NO 3 - availability in tundra soils is crucial for predicting C storage in tundra. Copyright © 2018 the Author(s). Published by PNAS.

  18. Les barrages alpins

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alain Marnezy

    2009-03-01

    Full Text Available Les barrages-réservoirs de montagne ont été réalisés initialement dans les Alpes pour répondre à la demande d’énergie en période hivernale. Une certaine diversification des usages de l’eau s’est ensuite progressivement développée, en relation avec le développement touristique des collectivités locales. Aujourd’hui, la participation des ouvrages d’Électricité De France à la production de neige de culture représente une nouvelle étape. Dans les régions où les aménagements hydroélectriques sont nombreux, les besoins en eau pour la production de neige peuvent être résolus par prélèvements à partir des adductions EDF. Les gestionnaires de stations échappent ainsi aux inconvénients liés à la construction et à la gestion des « retenues collinaires ». Cette évolution, qui concerne déjà quelques régions alpines comme la haute Maurienne ou le Beaufortin, apparaît comme une forme renouvelée d’intégration territoriale de la ressource en eau.Mountain reservoirs were initially built in the Alps to meet energy needs in the winter. A certain diversification in the uses of water then gradually developed, related to tourism development in the local communities. Today, the use of facilities belonging to EDF (French Electricity Authority to provide water for winter resorts to make artificial snow represents a new phase. By taking water from EDF resources to supply snow-making equipment, resort managers are thus able to avoid the problems related to the construction and management of small headwater dams. This new orientation in the use of mountain water resources already affects a number of alpine regions such as the Upper Maurienne valley and Beaufortain massif and represents a renewed form of the territorial integration of water resources.

  19. Physiology of Alpine skiing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Andersen, R E; Montgomery, D L

    1988-10-01

    Physiological profiles of elite Alpine skiers reveal the importance of muscular strength, anaerobic power, anaerobic endurance, aerobic endurance, coordination, agility, balance, and flexibility. On-hill snow training and dryland training programmes should focus on the elevation of these fitness components. Physical characteristics of elite skiers reveal an average height and body mass. Today, successful skiers are taller and heavier than their predecessors. Slalom skiers tend to be leaner than skiers in other events while the downhill racers are the heaviest. Elite skiers have strong legs when peak torque is measured during isometric and isokinetic conditions involving knee extension, which may be a specific adaptation since the skier is in a crouched position for a prolonged period when racing. Leg strength correlates significantly with performance in the downhill and giant slalom events. The glycolytic contribution in the slalom and giant slalom events is about 40% of the total energy cost. Following a race, blood lactate concentration averages 9 to 13 mmol/L. A muscle lactate concentration of 24 mmol/kg wet muscle tissue has been reported. Elite skiers have higher lactate values than advanced or novice skiers. The aerobic demands of competitive Alpine skiing may approach (90 to 95%) of the athlete's maximal aerobic power. Maximal heart rate is achieved during the latter part of the race. Elite skiers have a high VO2max. This may reflect their training programme and not the actual demands of the sport. When turning, muscular activity acts to impede blood flow and oxygen delivery. As a consequence, anaerobic metabolism is increased. Glycogen studies show significant utilisation from both slow and fast twitch muscle fibres. Skilled and unskilled skiers differ with respect to glycogen utilisation. Skilled skiers have greater glycogen depletion in the slow twitch fibres compared to unskilled skiers. Muscle glycogen decreases by about 32 mmol/kg wet muscle tissue

  20. Evidence and Implications of Frequent Fires in Ancient Shrub Tundra

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Higuera, P E; Brubaker, L B; Anderson, P M; Brown, T A; Kennedy, A T; Hu, F S

    2008-03-06

    Understanding feedbacks between terrestrial and atmospheric systems is vital for predicting the consequences of global change, particularly in the rapidly changing Arctic. Fire is a key process in this context, but the consequences of altered fire regimes in tundra ecosystems are rarely considered, largely because tundra fires occur infrequently on the modern landscape. We present paleoecological data that indicate frequent tundra fires in northcentral Alaska between 14,000 and 10,000 years ago. Charcoal and pollen from lake sediments reveal that ancient birchdominated shrub tundra burned as often as modern boreal forests in the region, every 144 years on average (+/- 90 s.d.; n = 44). Although paleoclimate interpretations and data from modern tundra fires suggest that increased burning was aided by low effective moisture, vegetation cover clearly played a critical role in facilitating the paleo-fires by creating an abundance of fine fuels. These records suggest that greater fire activity will likely accompany temperature-related increases in shrub-dominated tundra predicted for the 21st century and beyond. Increased tundra burning will have broad impacts on physical and biological systems as well as land-atmosphere interactions in the Arctic, including the potential to release stored organic carbon to the atmosphere.

  1. Recent Arctic tundra fire initiates widespread thermokarst development.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jones, Benjamin M; Grosse, Guido; Arp, Christopher D; Miller, Eric; Liu, Lin; Hayes, Daniel J; Larsen, Christopher F

    2015-10-29

    Fire-induced permafrost degradation is well documented in boreal forests, but the role of fires in initiating thermokarst development in Arctic tundra is less well understood. Here we show that Arctic tundra fires may induce widespread thaw subsidence of permafrost terrain in the first seven years following the disturbance. Quantitative analysis of airborne LiDAR data acquired two and seven years post-fire, detected permafrost thaw subsidence across 34% of the burned tundra area studied, compared to less than 1% in similar undisturbed, ice-rich tundra terrain units. The variability in thermokarst development appears to be influenced by the interaction of tundra fire burn severity and near-surface, ground-ice content. Subsidence was greatest in severely burned, ice-rich upland terrain (yedoma), accounting for ~50% of the detected subsidence, despite representing only 30% of the fire disturbed study area. Microtopography increased by 340% in this terrain unit as a result of ice wedge degradation. Increases in the frequency, magnitude, and severity of tundra fires will contribute to future thermokarst development and associated landscape change in Arctic tundra regions.

  2. Breeding habitat associations and predicted distribution of an obligate tundra-breeding bird, Smith's Longspur

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wild, Teri C.; Kendall, Steven J.; Guldager, Nikki; Powell, Abby N.

    2015-01-01

    Smith's Longspur (Calcarius pictus) is a species of conservation concern which breeds in Arctic habitats that are expected to be especially vulnerable to climate change. We used bird presence and habitat data from point-transect surveys conducted at 12 sites across the Brooks Range, Alaska, 2003–2009, to identify breeding areas, describe local habitat associations, and identify suitable habitat using a predictive model of Smith's Longspur distribution. Smith's Longspurs were observed at seven sites, where they were associated with a variety of sedge–shrub habitats composed primarily of mosses, sedges, tussocks, and dwarf shrubs; erect shrubs were common but sparse. Nonmetric multidimensional scaling ordination of ground cover revealed positive associations of Smith's Longspur presence with sedges and mosses and a negative association with high cover of shrubs. To model predicted distribution, we used boosted regression trees to relate landscape variables to occurrence. Our model predicted that Smith's Longspurs may occur in valleys and foothills of the northeastern and southeastern mountains and in upland plateaus of the western mountains, and farther west than currently documented, over a predicted area no larger than 15% of the Brooks Range. With climate change, shrubs are expected to grow larger and denser, while soil moisture and moss cover are predicted to decrease. These changes may reduce Smith's Longspur habitat quality and limit distribution in the Brooks Range to poorly drained lowlands and alpine plateaus where sedge–shrub tundra is likely to persist. Conversely, northward advance of shrubs into sedge tundra may create suitable habitat, thus supporting a northward longspur distribution shift.

  3. The Alpine marmot from the cave Matjaževe kamre

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    1994-12-01

    Full Text Available The excavations carried out in the Pleistocene sediments of a minor chamber belonging to a major cave complex, referred to as Matjaževe kamre, disclosed a paleolithic station with two cultural horizons of various ages and a fauna rather abundant in quantity but frugal in the number of species involved. In the present treatise the two authors deal merely with the paleontological elaboration ofAlpine marmot fossil remains assembled in the layer 2 of the paleolithic station as well as in the adjacent side gallery of the same cave complex. In the paleolithic station the bones have been crashed and burnt on purpose, while in the sidegallery, they have persisted nearly intact. The comparisons of measured dimensions of teeth, and of cranial and postcranial skeleton with findings of Alpine marmots of the same or surpassing age on the territory of Slovenia, show that measures differ but slightly, agreeing usually with the size of recent animals.Due to the fact that the fauna unearthed from the layer 2 is essentially represented by the fossil remains of the Alpine marmot, whilst the representatives of the tundra are missing, the authors attributed this layer to the late glacial. The statement is furthermore confirmed by the classification of stone tools havingbeen discovered in the same layer and attributed by Osole (1974, 29 to Epigravettian.The marmot remains from the side gallery are most probably of the same age.

  4. Beyond arctic and alpine: the influence of winter climate on temperate ecosystems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ladwig, Laura M; Ratajczak, Zak R; Ocheltree, Troy W; Hafich, Katya A; Churchill, Amber C; Frey, Sarah J K; Fuss, Colin B; Kazanski, Clare E; Muñoz, Juan D; Petrie, Matthew D; Reinmann, Andrew B; Smith, Jane G

    2016-02-01

    Winter climate is expected to change under future climate scenarios, yet the majority of winter ecology research is focused in cold-climate ecosystems. In many temperate systems, it is unclear how winter climate relates to biotic responses during the growing season. The objective of this study was to examine how winter weather relates to plant and animal communities in a variety of terrestrial ecosystems ranging from warm deserts to alpine tundra. Specifically, we examined the association between winter weather and plant phenology, plant species richness, consumer abundance, and consumer richness in 11 terrestrial ecosystems associated with the U.S. Long-Term Ecological Research (LTER) Network. To varying degrees, winter precipitation and temperature were correlated with all biotic response variables. Bud break was tightly aligned with end of winter temperatures. For half the sites, winter weather was a better predictor of plant species richness than growing season weather. Warmer winters were correlated with lower consumer abundances in both temperate and alpine systems. Our findings suggest winter weather may have a strong influence on biotic activity during the growing season and should be considered in future studies investigating the effects of climate change on both alpine and temperate systems.

  5. Human-animal agency in reindeer management: Sami herders' perspectives on Fennoscandian tundra vegetation dynamics under climate change

    Science.gov (United States)

    Forbes, B. C.; Horstkotte, T.; Utsi, T. A.; Larsson-Blind, Å.; Burgess, P.; Käyhkö, J.; Oksanen, L.; Johansen, B.

    2016-12-01

    Many primary livelihoods in Arctic and sub-Arctic regions are increasingly faced with accelerating effects of climate change and resource exploitation. The often close connection between indigenous populations and the dynamics of their respective territories allows them to make detailed observations of how these changes transform the landscapes where they practice their daily activities. Here, we report Sami reindeer herders' observations based on their long-term occupancy and use of contrasting pastoral landscapes in northern Fennoscandia. In particular, we focus on the capacity for various herd management regimes to prevent a potential transformation of open tundra vegetation to shrubland or woodland. Fennoscandian Sami herders did not confirm a substantial, rapid or large-scale transformation of treeless arctic-alpine areas into shrub- and/or woodlands as a consequence of climate change. However, where encroachment of open tundra landscapes has been observed, a range of drivers were deemed responsible. These included abiotic conditions, anthropogenic influences and the direct and indirect effects of reindeer. Mountain birch tree line advances were in some cases associated with reduced or discontinued grazing, depending on the seasonal significance of these particular areas. In the many places where tree line has risen, herding practices have by necessity adapted to these changes. Exploiting the capacity of reindeer grazing/browsing as a conservation tool offers new adaptive strategies of ecosystem management to counteract a potential encroachment of the tundra by woody plants. However, such novel solutions in environmental governance are confronted with difficult trade-offs involved in ecosystem management for ecologically reasonable, economically viable and socially desirable management strategies.

  6. Open tundra persist, but arctic features decline-Vegetation changes in the warming Fennoscandian tundra.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vuorinen, Katariina E M; Oksanen, Lauri; Oksanen, Tarja; Pyykönen, Anni; Olofsson, Johan; Virtanen, Risto

    2017-09-01

    In the forest-tundra ecotone of the North Fennoscandian inland, summer and winter temperatures have increased by two to three centigrades since 1965, which is expected to result in major vegetation changes. To document the expected expansion of woodlands and scrublands and its impact on the arctic vegetation, we repeated a vegetation transect study conducted in 1976 in the Darju, spanning from woodland to a summit, 200 m above the tree line. Contrary to our expectations, tree line movement was not detected, and there was no increase in willows or shrubby mountain birches, either. Nevertheless, the stability of tundra was apparent. Small-sized, poorly competing arctic species had declined, lichen cover had decreased, and vascular plants, especially evergreen ericoid dwarf shrubs, had gained ground. The novel climate seems to favour competitive clonal species and species thriving in closed vegetation, creating a community hostile for seedling establishment, but equally hostile for many arctic species, too. Preventing trees and shrubs from invading the tundra is thus not sufficient for conserving arctic biota in the changing climate. The only dependable cure is to stop the global warming. © 2017 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  7. La recherche alpine aujourd’hui

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jean-Jacques Brun

    2009-06-01

    Full Text Available Alpine research benefits from several international coordination networks, only one of which – ISCAR (the International Scientific Committee on Research in the Alps – works solely in the Alpine arc. The creation of ISCAR is a consequence of the input and involvement of various Alpine partners around the Alpine Convention. Alpine research now aims to promote an integrated vision of Alpine territories focusing on creating and maintaining spatial and temporal networks of sustainable relationships between humans and the other components of the ecosphere. It combines resource usage with conservation of the biological and cultural diversity that makes up the Alpine identity. This article aims to show: (1 how international Alpine research coordination is organised; (2 the role played by the Alpine Convention as a framework of reference for specifically Alpine research; and (3 the role that the ISCAR international commit-tee and the Interreg “Alpine Space” programmes play in uniting research around territorial challenges relating to biodiversity conservation and territorial development.La recherche sur les Alpes bénéficie de plusieurs réseaux de coordination internationaux dont un seul, le comité international recherche alpine (ISCAR, se consacre exclusivement à l’arc alpin. La création de l’ISCAR est une retombée de la mobilisation des divers partenaires alpins autour de la mise en place de la Convention alpine. Aujourd’hui, la recherche alpine vise à promouvoir une vision intégrée des territoires centrée sur la création et le maintien d’un réseau spatial et temporel de relations durables entre les hommes et les autres composantes de l’écosphère. Elle associe étroitement la mise en valeur des ressources et la conservation des diversités biologiques et culturelles qui constituent l’identité alpine. Cet article a pour ambition de montrer : (1 comment s’organise la coordination internationale des recherches sur les

  8. NPP Tundra: Toolik Lake, Alaska, 1982, R1

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — This data set contains one text file (.csv format) that provides productivity data for four contrasting tundra vegetation types studied during 1982 near Toolik Lake...

  9. NPP Tundra: Point Barrow, Alaska, 1970-1972, R1

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — This data set contains three data files. One file (.csv format) provides above- and below-ground biomass and leaf area index (LAI) data for a wet arctic tundra...

  10. Stem secondary growth of tundra shrubs

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Campioli, Matteo; Leblans, Niki; Michelsen, Anders

    2012-01-01

    Our knowledge of stem secondary growth of arctic shrubs (a key component of tundra net primary production, NPP) is very limited. Here, we investigated the impact of the physical elements of the environment on shrub secondary growth by comparing annual growth rates of model species from similar...... habitats at contrasting altitude, microtopography, latitude, geographical location, and soil type, in both the sub- and High Arctic. We found that secondary growth has a modest sensitivity to the environment but with large differences among species. For example, the evergreen Cassiope tetragona is affected...... by altitude, microtopography, and latitude, whereas the evergreen Empetrum hermaphroditum has rather constant secondary growth in all environments. Deciduous species seem to be most affected by microtopography. Furthermore, the impact of the environment on secondary growth differed from the impact on primary...

  11. Carbon loss from an unprecedented Arctic tundra wildfire.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mack, Michelle C; Bret-Harte, M Syndonia; Hollingsworth, Teresa N; Jandt, Randi R; Schuur, Edward A G; Shaver, Gaius R; Verbyla, David L

    2011-07-27

    Arctic tundra soils store large amounts of carbon (C) in organic soil layers hundreds to thousands of years old that insulate, and in some cases maintain, permafrost soils. Fire has been largely absent from most of this biome since the early Holocene epoch, but its frequency and extent are increasing, probably in response to climate warming. The effect of fires on the C balance of tundra landscapes, however, remains largely unknown. The Anaktuvuk River fire in 2007 burned 1,039 square kilometres of Alaska's Arctic slope, making it the largest fire on record for the tundra biome and doubling the cumulative area burned since 1950 (ref. 5). Here we report that tundra ecosystems lost 2,016 ± 435 g C m(-2) in the fire, an amount two orders of magnitude larger than annual net C exchange in undisturbed tundra. Sixty per cent of this C loss was from soil organic matter, and radiocarbon dating of residual soil layers revealed that the maximum age of soil C lost was 50 years. Scaled to the entire burned area, the fire released approximately 2.1 teragrams of C to the atmosphere, an amount similar in magnitude to the annual net C sink for the entire Arctic tundra biome averaged over the last quarter of the twentieth century. The magnitude of ecosystem C lost by fire, relative to both ecosystem and biome-scale fluxes, demonstrates that a climate-driven increase in tundra fire disturbance may represent a positive feedback, potentially offsetting Arctic greening and influencing the net C balance of the tundra biome.

  12. Climate sensitivity of shrub growth across the tundra biome

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Myers-Smith, Isla H; Elmendorf, Sarah C; Beck, Pieter S.A.

    2015-01-01

    Rapid climate warming in the tundra biome has been linked to increasing shrub dominance1–4. Shrub expansion can modify climate by altering surface albedo, energy and water balance, and permafrost2,5–8, yet the drivers of shrub growth remain poorly understood. Dendroecological data consisting...... be incorporated into Earth system models to improve future projections of climate change impacts across the tundra biome....

  13. Carbon loss from an unprecedented Arctic tundra wildfire

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mack, Michelle C.; Bret-Harte, M. Syndonia; Hollingsworth, Teresa N.; Jandt, Randi R.; Schuur, Edward A. G.; Shaver, Gaius R.; Verbyla, David L.

    2011-07-01

    Arctic tundra soils store large amounts of carbon (C) in organic soil layers hundreds to thousands of years old that insulate, and in some cases maintain, permafrost soils. Fire has been largely absent from most of this biome since the early Holocene epoch, but its frequency and extent are increasing, probably in response to climate warming. The effect of fires on the C balance of tundra landscapes, however, remains largely unknown. The Anaktuvuk River fire in 2007 burned 1,039 square kilometres of Alaska's Arctic slope, making it the largest fire on record for the tundra biome and doubling the cumulative area burned since 1950 (ref. 5). Here we report that tundra ecosystems lost 2,016+/-435gCm-2 in the fire, an amount two orders of magnitude larger than annual net C exchange in undisturbed tundra. Sixty per cent of this C loss was from soil organic matter, and radiocarbon dating of residual soil layers revealed that the maximum age of soil C lost was 50 years. Scaled to the entire burned area, the fire released approximately 2.1teragrams of C to the atmosphere, an amount similar in magnitude to the annual net C sink for the entire Arctic tundra biome averaged over the last quarter of the twentieth century. The magnitude of ecosystem C lost by fire, relative to both ecosystem and biome-scale fluxes, demonstrates that a climate-driven increase in tundra fire disturbance may represent a positive feedback, potentially offsetting Arctic greening and influencing the net C balance of the tundra biome.

  14. Plant community and soil chemistry responses to long-term nitrogen inputs drive changes in alpine bacterial communities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yuan, Xia; Knelman, Joseph E; Gasarch, Eve; Wang, Deli; Nemergut, Diana R; Seastedt, Timothy R

    2016-06-01

    Bacterial community composition and diversity was studied in alpine tundra soils across a plant species and moisture gradient in 20 y-old experimental plots with four nutrient addition regimes (control, nitrogen (N), phosphorus (P) or both nutrients). Different bacterial communities inhabited different alpine meadows, reflecting differences in moisture, nutrients and plant species. Bacterial community alpha-diversity metrics were strongly correlated with plant richness and the production of forbs. After meadow type, N addition proved the strongest determinant of bacterial community structure. Structural Equation Modeling demonstrated that tundra bacterial community responses to N addition occur via changes in plant community composition and soil pH resulting from N inputs, thus disentangling the influence of direct (resource availability) vs. indirect (changes in plant community structure and soil pH) N effects that have remained unexplored in past work examining bacterial responses to long-term N inputs in these vulnerable environments. Across meadow types, the relative influence of these indirect N effects on bacterial community structure varied. In explicitly evaluating the relative importance of direct and indirect effects of long-term N addition on bacterial communities, this study provides new mechanistic understandings of the interaction between plant and microbial community responses to N inputs amidst environmental change.

  15. Performance of Alpine Touring Boots When Used in Alpine Ski Bindings.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Campbell, Jeffrey R; Scher, Irving S; Carpenter, David; Jahnke, Bruce L; Ching, Randal P

    2017-10-01

    Alpine touring (AT) equipment is designed for ascending mountains and snow skiing down backcountry terrain. Skiers have been observed using AT boots in alpine (not made for Alpine Touring) ski bindings. We tested the effect on the retention-release characteristics of AT boots used in alpine bindings. Ten AT ski boots and 5 alpine ski boots were tested in 8 models of alpine ski bindings using an ASTM F504-05 (2012) apparatus. Thirty-one percent of the AT boots released appropriately when used in alpine ski bindings. One alpine binding released appropriately for all alpine and AT boots tested; 2 alpine ski bindings did not release appropriately for any AT boots. Altering the visual indicator settings on the bindings (that control the release torque of an alpine system) had little or no effect on the release torque when using AT boots in alpine ski bindings. Many combinations released appropriately in ski shop tests, but did not release appropriately in the more complex loading cases that simulated forward and backward falls; the simple tests performed by ski shops could produce a "false-negative" test result. These results indicate that using AT boots with alpine ski bindings could increase the likelihood of lower leg injuries.

  16. Arctic Tundra Greening and Browning at Circumpolar and Regional Scales

    Science.gov (United States)

    Epstein, H. E.; Bhatt, U. S.; Walker, D. A.; Raynolds, M. K.; Yang, X.

    2017-12-01

    Remote sensing data have historically been used to assess the dynamics of arctic tundra vegetation. Until recently the scientific literature has largely described the "greening" of the Arctic; from a remote sensing perspective, an increase in the Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI), or a similar satellite-based vegetation index. Vegetation increases have been heterogeneous throughout the Arctic, and were reported to be up to 25% in certain areas over a 30-year timespan. However, more recently, arctic tundra vegetation dynamics have gotten more complex, with observations of more widespread tundra "browning" being reported. We used a combination of remote sensing data, including the Global Inventory Monitoring and Modeling System (GIMMS), as well as higher spatial resolution Landsat data, to evaluate the spatio-temporal patterns of arctic tundra vegetation dynamics (greening and browning) at circumpolar and regional scales over the past 3-4 decades. At the circumpolar scale, we focus on the spatial heterogeneity (by tundra subzone and continent) of tundra browning over the past 5-15 years, followed by a more recent recovery (greening since 2015). Landsat time series allow us to evaluate the landscape-scale heterogeneity of tundra greening and browning for northern Alaska and the Yamal Peninsula in northwestern Siberia, Russia. Multi-dataset analyses reveal that tundra greening and browning (i.e. increases or decreases in the NDVI respectively) are generated by different sets of processes. Tundra greening is largely a result of either climate warming, lengthening of the growing season, or responses to disturbances, such as fires, landslides, and freeze-thaw processes. Browning on the other hand tends to be more event-driven, such as the shorter-term decline in vegetation due to fire, insect defoliation, consumption by larger herbivores, or extreme weather events (e.g. winter warming or early summer frost damage). Browning can also be caused by local or

  17. Hydrologic Response to Climatic and Vegetation Change in an Extreme Alpine Environment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Livneh, B.; Badger, A.; Molotch, N. P.; Bueno de Mesquita, C.; Suding, K.

    2016-12-01

    Mountain hydrology and ecology are uniquely sensitive to climate change. This presentation will examine how changes in climate have altered land cover and hydrology in the Green Lakes Valley, an alpine catchment for which approximately 80% of the annual precipitation ( 950 mm/yr) falls as snow. In these environments vegetation has two way interaction with hydrology: its distribution is driven by patterns of snowpack and water availability while it functions to modulate hydrologic responses by alterating land-atmosphere interaction. Long-term climate trends indicate warming, earlier snowmelt, and longer snow-free growing seasons. High-resolution aerial photography from 1972 and 2008 identified vegetation encroachment as shrubs and trees have increased in vigor and density in the tundra, while herbaceous tundra plants have colonized high-elevation bare ground. To understand modulations to physical hydrology from climate and biophysical responses, we apply a 20-m resolution fully-distributed hydrologic model. Through the use of observed meteorology (radiation, humidity, temperature and precipitation) an hourly climatology was created. Realizations from a stochastic ensemble of this climatology together with trends from long-term observations are used to characterize historical hydrologic response and project future changes. Through temperature and precipitation change experiments, alterations to the annual water cycle are presented—indicating the importance of annual snowpack evolution on both the surface and sub-surface hydrology, particularly through seasonal water storage. Probabilistic land cover change scenarios are developed that project how further vegetation encroachment modulates surface water fluxes and sediment yields. Lastly, the context of these results are compared with hydrometeorological research from other differing alpine and ecological regions.

  18. Isoprene emissions from a tundra ecosystem

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M. J. Potosnak

    2013-02-01

    Full Text Available Whole-system fluxes of isoprene from a moist acidic tundra ecosystem and leaf-level emission rates of isoprene from a common species (Salix pulchra in that same ecosystem were measured during three separate field campaigns. The field campaigns were conducted during the summers of 2005, 2010 and 2011 and took place at the Toolik Field Station (68.6° N, 149.6° W on the north slope of the Brooks Range in Alaska, USA. The maximum rate of whole-system isoprene flux measured was over 1.2 mg C m−2 h−1 with an air temperature of 22 °C and a PAR level over 1500 μmol m−2 s−1. Leaf-level isoprene emission rates for S. pulchra averaged 12.4 nmol m−2 s−1 (27.4 μg C gdw−1 h−1 extrapolated to standard conditions (PAR = 1000 μmol m−2 s−1 and leaf temperature = 30 °C. Leaf-level isoprene emission rates were well characterized by the Guenther algorithm for temperature with published coefficients, but less so for light. Chamber measurements from a nearby moist acidic tundra ecosystem with little S. pulchra emitted significant amounts of isoprene, but at lower rates (0.45 mg C m−2 h−1 suggesting other significant isoprene emitters. Comparison of our results to predictions from a global model found broad agreement, but a detailed analysis revealed some significant discrepancies. An atmospheric chemistry box model predicts that the observed isoprene emissions have a significant impact on Arctic atmospheric chemistry, including a reduction of hydroxyl radical (OH concentrations. Our results support the prediction that isoprene emissions from Arctic ecosystems will increase with global climate change.

  19. 50 CFR 20.107 - Seasons, limits, and shooting hours for tundra swans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-10-01

    ... tundra swans. 20.107 Section 20.107 Wildlife and Fisheries UNITED STATES FISH AND WILDLIFE SERVICE..., and Shooting Hours Schedules § 20.107 Seasons, limits, and shooting hours for tundra swans. This section provides for the annual hunting of tundra swans in designated portions of the 48 contiguous United...

  20. Vegetation shifts observed in arctic tundra 17 years after fire

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barrett, Kirsten; Rocha, Adrian V.; van de Weg, Martine Janet; Shaver, Gaius

    2012-01-01

    With anticipated climate change, tundra fires are expected to occur more frequently in the future, but data on the long-term effects of fire on tundra vegetation composition are scarce. This study addresses changes in vegetation structure that have persisted for 17 years after a tundra fire on the North Slope of Alaska. Fire-related shifts in vegetation composition were assessed from remote-sensing imagery and ground observations of the burn scar and an adjacent control site. Early-season remotely sensed imagery from the burn scar exhibits a low vegetation index compared with the control site, whereas the late-season signal is slightly higher. The range and maximum vegetation index are greater in the burn scar, although the mean annual values do not differ among the sites. Ground observations revealed a greater abundance of moss in the unburned site, which may account for the high early growing season normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI) anomaly relative to the burn. The abundance of graminoid species and an absence of Betula nana in the post-fire tundra sites may also be responsible for the spectral differences observed in the remotely sensed imagery. The partial replacement of tundra by graminoid-dominated ecosystems has been predicted by the ALFRESCO model of disturbance, climate and vegetation succession.

  1. A Comparative Review of North American Tundra Delineations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Silver, Kirk C.; Carroll, Mark

    2013-01-01

    Recent profound changes have been observed in the Arctic environment, including record low sea ice extents and high latitude greening. Studying the Arctic and how it is changing is an important element of climate change science. The Tundra, an ecoregion of the Arctic, is directly related to climate change due to its effects on the snow ice feedback mechanism and greenhouse gas cycling. Like all ecoregions, the Tundra border is shifting, yet studies and policies require clear delineation of boundaries. There are many options for ecoregion classification systems, as well as resources for creating custom maps. To help decision makers identify the best classification system possible, we present a review of North American Tundra ecoregion delineations and further explore the methodologies, purposes, limitations, and physical properties of five common ecoregion classification systems. We quantitatively compare the corresponding maps by area using a geographic information system.

  2. Future distribution of tundra refugia in northern Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hope, Andrew G.; Waltari, Eric; Payer, David C.; Cook, Joseph A.; Talbot, Sandra L.

    2013-01-01

    Climate change in the Arctic is a growing concern for natural resource conservation and management as a result of accelerated warming and associated shifts in the distribution and abundance of northern species. We introduce a predictive framework for assessing the future extent of Arctic tundra and boreal biomes in northern Alaska. We use geo-referenced museum specimens to predict the velocity of distributional change into the next century and compare predicted tundra refugial areas with current land-use. The reliability of predicted distributions, including differences between fundamental and realized niches, for two groups of species is strengthened by fossils and genetic signatures of demographic shifts. Evolutionary responses to environmental change through the late Quaternary are generally consistent with past distribution models. Predicted future refugia overlap managed areas and indicate potential hotspots for tundra diversity. To effectively assess future refugia, variable responses among closely related species to climate change warrants careful consideration of both evolutionary and ecological histories.

  3. Sensitivity of subalpine tree seedlings and alpine plants to natural and manipulated climate variation: Initial results from an Alpine Treeline Warming Experiment (Invited)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kueppers, L. M.

    2010-12-01

    Niche models and paleoecological studies indicate that future climate change will alter the geographic distributions of plant species. Changes in temperature, snowmelt timing, or moisture conditions at one edge of a species’ range may have different consequences for recruitment, carbon exchange, phenology, and survival than changes at another edge. Similarly, local genetic adaptation may constrain species and community responses to climate change. We have established a new experiment to investigate potential shifts in the distribution of subalpine tree species, and the alpine species they might replace. We are asking how tree species recruitment and alpine species growth and reproduction vary within their current ranges, and in response to temperature and soil moisture manipulations. We are also examining whether genetic provenance and ecosystem processes constrain tree seedling and alpine herb responses. Our Alpine Treeline Warming Experiment is located across three sites at Niwot Ridge, CO, ranging from near the lower limit of subalpine forest to alpine tundra. We use infrared heaters to raise growing season surface soil temperatures by 4-5°C, and to lengthen the growing season. The warming treatment is crossed with a soil moisture manipulation to distinguish effects due to higher temperatures from those due to drier soil. Each plot is a common garden sown with high and low elevation provenances of limber pine (Pinus flexilis) and Engelmann spruce (Picea engelmannii). We established an additional set of experimental plots to examine treatment effects on alpine species phenology, growth and reproduction. Under ambient conditions in 2009, tree seedling germination rate, lifespan, and first season survival was higher within the species’ current range than in the alpine, and for Engelmann spruce, was higher at the low elevation limit than the high elevation limit. Source population (low vs. high elevation) was a significant factor explaining natural variation in

  4. Carbon dioxide and methane dynamics in Russian tundra

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Johansson, Paul Torbjörn; Kiepe, Isabell; Herbst, Mathias

    Russia. The area is situated at 67°N in the European part of northeast Russia within the Pechora basin. The Russian tundra region is an area which has recently been subject to many speculations in relation to climatic change effects and greenhouse gas (GHG) exchange but still little scientific......, and discuss possible implications of climatic change on this lowland tundra ecosystem. This study have been conducted as a part of the CARBO-North project (2006-2010), a project within the EU 6th framework programme, aiming at quantifying the carbon budget in Northern Russia across temporal and spatial scales....

  5. Herbivory Network: An international, collaborative effort to study herbivory in Arctic and alpine ecosystems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barrio, I. C.; Hik, D. S.; Jónsdóttir, I. S.; Bueno, C. G.; Mörsdorf, M. A.; Ravolainen, V. T.

    2016-09-01

    Plant-herbivore interactions are central to the functioning of tundra ecosystems, but their outcomes vary over space and time. Accurate forecasting of ecosystem responses to ongoing environmental changes requires a better understanding of the processes responsible for this heterogeneity. To effectively address this complexity at a global scale, coordinated research efforts, including multi-site comparisons within and across disciplines, are needed. The Herbivory Network was established as a forum for researchers from Arctic and alpine regions to collaboratively investigate the multifunctional role of herbivores in these changing ecosystems. One of the priorities is to integrate sites, methodologies, and metrics used in previous work, to develop a set of common protocols and design long-term geographically-balanced, coordinated experiments. The implementation of these collaborative research efforts will also improve our understanding of traditional human-managed systems that encompass significant portions of the sub-Arctic and alpine areas worldwide. A deeper understanding of the role of herbivory in these systems under ongoing environmental changes will guide appropriate adaptive strategies to preserve their natural values and related ecosystem services.

  6. The effect of topography on arctic-alpine aboveground biomass and NDVI patterns

    Science.gov (United States)

    Riihimäki, Henri; Heiskanen, Janne; Luoto, Miska

    2017-04-01

    Topography is a key factor affecting numerous environmental phenomena, including Arctic and alpine aboveground biomass (AGB) distribution. Digital Elevation Model (DEM) is a source of topographic information which can be linked to local growing conditions. Here, we investigated the effect of DEM derived variables, namely elevation, topographic position, radiation and wetness on AGB and Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI) in a Fennoscandian forest-alpine tundra ecotone. Boosted regression trees were used to derive non-parametric response curves and relative influences of the explanatory variables. Elevation and potential incoming solar radiation were the most important explanatory variables for both AGB and NDVI. In the NDVI models, the response curves were smooth compared with AGB models. This might be caused by large contribution of field and shrub layer to NDVI, especially at the treeline. Furthermore, radiation and elevation had a significant interaction, showing that the highest NDVI and biomass values are found from low-elevation, high-radiation sites, typically on the south-southwest facing valley slopes. Topographic wetness had minor influence on AGB and NDVI. Topographic position had generally weak effects on AGB and NDVI, although protected topographic position seemed to be more favorable below the treeline. The explanatory power of the topographic variables, particularly elevation and radiation demonstrates that DEM-derived land surface parameters can be used for exploring biomass distribution resulting from landform control on local growing conditions.

  7. Climate change and alpine stream biology

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hotaling, Scott; Finn, Debra S.; Joseph Giersch, J.

    2017-01-01

    In alpine regions worldwide, climate change is dramatically altering ecosystems and affecting biodiversity in many ways. For streams, receding alpine glaciers and snowfields, paired with altered precipitation regimes, are driving shifts in hydrology, species distributions, basal resources......, and threatening the very existence of some habitats and biota. Alpine streams harbour substantial species and genetic diversity due to significant habitat insularity and environmental heterogeneity. Climate change is expected to affect alpine stream biodiversity across many levels of biological resolution from...... micro- to macroscopic organisms and genes to communities. Herein, we describe the current state of alpine stream biology from an organism-focused perspective. We begin by reviewing seven standard and emerging approaches that combine to form the current state of the discipline. We follow with a call...

  8. DOES NITROGEN PARTITIONING PROMOTE SPECIES DIVERSITY IN ARCTIC TUSSOCK TUNDRA?

    Science.gov (United States)

    We used 15N soil-labeling techniques to examine how the dominant species in a N-limited, tussock tundra plant community partitioned soil N, and how such partitioning may contribute to community organization. The five most productive species were well differentiated with respect ...

  9. Factors determining plant species richness in Alaskan artic tundra

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Welle, van der M.E.W.; Vermeulen, P.J.; Shaver, G.R.; Berendse, F.

    2003-01-01

    We studied the relationship between plant N:P ratio, soil characteristics and species richness in wet sedge and tussock tundra in northern Alaska at seven sites. We also collected data on soil characteristics, above-ground biomass, species richness and composition. The N:P ratio of the vegetation

  10. Strong microsite control of seedling recruitment in tundra

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Graae, Bente J; Ejrnæs, Rasmus; Lang, Simone I

    2011-01-01

    gradient in dry tundra. A survey of natural seed rain and seedling density in vegetation was combined with observations of the establishment of 14 species after sowing into intact or disturbed vegetation. Although seed rain density was closely correlated with natural seedling establishment...

  11. Large tundra methane burst during onset of freezing

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Mastepanov, Mikhail; Sigsgaard, Charlotte; Dlugokencky, Edward J.

    2008-01-01

    of global atmospheric methane concentrations indicate that the observed early winter emission burst improves the agreement between the simulated seasonal cycle and atmospheric data from latitudes north of 60N. Our findings suggest that permafrost-associated freeze-in bursts of methane missions from tundra...

  12. A Microwave Radiance Assimilation Study for a Tundra Snowpack

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Edward; Durand, Michael; Margulis, Steve; England, Anthony

    2010-01-01

    Recent studies have begun exploring the assimilation of microwave radiances for the modeling and retrieval of snow properties. At a point scale, and for short durations (i week), radiance assimilation (RA) results are encouraging. However, in order to determine how practical RA might be for snow retrievals when applied over longer durations, larger spatial scales, and/or different snow types, we must expand the scope of the tests. In this paper we use coincident microwave radiance measurements and station data from a tundra site on the North Slope of Alaska. The field data are from the 3rd Radio-brightness Energy Balance Experiment (REBEX-3) carried out in 1994-95 by the University of Michigan. This dataset will provide a test of RA over months instead of one week, and for a very different type of snow than previous snow RA studies. We will address the following questions: flow well can a snowpack physical model (SM), forced with local weather, match measured conditions for a tundra snowpack?; How well can a microwave emission model, driven by the snowpack model, match measured microwave brightnesses for a tundra snowpack?; How well does RA increase or decrease the fidelity of estimates of snow depth and temperatures for a tundra snowpack?

  13. Kevad tundras : [luuletused] / Prokopi Javtõsõi

    Index Scriptorium Estoniae

    Javtõsõi, Prokopi

    2004-01-01

    Sisu: Kevad tundras ; Virmalised ; Mulle meenus ema ; Minu rändude maa ; Oleme karjakasvatajad, "Kui olen sinu kõrval ma ..." ; "Kui askeldustest aega üle jääb ...". Eluloolisi andmeid autori kohta lk. 231. Luuletused paralleelselt eesti ja neenetsi keeles

  14. Changes in the Alpine environment

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Philippe Schoeneich

    2009-03-01

    Full Text Available L’évolution de l’environnement alpin au XXIe siècle sera conditionnée par le changement climatique. Celui-ci pourrait conduire à des climats inconnus à ce jour dans les Alpes, avec comme conséquence une crise environnementale majeure et durable. Face à ces défis, les financements de recherche restent insuffisants pour la recherche appliquée aux milieux de montagne. Les financements nationaux privilégient souvent la recherche polaire au détriment des hautes altitudes, alors que les financements de type Interreg prennent insuffisamment en compte les besoins de recherche fondamentale, préalable nécessaire à l’élaboration de scénarios. Une évolution se dessine depuis deux ou trois ans vers des projets en réseau à l’échelle alpine. Le présent article fait le point sur les principaux enjeux qui attendent la recherche environnementale alpine et sur la capacité des programmes de recherche à répondre aux besoins. La première partie sur les changements climatiques est fondée sur les rapports récents : rapport de synthèse IPCC 2007 (IPCC 2007, rapport IPCC sur l’Europe (Alcamo et al. 2007, rapport de synthèse du programme ClimChAlp (Prudent-Richard et al., 2008. On y trouvera des bibliographies complètes et circonstanciées. La deuxième partie se base sur une analyse des appels d’offres récents ou en cours, et des projets soumis et financés.The way the Alpine environment will evolve in the 21st century depends upon climate change. This could lead to climates never before seen in the Alps, resulting in a major and lasting environmental crisis. In the face of these challenges, funding is still insufficient for specialised research on mountain environments. State funding often prioritises polar research at the expense of high altitude areas, whereas funding schemes from bodies such as Interreg do not sufficiently address the need for fundamental research, which is nevertheless a necessary first step prior to

  15. Tundra uptake of atmospheric elemental mercury drives Arctic mercury pollution

    Science.gov (United States)

    Obrist, Daniel; Agnan, Yannick; Jiskra, Martin; Olson, Christine L.; Colegrove, Dominique P.; Hueber, Jacques; Moore, Christopher W.; Sonke, Jeroen E.; Helmig, Detlev

    2017-07-01

    Anthropogenic activities have led to large-scale mercury (Hg) pollution in the Arctic. It has been suggested that sea-salt-induced chemical cycling of Hg (through ‘atmospheric mercury depletion events’, or AMDEs) and wet deposition via precipitation are sources of Hg to the Arctic in its oxidized form (Hg(II)). However, there is little evidence for the occurrence of AMDEs outside of coastal regions, and their importance to net Hg deposition has been questioned. Furthermore, wet-deposition measurements in the Arctic showed some of the lowest levels of Hg deposition via precipitation worldwide, raising questions as to the sources of high Arctic Hg loading. Here we present a comprehensive Hg-deposition mass-balance study, and show that most of the Hg (about 70%) in the interior Arctic tundra is derived from gaseous elemental Hg (Hg(0)) deposition, with only minor contributions from the deposition of Hg(II) via precipitation or AMDEs. We find that deposition of Hg(0)—the form ubiquitously present in the global atmosphere—occurs throughout the year, and that it is enhanced in summer through the uptake of Hg(0) by vegetation. Tundra uptake of gaseous Hg(0) leads to high soil Hg concentrations, with Hg masses greatly exceeding the levels found in temperate soils. Our concurrent Hg stable isotope measurements in the atmosphere, snowpack, vegetation and soils support our finding that Hg(0) dominates as a source to the tundra. Hg concentration and stable isotope data from an inland-to-coastal transect show high soil Hg concentrations consistently derived from Hg(0), suggesting that the Arctic tundra might be a globally important Hg sink. We suggest that the high tundra soil Hg concentrations might also explain why Arctic rivers annually transport large amounts of Hg to the Arctic Ocean.

  16. Tundra uptake of atmospheric elemental mercury drives Arctic mercury pollution.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Obrist, Daniel; Agnan, Yannick; Jiskra, Martin; Olson, Christine L; Colegrove, Dominique P; Hueber, Jacques; Moore, Christopher W; Sonke, Jeroen E; Helmig, Detlev

    2017-07-12

    Anthropogenic activities have led to large-scale mercury (Hg) pollution in the Arctic. It has been suggested that sea-salt-induced chemical cycling of Hg (through 'atmospheric mercury depletion events', or AMDEs) and wet deposition via precipitation are sources of Hg to the Arctic in its oxidized form (Hg(ii)). However, there is little evidence for the occurrence of AMDEs outside of coastal regions, and their importance to net Hg deposition has been questioned. Furthermore, wet-deposition measurements in the Arctic showed some of the lowest levels of Hg deposition via precipitation worldwide, raising questions as to the sources of high Arctic Hg loading. Here we present a comprehensive Hg-deposition mass-balance study, and show that most of the Hg (about 70%) in the interior Arctic tundra is derived from gaseous elemental Hg (Hg(0)) deposition, with only minor contributions from the deposition of Hg(ii) via precipitation or AMDEs. We find that deposition of Hg(0)-the form ubiquitously present in the global atmosphere-occurs throughout the year, and that it is enhanced in summer through the uptake of Hg(0) by vegetation. Tundra uptake of gaseous Hg(0) leads to high soil Hg concentrations, with Hg masses greatly exceeding the levels found in temperate soils. Our concurrent Hg stable isotope measurements in the atmosphere, snowpack, vegetation and soils support our finding that Hg(0) dominates as a source to the tundra. Hg concentration and stable isotope data from an inland-to-coastal transect show high soil Hg concentrations consistently derived from Hg(0), suggesting that the Arctic tundra might be a globally important Hg sink. We suggest that the high tundra soil Hg concentrations might also explain why Arctic rivers annually transport large amounts of Hg to the Arctic Ocean.

  17. Paenibacillus tundrae sp. nov. and Paenibacillus xylanexedens sp. nov., Psychrotolerant, Xylan-Degrading, Bacteria from Alaskan Tundra

    Science.gov (United States)

    Psychrotolerant, xylan-degrading, strains of bacteria were isolated from soil beneath moist non-acidic and acidic tundra in northern Alaska. Phylogenetic analysis based on 16S rRNA gene sequences revealed that each strain belonged to the genus Paenibacillus. The highest levels of 16S rRNA gene sim...

  18. Diversification of Nitrogen Sources in Various Tundra Vegetation Types in the High Arctic.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Skrzypek, Grzegorz; Wojtuń, Bronisław; Richter, Dorota; Jakubas, Dariusz; Wojczulanis-Jakubas, Katarzyna; Samecka-Cymerman, Aleksandra

    2015-01-01

    Low nitrogen availability in the high Arctic represents a major constraint for plant growth, which limits the tundra capacity for carbon retention and determines tundra vegetation types. The limited terrestrial nitrogen (N) pool in the tundra is augmented significantly by nesting seabirds, such as the planktivorous Little Auk (Alle alle). Therefore, N delivered by these birds may significantly influence the N cycling in the tundra locally and the carbon budget more globally. Moreover, should these birds experience substantial negative environmental pressure associated with climate change, this will adversely influence the tundra N-budget. Hence, assessment of bird-originated N-input to the tundra is important for understanding biological cycles in polar regions. This study analyzed the stable nitrogen composition of the three main N-sources in the High Arctic and in numerous plants that access different N-pools in ten tundra vegetation types in an experimental catchment in Hornsund (Svalbard). The percentage of the total tundra N-pool provided by birds, ranged from 0-21% in Patterned-ground tundra to 100% in Ornithocoprophilous tundra. The total N-pool utilized by tundra plants in the studied catchment was built in 36% by birds, 38% by atmospheric deposition, and 26% by atmospheric N2-fixation. The stable nitrogen isotope mixing mass balance, in contrast to direct methods that measure actual deposition, indicates the ratio between the actual N-loads acquired by plants from different N-sources. Our results enhance our understanding of the importance of different N-sources in the Arctic tundra and the used methodological approach can be applied elsewhere.

  19. Identification of unrecognized tundra fire events on the north slope of Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jones, Benjamin M.; Breen, Amy L.; Gaglioti, Benjamin V.; Mann, Daniel H.; Rocha, Adrian V.; Grosse, Guido; Arp, Christopher D.; Kunz, Michael L.; Walker, Donald A.

    2013-01-01

    Characteristics of the natural fire regime are poorly resolved in the Arctic, even though fire may play an important role cycling carbon stored in tundra vegetation and soils to the atmosphere. In the course of studying vegetation and permafrost-terrain characteristics along a chronosequence of tundra burn sites from AD 1977, 1993, and 2007 on the North Slope of Alaska, we discovered two large, previously unrecognized tundra fires. The Meade River fire burned an estimated 500 km2 and the Ketik River fire burned an estimated 1200 km2. Based on radiocarbon dating of charred twigs, analysis of historic aerial photography, and regional climate proxy data, these fires likely occurred between AD 1880 and 1920. Together, these events double the estimated burn area on the North Slope of Alaska over the last ~100 to 130 years. Assessment of vegetation succession along the century-scale chronosequence of tundra fire disturbances demonstrates for the first time on the North Slope of Alaska that tundra fires can facilitate the invasion of tundra by shrubs. Degradation of ice-rich permafrost was also evident at the fire sites and likely aided in the presumed changes of the tundra vegetation postfire. Other previously unrecognized tundra fire events likely exist in Alaska and other Arctic regions and identification of these sites is important for better understanding disturbance regimes and carbon cycling in Arctic tundra.

  20. Carbon dioxide and methane dynamics in Russian tundra

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Johansson, Paul Torbjörn; Kiepe, Isabell; Herbst, Mathias

    Russia. The area is situated at 67°N in the European part of northeast Russia within the Pechora basin. The Russian tundra region is an area which has recently been subject to many speculations in relation to climatic change effects and greenhouse gas (GHG) exchange but still little scientific......, and discuss possible implications of climatic change on this lowland tundra ecosystem. This study have been conducted as a part of the CARBO-North project (2006-2010), a project within the EU 6th framework programme, aiming at quantifying the carbon budget in Northern Russia across temporal and spatial scales....... evidence is available from this region. At present, there are fundamental questions to answer about the CH4 concentration in the atmosphere and its oscillations and what role CH4 exchange may have under future climatic conditions, To do so, we need to better understand the ecosystem- atmosphere...

  1. Global assessment of experimental climate warming on tundra vegetation

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Elmendorf, S.C.; Henry, G.H.R.; Bjorkman, A.D.

    2012-01-01

    Understanding the sensitivity of tundra vegetation to climate warming is critical to forecasting future biodiversity and vegetation feedbacks to climate. In situ warming experiments accelerate climate change on a small scale to forecast responses of local plant communities. Limitations...... of this approach include the apparent site-specificity of results and uncertainty about the power of short-term studies to anticipate longer term change. We address these issues with a synthesis of 61 experimental warming studies, of up to 20 years duration, in tundra sites worldwide. The response of plant groups...... to warming often differed with ambient summer temperature, soil moisture and experimental duration. Shrubs increased with warming only where ambient temperature was high, whereas graminoids increased primarily in the coldest study sites. Linear increases in effect size over time were frequently observed...

  2. Cold season emissions dominate the Arctic tundra methane budget.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zona, Donatella; Gioli, Beniamino; Commane, Róisín; Lindaas, Jakob; Wofsy, Steven C; Miller, Charles E; Dinardo, Steven J; Dengel, Sigrid; Sweeney, Colm; Karion, Anna; Chang, Rachel Y-W; Henderson, John M; Murphy, Patrick C; Goodrich, Jordan P; Moreaux, Virginie; Liljedahl, Anna; Watts, Jennifer D; Kimball, John S; Lipson, David A; Oechel, Walter C

    2016-01-05

    Arctic terrestrial ecosystems are major global sources of methane (CH4); hence, it is important to understand the seasonal and climatic controls on CH4 emissions from these systems. Here, we report year-round CH4 emissions from Alaskan Arctic tundra eddy flux sites and regional fluxes derived from aircraft data. We find that emissions during the cold season (September to May) account for ≥ 50% of the annual CH4 flux, with the highest emissions from noninundated upland tundra. A major fraction of cold season emissions occur during the "zero curtain" period, when subsurface soil temperatures are poised near 0 °C. The zero curtain may persist longer than the growing season, and CH4 emissions are enhanced when the duration is extended by a deep thawed layer as can occur with thick snow cover. Regional scale fluxes of CH4 derived from aircraft data demonstrate the large spatial extent of late season CH4 emissions. Scaled to the circumpolar Arctic, cold season fluxes from tundra total 12 ± 5 (95% confidence interval) Tg CH4 y(-1), ∼ 25% of global emissions from extratropical wetlands, or ∼ 6% of total global wetland methane emissions. The dominance of late-season emissions, sensitivity to soil environmental conditions, and importance of dry tundra are not currently simulated in most global climate models. Because Arctic warming disproportionally impacts the cold season, our results suggest that higher cold-season CH4 emissions will result from observed and predicted increases in snow thickness, active layer depth, and soil temperature, representing important positive feedbacks on climate warming.

  3. Cold season emissions dominate the Arctic tundra methane budget

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zona, Donatella; Gioli, Beniamino; Commane, Róisín; Lindaas, Jakob; Wofsy, Steven C.; Miller, Charles E.; Dinardo, Steven J.; Dengel, Sigrid; Sweeney, Colm; Karion, Anna; Chang, Rachel Y.-W.; Henderson, John M.; Murphy, Patrick C.; Goodrich, Jordan P.; Moreaux, Virginie; Liljedahl, Anna; Watts, Jennifer D.; Kimball, John S.; Lipson, David A.; Oechel, Walter C.

    2016-01-01

    Arctic terrestrial ecosystems are major global sources of methane (CH4); hence, it is important to understand the seasonal and climatic controls on CH4 emissions from these systems. Here, we report year-round CH4 emissions from Alaskan Arctic tundra eddy flux sites and regional fluxes derived from aircraft data. We find that emissions during the cold season (September to May) account for ≥50% of the annual CH4 flux, with the highest emissions from noninundated upland tundra. A major fraction of cold season emissions occur during the "zero curtain" period, when subsurface soil temperatures are poised near 0 °C. The zero curtain may persist longer than the growing season, and CH4 emissions are enhanced when the duration is extended by a deep thawed layer as can occur with thick snow cover. Regional scale fluxes of CH4 derived from aircraft data demonstrate the large spatial extent of late season CH4 emissions. Scaled to the circumpolar Arctic, cold season fluxes from tundra total 12 ± 5 (95% confidence interval) Tg CH4 y-1, ∼25% of global emissions from extratropical wetlands, or ∼6% of total global wetland methane emissions. The dominance of late-season emissions, sensitivity to soil environmental conditions, and importance of dry tundra are not currently simulated in most global climate models. Because Arctic warming disproportionally impacts the cold season, our results suggest that higher cold-season CH4 emissions will result from observed and predicted increases in snow thickness, active layer depth, and soil temperature, representing important positive feedbacks on climate warming.

  4. Estimating Forest Carbon Stock in Alpine and Arctic Ecotones of the Urals

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    V. A. Usoltsev

    2014-10-01

    Full Text Available This paper reports on measured carbon stocks in the forests of two tree line ecotones of the Ural region where climate change might improve growing conditions. The first is an alpine ecotone that is represented by an altitudinal gradient of the spruce-dominated forests on the Western slope of the Tylaiskii Kamen Mountain (Western part of the Konzhakovskii-Tylaiskii-Serebryanskii Mountain system, 59°30′N, 59°00′E, at the alpine timber line that has risen from 864 to 960 m above sea level in the course of the last 100 years. The second is an arctic ecotone in larch-dominated forests at the lower course of the Pur river (67°N, 78°E, at the transition zone between closed floodplain forests and open or island-like communities of upland forests on tundra permafrost. According to our results, there are large differences in the carbon of the aboveground biomass of both ecotones across environmental gradients. In the alpine tree line ecotone, a 19-fold drop of the carbon stocks was detected between the lower and higher altitudinal levels. In the arctic ecotone the aboveground biomass carbon stock of forests of similar densities (1300 to 1700 trees per ha was 7 times as much in the river flood bed, and 5 times as much in mature, dense forests as the low density forests at higher elevations. Twelve regression equations describing dependencies of the aboveground tree biomass (stems, branches, foliage, total aboveground part upon stem diameter of the tree are proposed, which can be used to estimating the biological productivity (carbon of spruce and larch forests on Tylaiskii Kamen Mountain and the lower Pur river and on surrounding areas on the base of traditional forest mensuration have been proposed. In order to reduce the labor intensity of a coming determination of forest biomass the average values of density and dry matter content in the biomass fractions are given that were obtained by taking our sample trees.The results can be useful in

  5. Competition for tracer 15N in tussock tundra ecosystems

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Marion, G.M.; Miller, P.C.; Black, C.H.

    1987-01-01

    The objectives of this study were to assess the roles of plant species, time, and site on competition for tracer 15 N (without carrier) in tussock tundra ecosystems. Six experimental sites were located in northern Alaska. After one year across the experimental sites, the recovery of 15 N by litter (11.3-16.3%) and mosses (5.4-16.4%) was significantly greater than for aboveground vascular plants (2.6-5.0%). 15 N recoveries by tundra vascular plants (2.6-5.0%) were low when compared to forest trees (9-25%) which suggst that competition for nitrogen is particularly severe in these colddominated tundra ecosystems. There were no significant differences among sites in 15 N recoveries by vascular plants, by mosses, or by litter. There was a statistically significant decline in 15 N recovery with time for Vaccinium vitis-idaea and Eriophoum vaginatum between the second and third year. The shallow rooted Vaccinium vitis-ideae was more highly labeled than the deep rooted Eriophorum vaginatum. Nearness to the source of the applied 15 N played a critical role in competition for surface applied nitrogen. (author)

  6. Emissions of biogenic sulfur gases from Alaskan tundra

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hines, Mark E.; Morrison, Michael C.

    1992-01-01

    Results of sulfur emission measurements made in freshwater and marine wetlands in Alaskan tundra during the Arctic Boundary Layer Expedition 2A (ABLE 3A) in July 1988 are presented. The data indicate that this type of tundra emits very small amounts of gaseous sulfur and, when extrapolated globally, accounts for a very small percentage of the global flux of biogenic sulfur to the atmosphere. Sulfur emissions from marine sites are up to 20-fold greater than fluxes from freshwater habitats and are dominated by dimethyl sulfide (DMS). Highest emissions, with a mean of 6.0 nmol/sq m/h, occurred in water-saturated wet meadow areas. In drier upland tundra sites, highest fluxes occurred in areas inhabited by mixed vegetation and labrador tea at 3.0 nmol/sq m/h and lowest fluxes were from lichen-dominated areas at 0.9 nmol/sq m/h. DMS was the dominant gas emitted from all these sites. Emissions of DMS were highest from intertidal soils inhabited by Carex subspathacea.

  7. Frost resistance of alpine woody plants

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gilbert eNeuner

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available This report provides a brief review of key findings related to frost resistance in alpine woody plant species, summarizes data on their frost resistance, highlights the importance of freeze avoidance mechanisms, and indicates areas of future research.Freezing temperatures are possible throughout the whole growing period in the alpine life zone. Frost severity, comprised of both intensity and duration, becomes greater with increasing elevation and, there is also a greater probability, that small statured woody plants, may be insulated by snow cover.Several frost survival mechanisms have evolved in woody alpine plants in response to these environmental conditions. Examples of tolerance to extracellular freezing and freeze dehydration, life cycles that allow species to escape frost, and freeze avoidance mechanisms can all be found. Despite their specific adaption to the alpine environment, frost damage can occur in spring, while all alpine woody plants have a low risk of frost damage in winter. Experimental evidence indicates that premature deacclimation in Pinus cembra in the spring, and a limited ability of many species of alpine woody shrubs to rapidly reacclimate when they lose snow cover, resulting in reduced levels of frost resistance in the spring, may be particularly critical under the projected changes in climate.In this review, frost resistance and specific frost survival mechanisms of different organs (leaves, stems, vegetative and reproductive over-wintering buds, flowers and fruits and tissues are compared. The seasonal dynamics of frost resistance of leaves of trees, as opposed to woody shrubs, is also discussed. The ability of some tissues and organs to avoid freezing by supercooling, as visualized by high resolution infrared thermography, are also provided. Collectively, the report provides a review of the complex and diverse ways that woody plants survive in the frost dominated environment of the alpine life zone.

  8. Frost resistance in alpine woody plants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Neuner, Gilbert

    2014-01-01

    This report provides a brief review of key findings related to frost resistance in alpine woody plant species, summarizes data on their frost resistance, highlights the importance of freeze avoidance mechanisms, and indicates areas of future research. Freezing temperatures are possible throughout the whole growing period in the alpine life zone. Frost severity, comprised of both intensity and duration, becomes greater with increasing elevation and, there is also a greater probability, that small statured woody plants, may be insulated by snow cover. Several frost survival mechanisms have evolved in woody alpine plants in response to these environmental conditions. Examples of tolerance to extracellular freezing and freeze dehydration, life cycles that allow species to escape frost, and freeze avoidance mechanisms can all be found. Despite their specific adaption to the alpine environment, frost damage can occur in spring, while all alpine woody plants have a low risk of frost damage in winter. Experimental evidence indicates that premature deacclimation in Pinus cembra in the spring, and a limited ability of many species of alpine woody shrubs to rapidly reacclimate when they lose snow cover, resulting in reduced levels of frost resistance in the spring, may be particularly critical under the projected changes in climate. In this review, frost resistance and specific frost survival mechanisms of different organs (leaves, stems, vegetative and reproductive over-wintering buds, flowers, and fruits) and tissues are compared. The seasonal dynamics of frost resistance of leaves of trees, as opposed to woody shrubs, is also discussed. The ability of some tissues and organs to avoid freezing by supercooling, as visualized by high resolution infrared thermography, are also provided. Collectively, the report provides a review of the complex and diverse ways that woody plants survive in the frost dominated environment of the alpine life zone.

  9. The accuracy of satellite-derived albedo for northern alpine and glaciated land covers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Williamson, Scott N.; Copland, Luke; Hik, David S.

    2016-09-01

    Alpine and Arctic land cover can present a challenge for the validation of satellite-derived albedo measurements due, in part, to the complex terrain and logistical difficulty of accessing these regions. We compared measurements of albedo on transects from northern mountain land covers (snowfield, glacier ice, tundra, saline silt river delta) and over a large elevation range to the coincident 8-day MODIS (MCD43) albedo product. We also compared field measurements at snow covered sites to the coincident daily MODIS (MOD10A1) snow albedo product. For each transect, we measured a range of albedo values, with the least variability on the silt river delta (range = 0.084) and the largest over mid-elevation glacier ice (range = 0.307). The highest elevation snowfield (0.170) had nearly the same range of albedo values as tundra (0.164). The MODIS shortwave White Sky Albedo product (MCD43A3) was highly correlated with the field transect albedo (R2 = 0.96), with a Root Mean Square Error (RMSE) of 0.061. The MODIS shortwave Black Sky Albedo product was similarly correlated with field transects (R2 = 0.96; RMSE = 0.063). These results indicate that remote observation of albedo over snow covered and alpine terrain is well constrained and consistent with other studies. Albedo varied by ∼15% both spatially and temporally for the high elevation snowfields at the point in the season where albedo variation should be at its minimum. There were several instances where MCD43A3 albedo was not produced over snow and was instead classified as cloud covered, despite field observations of cloud free skies. There were also several instances where daily MOD10A1 albedo was produced during the coincident 8-day period at these locations. This suggests that the cloud mask in the MCD43 product is overly conservative over snow. Spatial variation in albedo within the MODIS grid cell (500 m), especially for snow and glacier ice, combined with the uncertainty associated with positional accuracy of

  10. POTENTIAL EFFECTS OF GLOBAL CLIMATE CHANGE ON ALPINE TUNDRA ECOSYSTEMS IN THE FRONT RANGE OF COLORADO. (R827449)

    Science.gov (United States)

    The perspectives, information and conclusions conveyed in research project abstracts, progress reports, final reports, journal abstracts and journal publications convey the viewpoints of the principal investigator and may not represent the views and policies of ORD and EPA. Concl...

  11. SYMBIOTIC N2 FIXATION IN ALPINE TUNDRA: ECOSYSTEM INPUT AND VARIATION IN FIXATION RATES AMONG PLANT COMMUNITIES (R823442)

    Science.gov (United States)

    The perspectives, information and conclusions conveyed in research project abstracts, progress reports, final reports, journal abstracts and journal publications convey the viewpoints of the principal investigator and may not represent the views and policies of ORD and EPA. Concl...

  12. TOPOGRAPHIC PATTERNS OF ABOVE- AND BELOW-GROUND PRODUCTION AND NITROGEN CYCLING IN ALPINE TUNDRA. (R823442)

    Science.gov (United States)

    The perspectives, information and conclusions conveyed in research project abstracts, progress reports, final reports, journal abstracts and journal publications convey the viewpoints of the principal investigator and may not represent the views and policies of ORD and EPA. Concl...

  13. Alaska North Slope Tundra Travel Model and Validation Study

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Harry R. Bader; Jacynthe Guimond

    2006-03-01

    The Alaska Department of Natural Resources (DNR), Division of Mining, Land, and Water manages cross-country travel, typically associated with hydrocarbon exploration and development, on Alaska's arctic North Slope. This project is intended to provide natural resource managers with objective, quantitative data to assist decision making regarding opening of the tundra to cross-country travel. DNR designed standardized, controlled field trials, with baseline data, to investigate the relationships present between winter exploration vehicle treatments and the independent variables of ground hardness, snow depth, and snow slab thickness, as they relate to the dependent variables of active layer depth, soil moisture, and photosynthetically active radiation (a proxy for plant disturbance). Changes in the dependent variables were used as indicators of tundra disturbance. Two main tundra community types were studied: Coastal Plain (wet graminoid/moist sedge shrub) and Foothills (tussock). DNR constructed four models to address physical soil properties: two models for each main community type, one predicting change in depth of active layer and a second predicting change in soil moisture. DNR also investigated the limited potential management utility in using soil temperature, the amount of photosynthetically active radiation (PAR) absorbed by plants, and changes in microphotography as tools for the identification of disturbance in the field. DNR operated under the assumption that changes in the abiotic factors of active layer depth and soil moisture drive alteration in tundra vegetation structure and composition. Statistically significant differences in depth of active layer, soil moisture at a 15 cm depth, soil temperature at a 15 cm depth, and the absorption of photosynthetically active radiation were found among treatment cells and among treatment types. The models were unable to thoroughly investigate the interacting role between snow depth and disturbance due to a

  14. Trends in NDVI and tundra community composition in the Arctic of NE Alaska between 1984 and 2009

    Science.gov (United States)

    Robert R. Pattison; Janet C. Jorgenson; Martha K. Raynolds; Jeffery M. Welker

    2015-01-01

    As Arctic ecosystems experience increases in surface air temperatures, plot-level analyses of tundra vegetation composition suggest that there are important changes occurring in tundra communities that are typified by increases in shrubs and declines in non-vascular species. At the same time analyses of NDVI indicate that the Arctic tundra is greening. Few studies have...

  15. Larch dwarf mistletoe not found on alpine larch

    Science.gov (United States)

    Robert L. Mathiasen; Brian W. Geils; Clinton E. Carlson; Frank G. Hawksworth

    1995-01-01

    Reports of larch dwarf mistletoe parasitizing alpine larch are based on two collections of this host/parasite combination made by J.R. Weir in Montana during the early 1900s. Examination of host material from these collections indicates that the host is western larch, not alpine larch as previously reported. Attempts to locate larch dwarf mistletoe on alpine larch were...

  16. Dynamics of aboveground phytomass of the circumpolar Arctic tundra during the past three decades

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Epstein, Howard E; Raynolds, Martha K; Walker, Donald A; Bhatt, Uma S; Tucker, Compton J; Pinzon, Jorge E

    2012-01-01

    Numerous studies have evaluated the dynamics of Arctic tundra vegetation throughout the past few decades, using remotely sensed proxies of vegetation, such as the normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI). While extremely useful, these coarse-scale satellite-derived measurements give us minimal information with regard to how these changes are being expressed on the ground, in terms of tundra structure and function. In this analysis, we used a strong regression model between NDVI and aboveground tundra phytomass, developed from extensive field-harvested measurements of vegetation biomass, to estimate the biomass dynamics of the circumpolar Arctic tundra over the period of continuous satellite records (1982–2010). We found that the southernmost tundra subzones (C–E) dominate the increases in biomass, ranging from 20 to 26%, although there was a high degree of heterogeneity across regions, floristic provinces, and vegetation types. The estimated increase in carbon of the aboveground live vegetation of 0.40 Pg C over the past three decades is substantial, although quite small relative to anthropogenic C emissions. However, a 19.8% average increase in aboveground biomass has major implications for nearly all aspects of tundra ecosystems including hydrology, active layer depths, permafrost regimes, wildlife and human use of Arctic landscapes. While spatially extensive on-the-ground measurements of tundra biomass were conducted in the development of this analysis, validation is still impossible without more repeated, long-term monitoring of Arctic tundra biomass in the field. (letter)

  17. The Cooling Capacity of Mosses: Controls on Water and Energy Fluxes in a Siberian Tundra Site

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Blok, D.; Heijmans, M.M.P.D.; Schaepman-Strub, G.; Ruijven, van J.; Parmentier, F.J.W.; Maximov, T.C.; Berendse, F.

    2011-01-01

    Arctic tundra vegetation composition is expected to undergo rapid changes during the coming decades because of changes in climate. Higher air temperatures generally favor growth of deciduous shrubs, often at the cost of moss growth. Mosses are considered to be very important to critical tundra

  18. Dynamics of Aboveground Phytomass of the Circumpolar Arctic Tundra During the Past Three Decades

    Science.gov (United States)

    Epstein, Howard E.; Raynolds, Martha K.; Walker, Donald A.; Bhatt, Uma S.; Tucker, Compton J.; Pinzon, Jorge E.

    2012-01-01

    Numerous studies have evaluated the dynamics of Arctic tundra vegetation throughout the past few decades, using remotely sensed proxies of vegetation, such as the normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI). While extremely useful, these coarse-scale satellite-derived measurements give us minimal information with regard to how these changes are being expressed on the ground, in terms of tundra structure and function. In this analysis, we used a strong regression model between NDVI and aboveground tundra phytomass, developed from extensive field-harvested measurements of vegetation biomass, to estimate the biomass dynamics of the circumpolar Arctic tundra over the period of continuous satellite records (1982-2010). We found that the southernmost tundra subzones (C-E) dominate the increases in biomass, ranging from 20 to 26%, although there was a high degree of heterogeneity across regions, floristic provinces, and vegetation types. The estimated increase in carbon of the aboveground live vegetation of 0.40 Pg C over the past three decades is substantial, although quite small relative to anthropogenic C emissions. However, a 19.8% average increase in aboveground biomass has major implications for nearly all aspects of tundra ecosystems including hydrology, active layer depths, permafrost regimes, wildlife and human use of Arctic landscapes. While spatially extensive on-the-ground measurements of tundra biomass were conducted in the development of this analysis, validation is still impossible without more repeated, long-term monitoring of Arctic tundra biomass in the field.

  19. Increased plant productivity in Alaskan tundra as a result of experimental warming of soil and permafrost

    Science.gov (United States)

    S.M. Natali; E.A.G. Schuur; R.L. Rubin

    2012-01-01

    The response of northern tundra plant communities to warming temperatures is of critical concern because permafrost ecosystems play a key role in global carbon (C) storage, and climate-induced ecological shifts in the plant community will affect the transfer of carbon-dioxide between biological and atmospheric pools. This study, which focuses on the response of tundra...

  20. Plot-scale evidence of tundra vegetation change and links to recent summer warming

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sarah C. Elmendorf; Gregory H.R. Henry; Robert D. Hollister; Robert G. Bjork; Noemie Boulanger-Lapointe; Elisabeth J. Cooper; Johannes H.C. Cornelissen; Thomas A. Day; Ellen Dorrepaal; Tatiana G. Elumeeva; Mike Gill; William A. Gould; John Harte; David S. Hik; Annika Hofgaard; David R. Johnson; Jill F. Johnstone; Ingijorg Svala Jonsdottir; Janet C. Jorgenson; Kari Klanderud; Julia A. Klein; Saewan Koh; Gaku Kudo; Mark Lara; Esther Levesque; Borgthor Magnusson; Jeremy L. May; Joel A. Mercado; Anders Michelsen; Ulf Molau; Isla H. Myers-Smith; Steven F. Oberbauer; Vladimir G. Onipchenko; Christian Rixen; Niels Martin Schmidt; Gaius R. Shaver; Marko J. Spasojevic; Pora Ellen Porhallsdottir; Anne Tolvanen; Tiffany Troxler; Craig E. Tweedie; Sandra Villareal; Carl-Henrik Wahren; Xanthe Walker; Patrick J. Webber; Jeffrey M. Welker; Sonja Wipf

    2012-01-01

    Temperature is increasing at unprecedented rates across most of the tundra biome1. Remote-sensing data indicate that contemporary climate warming has already resulted in increased productivity over much of the Arctic2,3, but plot-based evidence for vegetation transformation is not widespread. We analysed change in tundra vegetation surveyed between 1980 and 2010 in 158...

  1. Fire behavior, weather, and burn severity of the 2007 Anaktuvuk River tundra fire, North Slope, Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Benjamin M. Jones; Crystal A. Kolden; Randi Jandt; John T. Abatzoglu; Frank Urban; Christopher D. Arp

    2009-01-01

    In 2007, the Anaktuvuk River Fire (ARF) became the largest recorded tundra fire on the North Slope of Alaska. The ARF burned for nearly three months, consuming more than 100,000 ha. At its peak in early September, the ARF burned at a rate of 7000 ha d-1. The conditions potentially responsible for this large tundra fire include modeled record high...

  2. Permafrost collapse after shrub removal shifts tundra ecosystem into methane source

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Nauta, A.L.; Heijmans, M.M.P.D.; Blok, D.; Limpens, J.; Elberling, B.; Gallagher, A.; Li, B.; Petrov, R.E.; Maximov, T.C.; van Huissteden, J.; Berendse, F.

    2015-01-01

    Arctic tundra ecosystems are warming almost twice as fast as the global average. Permafrost thaw and the resulting release of greenhouse gases from decomposing soil organic carbon have the potential to accelerate climate warming. In recent decades, Arctic tundra ecosystems have changed rapidly,

  3. Permafrost collapse after shrub removal shifts tundra ecosystem to a methane source

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Nauta, A.L.; Heijmans, M.M.P.D.; Blok, D.; Limpens, J.; Elberling, B.; Gallagher, A.; Li, B.; Petrov, R.E.; Maximov, T.C.; Huissteden, van J.; Berendse, F.

    2015-01-01

    Arctic tundra ecosystems are warming almost twice as fast as the global average1. Permafrost thaw and the resulting release of greenhouse gases from decomposing soil organic carbon have the potential to accelerate climate warming2, 3. In recent decades, Arctic tundra ecosystems have changed

  4. Snow, ice and water in alpine regions

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Baumgartner, H.

    2009-01-01

    This article takes a look at how climate change will have a deep impact on alpine regions. The findings discussed at a conference organised by the Swiss Hydrologic Commission are presented and discussed. Flooding incidents that occurred 'once in a century' are now becoming more frequent and were considered at the conference as being an indicator of climate change. Changing hydrological factors are also discussed and the influence of climate factors in alpine regions on the water quantities in the rivers are looked at. Also, the spontaneous emptying of glacial lakes as has already happened in Switzerland and the consequences to be drawn from such incidences are discussed.

  5. Age of remnants of a pleistocene glacier in Bolshezemelskaya tundra

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Astakhov, V.I.; Svensen, J.I.

    2002-01-01

    The age of remnants of the pleistocene glacier in Bolshezemelskaya tundra was determined by the methods of radiocarbon and uranium-thorium dating to ascertain the age of the last continental icing of the Arctic planes on European territory of Russia. It is shown that the last glacier, that has left behind fragments of its soiled bottom in the region under review, disintegrated not later than 50 thousand years ago. The age of the maximum advance of the last glacier probably falls in the range of 80-100 thousand years ago [ru

  6. Radiocarbon chronology of palsas in Bol'shezemel'skaya tundra

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Vasil'chuk, Yu.K.; Vasil'chuk, A.K.; Sulerzhitskij, L.D.; Budantseva, N.A.; Volkova, E.M.; Chizhova, Yu.N.

    2003-01-01

    The age of the peat, overlapping the swelling hillocks under different geocryologic conditions in the South and North of the Bol'shezemel'skaya tundra, located in the North-East of the European part of Russia, is determined through the method of the radiocarbon dating. The similarities and differences in the paleodynamics of the swelling hillocks at various average annual ground temperatures are identified on the basis of the obtained chronological data, covering the period from 8860 years ago up to the present time [ru

  7. The Alpine loop of the tethys zone

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bemmelen, R.W. van

    The Alpine loop in Europe results from semi-autochthonous crustal movements which are restricted to the mobile Tethys zone. Its evolution cannot be explained by a uniform northward drift and push of the African continent; it has to be sought, in the first place, in geodynamic processes occurring in

  8. Paleomagnetism and the alpine tectonics of Eurasia

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Raven, Th.

    1964-01-01

    The following paper by Gregor and Zijderveld is the first of a series planned to report results of paleomagnetic investigations in the Alpine area from Italy to the Himalayas. These investigations are carried out in close collaboration between the well-equipped paleomagnetic laboratory of

  9. Can antibrowsing defense regulate the spread of woody vegetation in arctic tundra?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bryant, John P.; Joly, Kyle; Chapin, F. Stuart; DeAngelis, Donald L.; Kielland, Knut

    2014-01-01

    Global climate warming is projected to promote the increase of woody plants, especially shrubs, in arctic tundra. Many factors may affect the extent of this increase, including browsing by mammals. We hypothesize that across the Arctic the effect of browsing will vary because of regional variation in antibrowsing chemical defense. Using birch (Betula) as a case study, we propose that browsing is unlikely to retard birch expansion in the region extending eastward from the Lena River in central Siberia across Beringia and the continental tundra of central and eastern Canada where the more effectively defended resin birches predominate. Browsing is more likely to retard birch expansion in tundra west of the Lena to Fennoscandia, Iceland, Greenland and South Baffin Island where the less effectively defended non-resin birches predominate. Evidence from the literature supports this hypothesis. We further suggest that the effect of warming on the supply of plant-available nitrogen will not significantly change either this pan-Arctic pattern of variation in antibrowsing defense or the resultant effect that browsing has on birch expansion in tundra. However, within central and east Beringia warming-caused increases in plant-available nitrogen combined with wildfire could initiate amplifying feedback loops that could accelerate shrubification of tundra by the more effectively defended resin birches. This accelerated shrubification of tundra by resin birch, if extensive, could reduce the food supply of caribou causing population declines. We conclude with a brief discussion of modeling methods that show promise in projecting invasion of tundra by woody plants.

  10. Permafrost degradation stimulates carbon loss from experimentally warmed tundra.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Natali, Susan M; Schuur, Edward A G; Webb, Elizabeth E; Pries, Caitlin E Hicks; Crummer, Kathryn G

    2014-03-01

    A large pool of organic carbon (C) has been accumulating in the Arctic for thousands of years because cold and waterlogged conditions have protected soil organic material from microbial decomposition. As the climate warms this vast and frozen C pool is at risk of being thawed, decomposed, and released to the atmosphere as greenhouse gasses. At the same time, some C losses may be offset by warming-mediated increases in plant productivity. Plant and microbial responses to warming ultimately determine net C exchange from ecosystems, but the timing and magnitude of these responses remain uncertain. Here we show that experimental warming and permafrost (ground that remains below 0 degrees C for two or more consecutive years) degradation led to a two-fold increase in net ecosystem C uptake during the growing season. However, warming also enhanced winter respiration, which entirely offset growing-season C gains. Winter C losses may be even higher in response to actual climate warming than to our experimental manipulations, and, in that scenario, could be expected to more than double overall net C losses from tundra to the atmosphere. Our results highlight the importance of winter processes in determining whether tundra acts as a C source or sink, and demonstrate the potential magnitude of C release from the permafrost zone that might be expected in a warmer climate.

  11. Tundra swan habitat preferences during migration in North Dakota

    Science.gov (United States)

    Earnst, Susan L.

    1994-01-01

    I studied tundra swan (Cygnus columbianus columbianus) habitat preference in North Dakota during autumn migration, 1988-89. Many thousand tundra swans stop in the Prairie Pothole region during autumn migration, but swan resource use has not been quantified. I examined habitat preference in relation to an index of sago pondweed (Potamogeton pectinatus) presence, extent of open water, and wetland size. I compared habitat preference derived from counts of all swans to those derived from foraging swans only and cygnets only. Foraging swans preferred wetlands with sago pondweed (P = 0.03); the number of foraging swans per wetland was >4 times higher on wetlands with sago pondweed than on wetlands without sago. In contrast, nonforaging swans did not prefer wetlands with sago pondweed (P = 0.85) but preferred large wetlands (P = 0.02) and those with a high proportion of contiguous open water (P feeding than adults (P = 0.03) and occurred proportionately more often in smaller flocks (P = 0.04), but cygnets and adults had similar habitat preferences.

  12. Multi-Decadal Surface Water Dynamics in North American Tundra

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carroll, Mark L.; Loboda, Tatiana V.

    2017-01-01

    Over the last several decades, warming in the Arctic has outpaced the already impressive increases in global mean temperatures. The impact of these increases in temperature has been observed in a multitude of ecological changes in North American tundra including changes in vegetative cover, depth of active layer, and surface water extent. The low topographic relief and continuous permafrost create an ideal environment for the formation of small water bodies - a definitive feature of tundra surface. In this study, water bodies in Nunavut territory in northern Canada were mapped using a long-term record of remotely sensed observations at 30 meters spatial resolution from the Landsat suite of instruments. The temporal trajectories of water extent between 1985 and 2015 were assessed. Over 675,000 water bodies have been identified over the 31-year study period with over 168,000 showing a significant (probability is less than 0.05) trend in surface area. Approximately 55 percent of water bodies with a significant trend were increasing in size while the remaining 45 percent were decreasing in size. The overall net trend for water bodies with a significant trend is 0.009 hectares per year per water body.

  13. Succession Stages of Tundra Plant Communities Following Wildfire Disturbance in Arctic Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Breen, A. L.; Hollingsworth, T. N.; Mack, M. C.; Jones, B. M.

    2015-12-01

    Rapid climate change is affecting climate-sensitive disturbance regimes throughout the world. In particular, the impacts of climate change on Arctic disturbance regimes are poorly understood because landscape-scale disturbances are infrequent or occur in remote localities. Wildfire in Arctic Alaska is presently limited by ignition source and favorable burn weather. With rapid climate change, a lengthening growing season, and subsequent increase in plant biomass and productivity, wildfire frequency and annual area burned in tundra ecosystems is expected to increase over the next century. Yet, post-fire tundra vegetation succession is inadequately characterized except at a few point locations. We identify succession stages of tussock tundra communities following wildfire using a chronosequence of 65 relevés in 10 tundra fire scars (1971-2011) and nearby unburned tundra from sites on the Seward Peninsula and northern foothills of the Brooks Range. We used the Braun-Blanquét approach to classify plant communities, and applied nonmetric multidimentional scaling (NMDS) to identify ecological gradients underlying community differentiation. The ordination revealed a clear differentiation between unburned and burned tundra communities. Ecological gradients, reflected by ordination axes, correspond to fire history (e.g., time since last fire, number of times burned, burn severity) and a complex productivity gradient. Post-fire species richness is less than unburned tundra; primarily reflected as a decrease in lichen species and turnover of bryophyte species immediately post-fire. Species richness of grasses increases post-fire and is greatest in communities that burned more than once in the past 30 years. Shrub cover and total aboveground biomass are greatest in repeat burn sites. We review and discuss our results focusing on the implications of a changing tundra fire regime, its effect on vegetation succession trajectories, and subsequent rates of carbon sequestration and

  14. How will Shrub Expansion Impact Soil Carbon Sequestration in Arctic Tundra?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Czimczik, C. I.; Holden, S. R.; He, Y.; Randerson, J. T.

    2015-12-01

    Multiple lines of evidence suggest that plant productivity, and especially shrub abundance, is increasing in the Arctic in response to climate change. This greening is substantiated by increases in the Normalized Difference Vegetation Index, repeat photography and field observations. The implications of a greener Arctic on carbon sequestration by tundra ecosystems remain poorly understood. Here, we explore existing datasets of plant productivity and soil carbon stocks to quantify how greening, and in particular an expansion of woody shrubs, may translate to the sequestration of carbon in arctic soils. As an estimate of carbon storage in arctic tundra soils, we used the Northern Circumpolar Soil Carbon Database v2. As estimates of tundra type and productivity, we used the Circumpolar Arctic Vegetation map as well as the MODIS and Landsat Vegetation Continuous Fields, and MODIS GPP/NPP (MOD17) products. Preliminary findings suggest that in graminoid tundra and erect-shrub tundra higher shrub abundance is associated with greater soil carbon stocks. However, this relationship between shrub abundance and soil carbon is not apparent in prostrate-shrub tundra, or when comparing across graminoid tundra, erect-shrub tundra and prostrate-shrub tundra. Uncertainties originate from the extreme spatial (vertical and horizontal) heterogeneity of organic matter distribution in cryoturbated soils, the fact that (some) permafrost carbon stocks, e.g. yedoma, reflect previous rather than current vegetative cover, and small sample sizes, esp. in the High Arctic. Using Vegetation Continuous Fields and MODIS GPP/NPP (MOD17), we develop quantitative trajectories of soil carbon storage as a function of shrub cover and plant productivity in the Arctic (>60°N). We then compare our greening-derived carbon sequestration estimates to projected losses of carbon from thawing permafrost. Our findings will reduce uncertainties in the magnitude and timing of the carbon-climate feedback from the

  15. Spatiotemporal variability in surface energy balance across tundra, snow and ice in Greenland

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lund, Magnus; Stiegler, Christian; Abermann, Jakob

    2017-01-01

    The surface energy balance (SEB) is essential for understanding the coupled cryosphere–atmosphere system in the Arctic. In this study, we investigate the spatiotemporal variability in SEB across tundra, snow and ice. During the snow-free period, the main energy sink for ice sites is surface melt....... For tundra, energy is used for sensible and latent heat flux and soil heat flux leading to permafrost thaw. Longer snow-free period increases melting of the Greenland Ice Sheet and glaciers and may promote tundra permafrost thaw. During winter, clouds have a warming effect across surface types whereas during...

  16. First Record of Setaria Tundra in Danish Roe Deer (Capreolus Capreolus)

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Enemark, Heidi L.; Harslund, Jakob le Fèvre; Oksanen, A.

    2011-01-01

    , and may be connected to the spreading of this parasite. In reindeer heavy worm burdens of S. tundra have been found to cause severe peritonitis and negatively affect body condition score. Thus in the light of the possible climatic changes which could result in warmer, more humid weather in Scandinavia...... described by Rejewsky (1929) and Nikander et al. (2007). Sequences of the mitochondrial 12S rRNA and cox1 genes, 454 and 595 base pairs respectively, were 99.5-99.7% identical to previously published S. tundra isolates from France and Italy. Roe deer are thought to be asymptomatic carriers of S. tundra...

  17. Sunlight stimulates methane uptake and nitrous oxide emission from the High Arctic tundra.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Fangfang; Zhu, Renbin; Bao, Tao; Wang, Qing; Xu, Hua

    2016-12-01

    Many environmental factors affecting methane (CH 4 ) and nitrous oxide (N 2 O) fluxes have been investigated during the processes of carbon and nitrogen transformation in the boreal tundra. However, effects of sunlight on CH 4 and N 2 O fluxes and their budgets were neglected in the boreal tundra. Here, summertime CH 4 and N 2 O fluxes in the presence and total absence of sunlight were investigated at the six tundra sites (DM1-DM6) on Ny-Ålesund in the High Arctic. The mean CH 4 fluxes at the tundra sites ranged from -4.7 to -158.6μg CH 4 m -2 h -1 in the presence of light, indicating that a large CH 4 sink occurred in the tundra soils. However, enhanced CH 4 emission in total absence of light occurred at all the tundra sites. The mean N 2 O fluxes ranged from 7.4 to 14.6μg N 2 O m -2 h -1 in the presence of light, whereas in the absence of light all the tundra sites generally released less N 2 O, and even significant N 2 O uptake occurred there. Soil temperature, chamber temperature and soil moisture showed no significant correlations with tundra CH 4 and N 2 O flux. The presence of sunlight increased tundra CH 4 uptake by 114.2μg CH 4 m -2 h -1 and N 2 O emission by 10.9μg N 2 O m -2 h -1 compared with total absence of light. Overall our results showed that tundra ecosystem switched from CH 4 sink and N 2 O emission source in the presence of light to CH 4 emission source and N 2 O sink in the absence of light. Therefore sunlight had an important effect on CH 4 and N 2 O budgets in the High Arctic tundra. The exclusion of sunlight might overestimate CH 4 budgets, but underestimate N 2 O budgets in the Arctic tundra ecosystem. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  18. CHARACTERISTICS OF EVAPORATION FROM SNOW AND TUNDRA SURFACE IN SPITSBERGEN IN THE SNOWMELT SEASON 1993

    OpenAIRE

    タケウチ, ユカリ; コダマ, ユウジ; ナカバヤシ, ヒロノリ; Yukari, TAKEUCHI; Yuji, KODAMA; Hironori, NAKABAYASHI

    1995-01-01

    Meteorological conditions and evaporation from snow and tundra surfaces were measured in the tundra area in Spitsbergen from the end of May to the end of June in 1993. In this period, three types of ground surface were seen, i.e. dry snow, melting snow and snow-free tundra. Clear changes in evaporation as well as the meteorological conditions were seen with the changes in surface condition. During the dry snow period, evaporation predominated at the snow surface and the latent heat loss by ev...

  19. Climate Variations and Alaska Tundra Vegetation Productivity Declines in Spring

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bhatt, U. S.; Walker, D. A.; Bieniek, P.; Raynolds, M. K.; Epstein, H. E.; Comiso, J. C.; Pinzon, J. E.; Tucker, C. J.

    2015-12-01

    While sea ice has continued to decline, vegetation productivity increases have declined particularly during spring in Alaska as well as many parts of the Arctic tundra. To understand the processes behind these features we investigate spring climate variations that includes temperature, circulation patterns, and snow cover to determine how these may be contributing to spring browning. This study employs remotely sensed weekly 25-km sea ice concentration, weekly surface temperature, and bi-weekly NDVI from 1982 to 2014. Maximum NDVI (MaxNDVI, Maximum Normalized Difference Vegetation Index), Time Integrated NDVI (TI-NDVI), Summer Warmth Index (SWI, sum of degree months above freezing during May-August), atmospheric reanalysis data, dynamically downscaled climate data, meteorological station data, and snow water equivalent (GlobSnow, assimilated snow data set). We analyzed the data for the full period (1982-2014) and for two sub-periods (1982-1998 and 1999-2014), which were chosen based on the declining Alaska SWI since 1998. MaxNDVI has increased from 1982-2014 over most of the Arctic but has declined from 1999 to 2014 southwest Alaska. TI-NDVI has trends that are similar to those for MaxNDVI for the full period but display widespread declines over the 1999-2014 period. Therefore, as the MaxNDVI has continued to increase overall for the Arctic, TI-NDVI has been declining since 1999 and these declines are particularly noteworthy during spring in Alaska. Spring declines in Alaska have been linked to increased spring snow cover that can delay greenup (Bieniek et al. 2015) but recent ground observations suggest that after an initial warming and greening, late season freezing temperature are damaging the plants. The late season freezing temperature hypothesis will be explored with meteorological climate/weather data sets for Alaska tundra regions. References P.A. Bieniek, US Bhatt, DA Walker, MK Raynolds, JC Comiso, HE Epstein, JE Pinzon, CJ Tucker, RL Thoman, H Tran, N M

  20. Pleistocene colonization of afro-alpine 'sky islands' by the arctic-alpine Arabis alpina.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Assefa, A; Ehrich, D; Taberlet, P; Nemomissa, S; Brochmann, C

    2007-08-01

    The afro-alpine region comprises the high mountains of Ethiopia and tropical East Africa, which represent biological 'sky islands' with high level of endemism. However, some primarily arctic-alpine plants also occur in the afro-alpine mountains. It has been suggested that these plants are Tertiary relicts, but a recent worldwide study of Arabis alpina suggests that this species colonized the region twice during the Pleistocene. Here we investigate the detailed colonization history of A. alpina in the afro-alpine region based on chloroplast DNA sequences from 11 mountain systems. The results confirm the twice-into-Africa scenario. The Asian lineage is confined to the mountains closest to the Arabian Peninsula, on opposite sides of the Rift Valley (Simen Mts and Gara Muleta in Ethiopia), suggesting long-distance dispersal of this lineage. The African lineage is divided into two phylogeographic groups with distinct geographic distribution. The observed pattern is consistent with isolation of the African lineage in at least two interglacial refugia, located on separated highlands, followed by range expansion in cooler period(s), when the afro-alpine habitat extended further down the mountains. Several long-distance dispersal events, also across the Rift Valley, are suggested by single haplotypes observed outside the area occupied by the phylogeographic groups they belonged to.

  1. Dynamics of the recovery of damaged tundra vegetation. Annual progress report

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Amundsen, C.C.

    1975-01-01

    A study, begun in 1971, has been undertaken to determine the environmental factors which affect the recovery of damaged tundra vegetation. A sampling technique was developed on Amchitka Island to allow the rapid acquisition of data on species presence and frequency across areas disturbed at various times and in various ways. Attempts were made to sample across all examples of aspect, slope steepness and exposure. The data were analyzed and we concluded that there was no directional secondary succession on the Amchitka tundra, although there was vigorous recovery on organic soils. The study led to recommendations which resulted in a smaller effort than planned to reclaim damaged areas by seeding and fertilizing at a considerable financial saving and without further biological perturbation. Because of the increasing activity on tundra landscape, whether for energy production, or military or other reasons, we are expanding our sampling to other tundra areas. Immediate plans include sampling at Adak Island and Barrow, Alaska. (U.S.)

  2. Transformation of nitrogen compounds in the tundra soils of Northern Fennoscandia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maslov, M. N.; Makarov, M. I.

    2016-07-01

    The transformation of organic nitrogen compounds in the soils of tundra ecosystems of Northern Fennoscandia has been studied under laboratory and natural conditions. Tundra soils contain significant reserves of total nitrogen, but they are poor in its extractable mineral and organic forms. The potential rates of the net mineralization and net immobilization of nitrogen by microorganisms vary among the soils and depend on the C: N ratio in the extractable organic matter and microbial biomass of soil. Under natural conditions, the rate of nitrogen net mineralization is lower than the potential rate determined under laboratory conditions by 6-25 times. The incubation of tundra soils in the presence of plants does not result in the accumulation of mineral nitrogen compounds either in the soil or in microbial biomass. This confirms the high competitive capacity of plants under conditions of limited nitrogen availability in tundra ecosystems.

  3. Dynamics of the recovery of damaged tundra vegetation. Annual progress report

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Amundsen, C.C.

    1976-01-01

    A study, begun in 1971, continues to document the environmental factors which affect the recovery of damaged tundra landscapes. A measurement technique was developed on Amchitka Island to allow the rapid acquisition of data on species presence and frequency across areas disturbed at various times and in various ways. Samples across all examples of aspect, slope steepness and exposure are taken. Studies now include Adak Island and the Point Barrow area. We have concluded that there was no directional secondary succession on the Aleutian tundra, although there was vigorous recovery on organic soils. Our study led to recommendations which resulted in less intensive reclamation management at a considerable financial saving and without further biological perturbation. Because of the increasing activity on tundra landscapes, for energy extraction, transportation or production, military or other reasons, we have expanded our sampling to other tundra areas where landscape disruption is occurring or is predicted.

  4. On Sr90 migration in the soil and vegetation cover of the subarctic tundra

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kulikov, N.V.; Molchanova, I.V.; Puskinov, L.I.

    1975-01-01

    Data are presented on the migration and distribution of strontium-90 in the soil and plants of two subarctic tundra biogeocoenoses when the radionuclide is applied artificially to the soil surface. (V.A.P.)

  5. Permafrost collapse after shrub removal shifts tundra ecosystem to a methane source

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Nauta, Ake L.; Heijmans, Monique P.D.; Blok, Daan

    2015-01-01

    Arctic tundra ecosystems are warming almost twice as fast as the global average1. Permafrost thaw and the resulting release of greenhouse gases from decomposing soil organic carbon have the potential to accelerate climate warming2,3. In recent decades, Arctic tundra ecosystems have changed rapidly4......, including expansion of woody vegetation5,6, in response to changing climate conditions. How such vegetation changes contribute to stabilization or destabilization of the permafrost is unknown. Here we present six years of field observations in a shrub removal experiment at a Siberian tundra site. Removing...... experiment demonstrate the importance of the vegetation cover for protection of the massive carbon reservoirs stored in the permafrost and illustrate the strong vulnerability of these tundra ecosystems to perturbations. If permafrost thawing can more frequently trigger such local permafrost collapse, methane...

  6. ABoVE: Surface Water Extent, Boreal and Tundra Regions, North America, 1991-2011

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — This data set provides the location and extent of surface water (open water not including vegetated wetlands) for the entire Boreal and Tundra regions of North...

  7. Tree Canopy Cover for the Circumpolar Taiga-Tundra Ecotone: 2000-2005

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — This data set provides a map of selected areas with defined tree canopy cover over the circumpolar taiga-tundra ecotone (TTE). Canopy cover was derived from the...

  8. Pre-ABoVE: Arctic Vegetation Plots, IBP Tundra Biome, Barrow, Alaska, 1972-2010

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — This data set provides vegetation cover and environmental plot data collected as part of the International Biological Program (IBP), U. S. Tundra Biome Program, in...

  9. Pre-ABoVE: Arctic Vegetation Plots, Burned and Unburned Tundra, Alaska, 2011-2012

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — This dataset provides environmental and vegetation data collected in late June and July of 2011 and of 2012 from study plots located in tundra fire scars and...

  10. Spatiotemporal variability in surface energy balance across tundra, snow and ice in Greenland

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lund, Magnus; Stiegler, Christian; Abermann, Jakob

    2017-01-01

    The surface energy balance (SEB) is essential for understanding the coupled cryosphere–atmosphere system in the Arctic. In this study, we investigate the spatiotemporal variability in SEB across tundra, snow and ice. During the snow-free period, the main energy sink for ice sites is surface melt....... For tundra, energy is used for sensible and latent heat flux and soil heat flux leading to permafrost thaw. Longer snow-free period increases melting of the Greenland Ice Sheet and glaciers and may promote tundra permafrost thaw. During winter, clouds have a warming effect across surface types whereas during...... summer clouds have a cooling effect over tundra and a warming effect over ice, reflecting the spatial variation in albedo. The complex interactions between factors affecting SEB across surface types remain a challenge for understanding current and future conditions. Extended monitoring activities coupled...

  11. Tree Canopy Cover for the Circumpolar Taiga-Tundra Ecotone: 2000-2005

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — ABSTRACT: This data set provides a map of selected areas with defined tree canopy cover over the circumpolar taiga-tundra ecotone (TTE). Canopy cover was derived...

  12. Dispersal and microsite limitation of a rare alpine plant

    OpenAIRE

    Frei, Eva S.; Scheepens, J. F.; Stöcklin, Jürg

    2012-01-01

    Knowledge on the limitation of plant species’ distributions is important for preserving alpine biodiversity, particularly when the loss of alpine habitats because of global warming or land use changes is faster than colonization of new habitats. We investigated the potential of the rare alpine plant Campanula thyrsoides L. to colonize grassland sites of different suitability on a small mountain plateau in the Swiss Alps. A total of 15 experimental sites were selected according to their differ...

  13. Phosphate sorption characteristics of European alpine soils

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Kaňa, Jiří; Kopáček, Jiří; Camarero, L.; Garcia-Pausas, J.

    2011-01-01

    Roč. 75, č. 3 (2011), s. 862-870 ISSN 0361-5995 R&D Projects: GA ČR(CZ) GA526/09/0567; GA AV ČR(CZ) KJB600960907 Grant - others:EU EMERGE(CZ) EVK1-CT-1999-00032 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z60170517 Keywords : phosphate sorption * alpine soils * acidification Subject RIV: DJ - Water Pollution ; Quality Impact factor: 1.979, year: 2011

  14. Landscape topography structures the soil microbiome in arctic polygonal tundra

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Taş, Neslihan; Prestat, Emmanuel; Wang, Shi; Wu, Yuxin; Ulrich, Craig; Kneafsey, Timothy; Tringe, Susannah G.; Torn, Margaret S.; Hubbard, Susan S.; Jansson, Janet K.

    2018-02-22

    Global temperature increases are resulting in thaw of permafrost soil in the arctic with increased emission of greenhouse gases (GHGs). Soil microorganisms are responsible for degradation of the trapped organic carbon (C) in permafrost and emission of GHG as it thaws. However, environmental factors governing microbial degradation of soil C and GHG emissions are poorly understood. Here we determined the functional potential of soil microbiomes in arctic tundra across a cryoperturbed polygonal landscape in Barrow, Alaska. Using a combination of metagenome sequencing and gas flux measurements, we found that the soil microbiome composition, diversity and functional potential varied across the polygon transect and that specific microbes and functional genes were correlated to GHG measurements. Several draft genomes of novel species were obtained with genes encoding enzymes involved in cycling of complex organic compounds. These results have larger implications for prediction of the influence of the soil microbiome on soil C flux from arctic regions undergoing environmental change.

  15. The Russian-Swedish tundra radioecology expedition 1994

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Persson, B.R.; Holm, E.; Carlsson, K.Aa.; Josefsson, D.; Roos, P.

    1995-01-01

    The expedition investigated the ecology of the anthropogenic radio nuclides 137 Cs, 90 Sr, and 239,240 Pu in the Northern Sea to explain the origin from different sources. It had been shown from an earlier expedition that the levels of 137 Cs are higher in the central Arctic Ocean than further south in Barents Sea. The question was if this was due to inflow from the Atlantic or is due to other origin. The expedition also examined the outflow of 90 Sr from the rivers along the Siberian coast in order to investigate if the permafrost enhances the run-off of radionuclides from tundra. Study of anthropogenic radionuclides in the mixing zone between fresh and salt water at the different river systems along the Siberian coast was of particular interest. Some of the results from the expedition are presented in the present paper. 3 refs., 3 figs., 3 tabs

  16. Digital Necrobacillosis in Norwegian Wild Tundra Reindeer (Rangifer tarandus tarandus)

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Handeland, K.; Boye, Mette; Bergsjø, B.

    2010-01-01

    Outbreaks of digital necrobacillosis in Norwegian wild tundra reindeer (Rangifer tarandus tarandus) are described. The outbreaks occurred in late summer and autumn 2007 and 2008, subsequent to periods with an unusually high number of days with precipitation and high air temperature. Lesions were...... of pus. Subcutaneous tissue was inflamed and oedematous with focal necrosis. Tendons, tendon sheaths, joints and periosteum of the digital bones were often affected. Animals shot during winter showed severe chronic periostitis and osteomyelitis and necrotizing deforming arthritis. Microscopically, skin...... lesions were characterized by deep ulcers with centrally located necrotic tissue, bordered by a zone of oedema and intense inflammation with granulation tissue and fibrosis. Necrosis, suppurative inflammation and oedema were found in the synovial membranes, tendons and tendon sheaths. Digital bone lesions...

  17. Chronic gamma-radiation impact upon the state of thyroid gland of tundra voles

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ermakova, O.V.; Raskosha, O.V.

    2002-01-01

    The histomorphological estimation of the thyroid gland status of tundra voles living in the radiation polluted sites (30-km zone around Chernobyl nuclear plant and the Komi Republic) was given in the experiment. Nature populations of tundra voles have more high variety of the thyroid parenchyma morphological reconstructions in comparison with the experimental animals. Mechanisms of the response to the radiation influence in the nature and in the experiment are different. (author)

  18. Metagenomics Reveals Pervasive Bacterial Populations and Reduced Community Diversity across the Alaska Tundra Ecosystem.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Johnston, Eric R; Rodriguez-R, Luis M; Luo, Chengwei; Yuan, Mengting M; Wu, Liyou; He, Zhili; Schuur, Edward A G; Luo, Yiqi; Tiedje, James M; Zhou, Jizhong; Konstantinidis, Konstantinos T

    2016-01-01

    How soil microbial communities contrast with respect to taxonomic and functional composition within and between ecosystems remains an unresolved question that is central to predicting how global anthropogenic change will affect soil functioning and services. In particular, it remains unclear how small-scale observations of soil communities based on the typical volume sampled (1-2 g) are generalizable to ecosystem-scale responses and processes. This is especially relevant for remote, northern latitude soils, which are challenging to sample and are also thought to be more vulnerable to climate change compared to temperate soils. Here, we employed well-replicated shotgun metagenome and 16S rRNA gene amplicon sequencing to characterize community composition and metabolic potential in Alaskan tundra soils, combining our own datasets with those publically available from distant tundra and temperate grassland and agriculture habitats. We found that the abundance of many taxa and metabolic functions differed substantially between tundra soil metagenomes relative to those from temperate soils, and that a high degree of OTU-sharing exists between tundra locations. Tundra soils were an order of magnitude less complex than their temperate counterparts, allowing for near-complete coverage of microbial community richness (~92% breadth) by sequencing, and the recovery of 27 high-quality, almost complete (>80% completeness) population bins. These population bins, collectively, made up to ~10% of the metagenomic datasets, and represented diverse taxonomic groups and metabolic lifestyles tuned toward sulfur cycling, hydrogen metabolism, methanotrophy, and organic matter oxidation. Several population bins, including members of Acidobacteria, Actinobacteria, and Proteobacteria, were also present in geographically distant (~100-530 km apart) tundra habitats (full genome representation and up to 99.6% genome-derived average nucleotide identity). Collectively, our results revealed that

  19. Look again: Revising ideas about the greening of Alaska’s arctic tundra

    Science.gov (United States)

    Geoffrey Koch; Robert Pattison

    2017-01-01

    Alaska’s Arctic tundra is one of the most rapidly warming regions in the world. For years, scientists have been working to interpret the effects of its changing climate and determine what these changes may mean for the rest of the planet. Coarse-scale satellite imagery of much of this region shows the tundra is becoming greener. This has been widely attributed to shrub...

  20. Alpine Soils as long-term Bioindicators

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nestroy, O.

    2009-04-01

    Alpine soils as long-term bioindicators The introductory words concern the definitions and peculiarities of alpine soils and their position in the Austrian Soil Classification 2000 in comparison with the World Reference Base for Soil Resources 2006. The important parameters for genesis and threats for these soils in steep and high positions are discussed. It must be emphasized that the main threats are the very different kinds of erosion e.g. by water, wind and snow, and also by skiing (end of season) as well as and mountain-biking (mainly summer-sport). Due the very slow regeneration and - in this connection - due to the very slow changes of the soil entities, these soils give an utmost importance as a long-time bioindicator. With regard to the climate change one can assume an increase in the content of organic matter on site, but also an increase of erosion and mass movement on the other site, e. g. in kind of "plaiken" (soil slide) as result of an increasing intensity of rainfall. It lies partly in our hands to diminish the number and the intensity of the threats, we can influence the soil development, but the result to reach a new ecological equilibrium is very long - in case of alpine soil more than two generations.

  1. Glucose homeostasis and cardiovascular disease biomarkers in older alpine skiers

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Dela, F; Niederseer, David; Patsch, Wolfgang

    2011-01-01

    Alpine skiing and ski training involves elements of static and dynamic training, and may therefore improve insulin sensitivity. Healthy men and women who where beginners/intermediate level of alpine skiing, were studied before (Pre) and immediately after (Post) 12 weeks of alpine ski training...... a continued decrease was seen in IG (Ret vs Post, Ptraining in IG, while no effect was seen in CG. HOMA2 index for insulin resistance decreased (P..., and did not change. Alpine ski training improves glucose homeostasis and insulin sensitivity in healthy, elderly individuals....

  2. NDVI as a predictor of canopy arthropod biomass in the Alaskan arctic tundra.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sweet, Shannan K; Asmus, Ashley; Rich, Matthew E; Wingfield, John; Gough, Laura; Boelman, Natalie T

    2015-04-01

    The physical and biological responses to rapid arctic warming are proving acute, and as such, there is a need to monitor, understand, and predict ecological responses over large spatial and temporal scales. The use of the normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI) acquired from airborne and satellite sensors addresses this need, as it is widely used as a tool for detecting and quantifying spatial and temporal dynamics of tundra vegetation cover, productivity, and phenology. Such extensive use of the NDVI to quantify vegetation characteristics suggests that it may be similarly applied to characterizing primary and secondary consumer communities. Here, we develop empirical models to predict canopy arthropod biomass with canopy-level measurements of the NDVI both across and within distinct tundra vegetation communities over four growing seasons in the Arctic Foothills region of the Brooks Range, Alaska, USA. When canopy arthropod biomass is predicted with the NDVI across all four growing seasons, our overall model that includes all four vegetation communities explains 63% of the variance in canopy arthropod biomass, whereas our models specific to each of the four vegetation communities explain 74% (moist tussock tundra), 82% (erect shrub tundra), 84% (riparian shrub tundra), and 87% (dwarf shrub tundra) of the observed variation in canopy arthropod biomass. Our field-based study suggests that measurements of the NDVI made from air- and spaceborne sensors may be able to quantify spatial and temporal variation in canopy arthropod biomass at landscape to regional scales.

  3. Tundra ecosystems observed to be CO2 sources due to differential amplification of the carbon cycle.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Belshe, E F; Schuur, E A G; Bolker, B M

    2013-10-01

    Are tundra ecosystems currently a carbon source or sink? What is the future trajectory of tundra carbon fluxes in response to climate change? These questions are of global importance because of the vast quantities of organic carbon stored in permafrost soils. In this meta-analysis, we compile 40 years of CO2 flux observations from 54 studies spanning 32 sites across northern high latitudes. Using time-series analysis, we investigated if seasonal or annual CO2 fluxes have changed over time, and whether spatial differences in mean annual temperature could help explain temporal changes in CO2 flux. Growing season net CO2 uptake has definitely increased since the 1990s; the data also suggest (albeit less definitively) an increase in winter CO2 emissions, especially in the last decade. In spite of the uncertainty in the winter trend, we estimate that tundra sites were annual CO2 sources from the mid-1980s until the 2000s, and data from the last 7 years show that tundra continue to emit CO2 annually. CO2 emissions exceed CO2 uptake across the range of temperatures that occur in the tundra biome. Taken together, these data suggest that despite increases in growing season uptake, tundra ecosystems are currently CO2 sources on an annual basis. © 2013 John Wiley & Sons Ltd/CNRS.

  4. Ecosystem Carbon Storage in Alpine Grassland on the Qinghai Plateau.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Shuli; Zhang, Fawei; Du, Yangong; Guo, Xiaowei; Lin, Li; Li, Yikang; Li, Qian; Cao, Guangmin

    2016-01-01

    The alpine grassland ecosystem can sequester a large quantity of carbon, yet its significance remains controversial owing to large uncertainties in the relative contributions of climate factors and grazing intensity. In this study we surveyed 115 sites to measure ecosystem carbon storage (both biomass and soil) in alpine grassland over the Qinghai Plateau during the peak growing season in 2011 and 2012. Our results revealed three key findings. (1) Total biomass carbon density ranged from 0.04 for alpine steppe to 2.80 kg C m-2 for alpine meadow. Median soil organic carbon (SOC) density was estimated to be 16.43 kg C m-2 in alpine grassland. Total ecosystem carbon density varied across sites and grassland types, from 1.95 to 28.56 kg C m-2. (2) Based on the median estimate, the total carbon storage of alpine grassland on the Qinghai Plateau was 5.14 Pg, of which 94% (4.85 Pg) was soil organic carbon. (3) Overall, we found that ecosystem carbon density was affected by both climate and grazing, but to different extents. Temperature and precipitation interaction significantly affected AGB carbon density in winter pasture, BGB carbon density in alpine meadow, and SOC density in alpine steppe. On the other hand, grazing intensity affected AGB carbon density in summer pasture, SOC density in alpine meadow and ecosystem carbon density in alpine grassland. Our results indicate that grazing intensity was the primary contributing factor controlling carbon storage at the sites tested and should be the primary consideration when accurately estimating the carbon storage in alpine grassland.

  5. Ecosystem Carbon Storage in Alpine Grassland on the Qinghai Plateau.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shuli Liu

    Full Text Available The alpine grassland ecosystem can sequester a large quantity of carbon, yet its significance remains controversial owing to large uncertainties in the relative contributions of climate factors and grazing intensity. In this study we surveyed 115 sites to measure ecosystem carbon storage (both biomass and soil in alpine grassland over the Qinghai Plateau during the peak growing season in 2011 and 2012. Our results revealed three key findings. (1 Total biomass carbon density ranged from 0.04 for alpine steppe to 2.80 kg C m-2 for alpine meadow. Median soil organic carbon (SOC density was estimated to be 16.43 kg C m-2 in alpine grassland. Total ecosystem carbon density varied across sites and grassland types, from 1.95 to 28.56 kg C m-2. (2 Based on the median estimate, the total carbon storage of alpine grassland on the Qinghai Plateau was 5.14 Pg, of which 94% (4.85 Pg was soil organic carbon. (3 Overall, we found that ecosystem carbon density was affected by both climate and grazing, but to different extents. Temperature and precipitation interaction significantly affected AGB carbon density in winter pasture, BGB carbon density in alpine meadow, and SOC density in alpine steppe. On the other hand, grazing intensity affected AGB carbon density in summer pasture, SOC density in alpine meadow and ecosystem carbon density in alpine grassland. Our results indicate that grazing intensity was the primary contributing factor controlling carbon storage at the sites tested and should be the primary consideration when accurately estimating the carbon storage in alpine grassland.

  6. Relationship of cyanobacterial and algal assemblages with vegetation in the high Arctic tundra (West Spitsbergen, Svalbard Archipelago

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Richter Dorota

    2015-09-01

    Full Text Available The paper presents the results of a study of cyanobacteria and green algae assemblages occurring in various tundra types determined on the basis of mosses and vascular plants and habitat conditions. The research was carried out during summer in the years 2009-2013 on the north sea-coast of Hornsund fjord (West Spitsbergen, Svalbard Archipelago. 58 sites were studied in various tundra types differing in composition of vascular plants, mosses and in trophy and humidity. 141 cyanobacteria and green algae were noted in the research area in total. Cyanobacteria and green algae flora is a significant element of many tundra types and sometimes even dominate there. Despite its importance, it has not been hitherto taken into account in the description and classification of tundra. The aim of the present study was to demonstrate the legitimacy of using phycoflora in supplementing the descriptions of hitherto described tundra and distinguishing new tundra types. Numeric hierarchical-accumulative classification (MVSP 3.1 software methods were used to analyze the cyanobacterial and algal assemblages and their co-relations with particular tundra types. The analysis determined dominant and distinctive species in the communities in concordance with ecologically diverse types of tundra. The results show the importance of these organisms in the composition of the vegetation of tundra types and their role in the ecosystems of this part of the Arctic.

  7. The biodiversity and stability of alpine meadow plant communities in ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    The biodiversity and stability of alpine meadow plant communities in relation to altitude gradient in three headwater resource regions. ... with the help of the degree of stability. Key words: Alpine meadow, Yangtze, Yellow and Yalu Tsangpo river source region, altitude gradient, species diversity, membership functions.

  8. Water track distribution and effects on carbon dioxide flux in an eastern Siberian upland tundra landscape

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Curasi, Salvatore R; Loranty, Michael M; Natali, Susan M

    2016-01-01

    Shrub expansion in tundra ecosystems may act as a positive feedback to climate warming, the strength of which depends on its spatial extent. Recent studies have shown that shrub expansion is more likely to occur in areas with high soil moisture and nutrient availability, conditions typically found in sub-surface water channels known as water tracks. Water tracks are 5–15 m wide channels of subsurface water drainage in permafrost landscapes and are characterized by deeper seasonal thaw depth, warmer soil temperatures, and higher soil moisture and nutrient content relative to adjacent tundra. Consequently, enhanced vegetation productivity, and dominance by tall deciduous shrubs, are typical in water tracks. Quantifying the distribution of water tracks may inform investigations of the extent of shrub expansion and associated impacts on tundra ecosystem carbon cycling. Here, we quantify the distribution of water tracks and their contribution to growing season CO 2 dynamics for a Siberian tundra landscape using satellite observations, meteorological data, and field measurements. We find that water tracks occupy 7.4% of the 448 km 2 study area, and account for a slightly larger proportion of growing season carbon uptake relative to surrounding tundra. For areas inside water tracks dominated by shrubs, field observations revealed higher shrub biomass and higher ecosystem respiration and gross primary productivity relative to adjacent upland tundra. Conversely, a comparison of graminoid-dominated areas in water tracks and inter-track tundra revealed that water track locations dominated by graminoids had lower shrub biomass yet increased net uptake of CO 2 . Our results show water tracks are an important component of this landscape. Their distribution will influence ecosystem structural and functional responses to climate, and is therefore of importance for modeling. (letter)

  9. Anterior cruciate ligament injury/reinjury in alpine ski racing

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jordan, Matthew J; Aagaard, Per; Herzog, Walter

    2017-01-01

    The purpose of the present review was to: 1) provide an overview of the current understanding on the epidemiology, etiology, risk factors, and prevention methods for anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) injury in alpine ski racing; and 2) provide an overview of what is known pertaining to ACL reinjury...... and return to sport after ACL injury in alpine ski racing. Given that most of the scientific studies on ACL injuries in alpine ski racing have been descriptive, and that very few studies contributed higher level scientific evidence, a nonsystematic narrative review was employed. Three scholarly databases...... were searched for articles on ACL injury or knee injury in alpine ski racing. Studies were classified according to their relevance in relation to epidemiology, etiology, risk factors, and return to sport/reinjury prevention. Alpine ski racers (skiers) were found to be at high risk for knee injuries...

  10. Can lemmings control the expansion of woody plants on tundra?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oksanen, Lauri; Oksanen, Tarja; Olofsson, Johan; Virtanen, Risto; Hoset, Katrine; Tuomi, Maria; Kyrö, Kukka

    2013-04-01

    The ongoing expansion of woody vegetation in the arctic, due to global warming, creates a positive feed back loop. Increasing abundance of woody plants reduces surface albedo both directly and via speeding up snow melt. Thus a successively greater fraction of incoming solar radiation is absorbed and converted to heat. Browsing mammals - both big and small - can prevent this by consuming woody plants. However, the grazer/browser community of many tundra areas is dominated by brown/Norwegian lemmings (Lemmus spp.) which eat graminoids and mosses and cannot use woody plants as forage. It would seem a priori likely that in such areas, mammalian herbivores speed up the expansion of woody plants by improving the chances of their seedlings to get established. We studied the impact of lemmings on woody plants by constructing lemming proof exclosures within piece high-altitude tundra at Joatkanjávri, northernmost Norway. The exclosures were constructed in 1998, during a period of low lemming densities, in snow-beds, where Norwegian lemmings (L. lemmus) were the only ecologically significant herbivorous mammals. (Reindeer migrate through the area in May, when snow-beds are inaccessible for them; during the fall migration, the area represents a dead end and is therefore avoided.) We chose pairs of maximally similar vegetation patches of 0.5 by 0.5 m and randomly assigned one of each pair to become an exclosure while the other plot was left open. The initial state of the vegetation was documented by the point frequency method. In 2008, after the 2007 lemming outbreak, the same documentation was repeated; thereafter the plots were harvested, the vegetation was sorted to species, oven dried and weighed. Exclusion of lemmings resulted to pronounced increase in community level plant biomass. Evergreen woody plants were especially favored by the exclusion of lemming: their above-ground biomass in exclosures was 14 times as great as their biomass on open reference plots. The

  11. Vectors and transmission dynamics for Setaria tundra (Filarioidea; Onchocercidae, a parasite of reindeer in Finland

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kuusela Jussi

    2009-01-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Recent studies have revealed expansion by an array of Filarioid nematodes' into the northern boreal region of Finland. The vector-borne nematode, Setaria tundra, caused a serious disease outbreak in the Finnish reindeer population in 2003–05. The main aim of this study was to understand the outbreak dynamics and the rapid expansion of S. tundra in the sub arctic. We describe the vectors of S. tundra, and its development in vectors, for the first time. Finally we discuss the results in the context of the host-parasite ecology of S. tundra in Finland Results Development of S. tundra to the infective stage occurs in mosquitoes, (genera Aedes and Anopheles. We consider Aedes spp. the most important vectors. The prevalence of S. tundra naturally infected mosquitoes from Finland varied from 0.5 to 2.5%. The rate of development in mosquitoes was temperature-dependent. Infective larvae were present approximately 14 days after a blood meal in mosquitoes maintained at room temperature (mean 21 C, but did not develop in mosquitoes maintained outside for 22 days at a mean temperature of 14.1 C. The third-stage (infective larvae were elongated (mean length 1411 μm (SD 207, and width 28 μm (SD 2. The anterior end was blunt, and bore two liplike structures, the posterior end slight tapering with a prominent terminal papilla. Infective larvae were distributed anteriorly in the insect's body, the highest abundance being 70 larvae in one mosquito. A questionnaire survey revealed that the peak activity of Culicidae in the reindeer herding areas of Finland was from the middle of June to the end of July and that warm summer weather was associated with reindeer flocking behaviour on mosquito-rich wetlands. Conclusion In the present work, S. tundra vectors and larval development were identified and described for the first time. Aedes spp. mosquitoes likely serve as the most important and competent vectors for S. tundra in Finland. Warm summers

  12. Chilling- and Freezing-Induced Alterations in Cytosine Methylation and Its Association with the Cold Tolerance of an Alpine Subnival Plant, Chorispora bungeana.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yuan Song

    Full Text Available Chilling (0-18°C and freezing (<0°C are two distinct types of cold stresses. Epigenetic regulation can play an important role in plant adaptation to abiotic stresses. However, it is not yet clear whether and how epigenetic modification (i.e., DNA methylation mediates the adaptation to cold stresses in nature (e.g., in alpine regions. Especially, whether the adaptation to chilling and freezing is involved in differential epigenetic regulations in plants is largely unknown. Chorispora bungeana is an alpine subnival plant that is distributed in the freeze-thaw tundra in Asia, where chilling and freezing frequently fluctuate daily (24 h. To disentangle how C. bungeana copes with these intricate cold stresses through epigenetic modifications, plants of C. bungeana were treated at 4°C (chilling and -4°C (freezing over five periods of time (0-24 h. Methylation-sensitive amplified fragment-length polymorphism markers were used to investigate the variation in DNA methylation of C. bungeana in response to chilling and freezing. It was found that the alterations in DNA methylation of C. bungeana largely occurred over the period of chilling and freezing. Moreover, chilling and freezing appeared to gradually induce distinct DNA methylation variations, as the treatment went on (e.g., after 12 h. Forty-three cold-induced polymorphic fragments were randomly selected and further analyzed, and three of the cloned fragments were homologous to genes encoding alcohol dehydrogenase, UDP-glucosyltransferase and polygalacturonase-inhibiting protein. These candidate genes verified the existence of different expressive patterns between chilling and freezing. Our results showed that C. bungeana responded to cold stresses rapidly through the alterations of DNA methylation, and that chilling and freezing induced different DNA methylation changes. Therefore, we conclude that epigenetic modifications can potentially serve as a rapid and flexible mechanism for C. bungeana

  13. [The processes of methane formation and oxidation in the soils of the Russian arctic tundra].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Berestovskaia, Iu Iu; Rusanov, I I; Vasil'eva, L V; Pimenov, N V

    2005-01-01

    Methane emission from the following types of tundra soils was studied: coarse humic gleyey loamy cryo soil, peaty gley soil, and peaty gleyey midloamy cryo soil of the arctic tundra. All the soils studied were found to be potential sources of atmospheric methane. The highest values of methane emission were recorded in August at a soil temperature of 8-10 degrees C. Flooded parcels were the sources of atmospheric methane throughout the observation period. The rates of methane production and oxidation in tundra soils of various types at 5 and 15 degrees C were studied by the radioisotope method. Methane oxidation was found to occur in bog water, in the green part of peat moss, and in all the soil horizons studied. Methane formation was recorded in the horizons of peat, in clay with plant roots, and in peaty moss dust of the bogey parcels. At both temperatures, the methane oxidation rate exceeded the rate of methane formation in all the horizons of the mossy-lichen tundra and of the bumpy sinkhole complex. Methanogenesis prevailed only in a sedge-peat moss bog at 15 degrees C. Enrichment bacterial cultures oxidizing methane at 5 and 15 degrees C were obtained. Different types of methanotrophic bacteria were shown to be responsible for methane oxidation under these conditions. A representative of type I methylotrophs oxidized methane at 5 degrees C, and Methylocella tundrae, a psychroactive representative of an acidophilic methanotrophic genus Methylocella, at 15 degrees C.

  14. Potential effects of ultraviolet radiation reduction on tundra nitrous oxide and methane fluxes in maritime Antarctica.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bao, Tao; Zhu, Renbin; Wang, Pei; Ye, Wenjuan; Ma, Dawei; Xu, Hua

    2018-02-27

    Stratospheric ozone has begun to recover in Antarctica since the implementation of the Montreal Protocol. However, the effects of ultraviolet (UV) radiation on tundra greenhouse gas fluxes are rarely reported for Polar Regions. In the present study, tundra N 2 O and CH 4 fluxes were measured under the simulated reduction of UV radiation in maritime Antarctica over the last three-year summers. Significantly enhanced N 2 O and CH 4 emissions occurred at tundra sites under the simulated reduction of UV radiation. Compared with the ambient normal UV level, a 20% reduction in UV radiation increased tundra emissions by an average of 8 μg N 2 O m -2 h -1 and 93 μg CH 4 m -2 h -1 , whereas a 50% reduction in UV radiation increased their emissions by an average of 17 μg N 2 O m -2 h -1 and 128 μg CH 4 m -2 h -1 . No statistically significant correlation (P > 0.05) was found between N 2 O and CH 4 fluxes and soil temperature, soil moisture, total carbon, total nitrogen, NO 3 - -N and NH 4 + -N contents. Our results confirmed that UV radiation intensity is an important factor affecting tundra N 2 O and CH 4 fluxes in maritime Antarctica. Exclusion of the effects of reduced UV radiation might underestimate their budgets in Polar Regions with the recovery of stratospheric ozone.

  15. Modeling carbon-nutrient interactions during the early recovery of tundra after fire.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jiang, Yueyang; Rastetter, Edward B; Rocha, Adrian V; Pearce, Andrea R; Kwiatkowski, Bonnie L; Shaver, Gaius R

    2015-09-01

    Fire frequency has dramatically increased in the tundra of northern Alaska, USA, which has major implications for the carbon budget of the region and the functioning of these ecosystems, which support important wildlife species. We investigated the postfire succession of plant and soil carbon (C), nitrogen (N), and phosphorus (P) fluxes and stocks along a burn severity gradient in the 2007 Anaktuvuk River fire scar in northern Alaska. Modeling results indicated that the early regrowth of postfire tundra vegetation was limited primarily by its canopy photosynthetic potential, rather than nutrient availability, because of the initially low leaf area and relatively high inorganic N and P concentrations in soil. Our simulations indicated that the postfire recovery of tundra vegetation was sustained predominantly by the uptake of residual inorganic N (i.e., in the remaining ash), and the redistribution of N and P from soil organic matter to vegetation. Although residual nutrients in ash were higher in the severe burn than the moderate burn, the moderate burn recovered faster because of the higher remaining biomass and consequent photosynthetic potential. Residual nutrients in ash allowed both burn sites to recover and exceed the unburned site in both aboveground biomass and production five years after the fire. The investigation of interactions among postfire C, N, and P cycles has contributed to a mechanistic understanding of the response of tundra ecosystems to fire disturbance. Our study provided insight on how the trajectory of recovery of tundra from wildfire is regulated during early succession.

  16. Evidence for re-distribution of 137Cs in Alaskan tundra, lake, and marine sediments

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Cooper, L.W.; Grebmeier, J.M.; Larsen, I.L.; Solis, C.; Olsen, C.R.

    1994-01-01

    Tundra sampling conducted during 1989-1990 at Imnavait Creek, Alaska (68 o 37'N, 149 o 17'W) indicated that inventories of 137 Cs were close to expectations, based upon measured atmospheric deposition for this latitude band. Typically observed at a depth of 4-10 cm, peak accumulations of 137 Cs were associated with organic materials, above any mineral soil. Accumulated inventories of 137 Cs in tundra decreased by up to 50% along a transect to Prudhoe Bay (70 o 13'N, 148 o 30'W). Atmospheric deposition of 137 Cs decreased with latitude in the Arctic, but declines in deposition would have been relatively small over this distance (200 km). This finding suggests a recent loss of 137 Cs from tundra over the northern parts of the transect between Imnavait Creek and Prudhoe Bay. This hypothesis is supported by observations of maximum 137 Cs accumulations occurring in surface layers of the more northern tundra rather than at depth (as at Imnavait Creek), as well as by indications of higher 137 Cs accumulations in a lake inlet. On the other hand, marine sediments collected in the Bering Sea and Chukchi Seas, including the Yukon River delta region, show apparently lower inventories compared to tundra or lake sediments, although complete inventories are unavailable due to radiocesium buried to depths (>20 cm) beyond the sampling capabilities used

  17. Responses of Tree Seedlings near the Alpine Treeline to Delayed Snowmelt and Reduced Sky Exposure

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Maaike Y. Bader

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available Earlier snowmelt changes spring stress exposure and growing-season length, possibly causing shifts in plant species dominance. If such shifts involve trees, this may lead to changes in treeline position. We hypothesized that earlier snowmelt would negatively affect the performance of tree seedlings near the treeline due to higher spring stress levels, but less so if seedlings were protected from the main stress factors of night frosts and excess solar radiation. We exposed seedlings of five European treeline tree species: Larix decidua, Picea abies, Pinus cembra, Pinus uncinata, and Sorbus aucuparia to two snow-cover treatments (early and late melting, with about two weeks difference combined with reduced sky exposure during the day (shading or night (night warming, repeated in two years, at a site about 200 m below the regional treeline elevation. Physiological stress levels (as indicated by lower Fv/Fm in the first weeks after emergence from snow were higher in early-emerging seedlings. As expected, shade reduced stress, but contrary to expectation, night warming did not. However, early- and late-emerging seedlings did not differ overall in their growth or survival, and the interaction with shading was inconsistent between years. Overall, shading had the strongest effect, decreasing stress levels and mortality (in the early-emerging seedlings only, but also growth. A two-week difference in snow-cover duration did not strongly affect the seedlings, although even smaller differences have been shown to affect productivity in alpine and arctic tundra vegetation. Still, snowmelt timing cannot be discarded as important for regeneration in subalpine conditions, because (1 it is likely more critical in very snow-rich or snow-poor mountains or landscape positions; and (2 it can change (subalpine vegetation phenology and productivity, thereby affecting plant interactions, an aspect that should be considered in future studies.

  18. What Does Matter?: Idols and Icons in the Nenets Tundra

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Laur Vallikivi

    2011-08-01

    Full Text Available This paper examines a mission encounter in the Nenets reindeer herders’ tundra. In post-Soviet Arctic Russia, Pentecostal and Baptist missionaries of Russian and Ukrainian origin have been fighting against idolatry and trying to persuade the Nenets to burn their sacred images or khekhe’’. They claim that among the indigenous Siberians idolatry exists in its quintessential or prototypical form, as it is described in the Bible. I shall suggest that this encounter takes place in a gap, in which the Nenets and Protestant have different understandings of language and materiality. Missionaries rely simultaneously on the ‘modern’ ideology of signification and the ‘non-modern’ magic of the material. They argue that idols, which are ‘nothing’ according to the scriptures, dangerously bind the ‘pagans’’ minds. For reindeer herders, for whom sacred items occupy an important place in the family wellbeing, the main issue is how to sever the link with the spirits without doing any damage.

  19. What Does Matter?: Idols and Icons in the Nenets Tundra

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Laur Vallikivi

    2011-09-01

    Full Text Available This paper examines a mission encounter in the Nenets reindeer herders’ tundra. In post-Soviet Arctic Russia, Pentecostal and Baptist missionaries of Russian and Ukrainian origin have been fighting against idolatry and trying to persuade the Nenets to burn their sacred images or khekhe’’. They claim that among the indigenous Siberians idolatry exists in its quintessential or prototypical form, as it is described in the Bible. I shall suggest that this encounter takes place in a gap, in which the Nenets and Protestant have different understandings of language and materiality. Missionaries rely simultaneously on the ‘modern’ ideology of signification and the ‘non-modern’ magic of the material. They argue that idols, which are ‘nothing’ according to the scriptures, dangerously bind the ‘pagans’’ minds. For reindeer herders, for whom sacred items occupy an important place in the family wellbeing, the main issue is how to sever the link with the spirits without doing any damage.

  20. Patterned-ground facilitates shrub expansion in Low Arctic tundra

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Frost, Gerald V; Epstein, Howard E; Walker, Donald A; Matyshak, Georgiy; Ermokhina, Ksenia

    2013-01-01

    Recent expansion of tall shrubs in Low Arctic tundra is widely seen as a response to climate warming, but shrubification is not occurring as a simple function of regional climate trends. We show that establishment of tall alder (Alnus) is strongly facilitated by small, widely distributed cryogenic disturbances associated with patterned-ground landscapes. We identified expanding and newly established shrub stands at two northwest Siberian sites and observed that virtually all new shrubs occurred on bare microsites (‘circles’) that were disturbed by frost-heave. Frost-heave associated with circles is a widespread, annual phenomenon that maintains mosaics of mineral seedbeds with warm soils and few competitors that are immediately available to shrubs during favorable climatic periods. Circle facilitation of alder recruitment also plausibly explains the development of shrublands in which alders are regularly spaced. We conclude that alder abundance and extent have increased rapidly in the northwest Siberian Low Arctic since at least the mid-20th century, despite a lack of summer warming in recent decades. Our results are consistent with findings in the North American Arctic which emphasize that the responsiveness of Low Arctic landscapes to climate change is largely determined by the frequency and extent of disturbance processes that create mineral-rich seedbeds favorable for tall shrub recruitment. Northwest Siberia has high potential for continued expansion of tall shrubs and concomitant changes to ecosystem function, due to the widespread distribution of patterned-ground landscapes. (letter)

  1. Metabolic Profiling of Alpine and Ecuadorian Lichens

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Verena K. Mittermeier

    2015-10-01

    Full Text Available Non-targeted 1H-NMR methods were used to determine metabolite profiles from crude extracts of Alpine and Ecuadorian lichens collected from their natural habitats. In control experiments, the robustness of metabolite detection and quantification was estimated using replicate measurements of Stereocaulon alpinum extracts. The deviations in the overall metabolite fingerprints were low when analyzing S. alpinum collections from different locations or during different annual and seasonal periods. In contrast, metabolite profiles observed from extracts of different Alpine and Ecuadorian lichens clearly revealed genus- and species-specific profiles. The discriminating functions determining cluster formation in principle component analysis (PCA were due to differences in the amounts of genus-specific compounds such as sticticin from the Sticta species, but also in the amounts of ubiquitous metabolites, such as sugar alcohols or trehalose. However, varying concentrations of these metabolites from the same lichen species e.g., due to different environmental conditions appeared of minor relevance for the overall cluster formation in PCA. The metabolic clusters matched phylogenetic analyses using nuclear ribosomal DNA (nrDNA internal transcribed spacer (ITS sequences of lichen mycobionts, as exemplified for the genus Sticta. It can be concluded that NMR-based non-targeted metabolic profiling is a useful tool in the chemo-taxonomy of lichens. The same approach could also facilitate the discovery of novel lichen metabolites on a rapid and systematical basis.

  2. Detection and molecular characterization of the mosquito-borne filarial nematode Setaria tundra in Danish roe deer (Capreolus capreolus)

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Enemark, Heidi Larsen; Oksanen, Antti; Chriél, Mariann

    2017-01-01

    Setaria tundra is a mosquito-borne filarial nematode of cervids in Europe. It has recently been associated with an emerging epidemic disease causing severe morbidity and mortality in reindeer and moose in Finland. Here, we present the first report of S. tundra in six roe deer (Capreolus capreolus...... capsule, worms (ranging from 2 to >20/deer) were found free in the peritoneal cavity. The worms were identified as S. tundra by morphological examination and/or molecular typing of the mitochondrial 12S rRNA and cox1 genes, which showed 99.1-99.8% identity to previously published S. tundra isolates from...... for development of parasite larvae in the mosquito vectors are expected, which may lead to increasing prevalence of S. tundra. Monitoring of this vector-borne parasite may thus be needed in order to enhance the knowledge of factors promoting its expansion and prevalence as well as predicting disease outbreaks. (C...

  3. Snowpack fluxes of methane and carbon dioxide from high Arctic tundra

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Pirk, Norbert; Tamstorf, Mikkel P; Lund, Magnus

    2016-01-01

    Measurements of the land-atmosphere exchange of the greenhouse gases methane (CH4) andcarbon dioxide (CO2) in high Arctic tundra ecosystems are particularly difficult in the cold season, resultingin large uncertainty on flux magnitudes and their controlling factors during this long, frozen period...... butdetected a pulse in the 13C-CH4stable isotopic signature of the soil’s CH4source during snowmelt, whichsuggests the release of a CH4reservoir that was strongly affected by methanotrophic microorganisms. In thepolygonal tundra of Adventdalen, the snowpack featured several ice layers, which suppressed...... togeomorphological soil cracks. Collectively, these findings suggest important ties between growing seasonand cold season greenhouse gas emissions from high Arctic tundra....

  4. Potential contributions of root decomposition to the nitrogen cycle in arctic forest and tundra.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Träger, Sabrina; Milbau, Ann; Wilson, Scott D

    2017-12-01

    Plant contributions to the nitrogen (N) cycle from decomposition are likely to be altered by vegetation shifts associated with climate change. Roots account for the majority of soil organic matter input from vegetation, but little is known about differences between vegetation types in their root contributions to nutrient cycling. Here, we examine the potential contribution of fine roots to the N cycle in forest and tundra to gain insight into belowground consequences of the widely observed increase in woody vegetation that accompanies climate change in the Arctic. We combined measurements of root production from minirhizotron images with tissue analysis of roots from differing root diameter and color classes to obtain potential N input following decomposition. In addition, we tested for changes in N concentration of roots during early stages of decomposition, and investigated whether vegetation type (forest or tundra) affected changes in tissue N concentration during decomposition. For completeness, we also present respective measurements of leaves. The potential N input from roots was twofold greater in forest than in tundra, mainly due to greater root production in forest. Potential N input varied with root diameter and color, but this variation tended to be similar in forest and tundra. As for roots, the potential N input from leaves was significantly greater in forest than in tundra. Vegetation type had no effect on changes in root or leaf N concentration after 1 year of decomposition. Our results suggest that shifts in vegetation that accompany climate change in the Arctic will likely increase plant-associated potential N input both belowground and aboveground. In contrast, shifts in vegetation might not alter changes in tissue N concentration during early stages of decomposition. Overall, differences between forest and tundra in potential contribution of decomposing roots to the N cycle reinforce differences between habitats that occur for leaves.

  5. Reproduction and seedling establishment of Picea glauca across the northernmost forest-tundra region in Canada.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Walker, Xanthe; Henry, Gregory H R; McLeod, Katherine; Hofgaard, Annika

    2012-10-01

    The northern boundary of boreal forest and the ranges of tree species are expected to shift northward in response to climate warming, which will result in a decrease in the albedo of areas currently covered by tundra vegetation, an increase in terrestrial carbon sequestration, and an alteration of biodiversity in the current Low Arctic. Central to the prediction of forest expansion is an increase in the reproductive capacity and establishment of individual trees. We assessed cone production, seed viability, and transplanted seedling success of Picea glauca (Moench.) Voss. (white spruce) in the early 1990s and again in the late 2000s at four forest stand sites and eight tree island sites (clonal populations beyond present treeline) in the Mackenzie Delta region of the Northwest Territories, Canada. Over the past 20 years, average temperatures in this region have increased by 0.9 °C. This area has the northernmost forest-tundra ecotone in North America and is one of the few circumpolar regions where the northern limit of conifer trees reaches the Arctic Ocean. We found that cone production and seed viability did not change between the two periods of examination and that both variables decreased northward across the forest-tundra ecotone. Nevertheless, white spruce individuals at the northern limit of the forest-tundra ecotone produced viable seeds. Furthermore, transplanted seedlings were able to survive in the northernmost sites for 15 years, but there were no signs of natural regeneration. These results indicate that if climatic conditions continue to ameliorate, reproductive output will likely increase, but seedling establishment and forest expansion within the forest-tundra of this region is unlikely to occur without the availability of suitable recruitment sites. Processes that affect the availability of recruitment sites are likely to be important elsewhere in the circumpolar ecotone, and should be incorporated into models and predictions of climate change

  6. Increasing alpine transit traffic through Switzerland will considerably enhance high altitude alpine pollutant levels

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Prevot, A.S.H.; Dommen, J.; Furger, M.; Graber, W.K. [Paul Scherrer Inst. (PSI), Villigen (Switzerland)

    1999-08-01

    Within the EU-Project VOTALP (Vertical Ozone Transports in the Alps), we have shown that deep alpine valleys like the Mesolcina Valley very efficiently transport air out of the polluted valley up to altitudes between 2000 and near 4000 m asl (above sea level). Pollutants emitted in these valleys are very efficiently transported up to high altitudes. (author) 2 figs., 1 tab., 2 refs.

  7. Encounters between Alpine ibex, Alpine chamois and domestic sheep in the Swiss Alps

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marie-Pierre Ryser-Degiorgis

    2002-12-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Information regarding spatio-temporal relationships and encounters of sympatric domestic sheep, Alpine ibex (Capra ibex ibex and Alpine chamois (Rupicapra rupicapra rupicapra in the Swiss Alps were systematically registered to evaluate the possibility of an interspecific transmission of infectious agents on pastures. Observations were performed in alpine regions of four Swiss cantons during the 1997 and 1998 mountain summer grazing season. In the main study area, Val Chamuera (canton of Grisons, a consistent reduction in the number of ibexes was observed after the arrival of sheep on the pasture. Some ibexes remained for a longer time in the area, but in general, ibexes and sheep did not use the same compartments of the area simultaneously. However, a salt lick for sheep attracted the ibexes, and several encounters were recorded in the compartments close to this salt lick. Several encounters registered in other areas of the Swiss Alps also occurred in the neighbourhood of a salt lick; however, in other cases different species were attracted by rich pastures. The study indicates that encounters (0-50 m between free-ranging individuals of different Caprinae species, domestic and wild, are not uncommon events in the Alps. Therefore, encounters can be considered to be a predisposing factor for interspecific transmission of infectious agents such as Mycoplasma conjunctivae, causing keratoconjunctivitis in chamois, ibex, domestic sheep and goats.

  8. GIS- and field data based modeling of snow water equivalent in shrub tundra

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yu. A. Dvornikov

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available An approach for snow water equivalent (SWE modelling in tundra environments has been developed for the test area on the Yamal peninsula. Detailed mapping of snow cover is very important for tundra areas under continuous permafrost conditions, because the snow cover affects the active layer thickness (ALT and the ground temperature, acting as a heat-insulating agent. The information concerning snow cover with specific regime of accumulation can support studies of ground temperature distribution and other permafrost related aspects. 

  9. Metagenomics reveals pervasive bacterial populations and reduced community diversity across the Alaska tundra ecosystem

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Eric Robert Johnston

    2016-04-01

    Full Text Available How soil microbial communities contrast with respect to taxonomic and functional composition within and between ecosystems remains an unresolved question that is central to predicting how global anthropogenic change will affect soil functioning and services. In particular, it remains unclear how small-scale observations of soil communities based on the typical volume sampled (1-2 grams are generalizable to ecosystem-scale responses and processes. This is especially relevant for remote, northern latitude soils, which are challenging to sample and are also thought to be more vulnerable to climate change compared to temperate soils. Here, we employed well-replicated shotgun metagenome and 16S rRNA gene amplicon sequencing to characterize community composition and metabolic potential in Alaskan tundra soils, combining our own datasets with those publically available from distant tundra and temperate grassland and agriculture habitats. We found that the abundance of many taxa and metabolic functions differed substantially between tundra soil metagenomes relative to those from temperate soils, and that a high degree of OTU-sharing exists between tundra locations. Tundra soils were an order of magnitude less complex than their temperate counterparts, allowing for near-complete coverage of microbial community richness (~92% breadth by sequencing, and the recovery of twenty-seven high-quality, almost complete (>80% completeness population bins. These population bins, collectively, made up to ~10% of the metagenomic datasets, and represented diverse taxonomic groups and metabolic lifestyles tuned toward sulfur cycling, hydrogen metabolism, methanotrophy, and organic matter oxidation. Several population bins, including members of Acidobacteria, Actinobacteria, and Proteobacteria, were also present in geographically distant (~100-530 km apart tundra habitats (full genome representation and up to 99.6% genome-derived average nucleotide identity. Collectively

  10. Shrub Abundance Mapping in Arctic Tundra with Misr

    Science.gov (United States)

    Duchesne, R.; Chopping, M. J.; Wang, Z.; Schaaf, C.; Tape, K. D.

    2013-12-01

    Over the last 60 years an increase in shrub abundance has been observed in the Arctic tundra in connection with a rapid surface warming trend. Rapid shrub expansion may have consequences in terms of ecosystem structure and function, albedo, and feedbacks to climate; however, its rate is not yet known. The goal of this research effort is thus to map large scale changes in Arctic tundra vegetation by exploiting the structural signal in moderate resolution satellite remote sensing images from NASA's Multiangle Imaging SpectroRadiometer (MISR), mapped onto a 250m Albers Conic Equal Area grid. We present here large area shrub mapping supported by reference data collated using extensive field inventory data and high resolution panchromatic imagery. MISR Level 1B2 Terrain radiance scenes from the Terra satellite from 15 June-31 July, 2000 - 2010 were converted to surface bidirectional reflectance factors (BRF) using MISR Toolkit routines and the MISR 1 km LAND product BRFs. The red band data in all available cameras were used to invert the RossThick-LiSparse-Reciprocal BRDF model to retrieve kernel weights, model-fitting RMSE, and Weights of Determination. The reference database was constructed using aerial survey, three field campaigns (field inventory for shrub count, cover, mean radius and height), and high resolution imagery. Tall shrub number, mean crown radius, cover, and mean height estimates were obtained from QuickBird and GeoEye panchromatic image chips using the CANAPI algorithm, and calibrated using field-based estimates, thus extending the database to over eight hundred locations. Tall shrub fractional cover maps for the North Slope of Alaska were constructed using the bootstrap forest machine learning algorithm that exploits the surface information provided by MISR. The reference database was divided into two datasets for training and validation. The model derived used a set of 19 independent variables(the three kernel weights, ratios and interaction terms

  11. Fire disturbance effects on land surface albedo in Alaskan tundra

    Science.gov (United States)

    French, Nancy H. F.; Whitley, Matthew A.; Jenkins, Liza K.

    2016-03-01

    The study uses satellite Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer albedo products (MCD43A3) to assess changes in albedo at two sites in the treeless tundra region of Alaska, both within the foothills region of the Brooks Range, the 2007 Anaktuvuk River Fire (ARF) and 2012 Kucher Creek Fire (KCF). Results are compared to each other and other studies to assess the magnitude of albedo change and the longevity of impact of fire on land surface albedo. In both sites there was a marked decrease of albedo in the year following the fire. In the ARF, albedo slowly increased until 4 years after the fire, when it returned to albedo values prior to the fire. For the year immediately after the fire, a threefold difference in the shortwave albedo decrease was found between the two sites. ARF showed a 45.3% decrease, while the KCF showed a 14.1% decrease in shortwave albedo, and albedo is more variable in the KCF site than ARF site 1 year after the fire. These differences are possibly the result of differences in burn severity of the two fires, wherein the ARF burned more completely with more contiguous patches of complete burn than KCF. The impact of fire on average growing season (April-September) surface shortwave forcing in the year following fire is estimated to be 13.24 ± 6.52 W m-2 at the ARF site, a forcing comparable to studies in other treeless ecosystems. Comparison to boreal studies and the implications to energy flux are discussed in the context of future increases in fire occurrence and severity in a warming climate.

  12. Transient nature of CO2 fertilization in Arctic tundra

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oechel, Walter C.; Cowles, Sid; Grulke, Nancy; Hastings, Steven J.; Lawrence, Bill; Prudhomme, Tom; Riechers, George; Strain, Boyd; Tissue, David; Vourlitis, George

    1994-10-01

    THERE has been much debate about the effect of increased atmospheric CO2 concentrations on plant net primary production1,3 and on net ecosystem CO2 flux3-10. Apparently conflicting experimental findings could be the result of differences in genetic potential11-15 and resource availability16-20, different experimental conditions21-24 and the fact that many studies have focused on individual components of the system2,21,25-27 rather than the whole ecosystem. Here we present results of an in situ experiment on the response of an intact native ecosystem to elevated CO2. An undisturbed patch of tussock tundra at Toolik Lake, Alaska, was enclosed in greenhouses in which the CO2 level, moisture and temperature could be controlled28, and was subjected to ambient (340 p.p.m.) and elevated (680 p.p.m.) levels of CO2 and temperature (+4 °C). Air humidity, precipitation and soil water table were maintained at ambient control levels. For a doubled CO2 level alone, complete homeostasis of the CO2 flux was re-established within three years, whereas the regions exposed to a combination of higher temperatures and doubled CO2 showed persistent fertilization effect on net ecosystem carbon sequestration over this time. This difference may be due to enhanced sink activity from the direct effects of higher temperatures on growth16,29-33 and to indirect effects from enhanced nutrient supply caused by increased mineralization10,11,19,27,34. These results indicate that the responses of native ecosystems to elevated CO2 may not always be positive, and are unlikely to be straightforward. Clearly, CO2 fertilization effects must always be considered in the context of genetic limitation, resource availability and other such factors.

  13. Tundra water budget and implications of precipitation underestimation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liljedahl, Anna K.; Hinzman, Larry D.; Kane, Douglas L.; Oechel, Walter C.; Tweedie, Craig E.; Zona, Donatella

    2017-08-01

    Difficulties in obtaining accurate precipitation measurements have limited meaningful hydrologic assessment for over a century due to performance challenges of conventional snowfall and rainfall gauges in windy environments. Here, we compare snowfall observations and bias adjusted snowfall to end-of-winter snow accumulation measurements on the ground for 16 years (1999-2014) and assess the implication of precipitation underestimation on the water balance for a low-gradient tundra wetland near Utqiagvik (formerly Barrow), Alaska (2007-2009). In agreement with other studies, and not accounting for sublimation, conventional snowfall gauges captured 23-56% of end-of-winter snow accumulation. Once snowfall and rainfall are bias adjusted, long-term annual precipitation estimates more than double (from 123 to 274 mm), highlighting the risk of studies using conventional or unadjusted precipitation that dramatically under-represent water balance components. Applying conventional precipitation information to the water balance analysis produced consistent storage deficits (79 to 152 mm) that were all larger than the largest actual deficit (75 mm), which was observed in the unusually low rainfall summer of 2007. Year-to-year variability in adjusted rainfall (±33 mm) was larger than evapotranspiration (±13 mm). Measured interannual variability in partitioning of snow into runoff (29% in 2008 to 68% in 2009) in years with similar end-of-winter snow accumulation (180 and 164 mm, respectively) highlights the importance of the previous summer's rainfall (25 and 60 mm, respectively) on spring runoff production. Incorrect representation of precipitation can therefore have major implications for Arctic water budget descriptions that in turn can alter estimates of carbon and energy fluxes.

  14. Terrimonas arctica sp. nov., isolated from Arctic tundra soil.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jiang, Fan; Qiu, Xia; Chang, Xulu; Qu, Zhihao; Ren, Lvzhi; Kan, Wenjing; Guo, Youhao; Fang, Chengxiang; Peng, Fang

    2014-11-01

    A novel, Gram-stain-negative, aerobic, non-motile and rod-shaped bacterium, designated R9-86(T), was isolated from tundra soil collected near Ny-Ålesund, Svalbard Archipelago, Norway (78° N). Growth occurred at 4-28 °C (optimum, 22-25 °C) and at pH 6.0-9.0 (optimum, pH 7.0). Flexirubin-type pigments were absent. Phylogenetic analysis based on 16S rRNA gene sequences indicated that strain R9-86(T) belonged to the genus Terrimonas in the family Chitinophagaceae. 16S rRNA gene sequence similarities between strain R9-86(T) and the type strains of species of the genus Terrimonas with validly published names ranged from 93.7 to 95.0%. Strain R9-86(T) contained iso-C(15:1)-G (25.7%), iso-C(15:0) (24.5%), iso-C(17:0)-3OH (18.3%) and summed feature 3 (C(16:1)ω7c and/or C(16:1)ω6c, 8.7%) as its major cellular fatty acids; phosphatidylethanolamine and an unknown polar lipid as its main polar lipids, and MK-7 as its predominant respiratory quinone. The DNA G+C content was 48.4 mol%. On the basis of phenotypic, chemotaxonomic and phylogenetic data, strain R9-86(T) is considered to represent a novel species of the genus Terrimonas, for which the name Terrimonas arctica sp. nov. is proposed. The type strain is R9-86(T) ( =CCTCC AB 2011004(T) =NRRL B-59114(T)). © 2014 IUMS.

  15. Spirosoma flavum sp. nov., isolated from Arctic tundra soil.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zou, Rui; Zhang, Yumin; Zhou, Xueyin; Wang, Yang; Peng, Fang

    2017-12-01

    A yellow-pigmented strain, designated Y4AR-5 T , was characterized by using a polyphasic approach. The strain was isolated from a tundra soil from near Longyearbyen, Svalbard Islands, Norway. The cells were Gram-stain-negative, aerobic, rod-shaped and non-motile. Growth occurred at 4-28 °C (optimum 20 °C) and pH 6.0-9.0 (optimum pH 8.0) and with 0-0.5 % (w/v) NaCl (optimum 0 %). The major respiratory quinone was MK-7. The polar lipids were phosphatidylethanolamine (PE), an aminophospholipid (APL), a phospholipid (PL), an unidentified aminolipid (AL) and two unidentified lipids. The results of analysis of the 16S rRNA gene indicated that the novel strain was most closely related to members of the genus Spirosoma (96.2 % sequence similarity with Spirosoma endophyticum). The genomic DNA G+C content was 45.9 mol%. The major cellular fatty acids were summed feature 3 (C16 : 1ω7c and/or C16 : 1ω6c), C16 : 1ω5c, iso-C17 : 0 3-OH and iso-C15 : 0. On the basis of its phenotypic and genotypic properties, strain Y4AR-5 T should be classified as representing a novel species of the genus Spirosoma, for which the name Spirosomaflavum sp. nov. is proposed. The type strain is Y4AR-5 T (=CCTCC AB 2015352 T =KCTC 52490 T ).

  16. Mucilaginibacter antarcticus sp. nov., isolated from tundra soil.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zheng, Ruichen; Zhao, Yiming; Wang, Liqiu; Chang, Xulu; Zhang, Yumin; Da, Xuyang; Peng, Fang

    2016-12-01

    The novel, pale yellow bacterial strain, designated S14-88T, was isolated from a tundra soil near Antarctic Peninsula, South Shetland Islands, and its taxonomic position was investigated by a genotypic and phenotypic analysis. Cells were facultatively anaerobic, Gram-stain-negative, non-motile and rod-shaped. Growth occurred at 4-28 °C (optimum at 15 °C), at pH 7.0-8.0 (optimum at 7.0) and with 0-0.6 % (w/v) NaCl (optimum, no NaCl). Phylogenetic analysis based on 16S rRNA gene sequences indicated that strain S14-88T formed a lineage within the genus Mucilaginibacter. The 16S rRNA gene sequence similarity between strain S14-88T and the type strains of related species ranged from 92.2 to 96.5 %, and the 16S rRNA gene sequence of S14-88T showed highest similarity of 96.5 % to Mucilaginibacter soyangensis HME6664T. The major cellular fatty acids of strain S14-88T were iso-C15 : 0 and summed feature 3 (C16 : 1ω7c and/or C16 : 1ω6c). The major respiratory quinone was menaquinone MK-7, and the main polar lipid was phosphatidylethanolamine. The DNA G+C content of strain S14-88T was 42.3 mol%. On the basis of the evidence presented in this study, strain S14-88T is considered to represent a novel species of the genus Mucilaginibacter, for which the name Mucilaginibacter antarcticus sp. nov. is proposed. The type strain is S14-88T (=CCTCC AB 2015321T=KCTC 52232T).

  17. Roseomonas arcticisoli sp. nov., isolated from Arctic tundra soil.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Myong Chol; Rim, Songguk; Pak, Sehong; Ren, Lvzhi; Zhang, Yumin; Chang, Xulu; Li, Xuhuan; Fang, Chengxiang; Zheng, Congyi; Peng, Fang

    2016-10-01

    A pale pink, Gram-reaction-negative, non-motile, aerobic bacterium, designated MC 3624T, was isolated from a tundra soil near Ny-Ålesund, Svalbard Archipelago, Norway (78° N). Growth occurred at 10-37 °C (optimum 25-30 °C) and at pH 6.0-9.0 (optimum pH 8.0). The predominant fatty acids were C16 : 0 (17.7 %), C18 : 1ω7c 11-methyl (13.4 %), summed feature 3 (C16 : 1ω7c and/or C16 : 1ω6c) (10.1 %) and summed feature 8 (C18 : 1ω6c and/or C18 : 1ω7c) (38.3 %). The major respiratory quinone was ubiquinone-10, and the main polar lipids were phosphatidylethanolamine, phosphatidylglycerol, diphosphatidylglycerol, phosphatidylcholine and an unidentified aminolipids. The DNA G+C content was 68.9 mol%. Carotenoids of the spirilloxanthin series were produced. The nearest neighbour to the novel strain was Roseomonas wooponensis WW53T (94.36 % 16S rRNA gene sequence similarity). On the basis of phenotypic, chemotaxonomic and phylogenetic data, strain MC 3624T represents a novel species of the genus Roseomonas, for which the name Roseomonas arcticisoli sp. nov. is proposed. The type strain is MC 3624T (=CCTCC AB 2014278T=LMG 28637T).

  18. Nocardia otitidiscaviarum pneumonia in an Alpine chamois (Rupicapra rupicapra rupicapra).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Domenis, L; Pecoraro, P; Spedicato, R; Corvonato, M; Peletto, S; Zuccon, F; Acutis, P

    2009-07-01

    Nocardia otitidiscaviarum was cultured from the lung of an Alpine chamois (Rupicapra rupicapra rupicapra) with suppurative bronchopneumonia. This is the first report of both nocardiosis and Nocardia otitidiscaviarum in this wild ungulate species.

  19. Palinspastic reconstruction of the Alpine thrust belt at the Alpine-Carpathian transition - A geological Sudoku

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beidinger, A.; Decker, K.; Zamolyi, A.; Hölzel, M.; Hoprich, M.; Strauss, P.

    2009-04-01

    The palinspastic reconstruction of the Austroalpine thrust belt is part of the project Karpatian Tectonics, which is funded by OMV Austria. The objective is to reconstruct the evolution of the thrust belt through the Early to Middle Miocene in order to obtain information on the palaeogeographic position of the Northern Calcareous Alps (NCA) in the region of the present Vienna Basin. A particular goal of the study is to constrain the position of reservoir rocks within the Rhenodanubic Flysch units and the NCA with respect to the autochthonous Malmian source rocks overlying the European basement below the Alpine-Carpathian thrust wedge, and to constrain the burial history of these source rocks. Reconstruction uses regional 2D seismic lines crossing from the European foreland into the fold-thrust belt, 3D seismic data covering the external thrust sheets, and lithostratigraphic data from a total of 51 selected wells, which were drilled and provided by OMV Austria. The main criterion, whether a well was suitable for palinspastic reconstruction or not, was its penetration of Alpine thrust sheets down to the Autochthonous Molasse of the foreland. Additional wells, which do not penetrate the entire Alpine thrust complex but include the Allochthonous Molasse or the external Alpine-Carpathian nappes (Waschberg and Roseldorf thrust unit, Rhenodanubic Flysch nappes) in their well path, were also taken into account. The well data in particular comprise stratigraphic information on the youngest overthrust sediments of the different thrust units and the underlying Autochthonous foreland Molasse. These data allow constraining the timing of thrust events in the allochthonous thrust units and overthrusting of the Autochthonous Molasse. In the particular case of overthrust Autochthonous Molasse, additionally to the timing of overthrusting, which can be derived from the youngest overthrust sediments, the palaeogeographic position of the Alpine Carpathian thrust front could directly be

  20. The relationship between soil physical properties and alpine plant diversity on Qinghai-Tibet Plateau

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lin Tang

    2015-04-01

    Full Text Available Through a large-scale research, we examined the heterogeneity of soil properties and plant diversity, as well as their relationships across alpine grassland types on Qinghai-Tibet Plateau. The soil pH and EC value increased with the constant deepening of the soil in all the three alpine grassland types which in order of absolute value in every soil layer were alpine desert steppe, alpine steppe and alpine meadow. Among the three grassland types, the alpine meadow possessed the highest SM but the lowest SBD. For plant diversity, alpine meadow was the highest, alpine desert steppe ranked the second and alpine steppe was the last. SM and SBD were the highest influential soil physical properties to species richness, but with opposite effects.

  1. INFLUENCE OF MOTOR ABILITIES ON LEARNING OF ALPINE SKI TECHNIQUE

    OpenAIRE

    Igor Božić; Nikola Prlenda; Vjekoslav Cigrovski

    2012-01-01

    The research determined influence of motor abilities on alpine ski learning. Moreover, the aim was also to estimate the contribution of some morphological characteristics to acquisition of ski knowledge. At the beginning of the study, participants were tested by tests evaluating balance, agility, explosive and static strength, movement frequency and flexibility. After evaluation of motor abilities, basic morphological characteristics were noted and then participants entered a seven days alpin...

  2. The footprint of Alaskan tundra fires during the past half-century: implications for surface properties and radiative forcing

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rocha, Adrian V.; Loranty, Michael M.; Higuera, Phil E.; Mack, Michelle C.; Hu, Feng Sheng; Jones, Benjamin M.; Breen, Amy L.; Rastetter, Edward B.; Goetz, Scott J.; Shaver, Gus R.

    2012-12-01

    Recent large and frequent fires above the Alaskan arctic circle have forced a reassessment of the ecological and climatological importance of fire in arctic tundra ecosystems. Here we provide a general overview of the occurrence, distribution, and ecological and climate implications of Alaskan tundra fires over the past half-century using spatially explicit climate, fire, vegetation and remote sensing datasets for Alaska. Our analyses highlight the importance of vegetation biomass and environmental conditions in regulating tundra burning, and demonstrate that most tundra ecosystems are susceptible to burn, providing the environmental conditions are right. Over the past two decades, fire perimeters above the arctic circle have increased in size and importance, especially on the North Slope, indicating that future wildfire projections should account for fire regime changes in these regions. Remote sensing data and a literature review of thaw depths indicate that tundra fires have both positive and negative implications for climatic feedbacks including a decadal increase in albedo radiative forcing immediately after a fire, a stimulation of surface greenness and a persistent long-term (>10 year) increase in thaw depth. In order to address the future impact of tundra fires on climate, a better understanding of the control of tundra fire occurrence as well as the long-term impacts on ecosystem carbon cycling will be required.

  3. The footprint of Alaskan tundra fires during the past half-century: implications for surface properties and radiative forcing

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Rocha, Adrian V; Loranty, Michael M; Higuera, Phil E; Mack, Michelle C; Hu Fengsheng; Jones, Benjamin M; Breen, Amy L; Rastetter, Edward B; Shaver, Gus R; Goetz, Scott J

    2012-01-01

    Recent large and frequent fires above the Alaskan arctic circle have forced a reassessment of the ecological and climatological importance of fire in arctic tundra ecosystems. Here we provide a general overview of the occurrence, distribution, and ecological and climate implications of Alaskan tundra fires over the past half-century using spatially explicit climate, fire, vegetation and remote sensing datasets for Alaska. Our analyses highlight the importance of vegetation biomass and environmental conditions in regulating tundra burning, and demonstrate that most tundra ecosystems are susceptible to burn, providing the environmental conditions are right. Over the past two decades, fire perimeters above the arctic circle have increased in size and importance, especially on the North Slope, indicating that future wildfire projections should account for fire regime changes in these regions. Remote sensing data and a literature review of thaw depths indicate that tundra fires have both positive and negative implications for climatic feedbacks including a decadal increase in albedo radiative forcing immediately after a fire, a stimulation of surface greenness and a persistent long-term (>10 year) increase in thaw depth. In order to address the future impact of tundra fires on climate, a better understanding of the control of tundra fire occurrence as well as the long-term impacts on ecosystem carbon cycling will be required. (letter)

  4. The footprint of Alaskan tundra fires during the past half-century: implications for surface properties and radiative forcing

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rocha, Adrian V.; Loranty, Michael M.; Higuera, Phil E.; Mack, Michelle C.; Hu, Feng Sheng; Jones, Benjamin M.; Breen, Amy L.; Rastetter, Edward B.; Goetz, Scott J.; Shaver, Gus R.

    2012-01-01

    Recent large and frequent fires above the Alaskan arctic circle have forced a reassessment of the ecological and climatological importance of fire in arctic tundra ecosystems. Here we provide a general overview of the occurrence, distribution, and ecological and climate implications of Alaskan tundra fires over the past half-century using spatially explicit climate, fire, vegetation and remote sensing datasets for Alaska. Our analyses highlight the importance of vegetation biomass and environmental conditions in regulating tundra burning, and demonstrate that most tundra ecosystems are susceptible to burn, providing the environmental conditions are right. Over the past two decades, fire perimeters above the arctic circle have increased in size and importance, especially on the North Slope, indicating that future wildfire projections should account for fire regime changes in these regions. Remote sensing data and a literature review of thaw depths indicate that tundra fires have both positive and negative implications for climatic feedbacks including a decadal increase in albedo radiative forcing immediately after a fire, a stimulation of surface greenness and a persistent long-term (>10 year) increase in thaw depth. In order to address the future impact of tundra fires on climate, a better understanding of the control of tundra fire occurrence as well as the long-term impacts on ecosystem carbon cycling will be required.

  5. How cushion communities are maintained in alpine ecosystems: A review and case study on alpine cushion plant reproduction

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jianguo Chen

    2017-08-01

    Full Text Available Cushion species occur in nearly all alpine environments worldwide. In past decades, the adaptive and ecosystem-engineering roles of such highly specialized life forms have been well studied. However, the adaptive strategies responsible for cushion species reproductive success and maintenance in severe alpine habitats remain largely unclear. In this study, we reviewed the current understanding of reproductive strategies and population persistence in alpine cushion species. We then present a preliminary case study on the sexual reproduction of Arenaria polytrichoides (Caryophyllaceae, a typical cushion species inhabiting high elevations of the Himalaya Hengduan Mountains, which is a hotspot for diversification of cushion species. Finally, we highlight the limitations of our current understanding of alpine cushion species reproduction and propose future directions for study.

  6. Seasonal variability of leaf area index and foliar nitrogen in contrasting dry-mesic tundras

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Campioli, Matteo; Michelsen, Anders; Lemeur, Raoul

    2009-01-01

    Assimilation and exchange of carbon for arctic ecosystems depend strongly on leaf area index (LAI) and total foliar nitrogen (TFN). For dry-mesic tundras, the seasonality of these characteristics is unexplored. We addressed this knowledge gap by measuring variations of LAI and TFN at five contras...

  7. Disturbance and Recovery of Arctic Alaskan Tundra Terrain. A Review of Recent Investigations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    1987-07-01

    analogous to situations where thermal thermoerosional niches (e.g. Williams 1952, erosion has been induced by off-road vehicle Abramov 1957, Walker and...assess environmental sensitivity 283-294. across large tundra areas could be improved with Abramov , R.V. (1957) Nish: Vytaivaniya (thaw- advances in

  8. Carbon dioxide exchange of the Arctic tundra in the northern part of European Russia

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kiepe, Isabell; Johansson, Paul Torbjörn; Friborg, Thomas

    , in the Pechora basin of the northern Komi Republic. The site is of lowland tundra type (underlain by permafrost) with predominating grasses, low shrubs, lichens and mosses interspersed with thermokarst lakes. The max. active layer thickness ranges from 90 cm till over 160 cm on the mineral slope and from 35 till...

  9. DIFFERENTIATION IN N15 UPTAKE AND THE ORGANIZATION OF AN ARCTIC TUNDRA PLANT COMMUNITY

    Science.gov (United States)

    We used N15 soil-labeling techniques to examine how the dominant species in a N-limited, tussock tundra plant community partitioned soil N, and how such partitioning may contribute to community organization. The five most abundant species were well differentiated with respect to...

  10. Spring feeding by pink-footed geese reduces carbon stocks and sink strength in tundra ecosystems

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Van der Wal, R.; Sjögersten, S.; Woodin, S.J.; Cooper, E.J.; Jónsdóttir, I.S.; Kuijper, D.; Fox, A.D.; Huiskes, A.H.L.

    2007-01-01

    Tundra ecosystems are widely recognized as precious areas and globally important carbon (C) sinks, yet our understanding of potential threats to these habitats and their large soil C store is limited. Land-use changes and conservation measures in temperate regions have led to a dramatic expansion of

  11. Carbon dioxide exchange in three tundra sites show a dissimilar response to environmental variables

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Mbufong, Herbert Njuabe; Lund, Magnus; Christensen, Torben Røjle

    2015-01-01

    variability. An improved understanding of the control of ancillary variables on net ecosystem exchange (NEE), gross primary production (GPP) and ecosystem respiration (Re) will improve the accuracy with which CO2 exchange seasonality in Arctic tundra ecosystems is modelled. Fluxes were measured with the eddy...

  12. Global assessment of experimental climate warming on tundra vegetation: heterogeneity over space and time

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sarah C. Elmendorf; Gregory H.R. Henry; Robert D. Hollister; Robert G. Björk; Anne D. Bjorkman; Terry V. Callaghan; [and others] NO-VALUE; William Gould; Joel Mercado

    2012-01-01

    Understanding the sensitivity of tundra vegetation to climate warming is critical to forecasting future biodiversity and vegetation feedbacks to climate. In situ warming experiments accelerate climate change on a small scale to forecast responses of local plant communities. Limitations of this approach include the apparent site-specificity of results and uncertainty...

  13. Micrometeorological measurements of CH4 and CO2 exchange between the atmosphere and subarctic tundra

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fan, S. M.; Wofsy, S. C.; Bakwin, P. S.; Jacob, D. J.; Anderson, S. M.; Kebabian, P. L.; Mcmanus, J. B.; Kolb, C. E.; Fitzjarrald, D. R.

    1992-01-01

    Eddy correlation flux measurements and concentration profiles of total hydrocarbons (THC) and CO2 were combined to provide a comprehensive record of atmosphere-biosphere exchange for these gases over a 30-day period in July-August 1988 in the Yukon-Kuskokwin River Delta of Alaska. Over 90 percent of net ecosystem exchanges of THC were due to methane. Lakes and wet meadow tundra provided the major sources of methane. The average fluxes from lake, dry tundra, and wet tundra were 11 +/- 3, 29 +/- 3, and 57 +/- 6 mg CH4/sq m/d, respectively. The mean remission rate for the site was 25 mg/sq m/d. Maximum uptake of CO2 by the tundra was 1.4 gC/sq m/d between 1000 and 1500 hrs, and nocturnal respiration averaged 0.73 gC/sq m/d. Net uptake of CO2 was 0.30 gC/sq m/d for the 30 days of measurement; methane flux accounted for 6 percent of CO2 net uptake.

  14. Snowpack fluxes of methane and carbon dioxide from high Arctic tundra

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Pirk, Norbert; Tamstorf, Mikkel P.; Lund, Magnus

    2016-01-01

    butdetected a pulse in the 13C-CH4stable isotopic signature of the soil’s CH4source during snowmelt, whichsuggests the release of a CH4reservoir that was strongly affected by methanotrophic microorganisms. In thepolygonal tundra of Adventdalen, the snowpack featured several ice layers, which suppressed...

  15. Contrasting radiation and soil heat fluxes in Arctic shrub and wet sedge tundra

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Juszak, Inge; Eugster, Werner; Heijmans, Monique M.P.D.; Schaepman-Strub, Gabriela

    2016-01-01

    Vegetation changes, such as shrub encroachment and wetland expansion, have been observed in many Arctic tundra regions. These changes feed back to permafrost and climate. Permafrost can be protected by soil shading through vegetation as it reduces the amount of solar energy available for thawing.

  16. Leaves are just the tip of the iceberg: A review of plant roots in Arctic tundra

    Science.gov (United States)

    Iversen, C. M.; Sloan, V. L.; Sullivan, P.; Euskirchen, E. S.; McGuire, A. D.; Norby, R. J.; Walker, A. P.; Warren, J.; Wullschleger, S. D.

    2013-12-01

    Arctic tundra is characterized by short-statured plant communities underlain by carbon (C)-rich soils and permafrost. Ecosystem C and nutrient cycles in tundra are driven by complex interactions between plants and their environment. However, rooting dynamics remain some of the least understood aspects of plant growth in the Arctic. Our goal in this review is to synthesize the available literature on arctic roots, and also their treatment in models. Belowground plant biomass in tundra ecosystems can be an order of magnitude larger than aboveground biomass. Roots are shallowly distributed, and often found in a thick organic horizon at the soil surface. Species-specific differences in root distribution, mycorrhizal colonization, and preference for different forms of nitrogen (N) may affect plant species competition and distribution under changing environmental conditions, and should be better represented in large-scale models. Future research should focus on estimates of arctic root production and lifespan, across the diversity of tundra ecosystems that exist in the Arctic. Improved linkages between root traits and easily-measured aboveground traits will facilitate the representation of roots in large-scale land surface models, and advance our understanding of the contribution of roots to ecosystem C and N cycling in the Arctic under current and future climates.

  17. Tundra plant above-ground biomass and shrub dominance mapped across the North Slope of Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Berner, Logan T.; Jantz, Patrick; Tape, Ken D.; Goetz, Scott J.

    2018-03-01

    Arctic tundra is becoming greener and shrubbier due to recent warming. This is impacting climate feedbacks and wildlife, yet the spatial distribution of plant biomass in tundra ecosystems is uncertain. In this study, we mapped plant and shrub above-ground biomass (AGB; kg m-2) and shrub dominance (%; shrub AGB/plant AGB) across the North Slope of Alaska by linking biomass harvests at 28 field sites with 30 m resolution Landsat satellite imagery. We first developed regression models (p accounting for ~43% of regional plant AGB. The new maps capture landscape variation in plant AGB visible in high resolution satellite and aerial imagery, notably shrubby riparian corridors. Modeled shrub AGB was strongly correlated with field measurements of shrub canopy height at 25 sites (rs  = 0.88) and with a regional map of shrub cover (rs  = 0.76). Modeled plant AGB and shrub dominance were higher in shrub tundra than graminoid tundra and increased between areas with the coldest and warmest summer air temperatures, underscoring the fact that future warming has the potential to greatly increase plant AGB and shrub dominance in this region. These new biomass maps provide a unique source of ecological information for a region undergoing rapid environmental change.

  18. Movement of foraging Tundra Swans explained by spatial pattern in cryptic food densities

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Klaassen, R.H.G.; Nolet, B.A.; Bankert, D.

    2006-01-01

    We tested whether Tundra Swans use information on the spatial distribution of cryptic food items (belowground Sago pondweed tubers) to shape their movement paths. In a continuous environment, swans create their own food patches by digging craters, which they exploit in several feeding bouts. Series

  19. Response of CO2 exchange in a tussock tundra ecosystem to permafrost thaw and thermokarst development

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jason Vogel; Edward A.G. Schuur; Christian Trucco; Hanna. Lee

    2009-01-01

    Climate change in high latitudes can lead to permafrost thaw, which in ice-rich soils can result in ground subsidence, or thermokarst. In interior Alaska, we examined seasonal and annual ecosystem CO2 exchange using static and automatic chamber measurements in three areas of a moist acidic tundra ecosystem undergoing varying degrees of permafrost...

  20. Resistance and resilience of tundra plant communities to disturbance by winter seismic vehicles

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Felix, N.A.; Raynolds, M.K.; Jorgenson, J.C.; DuBois, K.E.

    1992-01-01

    Effects of winter seismic exploration on arctic tundra were evaluated on the coastal plain of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, four to five growing seasons after disturbance. Plant cover, active layer depths, and track depression were measured at plots representing major tundra plant communities and different levels of initial disturbance. Results are compared with the initial effects reported earlier. Little resilience was seen in any vegetation type, with no clearly decreasing trends in community dissimilarity. Active layer depths remained greater on plots in all nonriparian vegetation types, and most plots still had visible trails. Decreases in plant cover persisted on most plots, although a few species showed recovery or increases in cover above predisturbance level. Moist sedge-shrub tundra and dryas terraces had the largest community dissimilarities initially, showing the least resistance to high levels of winter vehicle disturbance. Community dissimilarity continued to increase for five seasons in moist sedge-shrub tundra, with species composition changing to higher sedge cover and lower shrub cover. The resilience amplitude may have been exceeded on four plots which had significant track depression

  1. Landscape variability of vegetation change across the forest to tundra transition of central Canada

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bonney, Mitchell Thurston

    Widespread vegetation productivity increases in tundra ecosystems and stagnation, or even productivity decreases, in boreal forest ecosystems have been detected from coarse-scale remote sensing observations over the last few decades. However, finer-scale Landsat studies have shown that these changes are heterogeneous and may be related to landscape and regional variability in climate, land cover, topography and moisture. In this study, a Landsat Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI) time-series (1984-2016) was examined for a study area spanning the entirety of the sub-Arctic boreal forest to Low Arctic tundra transition of central Canada (i.e., Yellowknife to the Arctic Ocean). NDVI trend analysis indicated that 27% of un-masked pixels in the study area exhibited a significant (p temperatures, shrubland and forest land cover, closer proximity to major drainage systems, longer distances from major lakes and lower elevations were generally more important and associated with larger positive NDVI trends. These findings indicate that the largest positive NDVI trends were primarily associated with the increased productivity of shrubby environments, especially at, and north of the forest-tundra ecotone in areas with more favorable growing conditions. Smaller and less significant NDVI trends in boreal forest environments south of the forest-tundra ecotone were likely associated with long-term recovery from fire disturbance rather than the variables analyzed here.

  2. Does earlier snowmelt lead to greater CO2 sequestration in two low Arctic tundra ecosystems?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Humphreys, Elyn R.; Lafleur, Peter M.

    2011-05-01

    Some studies have reported that spring warming and earlier snowmelt leads to increased CO2 sequestration in Arctic terrestrial ecosystems. We measured tundra-atmosphere CO2 exchange via eddy covariance at two low Arctic sites (mixed upland tundra and sedge fen) in central Canada over multiple snow-free periods to assess this hypothesis. Both sites were net sinks for atmospheric CO2 in all years (2004-2010), but with high interannual variability. Despite a large range in snowmelt date (30 days), we did not find a statistically significant correlation between seasonal accumulated net ecosystem production (NEP) and snowmelt for either site. Although many factors can influence seasonal total NEP, our analysis shows that annual variations in photosynthetic capacity, likely driven by changes in leaf area, is a dominating control at these Arctic sites. At the upland tundra site, protection of overwintering buds by a longer duration of deep snow appears to be linked to greater photosynthetic capacity and NEP. Whereas at the fen site, sedge growth benefits from earlier snowmelt resulting in a strong correlation with early season NEP and an increase in total study period NEP with increasing growing degree days. These results highlight the complexity of interannual variation in ecosystem CO2 exchange in Arctic tundra and suggest that snowmelt date alone cannot predict seasonal, or annual, NEP.

  3. Importance of Marine-Derived Nutrients Supplied by Planktivorous Seabirds to High Arctic Tundra Plant Communities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zwolicki, Adrian; Zmudczyńska-Skarbek, Katarzyna; Richard, Pierre; Stempniewicz, Lech

    2016-01-01

    We studied the relative importance of several environmental factors for tundra plant communities in five locations across Svalbard (High Arctic) that differed in geographical location, oceanographic and climatic influence, and soil characteristics. The amount of marine-derived nitrogen in the soil supplied by seabirds was locally the most important of the studied environmental factors influencing the tundra plant community. We found a strong positive correlation between δ15N isotopic values and total N content in the soil, confirming the fundamental role of marine-derived matter to the generally nutrient-poor Arctic tundra ecosystem. We also recorded a strong correlation between the δ15N values of soil and of the tissues of vascular plants and mosses, but not of lichens. The relationship between soil δ15N values and vascular plant cover was linear. In the case of mosses, the percentage ground cover reached maximum around a soil δ 15N value of 8‰, as did plant community diversity. This soil δ15N value clearly separated the occurrence of plants with low nitrogen tolerance (e.g. Salix polaris) from those predominating on high N content soils (e.g. Cerastium arcticum, Poa alpina). Large colonies of planktivorous little auks have a great influence on Arctic tundra vegetation, either through enhancing plant abundance or in shaping plant community composition at a local scale.

  4. CLIMATIC EFFECTS ON TUNDRA CARBON STORAGE INFERRED FROM EXPERIMENTAL DATA AND A MODEL

    Science.gov (United States)

    We used a process-based model of ecosystem carbon (C) and nitrogen (N)dynamics, MBL-GEM (Marine Biological Laboratory General Ecosystem Model), to integrated and analyze the results of several experiments that examined the response of arctic tussock tundra to manipulations of CO2...

  5. Seasonal changes in the radiation balance of subarctic forest and tundra

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lafleur, P.M.; Renzetti, A.V.; Bello, R.

    1993-01-01

    This paper examines the seasonal behavior of the components of the radiation budget of subarctic tundra and open forest near Churchill, Manitoba. Data were collected between late February and August 1990. The presence of the winter snowpack is the most important factor which affects the difference in radiation balances of tundra and forest. Overall, net radiation was about four to five times larger over the forest when snow covered the ground. Albedo differences were primarily responsible for this difference in net radiation; however, somewhat smaller net longwave losses were experienced at the tundra site. The step decrease in albedo from winter to summer (i.e. snow-covered to snow-free conditions) was significant at both sites. The forest albedo decreased by about three-fold while the tundra experienced a seven-fold decrease. Net radiation at both sites increased in direct response to the albedo change. Transmissivity of the atmosphere near Churchill also appeared to change at about the same time as the loss of the snow cover and may be related to changing air masses which bring about the final snow melt

  6. Tundra landform and vegetation productivity trend maps for the Arctic Coastal Plain of northern Alaska.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lara, Mark J; Nitze, Ingmar; Grosse, Guido; McGuire, A David

    2018-04-10

    Arctic tundra landscapes are composed of a complex mosaic of patterned ground features, varying in soil moisture, vegetation composition, and surface hydrology over small spatial scales (10-100 m). The importance of microtopography and associated geomorphic landforms in influencing ecosystem structure and function is well founded, however, spatial data products describing local to regional scale distribution of patterned ground or polygonal tundra geomorphology are largely unavailable. Thus, our understanding of local impacts on regional scale processes (e.g., carbon dynamics) may be limited. We produced two key spatiotemporal datasets spanning the Arctic Coastal Plain of northern Alaska (~60,000 km 2 ) to evaluate climate-geomorphological controls on arctic tundra productivity change, using (1) a novel 30 m classification of polygonal tundra geomorphology and (2) decadal-trends in surface greenness using the Landsat archive (1999-2014). These datasets can be easily integrated and adapted in an array of local to regional applications such as (1) upscaling plot-level measurements (e.g., carbon/energy fluxes), (2) mapping of soils, vegetation, or permafrost, and/or (3) initializing ecosystem biogeochemistry, hydrology, and/or habitat modeling.

  7. Plant functional type affects nitrogen use efficiency in high-Arctic tundra

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Oulehle, F.; Rowe, E. C.; Myška, Oldřich; Chuman, T.; Evans, C.D.

    2016-01-01

    Roč. 94, mar (2016), s. 19-28 ISSN 0038-0717 R&D Projects: GA MŠk(CZ) ED1.1.00/02.0073 Institutional support: RVO:67179843 Keywords : Arctic * Nitrogen * Isotope * Mineralization * Nitrification * Tundra Subject RIV: EH - Ecology, Behaviour Impact factor: 4.857, year: 2016

  8. The effect of nutrient deposition on bacterial communities in Arctic tundra soil

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barbara J. Campbell; Shawn W. Polson; Thomas E. Hanson; Michelle C. Mack; Edward A.G. Schuur

    2010-01-01

    The microbial communities of high-latitude ecosystems are expected to experience rapid changes over the next century due to climate warming and increased deposition of reactive nitrogen, changes that will likely affect microbial community structure and function. In moist acidic tundra (MAT) soils on the North Slope of the Brooks Range, Alaska, substantial losses of C...

  9. Estimation and extrapolation of soil properties in the Siberian tundra, using field spectroscopy

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bartholomeus, H.; Schaepman-Strub, G.; Blok, D.; Udaltsov, S.; Sofronov, R.

    2010-01-01

    The Siberian tundra is a complex and sensitive ecosystem. Predicted global warming will be highest in the Arctic and will severely affect permafrost environments. Due to its large spatial extent and large stocks of soil organic carbon, changes to the carbon fluxes in the Arctic will have significant

  10. Sphingomonas antarctica sp. nov., isolated from Antarctic tundra soil.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huang, Yao; Wei, Ziyan; Danzeng, Wangmu; Kim, Myong Chol; Zhu, Guoxin; Zhang, Yumin; Liu, Zuobing; Peng, Fang

    2017-10-01

    Strain 200 T , isolated from a soil sample taken from Antarctic tundra soil around Zhongshan Station, was found to be a Gram-stain-negative, yellow-pigmented, catalase-positive, oxidase-negative, non-motile, non-spore-forming, rod-shaped and aerobic bacterium. Strain 200 T grew optimally at pH 7.0 and in the absence of NaCl on R2A. Its optimum growth temperature was 20 °C. Phylogenetic analysis based on 16S rRNA gene sequences indicated that strain 200 T belonged to the genus Sphingomonas. Strain 200 T showed the highest sequence similarities to Sphingomonas kyeonggiense THG-DT81 T (95.1 %) and Sphingomonas molluscorum KMM 3882 T (95.1 %). Chemotaxonomic analysis showed that strain 200 T had characteristics typical of members of the genus Sphingomonas. Ubiquinone 10 was the predominant respiratory quinone and sym-homospermidine was the polyamine. The major polar lipids were sphingoglycolipid, phosphatidylethanolamine, phosphatidylglycerol, diphosphatidylglycerol and phosphatidylcholine. The G+C content of the genomic DNA was determined to be 60.9 mol%. Strain 200 T contained C16 : 0 (31.6 %), summed feature 8 (comprising C18 : 1ω7c and/or C18 : 1ω6c, 22.7 %), summed feature 3 (comprising C16 : 1ω7c and/or C16 : 1ω6c, 11.2 %), C18 : 0 (7.8 %) and C14 : 0 2OH (6.7 %) as the major cellular fatty acids. On the basis of phylogenetic analysis, and physiological and biochemical characterization, strain 200 T should be classified as representing a novel species of the genus Sphingomonas, for which the name Sphingomonasantarctica sp. nov. is proposed. The type strain is 200 T (=CCTCC AB 2016064 T =KCTC 52488 T ).

  11. Assessment of tundra-taiga boundary changes using MODIS LAI data

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Min-ji; Han, Kyung-Soo; Pi, Kyoung-Jin; Kim, Sang-Il; Kim, In-Hwan

    2011-11-01

    Surface of the earth temperature of the earth caused phenomenon that rise and is global warming as greenhouse gas concentration into waiting by continuous discharge of greenhouse gas increases since passing industrial revolution. While gravity about climate fluctuation is risen worldwide, place that can diminish successively biggest surface of the earth change by global warming is high latitude area of polar regions. This study observed distribution of vegetation to confirm change of tundra-taiga boundary. Tundra-taiga boundary is used to observe the transfer of vegetation pattern because it is very sensitive to human activity, natural disturbances and climate change. The circumpolar tundra-taiga boundary could observe reaction about some change. Reaction and confirmation about climate change were definite than other place. This study used Leaf Area Index(LAI) 8-Day data in August from 2000 to 2009 that acquire from Terra satellite MODerate resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer(MODIS) sensor and used Köppen Climate Map, Global Land Cover 2000 for reference data. This study conducted analysis of spatial distribution in low density vegetated areas and inter-annual / zonal analysis for using the long period data of LAI. Change of LAI was confirmed by analysis based on boundary value of LAI in study area. Development of vegetation could be confirmed by area of grown vegetation(730,325km2 ) than area of reduced vegetation(22,372km2 ) in tundra climate. Also, area was increased with the latitude 64°N~66° N as the center and around the latitude 62° N through area analysis by latitude. Vegetation of tundra-taiga boundary was general increase from 2000 to 2009. While area of reduced vegetation was a little, area of vegetation growth and development was increased significantly.

  12. Interannual Variability of Carbon Dioxide, Methane and Nitrous Oxide Fluxes in Subarctic European Russian Tundra

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marushchak, M. E.; Voigt, C.; Gil, J.; Lamprecht, R. E.; Trubnikova, T.; Virtanen, T.; Kaverin, D.; Martikainen, P. J.; Biasi, C.

    2017-12-01

    Southern tundra landscapes are particularly vulnerable to climate warming, permafrost thaw and associated landscape rearrangement due to near-zero permafrost temperatures. The large soil C and N stocks of subarctic tundra may create a positive feedback for warming if released to the atmosphere at increased rates. Subarctic tundra in European Russia is a mosaic of land cover types, which all play different roles in the regional greenhouse gas budget. Peat plateaus - massive upheaved permafrost peatlands - are large storehouses of soil carbon and nitrogen, but include also bare peat surfaces that act as hot-spots for both carbon dioxide and nitrous oxide emissions. Tundra wetlands are important for the regional greenhouse gas balance since they show high rates of methane emissions and carbon uptake. The most dominant land-form is upland tundra vegetated by shrubs, lichens and mosses, which displays a close-to-neutral balance with respect to all three greenhouse gases. The study site Seida (67°03'N, 62°56'E), located in the discontinuous permafrost zone of Northeast European Russia, incorporates all these land forms and has been an object for greenhouse gas investigations since 2007. Here, we summarize the growing season fluxes of carbon dioxide, methane and nitrous oxide measured by chamber techniques over the study years. We analyzed the flux time-series together with the local environmental data in order to understand the drivers of interannual variability. Detailed soil profile measurements of greenhouse gas concentrations, soil moisture and temperature provide insights into soil processes underlying the net emissions to the atmosphere. The multiannual time-series allows us to assess the importance of the different greenhouse gases and landforms to the overall climate forcing of the study region.

  13. Greater shrub dominance alters breeding habitat and food resources for migratory songbirds in Alaskan arctic tundra.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boelman, Natalie T; Gough, Laura; Wingfield, John; Goetz, Scott; Asmus, Ashley; Chmura, Helen E; Krause, Jesse S; Perez, Jonathan H; Sweet, Shannan K; Guay, Kevin C

    2015-04-01

    Climate warming is affecting the Arctic in multiple ways, including via increased dominance of deciduous shrubs. Although many studies have focused on how this vegetation shift is altering nutrient cycling and energy balance, few have explicitly considered effects on tundra fauna, such as the millions of migratory songbirds that breed in northern regions every year. To understand how increasing deciduous shrub dominance may alter breeding songbird habitat, we quantified vegetation and arthropod community characteristics in both graminoid and shrub dominated tundra. We combined measurements of preferred nest site characteristics for Lapland longspurs (Calcarius lapponicus) and Gambel's White-crowned sparrows (Zonotrichia leucophrys gambelii) with modeled predictions for the distribution of plant community types in the Alaskan arctic foothills region for the year 2050. Lapland longspur nests were found in sedge-dominated tussock tundra where shrub height does not exceed 20 cm, whereas White-crowned sparrows nested only under shrubs between 20 cm and 1 m in height, with no preference for shrub species. Shrub canopies had higher canopy-dwelling arthropod availability (i.e. small flies and spiders) but lower ground-dwelling arthropod availability (i.e. large spiders and beetles). Since flies are the birds' preferred prey, increasing shrubs may result in a net enhancement in preferred prey availability. Acknowledging the coarse resolution of existing tundra vegetation models, we predict that by 2050 there will be a northward shift in current White-crowned sparrow habitat range and a 20-60% increase in their preferred habitat extent, while Lapland longspur habitat extent will be equivalently reduced. Our findings can be used to make first approximations of future habitat change for species with similar nesting requirements. However, we contend that as exemplified by this study's findings, existing tundra modeling tools cannot yet simulate the fine-scale habitat

  14. Greater deciduous shrub abundance extends tundra peak season and increases modeled net CO2 uptake.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sweet, Shannan K; Griffin, Kevin L; Steltzer, Heidi; Gough, Laura; Boelman, Natalie T

    2015-06-01

    Satellite studies of the terrestrial Arctic report increased summer greening and longer overall growing and peak seasons since the 1980s, which increases productivity and the period of carbon uptake. These trends are attributed to increasing air temperatures and reduced snow cover duration in spring and fall. Concurrently, deciduous shrubs are becoming increasingly abundant in tundra landscapes, which may also impact canopy phenology and productivity. Our aim was to determine the influence of greater deciduous shrub abundance on tundra canopy phenology and subsequent impacts on net ecosystem carbon exchange (NEE) during the growing and peak seasons in the arctic foothills region of Alaska. We compared deciduous shrub-dominated and evergreen/graminoid-dominated community-level canopy phenology throughout the growing season using the normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI). We used a tundra plant-community-specific leaf area index (LAI) model to estimate LAI throughout the green season and a tundra-specific NEE model to estimate the impact of greater deciduous shrub abundance and associated shifts in both leaf area and canopy phenology on tundra carbon flux. We found that deciduous shrub canopies reached the onset of peak greenness 13 days earlier and the onset of senescence 3 days earlier compared to evergreen/graminoid canopies, resulting in a 10-day extension of the peak season. The combined effect of the longer peak season and greater leaf area of deciduous shrub canopies almost tripled the modeled net carbon uptake of deciduous shrub communities compared to evergreen/graminoid communities, while the longer peak season alone resulted in 84% greater carbon uptake in deciduous shrub communities. These results suggest that greater deciduous shrub abundance increases carbon uptake not only due to greater leaf area, but also due to an extension of the period of peak greenness, which extends the period of maximum carbon uptake. © 2015 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  15. Ethnobotany of medicinal plants among the communities of Alpine and Sub-alpine regions of Pakistan.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kayani, Sadaf; Ahmad, Mushtaq; Sultana, Shazia; Khan Shinwari, Zabta; Zafar, Muhammed; Yaseen, Ghulam; Hussain, Manzoor; Bibi, Tahira

    2015-04-22

    To best of our knowledge it is first quantitative ethno-botanical study from Alpine and Sub-alpine, Western Himalaya of Pakistan. The study aims to report, compare the uses and highlight the ethno-botanical significance of medicinal plants for treatment of various diseases. A total of 290 (278 males and 12 females) informants including 14 Local Traditional Healers (LTHs) were interviewed. Information was collected using semi-structured interviews, analyzed and compared by quantitative ethno-botanical indices such as Informant Consensus Factor (ICF), Relative frequency of citation (RFC), use value (UV), Fidelity Level (FL) and Jaccard index (JI). A total of 125 plant species (Gymnosperms 7 species, Monocotyledons 2 and 116 Di-cotyledons) belonging to 41 families are collected, identified and ethno-botanically assessed. The most dominant family is Ranunculaceae (20 species) followed by Rosaceae (14 species). In diseases treated, gastrointestinal tract (GIT) diseases have highest proportion (27.5%) followed by respiratory diseases (20%) in the mountain communities. The most dominant life form of plants used is herbs (78%) followed by shrubs (19%) while the most commonly used plant parts are leaves (44 reports) followed by underground part, the roots (37 reports). The highest ICF (0.68) is found for ear, nose and eye disease category followed by respiratory disorders (0.46). There are 15 medicinal plants having 100% FL. Use value (UV) and Relative frequency of citation (RFC) range from 0.03 to 0.53 and 0.04 to 0.23 respectively. In comparison, maximum similarity index is found in the studies with JI 19.52 followed by 17.39. Similarity percentage of plant uses range from 1.69% to 19.52% while dissimilarity percentage varies from 0% to 20%. The Alpine and Sub-alpine regions of Pakistan are rich in medicinal plants and still need more research exploration. On the other hand, ethno-botanical knowledge in study areas is decreasing day by day due to high emigration rates

  16. Ecological networks in the Alpine Arc

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Thomas Scheurer

    2009-07-01

    Full Text Available In response to decreasing biodiversity and new phenomena such as climate change, the number of initiatives aimed at creating ecological networks is increasing. Research and activities based on the theme of ecological connectivity are generating a completely new perception of methods of protecting the natural environment: there is a shift from a conservationist approach to natural systems to one that is more functional. The place and role of protected areas within their regions are being redefined. Such areas are now situated in a wider territorial context and new cooperative arrangements are encouraged with local actors. The alpine approach adopted in establishing a transalpine ecological network, illustrated by several examples, underlines the importance of both an international framework for such activities and the need to extend them to include not only the classic actors in the protection of the natural environment, but also other sectors that until now have seldom been involved.Face au constat d’une perte accrue de biodiversité et de phénomènes nouveaux, tels le changement climatique, les initiatives de mise en place de réseaux écologiques se multiplient. Les réflexions et les actions conduites autour de la thématique de la connectivité écologique font naître une perception complètement nouvelle des pratiques de la protection de la nature : un changement d’une conception patrimoniale conservatrice vers une approche plus fonctionnelle des systèmes naturels. La place et le rôle des espaces protégés au sein de leur région sont redéfinis, les situant  dans un contexte territorial plus large et engendrant de nouvelles collaborations entre acteurs locaux. L’approche alpine pour la réalisation d’un réseau écologique transalpin, illustrée par différents exemples, souligne l’importance d’un cadre international pour ces démarches et d’une ouverture sur l’ensemble du territoire impliquant en plus des acteurs

  17. Monitoring small pioneer trees in the forest-tundra ecotone: using multi-temporal airborne laser scanning data to model height growth.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hauglin, Marius; Bollandsås, Ole Martin; Gobakken, Terje; Næsset, Erik

    2017-12-08

    Monitoring of forest resources through national forest inventory programmes is carried out in many countries. The expected climate changes will affect trees and forests and might cause an expansion of trees into presently treeless areas, such as above the current alpine tree line. It is therefore a need to develop methods that enable the inclusion of also these areas into monitoring programmes. Airborne laser scanning (ALS) is an established tool in operational forest inventories, and could be a viable option for monitoring tasks. In the present study, we used multi-temporal ALS data with point density of 8-15 points per m 2 , together with field measurements from single trees in the forest-tundra ecotone along a 1500-km-long transect in Norway. The material comprised 262 small trees with an average height of 1.78 m. The field-measured height growth was derived from height measurements at two points in time. The elapsed time between the two measurements was 4 years. Regression models were then used to model the relationship between ALS-derived variables and tree heights as well as the height growth. Strong relationships between ALS-derived variables and tree heights were found, with R 2 values of 0.93 and 0.97 for the two points in time. The relationship between the ALS data and the field-derived height growth was weaker, with R 2 values of 0.36-0.42. A cross-validation gave corresponding results, with root mean square errors of 19 and 11% for the ALS height models and 60% for the model relating ALS data to single-tree height growth.

  18. Quantifying instantaneous performance in alpine ski racing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Federolf, Peter Andreas

    2012-01-01

    Alpine ski racing is a popular sport in many countries and a lot of research has gone into optimising athlete performance. Two factors influence athlete performance in a ski race: speed and the chosen path between the gates. However, to date there is no objective, quantitative method to determine instantaneous skiing performance that takes both of these factors into account. The purpose of this short communication was to define a variable quantifying instantaneous skiing performance and to study how this variable depended on the skiers' speed and on their chosen path. Instantaneous skiing performance was defined as time loss per elevation difference dt/dz, which depends on the skier's speed v(z), and the distance travelled per elevation difference ds/dz. Using kinematic data collected in an earlier study, it was evaluated how these variables can be used to assess the individual performance of six ski racers in two slalom turns. The performance analysis conducted in this study might be a useful tool not only for athletes and coaches preparing for competition, but also for sports scientists investigating skiing techniques or engineers developing and testing skiing equipment.

  19. Aortic Dissection Type A in Alpine Skiers

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Thomas Schachner

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available Patients and Methods. 140 patients with aortic dissection type A were admitted for cardiac surgery. Seventy-seven patients experienced their dissection in the winter season (from November to April. We analyzed cases of ascending aortic dissection associated with alpine skiing. Results. In 17 patients we found skiing-related aortic dissections. Skiers were taller (180 (172–200 cm versus 175 (157–191 cm, and heavier (90 (68–125 kg versus 80 (45–110 kg, than nonskiers. An extension of aortic dissection into the aortic arch, the descending thoracic aorta, and the abdominal aorta was found in 91%, 74%, and 69%, respectively, with no significant difference between skiers and nonskiers. Skiers experienced RCA ostium dissection requiring CABG in 17.6% while this was true for 5% of nonskiers (. Hospital mortality of skiers was 6% versus 13% in nonskiers (. The skiers live at an altitude of 170 (0–853 m.a.s.l. and experience their dissection at 1602 (1185–3105; m.a.s.l. In 82% symptom start was during recreational skiing without any trauma. Conclusion. Skiing associated aortic dissection type A is usually nontraumatic. The persons affected live at low altitudes and practice an outdoor sport at unusual high altitude at cold temperatures. Postoperative outcome is good.

  20. Aortic Dissection Type A in Alpine Skiers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schachner, Thomas; Fischler, Nikolaus; Dumfarth, Julia; Bonaros, Nikolaos; Krapf, Christoph; Schobersberger, Wolfgang; Grimm, Michael

    2013-01-01

    Patients and Methods. 140 patients with aortic dissection type A were admitted for cardiac surgery. Seventy-seven patients experienced their dissection in the winter season (from November to April). We analyzed cases of ascending aortic dissection associated with alpine skiing. Results. In 17 patients we found skiing-related aortic dissections. Skiers were taller (180 (172–200) cm versus 175 (157–191) cm, P = 0.008) and heavier (90 (68–125) kg versus 80 (45–110) kg, P = 0.002) than nonskiers. An extension of aortic dissection into the aortic arch, the descending thoracic aorta, and the abdominal aorta was found in 91%, 74%, and 69%, respectively, with no significant difference between skiers and nonskiers. Skiers experienced RCA ostium dissection requiring CABG in 17.6% while this was true for 5% of nonskiers (P = 0.086). Hospital mortality of skiers was 6% versus 13% in nonskiers (P = 0.399). The skiers live at an altitude of 170 (0–853) m.a.s.l. and experience their dissection at 1602 (1185–3105; P < 0.001) m.a.s.l. In 82% symptom start was during recreational skiing without any trauma. Conclusion. Skiing associated aortic dissection type A is usually nontraumatic. The persons affected live at low altitudes and practice an outdoor sport at unusual high altitude at cold temperatures. Postoperative outcome is good. PMID:23971024

  1. Indicators of reproduction of the tundra vole (microtus oeconomus pallas, 1776) in Palesse state radiation-ecological reserve

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kuchmel', S.V.

    2010-01-01

    In 2003-2007 reproductive indicators of the tundra vole in territory of Palesse state radiation-ecological reserve have been caused by factors of an inhabitancy and are peculiar to this kind on other sites of dwelling. (authors)

  2. Human behaviour towards climatic change during the 4th millennium BC in the Swiss Alpine forelands

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Karg, Sabine

    Human behaviour towards climatic change during the 4th millennium BC in the Swiss Alpine forelands.......Human behaviour towards climatic change during the 4th millennium BC in the Swiss Alpine forelands....

  3. Alpine plant functional group responses to fertiliser addition depend on abiotic regime and community composition.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Onipchenko, V.G.; Makarov, M.I.; Akmetzhanova, A.A.; Soudzilovskaia, N.A.; Aibazova, F.U.; Elkanova, M.K.; Stogova, A.V.; Cornelissen, J.H.C.

    2012-01-01

    Background and aims: We ask how productivity responses of alpine plant communities to increased nutrient availability can be predicted from abiotic regime and initial functional type composition. Methods: We compared four Caucasian alpine plant communities (lichen heath, Festuca varia grassland,

  4. Minimal erosion of Arctic alpine topography during late Quaternary glaciation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gjermundsen, Endre F.; Briner, Jason P.; Akçar, Naki; Foros, Jørn; Kubik, Peter W.; Salvigsen, Otto; Hormes, Anne

    2015-10-01

    The alpine topography observed in many mountainous regions is thought to have formed during repeated glaciations of the Quaternary period. Before this time, landscapes had much less relief. However, the spatial patterns and rates of Quaternary exhumation at high latitudes--where cold-based glaciers may protect rather than erode landscapes--are not fully quantified. Here we determine the exposure and burial histories of rock samples from eight summits of steep alpine peaks in northwestern Svalbard (79.5° N) using analyses of 10Be and 26Al concentrations. We find that the summits have been preserved for at least the past one million years. The antiquity of Svalbard’s alpine landscape is supported by the preservation of sediments older than one million years along a fjord valley, which suggests that both mountain summits and low-elevation landscapes experienced very low erosion rates over the past million years. Our findings support the establishment of northwestern Svalbard’s alpine topography during the early Quaternary. We suggest that, as the Quaternary ice age progressed, glacial erosion in the Arctic became inefficient and confined to ice streams, and high-relief alpine landscapes were preserved by minimally erosive glacier armour.

  5. Circumpolar spatio-temporal patterns and contributing climatic factors of wildfire activity in the Arctic tundra from 2001-2015

    Science.gov (United States)

    Masrur, Arif; Petrov, Andrey N.; DeGroote, John

    2018-01-01

    Recent years have seen an increased frequency of wildfire events in different parts of Arctic tundra ecosystems. Contemporary studies have largely attributed these wildfire events to the Arctic’s rapidly changing climate and increased atmospheric disturbances (i.e. thunderstorms). However, existing research has primarily examined the wildfire-climate dynamics of individual large wildfire events. No studies have investigated wildfire activity, including climatic drivers, for the entire tundra biome across multiple years, i.e. at the planetary scale. To address this limitation, this paper provides a planetary/circumpolar scale analyses of space-time patterns of tundra wildfire occurrence and climatic association in the Arctic over a 15 year period (2001-2015). In doing so, we have leveraged and analyzed NASA Terra’s MODIS active fire and MERRA climate reanalysis products at multiple temporal scales (decadal, seasonal and monthly). Our exploratory spatial data analysis found that tundra wildfire occurrence was spatially clustered and fire intensity was spatially autocorrelated across the Arctic regions. Most of the wildfire events occurred in the peak summer months (June-August). Our multi-temporal (decadal, seasonal and monthly) scale analyses provide further support to the link between climate variability and wildfire activity. Specifically, we found that warm and dry conditions in the late spring to mid-summer influenced tundra wildfire occurrence, spatio-temporal distribution, and fire intensity. Additionally, reduced average surface precipitation and soil moisture levels in the winter-spring period were associated with increased fire intensity in the following summer. These findings enrich contemporary knowledge on tundra wildfire’s spatial and seasonal patterns, and shed new light on tundra wildfire-climate relationships in the circumpolar context. Furthermore, this first pan-Arctic analysis provides a strong incentive and direction for future studies

  6. First report of Setaria tundra in roe deer (Capreolus capreolus) from the Iberian Peninsula inferred from molecular data: epidemiological implications.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Angelone-Alasaad, Samer; Jowers, Michael J; Panadero, Rosario; Pérez-Creo, Ana; Pajares, Gerardo; Díez-Baños, Pablo; Soriguer, Ramón C; Morrondo, Patrocinio

    2016-09-29

    Filarioid nematode parasites are major health hazards with important medical, veterinary and economic implications. Recently, they have been considered as indicators of climate change. In this paper, we report the first record of Setaria tundra in roe deer from the Iberian Peninsula. Adult S. tundra were collected from the peritoneal cavity during the post-mortem examination of a 2 year-old male roe deer, which belonged to a private fenced estate in La Alcarria (Guadalajara, Spain). Since 2012, the area has suffered a high roe deer decline rate (75 %), for unknown reasons. Aiming to support the morphological identification and to determine the phylogenetic position of S. tundra recovered from the roe deer, a fragment of the mitochondrial cytochrome c oxidase subunit 1 (cox1) gene from the two morphologically identified parasites was amplified, sequenced and compared with corresponding sequences of other filarioid nematode species. Phylogenetic analyses revealed that the isolate of S. tundra recovered was basal to all other formely reported Setaria tundra sequences. The presence of all other haplotypes in Northern Europe may be indicative of a South to North outbreak in Europe. This is the first report of S. tundra in roe deer from the Iberian Peninsula, with interesting phylogenetic results, which may have further implications in the epidemiological and genetic studies of these filarioid parasites. More studies are needed to explore the reasons and dynamics behind the rapid host/geographic expansion of the filarioid parasites in Europe.

  7. The microbially mediated soil organic carbon loss under degenerative succession in an alpine meadow.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Yuguang; Liu, Xiao; Cong, Jing; Lu, Hui; Sheng, Yuyu; Wang, Xiulei; Li, Diqiang; Liu, Xueduan; Yin, Huaqun; Zhou, Jizhong; Deng, Ye

    2017-07-01

    Land-cover change has long been recognized as having marked effect on the amount of soil organic carbon (SOC). However, the microbially mediated processes and mechanisms on SOC are still unclear. In this study, the soil samples in a degenerative succession from alpine meadow to alpine steppe meadow in the Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau were analysed using high-throughput technologies, including Illumina sequencing and geochip functional gene arrays. The soil microbial community structure and diversity were significantly (p the microbial ɑ-diversity in alpine steppe meadow was significantly (p the microbial community structure in alpine steppe meadow was more complex and tighter than in the alpine meadow. The relative abundance of soil microbial labile carbon degradation genes (e.g., pectin and hemicellulose) was significantly higher in alpine steppe meadow than in alpine meadow, but the relative abundance of soil recalcitrant carbon degradation genes (e.g., chitin and lignin) showed the opposite tendency. The Biolog Ecoplate experiment showed that microbially mediated soil carbon utilization was more active in alpine steppe meadow than in alpine meadow. Consequently, more soil labile carbon might be decomposed in alpine steppe meadow than in alpine meadow. Therefore, the degenerative succession of alpine meadow because of climate change or anthropogenic activities would most likely decrease SOC and nutrients medicated by changing soil microbial community structure and their functional potentials for carbon decomposition. © 2017 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  8. Photochemistry and aerosol in alpine region: mixing and transport

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Chaxel, E.

    2006-11-01

    The Alpine arc deeply interacts with general circulation of atmosphere. By studying configurations in summer and winter over various Alpine areas, this work explains how mixing and transport of airborne pollutants happen, both gaseous and particulate matter, from their emission sources to free troposphere. Using observational results and a comprehensive Eulerian modelling system, one focuses on mechanisms of pollution by ozone in summer and by particulate matter and benzene in winter. After having validated the modelling system using datasets from field experiments POVA, GRENOPHOT and ESCOMPTE, it is applied on two periods with principal interest in the Grenoble area: one is the heat-wave August 2003 and the other is a long episode of thermal inversion in February 2005. Uncertainties are also calculated. One finishes by applying the modelling chain to understand how a stratospheric intrusion following a tropopause fold affected the Alpine region in July 2004. (author)

  9. Inter-annual variability of NDVI in response to long-term warming and fertilization in wet sedge and tussock tundra.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boelman, Natalie T; Stieglitz, Marc; Griffin, Kevin L; Shaver, Gaius R

    2005-05-01

    This study explores the relationship between the normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI) and aboveground plant biomass for tussock tundra vegetation and compares it to a previously established NDVI-biomass relationship for wet sedge tundra vegetation. In addition, we explore inter-annual variation in NDVI in both these contrasting vegetation communities. All measurements were taken across long-term experimental treatments in wet sedge and tussock tundra communities at the Toolik Lake Long Term Ecological Research (LTER) site, in northern Alaska. Over 15 years (for wet sedge tundra) and 14 years (for tussock tundra), N and P were applied in factorial experiments (N, P and N+P), air temperature was increased using greenhouses with and without N+P fertilizer, and light intensity was reduced by 50% using shade cloth. during the peak growing seasons of 2001, 2002, and 2003, NDVI measurements were made in both the wet sedge and tussock tundra experimental treatment plots, creating a 3-year time series of inter-annual variation in NDVI. We found that: (1) across all tussock experimental tundra treatments, NDVI is correlated with aboveground plant biomass (r2 = 0.59); (2) NDVI-biomass relationships for tussock and wet sedge tundra communities are community specific, and; (3) NDVI values for tussock tundra communities are typically, but not always, greater than for wet sedge tundra communities across all experimental treatments. We suggest that differences between the response of wet sedge and tussock tundra communities in the same experimental treatments result from the contrasting degree of heterogeneity in species and functional types that characterize each of these Arctic tundra vegetation communities.

  10. Horn growth patterns in Alpine chamois.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Corlatti, Luca; Gugiatti, Alessandro; Imperio, Simona

    2015-06-01

    The analysis of horn growth may provide important information about the allocation of metabolic resources to secondary sexual traits. Depending on the selective advantages offered by horn size during intra- and inter-specific interactions, ungulates may show different investment in horn development, and growth variations within species may be influenced by several parameters, such as sex, age, or resource availability. We investigated the horn growth patterns in two hunted populations of Alpine chamois (Rupicapra r. rupicapra) in the Central Italian Alps. We tested the role of individual heterogeneity on the growth pattern and explored the variation in annulus length as a function of different factors (sex, age, hunting location, cohort). We then investigated the mechanisms underlying horn growth trajectories to test for the occurrence of compensatory or recovery growth and their potential differences between sexes and populations. Annulus length varied as a function of sex, age of individuals and, marginally, hunting location; no effect of cohort or individual heterogeneity was detected. Male and female chamois showed compensatory horn growth within the first 5½ years of life, though the partial convergence of horn trajectories in chamois suggests that this mechanisms would best be described as 'recovery growth'. Compensation rates were greater in males than in females, while only compensatory growth rates up to 2½ years of age were different in the two populations. Besides confirming the sex- and age-dependent pattern of horn development, our study suggests that the mechanism of recovery growth supports the hypothesis of horn size as a weakly selected sexual trait in male and female chamois. Furthermore, the greater compensation rates in horn growth shown by male chamois possibly suggest selective effects of hunting on age at first reproduction, while different compensation rates between populations may suggest the occurrence of some plasticity in resource

  11. Participative Spatial Scenario Analysis for Alpine Ecosystems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kohler, Marina; Stotten, Rike; Steinbacher, Melanie; Leitinger, Georg; Tasser, Erich; Schirpke, Uta; Tappeiner, Ulrike; Schermer, Markus

    2017-10-01

    Land use and land cover patterns are shaped by the interplay of human and ecological processes. Thus, heterogeneous cultural landscapes have developed, delivering multiple ecosystem services. To guarantee human well-being, the development of land use types has to be evaluated. Scenario development and land use and land cover change models are well-known tools for assessing future landscape changes. However, as social and ecological systems are inextricably linked, land use-related management decisions are difficult to identify. The concept of social-ecological resilience can thereby provide a framework for understanding complex interlinkages on multiple scales and from different disciplines. In our study site (Stubai Valley, Tyrol/Austria), we applied a sequence of steps including the characterization of the social-ecological system and identification of key drivers that influence farmers' management decisions. We then developed three scenarios, i.e., "trend", "positive" and "negative" future development of farming conditions and assessed respective future land use changes. Results indicate that within the "trend" and "positive" scenarios pluri-activity (various sources of income) prevents considerable changes in land use and land cover and promotes the resilience of farming systems. Contrarily, reductions in subsidies and changes in consumer behavior are the most important key drivers in the negative scenario and lead to distinct abandonment of grassland, predominantly in the sub-alpine zone of our study site. Our conceptual approach, i.e., the combination of social and ecological methods and the integration of local stakeholders' knowledge into spatial scenario analysis, resulted in highly detailed and spatially explicit results that can provide a basis for further community development recommendations.

  12. Transient thermal effects in Alpine permafrost

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    J. Noetzli

    2009-04-01

    Full Text Available In high mountain areas, permafrost is important because it influences the occurrence of natural hazards, because it has to be considered in construction practices, and because it is sensitive to climate change. The assessment of its distribution and evolution is challenging because of highly variable conditions at and below the surface, steep topography and varying climatic conditions. This paper presents a systematic investigation of effects of topography and climate variability that are important for subsurface temperatures in Alpine bedrock permafrost. We studied the effects of both, past and projected future ground surface temperature variations on the basis of numerical experimentation with simplified mountain topography in order to demonstrate the principal effects. The modeling approach applied combines a distributed surface energy balance model and a three-dimensional subsurface heat conduction scheme. Results show that the past climate variations that essentially influence present-day permafrost temperatures at depth of the idealized mountains are the last glacial period and the major fluctuations in the past millennium. Transient effects from projected future warming, however, are likely larger than those from past climate conditions because larger temperature changes at the surface occur in shorter time periods. We further demonstrate the accelerating influence of multi-lateral warming in steep and complex topography for a temperature signal entering the subsurface as compared to the situation in flat areas. The effects of varying and uncertain material properties (i.e., thermal properties, porosity, and freezing characteristics on the subsurface temperature field were examined in sensitivity studies. A considerable influence of latent heat due to water in low-porosity bedrock was only shown for simulations over time periods of decades to centuries. At the end, the model was applied to the topographic setting of the Matterhorn

  13. Alpine ski bindings and injuries. Current findings.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Natri, A; Beynnon, B D; Ettlinger, C F; Johnson, R J; Shealy, J E

    1999-07-01

    In spite of the fact that the overall incidence of alpine ski injuries has decreased during the last 25 years, the incidence of serious knee sprains usually involving the anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) has risen dramatically since the late 1970s. This trend runs counter to a dramatic reduction in lower leg injuries that began in the early 1970s and to date has lowered the risk of injury below the knee by almost 90%. One of the primary design objectives of modern ski boots and bindings has been to protect the skier from tibia and ankle fractures. So, in that sense, they have done an excellent job. However, despite advances in equipment design, modern ski bindings have not protected the knee from serious ligament trauma. At the present time, we are unaware of any binding design, settings or function that can protect both the knee and lower extremities from serious ligament sprains. No innovative change in binding design appears to be on the horizon that has the potential to reduce the risk of these severe knee injuries. Indeed, only 1 study has demonstrated a means to help reduce this risk of serious knee sprains, and this study involved education of skiers, not ski equipment. Despite the inability of bindings to reduce the risk of severe knee injuries there can be no doubt that improvement in ski bindings has been the most important factor in the marked reduction in incidence of lower leg and ankle injuries during the last 25 years. The authors strongly endorse the application of present International Standards Organisation (ISO) and American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM) standards concerning mounting, setting and maintaining modern 'state of the art' bindings.

  14. Participative Spatial Scenario Analysis for Alpine Ecosystems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kohler, Marina; Stotten, Rike; Steinbacher, Melanie; Leitinger, Georg; Tasser, Erich; Schirpke, Uta; Tappeiner, Ulrike; Schermer, Markus

    2017-10-01

    Land use and land cover patterns are shaped by the interplay of human and ecological processes. Thus, heterogeneous cultural landscapes have developed, delivering multiple ecosystem services. To guarantee human well-being, the development of land use types has to be evaluated. Scenario development and land use and land cover change models are well-known tools for assessing future landscape changes. However, as social and ecological systems are inextricably linked, land use-related management decisions are difficult to identify. The concept of social-ecological resilience can thereby provide a framework for understanding complex interlinkages on multiple scales and from different disciplines. In our study site (Stubai Valley, Tyrol/Austria), we applied a sequence of steps including the characterization of the social-ecological system and identification of key drivers that influence farmers' management decisions. We then developed three scenarios, i.e., "trend", "positive" and "negative" future development of farming conditions and assessed respective future land use changes. Results indicate that within the "trend" and "positive" scenarios pluri-activity (various sources of income) prevents considerable changes in land use and land cover and promotes the resilience of farming systems. Contrarily, reductions in subsidies and changes in consumer behavior are the most important key drivers in the negative scenario and lead to distinct abandonment of grassland, predominantly in the sub-alpine zone of our study site. Our conceptual approach, i.e., the combination of social and ecological methods and the integration of local stakeholders' knowledge into spatial scenario analysis, resulted in highly detailed and spatially explicit results that can provide a basis for further community development recommendations.

  15. WINTER PRODUCTION OF CO2 AND N2O FROM ALPINE TUNDRA: ENVIRONMENTAL CONTROLS AND RELATIONSHIP TO INTER-SYSTEM C AND N FLUXES (R823442)

    Science.gov (United States)

    The perspectives, information and conclusions conveyed in research project abstracts, progress reports, final reports, journal abstracts and journal publications convey the viewpoints of the principal investigator and may not represent the views and policies of ORD and EPA. Concl...

  16. Alpine Skiing With total knee ArthroPlasty (ASWAP)

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Narici, Marco; Conte, M; Salvioli, Stefano

    2015-01-01

    This study investigated features of skeletal muscle ageing in elderly individuals having previously undergone unilateral total knee arthroplasty (TKA) and whether markers of sarcopenia could be mitigated by a 12-week alpine skiing intervention. Novel biomarkers agrin, indicative of neuromuscular....... Notably, sarcopenia was strongly associated with the expression of p53, which seems to confirm its validity as a biomarker of muscle atrophy. Training did not significantly modify any of these biomarkers. In view of the lack of accretion of muscle mass in response to the alpine skiing intervention, we...

  17. Alpine Skiing With total knee ArthroPlasty (ASWAP)

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kristensen, M.; Pötzelsberger, B.; Scheiber, P.

    2015-01-01

    We investigated the effect of alpine skiing for 12 weeks on skeletal muscle characteristics and biomarkers of glucose homeostasis and cardiovascular risk factors. Twenty-three patients with a total knee arthroplasty (TKA) were studied 2.9 ± 0.9 years (mean ± SD) after the operation. Fourteen...... I fibers increased with skiing in IG with no change in CG. Inflammatory biomarkers, plasma lipids, and mitochondrial proteins and activity did not change. Alpine skiing is metabolically beneficial and can be used as a training modality by elderly people with TKA....

  18. Estimating Temperature Fields from MODIS Land Surface Temperature and Air Temperature Observations in a Sub-Arctic Alpine Environment

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Scott N. Williamson

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Spatially continuous satellite infrared temperature measurements are essential for understanding the consequences and drivers of change, at local and regional scales, especially in northern and alpine environments dominated by a complex cryosphere where in situ observations are scarce. We describe two methods for producing daily temperature fields using MODIS “clear-sky” day-time Land Surface Temperatures (LST. The Interpolated Curve Mean Daily Surface Temperature (ICM method, interpolates single daytime Terra LST values to daily means using the coincident diurnal air temperature curves. The second method calculates daily mean LST from daily maximum and minimum LST (MMM values from MODIS Aqua and Terra. These ICM and MMM models were compared to daily mean air temperatures recorded between April and October at seven locations in southwest Yukon, Canada, covering characteristic alpine land cover types (tundra, barren, glacier at elevations between 1,408 m and 2,319 m. Both methods for producing mean daily surface temperatures have advantages and disadvantages. ICM signals are strongly correlated with air temperature (R2 = 0.72 to 0.86, but have relatively large variability (RMSE = 4.09 to 4.90 K, while MMM values had a stronger correlation to air temperature (R2 = 0.90 and smaller variability (RMSE = 2.67 K. Finally, when comparing 8-day LST averages, aggregated from the MMM method, to air temperature, we found a high correlation (R2 = 0.84 with less variability (RMSE = 1.54 K. Where the trend was less steep and the y-intercept increased by 1.6 °C compared to the daily correlations. This effect is likely a consequence of LST temperature averages being differentially affected by cloud cover over warm and cold surfaces. We conclude that satellite infrared skin temperature (e.g., MODIS LST, which is often aggregated into multi-day composites to mitigate data reductions caused by cloud cover, changes in its relationship to air temperature

  19. Topographic Patterns of Mortality and Succession in the Alpine Treeline Ecotone Suggest Hydrologic Controls on Post-Fire Tree Establishment

    Science.gov (United States)

    McCaffrey, D. R.; Hopkinson, C.

    2017-12-01

    Alpine Treeline Ecotone (ATE), the transition zone between closed canopy forest and alpine tundra, is a prominent vegetation pattern in mountain regions. At continental scales, the elevation of ATE is negatively correlated with latitude and is generally explained by thermal limitations. However, at landscape scales, precipitation and moisture regimes can suppress ATE elevation below thermal limits, causing variability and patterning in ATE position. Recent studies have investigated the relative effects of hydroclimatic variables on ATE position at multiple scales, but less attention has been given to interactions between hydroclimatic variables and disturbance agents, such as fire. Observing change in the ATE at sufficient spatial resolution and temporal extent to identify correlations between topographic variables and disturbance agents has proved challenging. Recent advances in monoplotting have enabled the extraction of canopy cover information from oblique photography, at a resolution of 20 m. Using airborne lidar and repeat photography from the Mountain Legacy Project, we observed canopy cover change in West Castle Watershed (Alberta, Canada; 103 km2; 49.3° N, 114.4° W) over a 92-year period (i.e. 1914-2006). Two wildfires, occurring 1934 and 1936, affected 63% of the watershed area, providing an opportunity to contrast topographic patterns of mortality and succession in the ATE, while factoring by exposure to fire. Slope aspect was a strong predictor of mortality and succession: the frequency of mortality was four times higher in fire-exposed areas, with 72% of all mortality occurring on south- and east-facing slope aspects; the frequency of succession was balanced between fire-exposed and unexposed areas, with 66% of all succession occurred on north- and east-facing slope aspects. Given previous experiments have demonstrated that moisture limitation inhibits tree establishment, suppressing elevation of ATE below thermal growth boundaries, we hypothesize

  20. The structure of the bacterial heterotrophic block in tundra soils of Yamal Peninsula

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kukharenko, O. S.; Dobrovol'Skaya, T. G.; Golovchenko, A. V.; Stepanov, A. L.; Matyshak, G. V.

    2009-04-01

    The tundra cryogenic soils of Yamal Peninsula have a high pool of prokaryote microorganisms characteristic of ecosystems where the environmental conditions are unfavorable for microbiological processes. The lowering of the cultivation temperature from 20 to 5°C did not affect the number of bacteria and their taxonomic structure. Psychrotolerant gram-negative bacteria represented by oligotrophs and copiotrophs predominated in the bacterial communities. Among the bacteria of the hydrolytic block, only bacilli were isolated upon cultivation on the media. The species spectrum of the Bacillus genus was determined by the capability of its representatives for growth at low temperatures. The bacteria isolated from the cryogenic soils had a high nitrogenase activity, which increased under the lower cultivation temperature. This fact shows that the majority of the bacteria in tundra soils has adapted to functioning at low temperatures.

  1. InSAR detects increase in surface subsidence caused by an Arctic tundra fire

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Lin; Jafarov, Elchin E.; Schaefer, Kevin M.; Jones, Benjamin M.; Zebker, Howard A.; Williams, Christopher A.; Rogan, John; Zhang, Tingjun

    2014-01-01

    Wildfire is a major disturbance in the Arctic tundra and boreal forests, having a significant impact on soil hydrology, carbon cycling, and permafrost dynamics. This study explores the use of the microwave Interferometric Synthetic Aperture Radar (InSAR) technique to map and quantify ground surface subsidence caused by the Anaktuvuk River fire on the North Slope of Alaska. We detected an increase of up to 8 cm of thaw-season ground subsidence after the fire, which is due to a combination of thickened active layer and permafrost thaw subsidence. Our results illustrate the effectiveness and potential of using InSAR to quantify fire impacts on the Arctic tundra, especially in regions underlain by ice-rich permafrost. Our study also suggests that surface subsidence is a more comprehensive indicator of fire impacts on ice-rich permafrost terrain than changes in active layer thickness alone.

  2. Prevalence, transmission, and genetic diversity of blood parasites infecting tundra-nesting geese in Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ramey, Andy M.; Reed, John A.; Schmutz, Joel A.; Fondell, Tom F.; Meixell, Brandt W.; Hupp, Jerry W.; Ward, David H.; Terenzi, John; Ely, Craig R.

    2014-01-01

    A total of 842 blood samples collected from five species of tundra-nesting geese in Alaska was screened for haemosporidian parasites using molecular techniques. Parasites of the generaLeucocytozoon Danilewsky, 1890, Haemoproteus Kruse, 1890, and Plasmodium Marchiafava and Celli, 1885 were detected in 169 (20%), 3 (tundra habitats in Alaska, or alternatively, may only occur at low levels. Five haemosporidian genetic lineages shared among different species of geese sampled from two geographic areas were indicative of interspecies parasite transmission and supported broad parasite or vector distributions. However, identicalLeucocytozoon and Haemoproteus lineages on public databases were limited to waterfowl hosts suggesting constraints in the range of parasite hosts.

  3. 238U, 232Th and 226Ra behaviour in soils of mountainous tundra

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Shuktomova, I.I.; Titaeva, N.A.; Tashkaev, A.I.; Aleksakhin, R.M.

    1983-01-01

    Investigation into mountain-tundra soils of the Polar Urals for study of distribution and behaviour of natural radionuclides in them as well as search for correlations between radionuclides and physico-chemical properties of soils is conducted. It is shown that behaviour of 238 U, 232 Th, 226 Ra in soils of mountain tundra obeys general regularities of soil-formation process in any type of soils. Content of radionuclides is determined by their concentration in soil-formation rock and by the effect of talus ablations but not by the type of soils. Radionuclides in turf stained-humic soils are associated with mineral-fragmental fraction of soils, in peat-gley ones. The main part of them has sorption origin, both ways of nuclide supply are observed in turf-gley soils

  4. InSAR detects increase in surface subsidence caused by an Arctic tundra fire

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Lin; Jafarov, Elchin E.; Schaefer, Kevin M.; Jones, Benjamin M.; Zebker, Howard A.; Williams, Christopher A.; Rogan, John; Zhang, Tingjun

    2014-06-01

    Wildfire is a major disturbance in the Arctic tundra and boreal forests, having a significant impact on soil hydrology, carbon cycling, and permafrost dynamics. This study explores the use of the microwave Interferometric Synthetic Aperture Radar (InSAR) technique to map and quantify ground surface subsidence caused by the Anaktuvuk River fire on the North Slope of Alaska. We detected an increase of up to 8 cm of thaw-season ground subsidence after the fire, which is due to a combination of thickened active layer and permafrost thaw subsidence. Our results illustrate the effectiveness and potential of using InSAR to quantify fire impacts on the Arctic tundra, especially in regions underlain by ice-rich permafrost. Our study also suggests that surface subsidence is a more comprehensive indicator of fire impacts on ice-rich permafrost terrain than changes in active layer thickness alone.

  5. Tundra photosynthesis captured by satellite-observed solar-induced chlorophyll fluorescence

    Science.gov (United States)

    Luus, K. A.; Commane, R.; Parazoo, N. C.; Benmergui, J.; Euskirchen, E. S.; Frankenberg, C.; Joiner, J.; Lindaas, J.; Miller, C. E.; Oechel, W. C.; Zona, D.; Wofsy, S.; Lin, J. C.

    2017-02-01

    Accurately quantifying the timing and magnitude of respiration and photosynthesis by high-latitude ecosystems is important for understanding how a warming climate influences global carbon cycling. Data-driven estimates of photosynthesis across Arctic regions often rely on satellite-derived enhanced vegetation index (EVI); we find that satellite observations of solar-induced chlorophyll fluorescence (SIF) provide a more direct proxy for photosynthesis. We model Alaskan tundra CO2 cycling (2012-2014) according to temperature and shortwave radiation and alternately input EVI or SIF to prescribe the annual seasonal cycle of photosynthesis. We find that EVI-based seasonality indicates spring "green-up" to occur 9 days prior to SIF-based estimates, and that SIF-based estimates agree with aircraft and tower measurements of CO2. Adopting SIF, instead of EVI, for modeling the seasonal cycle of tundra photosynthesis can result in more accurate estimates of growing season duration and net carbon uptake by arctic vegetation.

  6. Psychrotolerant actinomycetes of plants and organic horizons in tundra and taiga soils

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dubrova, M. S.; Zenova, G. M.; Yakushev, A. V.; Manucharova, N. A.; Makarova, E. P.; Zvyagintsev, D. G.; Chernov, I. Yu.

    2013-08-01

    It has been revealed that in organic horizons and plants of the tundra and taiga ecosystems under low temperatures, actinomycetal complexes form. The population density of psychrotolerant actinomycetes in organic horizons and plants reaches tens and hundreds of thousands CFU/g of substrate or soil, and decreases in the sequence litters > plants > soils > undecomposed plant remains > moss growths. The mycelium length of psychrotolerant actinomycetes reaches 220 m/g of substrate. Application of the FISH method has demonstrated that metabolically active psychrotolerant bacteria of the phylum Actinobacteria constitute 30% of all metabolically active psychrotolerant representatives of the Bacterià domain of the prokaryotic microbial community of soils and plants. Psychrotolerant actinomycetes in tundra and taiga ecosystems possess antimicrobial properties.

  7. Photochemistry and aerosol in alpine region: mixing and transport; Photochimie et aerosol en region alpine: melange et transport

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Chaxel, E

    2006-11-15

    The Alpine arc deeply interacts with general circulation of atmosphere. By studying configurations in summer and winter over various Alpine areas, this work explains how mixing and transport of airborne pollutants happen, both gaseous and particulate matter, from their emission sources to free troposphere. Using observational results and a comprehensive Eulerian modelling system, one focuses on mechanisms of pollution by ozone in summer and by particulate matter and benzene in winter. After having validated the modelling system using datasets from field experiments POVA, GRENOPHOT and ESCOMPTE, it is applied on two periods with principal interest in the Grenoble area: one is the heat-wave August 2003 and the other is a long episode of thermal inversion in February 2005. Uncertainties are also calculated. One finishes by applying the modelling chain to understand how a stratospheric intrusion following a tropopause fold affected the Alpine region in July 2004. (author)

  8. Bird communities of the arctic shrub tundra of Yamal: habitat specialists and generalists.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vasiliy Sokolov

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: The ratio of habitat generalists to specialists in birds has been suggested as a good indicator of ecosystem changes due to e.g. climate change and other anthropogenic perturbations. Most studies focusing on this functional component of biodiversity originate, however, from temperate regions. The Eurasian Arctic tundra is currently experiencing an unprecedented combination of climate change, change in grazing pressure by domestic reindeer and growing human activity. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: Here we monitored bird communities in a tundra landscape harbouring shrub and open habitats in order to analyse bird habitat relationships and quantify habitat specialization. We used ordination methods to analyse habitat associations and estimated the proportions of specialists in each of the main habitats. Correspondence Analysis identified three main bird communities, inhabiting upland, lowland and dense willow shrubs. We documented a stable structure of communities despite large multiannual variations of bird density (from 90 to 175 pairs/km(2. Willow shrub thickets were a hotspot for bird density, but not for species richness. The thickets hosted many specialized species whose main distribution area was south of the tundra. CONCLUSION/SIGNIFICANCE: If current arctic changes result in a shrubification of the landscape as many studies suggested, we would expect an increase in the overall bird abundance together with an increase of local specialists, since they are associated with willow thickets. The majority of these species have a southern origin and their increase in abundance would represent a strengthening of the boreal component in the southern tundra, perhaps at the expense of species typical of the subarctic zone, which appear to be generalists within this zone.

  9. Bird Communities of the Arctic Shrub Tundra of Yamal: Habitat Specialists and Generalists

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sokolov, Vasiliy; Ehrich, Dorothée; Yoccoz, Nigel G.; Sokolov, Alexander; Lecomte, Nicolas

    2012-01-01

    Background The ratio of habitat generalists to specialists in birds has been suggested as a good indicator of ecosystem changes due to e.g. climate change and other anthropogenic perturbations. Most studies focusing on this functional component of biodiversity originate, however, from temperate regions. The Eurasian Arctic tundra is currently experiencing an unprecedented combination of climate change, change in grazing pressure by domestic reindeer and growing human activity. Methodology/Principal Findings Here we monitored bird communities in a tundra landscape harbouring shrub and open habitats in order to analyse bird habitat relationships and quantify habitat specialization. We used ordination methods to analyse habitat associations and estimated the proportions of specialists in each of the main habitats. Correspondence Analysis identified three main bird communities, inhabiting upland, lowland and dense willow shrubs. We documented a stable structure of communities despite large multiannual variations of bird density (from 90 to 175 pairs/km2). Willow shrub thickets were a hotspot for bird density, but not for species richness. The thickets hosted many specialized species whose main distribution area was south of the tundra. Conclusion/Significance If current arctic changes result in a shrubification of the landscape as many studies suggested, we would expect an increase in the overall bird abundance together with an increase of local specialists, since they are associated with willow thickets. The majority of these species have a southern origin and their increase in abundance would represent a strengthening of the boreal component in the southern tundra, perhaps at the expense of species typical of the subarctic zone, which appear to be generalists within this zone. PMID:23239978

  10. Site scale wetness classification of tundra regions with C-band SAR satellite data

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Widhalm, Barbara; Bartsch, Annett; Siewert, Matthias Benjamin

    2016-01-01

    A representative and consistent wetland map for the circumpolar region is required for a range of applications including modelling of permafrost properties as well as upscaling of carbon pools and fluxes. Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR) data has been shown to be suitable for wetland mapping, espec...... resolution C-band SAR based wetness level map can be derived for tundra regions where no scattering due to tree trunks hampers the applied methodology....

  11. Regional and landscape-scale variability of Landsat-observed vegetation dynamics in northwest Siberian tundra

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Frost, Gerald V; Epstein, Howard E; Walker, Donald A

    2014-01-01

    Widespread increases in Arctic tundra productivity have been documented for decades using coarse-scale satellite observations, but finer-scale observations indicate that changes have been very uneven, with a high degree of landscape- and regional-scale heterogeneity. Here we analyze time-series of the Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI) observed by Landsat (1984–2012), to assess landscape- and regional-scale variability of tundra vegetation dynamics in the northwest Siberian Low Arctic, a little-studied region with varied soils, landscape histories, and permafrost attributes. We also estimate spatio-temporal rates of land-cover change associated with expansion of tall alder (Alnus) shrublands, by integrating Landsat time-series with very-high-resolution imagery dating to the mid-1960s. We compiled Landsat time-series for eleven widely-distributed landscapes, and performed linear regression of NDVI values on a per-pixel basis. We found positive net NDVI trends (‘greening’) in nine of eleven landscapes. Net greening occurred in alder shrublands in all landscapes, and strong greening tended to correspond to shrublands that developed since the 1960s. Much of the spatial variability of greening within landscapes was linked to landscape physiography and permafrost attributes, while between-landscape variability largely corresponded to differences in surficial geology. We conclude that continued increases in tundra productivity in the region are likely in upland tundra landscapes with fine-textured, cryoturbated soils; these areas currently tend to support discontinuous vegetation cover, but are highly susceptible to rapid increases in vegetation cover, as well as land-cover changes associated with the development of tall shrublands. (paper)

  12. Spaceborne potential for examining taiga–tundra ecotone form and vulnerability

    OpenAIRE

    P. M. Montesano; G. Sun; R. O. Dubayah; K. J. Ranson

    2016-01-01

    In the taiga–tundra ecotone (TTE), site-dependent forest structure characteristics can influence the subtle and heterogeneous structural changes that occur across the broad circumpolar extent. Such changes may be related to ecotone form, described by the horizontal and vertical patterns of forest structure (e.g., tree cover, density, and height) within TTE forest patches, driven by local site conditions, and linked to ecotone dynamics. The unique circumstance of subtle, vari...

  13. Spatial Variability, Drivers, and Scale-Mismatch of Tundra Greenup Phenology at a Landscape Extent

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kerby, J.

    2016-12-01

    Spatial variability of plant phenology has widespread implications for landscape-level processes like herbivore foraging and the carbon cycle, but has traditionally only been quantified on small plots by human observers or at broader scales using coarse satellite imagery. Many ecological patterns vary with their scale of measurement, yet scale-dependence in vegetation emergence is poorly understood, particularly in Arctic environments. To investigate the effect of spatial grain choice on quantifying variability in tundra emergence phenology, we extracted greenness profiles from a network of 50 near-surface time-lapse cameras (Phenocams) across 40 km2 of West Greenland tundra in two years with contrasting abiotic conditions. Using this landscape-extent dataset paired with satellite-based MODIS multispectral time-series, we examined the influence of spatial grain choice on the observed timing, spatial variability, and landscape correlates of tundra green-up phenology. We matched the spatial grain of emergence time-series with three levels of ecological organization: vegetation functional-type patches (ecological `level' were analyzed simultaneously using a hierarchical Bayesian mixed modeling framework. Despite the contrasting abiotic conditions in each study year, the annual spatial variability in emergence across the broader landscape measured at fine grains was of a much greater magnitude than between year differences measured from any data-source. Coarser-grained MODIS derived metrics of vegetation greenup were much less variable between years, and were also significantly correlated with different landscape-level features than the finer grained Phenocam datasets. This first report of fine-grained vegetation emergence phenology across a broad tundra landscape extent (40 km2) reveals clear scale-dependent dynamics in the timing, variability, and environmental drivers of greenup, and offers empirical insights into how fine-grained processes may contribute to broader

  14. Effects of Climate Warming on Organic Carbon Degradation and Methylmercury Production in an Arctic Tundra Soil

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gu, B.; Yang, Z.; Lu, X.; Liang, L.; Graham, D. E.; Wullschleger, S. D.

    2016-12-01

    Climate warming increases microbial activity and stimulates the degradation of stored soil organic carbon (SOC) in Arctic tundra. Studies have shown that the rates of SOC degradation are affected by the substrate quality or chemical composition of SOC, but it remains unclear which pools of SOC are the most vulnerable to rapid breakdown and what mechanisms are involved. Additionally, little is known concerning the effects of warming on microbial mercury methylation and how it is coupled to SOC degradation. Using a suite of analytical techniques, we examined the dynamic consumption and production of labile SOC compounds, including reducing sugars, alcohols, and low-molecular-weight organic acids during an 8-month anoxic incubation with a high-centered polygon trough tundra soil from Barrow, Alaska. We show that reducing sugars and alcohols in thawed permafrost largely account for the initial rapid release of CO2 and CH4 through anaerobic fermentation, whereas the fermentation products such as acetate and formate are subsequently utilized as primary substrates for methanogenesis. Degradation of labile SOC is also found to rapidly fueling the biosynthesis of methylmercury, a potent neurotoxin in tundra soil. Mercury methylation is positively correlated to the production of CH4 and ferrous ion, suggesting the linkages among microbial pathways of methanogenesis, iron reduction, and mercury methylation. Additionally, we found that freshly amended mercury is more bioavailable and susceptible to microbial methylation than preexisting Hg, particularly in the deep mineral soil. These observations suggest that climate warming and permafrost thaw not only impact on the decomposition of stored SOC and emission of greenhouse gases but also increase production of toxic methylmercury in Arctic tundra.

  15. Fire Severity and Soil Carbon Combustion in Boreal and Tundra Ecosystems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Walker, X. J.; Mack, M. C.; Baltzer, J. L.; Cummings, S.; Day, N.; Goetz, S.; Johnstone, J. F.; Rogers, B. M.; Turetsky, M. R.

    2016-12-01

    Climate warming in northern latitudes has led to an intensification of wildfire disturbance. Increased fire frequency, extent, and severity is expected to strongly impact the structure and function of northern ecosystems. In this study, we examined 50 sites in a recently burned tundra ecosystem of Alaska, USA and 250 sites in recently burned boreal conifer forest ecosystems of Northwest Territories, Canada. The majority of organic carbon (C) in both boreal and tundra ecosystems resides in the soil organic layer (SOL) and combustion of this layer can lead to large C emissions. Through examining multiple fire scars in different regions, ranging in moisture, elevation, and pre-fire vegetation communities, we can determine the ecosystem, landscape, and regional controls on SOL combustion and the potential shift in C storage. In this research, we use scalable SOL consumption metrics to estimate depth of burn and the associated C emissions. Preliminary results from boreal conifer sites indicate that nearly 50% of the pre-fire soil C pool was combusted and that over 75% of the total C emitted from the extreme fire year of 2014 can be attributed to combustion of the SOL. Increased combustion of SOL associated with an intensifying fire regime could shift boreal and tundra ecosystems across a C cycle threshold: from net accumulation of C from the atmosphere over multiple fire cycles, to a net loss. Understanding changes in SOL combustion and C storage is essential for assessing the consequences of an altered fire regime on permafrost dynamics, vegetation regeneration, and the initiation of successional trajectories in tundra and boreal ecosystems.

  16. Evapotranspiration across plant types and geomorphological units in polygonal Arctic tundra

    Science.gov (United States)

    Raz-Yaseef, Naama; Young-Robertson, Jessica; Rahn, Thom; Sloan, Victoria; Newman, Brent; Wilson, Cathy; Wullschleger, Stan D.; Torn, Margaret S.

    2017-10-01

    Coastal tundra ecosystems are relatively flat, and yet display large spatial variability in ecosystem traits. The microtopographical differences in polygonal geomorphology produce heterogeneity in permafrost depth, soil temperature, soil moisture, soil geochemistry, and plant distribution. Few measurements have been made, however, of how water fluxes vary across polygonal tundra plant types, limiting our ability to understand and model these ecosystems. Our objective was to investigate how plant distribution and geomorphological location affect actual evapotranspiration (ET). These effects are especially critical in light of the rapid change polygonal tundra systems are experiencing with Arctic warming. At a field site near Barrow, Alaska, USA, we investigated the relationships between ET and plant cover in 2014 and 2015. ET was measured at a range of spatial and temporal scales using: (1) An eddy covariance flux tower for continuous landscape-scale monitoring; (2) An automated clear surface chamber over dry vegetation in a fixed location for continuous plot-scale monitoring; and (3) Manual measurements with a clear portable chamber in approximately 60 locations across the landscape. We found that variation in environmental conditions and plant community composition, driven by microtopographical features, has significant influence on ET. Among plant types, ET from moss-covered and inundated areas was more than twice that from other plant types. ET from troughs and low polygonal centers was significantly higher than from high polygonal centers. ET varied seasonally, with peak fluxes of 0.14 mm h-1 in July. Despite 24 hours of daylight in summer, diurnal fluctuations in incoming solar radiation and plant processes produced a diurnal cycle in ET. Combining the patterns we observed with projections for the impact of permafrost degradation on polygonal structure suggests that microtopographic changes associated with permafrost thaw have the potential to alter tundra

  17. Call broadcasting and automated recorders as tools for anuran surveys in a subarctic tundra landscape

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mannan, R. Nicholas; Perry, Gad; Andersen, David; Boal, Clint W.

    2014-01-01

    Relatively little is known about population ecology of anurans in arctic and subarctic tundra regions, in part because it is difficult to survey anurans in these landscapes. Anuran survey protocols developed for temperate regions have limited applicability in arctic and subarctic tundra landscapes, which may lack roads and vehicle access, and experience variable and inclement weather during short anuran breeding seasons. To evaluate approaches to address some of the limitations of surveying anurans in tundra landscapes, we assessed the effectiveness of using breeding call broadcasts to increase detection of Boreal Chorus Frogs (Pseudacris maculata) and Wood Frogs (Lithobates sylvaticus) near Cape Churchill, Manitoba, Canada. We also evaluated how counts of anurans derived from automated audio recorders compared with those obtained simultaneously by observers. We detected on average 0.4 additional Wood Frogs per survey when we broadcasted calls (x̄ = 0.82, SD = 1.38), an increase of > 40% compared to surveys without broadcasts (x̄ = 1.24, SD = 1.51; Wilcoxon test; Z = 2.73, P = 0.006). In contrast, broadcasting Boreal Chorus Frog calls did not increase the number of chorus frog detections (Wilcoxon test; Z 0.90). Detections of Wood Frogs in a 100-m radius were lower via automated recorders (x̄ = 0.60, SD = 0.87 SD) than by observers during simultaneous surveys (x̄ = 0.96, SD = 1.27 Z = 2.07, P = 0.038), but those of Boreal Chorus Frogs were not different (x = 1.72, SD = 1.31;x̄ = 1.44, SD = 1.5; Z = 1.55, P > 0.121). Our results suggest that broadcasting calls can increase detection of Wood Frogs, and that automated recorders are useful in detecting both Wood Frogs and Boreal Chorus Fogs in arctic and subarctic tundra landscapes.

  18. Blood lead concentrations in Alaskan tundra swans: linking breeding and wintering areas with satellite telemetry

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ely, Craig R.; Franson, Christian

    2014-01-01

    Tundra swans (Cygnus columbianus) like many waterfowl species are susceptible to lead (Pb) poisoning, and Pb-induced mortality has been reported from many areas of their wintering range. Little is known however about Pb levels throughout the annual cycle of tundra swans, especially during summer when birds are on remote northern breeding areas where they are less likely to be exposed to anthropogenic sources of Pb. Our objective was to document summer Pb levels in tundra swans throughout their breeding range in Alaska to determine if there were population-specific differences in blood Pb concentrations that might pose a threat to swans and to humans that may consume them. We measured blood Pb concentrations in tundra swans at five locations in Alaska, representing birds that winter in both the Pacific Flyway and Atlantic Flyway. We also marked swans at each location with satellite transmitters and coded neck bands, to identify staging and wintering sites and determine if winter site use correlated with summer Pb concentrations. Blood Pb levels were generally low ( < 0.2 μg/ml) in swans across all breeding areas. Pb levels were lower in cygnets than adults, suggesting that swans were likely exposed to Pb on wintering areas or on return migration to Alaska, rather than on the summer breeding grounds. Blood Pb levels varied significantly across the five breeding areas, with highest concentrations in birds on the North Slope of Alaska (wintering in the Atlantic Flyway), and lowest in birds from the lower Alaska Peninsula that rarely migrate south for winter.

  19. Long-term persistence of spent lead shot in tundra wetlands

    Science.gov (United States)

    Flint, Paul L.; Schamber, Jason L.

    2010-01-01

    We seeded experimental plots with number 4 lead pellets and sampled these plots for 10 years to assess the settlement rate of pellets in tundra wetland types commonly used by foraging waterfowl. After 10 years, about 10% of pellets remained within 6 cm of the surface, but >50% remained within 10 cm. We predict that spent lead pellets will eventually become unavailable to waterfowl; however, it will likely require >25 years for all pellets to exceed depths at which waterfowl species may forage.

  20. The 'Alpine Windharvest' project - Overview; Projekt Alpine Windharvest - Schlussbericht

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Schaffner, B.; Kunz, S. [Suisse Eole, Meteotest, Berne (Switzerland)

    2005-07-01

    This short introduction forms part of a final report for the Swiss Federal Office of Energy (SFOE) that presents the results of a project carried out by the Swiss wind-energy organisation 'Suisse Eole' and the meteorology specialists of the company METEOTEST. The project investigated the use of digital relief-analysis and formed part of a European wind-energy project that investigated the technical, legal and socio-economical aspects of the use of wind energy. The work-package 7 included the identification of wind-energy areas using comparative Geographic Information System (GIS) methods. An overview is provided of the wind-energy potential in the whole of the alpine region and five areas in which measurements are to be made, including GIS analyses, are defined.

  1. Soil bacterial community composition altered by increased nutrient availability in Arctic tundra soils.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Koyama, Akihiro; Wallenstein, Matthew D; Simpson, Rodney T; Moore, John C

    2014-01-01

    The pool of soil organic carbon (SOC) in the Arctic is disproportionally large compared to those in other biomes. This large quantity of SOC accumulated over millennia due to slow rates of decomposition relative to net primary productivity. Decomposition is constrained by low temperatures and nutrient concentrations, which limit soil microbial activity. We investigated how nutrients limit bacterial and fungal biomass and community composition in organic and mineral soils within moist acidic tussock tundra ecosystems. We sampled two experimental arrays of moist acidic tussock tundra that included fertilized and non-fertilized control plots. One array included plots that had been fertilized annually since 1989 and the other since 2006. Fertilization significantly altered overall bacterial community composition and reduced evenness, to a greater degree in organic than mineral soils, and in the 1989 compared to the 2006 site. The relative abundance of copiotrophic α-Proteobacteria and β-Proteobacteria was higher in fertilized than control soils, and oligotrophic Acidobacteria were less abundant in fertilized than control soils at the 1989 site. Fungal community composition was less sensitive to increased nutrient availability, and fungal responses to fertilization were not consistent between soil horizons and sites. We detected two ectomycorrhizal genera, Russula and Cortinarius spp., associated with shrubs. Their relative abundance was not affected by fertilization despite increased dominance of their host plants in the fertilized plots. Our results indicate that fertilization, which has been commonly used to simulate warming in Arctic tundra, has limited applicability for investigating fungal dynamics under warming.

  2. Humic substances elemental composition of selected taiga and tundra soils from Russian European North-East

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lodygin Evgeny

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available Soils of Russian European North were investigated in terms of stability and quality of organic matter as well as in terms of soils organic matter elemental composi­tion. Therefore, soil humic acids (HAs, extracted from soils of different natural zones of Russian North-East were studied to characterize the degree of soil organic matter stabilization along a zonal gradient. HAs were extracted from soil of different zonal environments of the Komi Republic: south, middle and north taiga as well as south tundra. Data on elemental composition of humic acids and fulvic acids (FAs extracted from different soil types were obtained to assess humus formation mechanisms in the soils of taiga and tundra of the European North-East of Russia. The specificity of HAs elemental composition are discussed in relation to environmental conditions. The higher moisture degree of taiga soils results in the higher H/C ratio in humic substances. This reflects the reduced microbiologic activity in Albeluvisols sods and subsequent conser­vation of carbohydrate and amino acid fragments in HAs. HAs of tundra soils, shows the H/C values decreasing within the depth of the soils, which reflects increasing of aromatic compounds in HA structure of mineral soil horizons. FAs were more oxidized and contains less carbon while compared with the HAs. Humic acids, extracted from soil of different polar and boreal environments differ in terms of elemental composition winch reflects the climatic and hydrological regimes of humification.

  3. The response of Arctic vegetation and soils following an unusually severe tundra fire.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bret-Harte, M Syndonia; Mack, Michelle C; Shaver, Gaius R; Huebner, Diane C; Johnston, Miriam; Mojica, Camilo A; Pizano, Camila; Reiskind, Julia A

    2013-08-19

    Fire causes dramatic short-term changes in vegetation and ecosystem function, and may promote rapid vegetation change by creating recruitment opportunities. Climate warming likely will increase the frequency of wildfire in the Arctic, where it is not common now. In 2007, the unusually severe Anaktuvuk River fire burned 1039 km(2) of tundra on Alaska's North Slope. Four years later, we harvested plant biomass and soils across a gradient of burn severity, to assess recovery. In burned areas, above-ground net primary productivity of vascular plants equalled that in unburned areas, though total live biomass was less. Graminoid biomass had recovered to unburned levels, but shrubs had not. Virtually all vascular plant biomass had resprouted from surviving underground parts; no non-native species were seen. However, bryophytes were mostly disturbance-adapted species, and non-vascular biomass had recovered less than vascular plant biomass. Soil nitrogen availability did not differ between burned and unburned sites. Graminoids showed allocation changes consistent with nitrogen stress. These patterns are similar to those seen following other, smaller tundra fires. Soil nitrogen limitation and the persistence of resprouters will likely lead to recovery of mixed shrub-sedge tussock tundra, unless permafrost thaws, as climate warms, more extensively than has yet occurred.

  4. Soil bacterial community composition altered by increased nutrient availability in Arctic tundra soils

    Science.gov (United States)

    Koyama, Akihiro; Wallenstein, Matthew D.; Simpson, Rodney T.; Moore, John C.

    2014-01-01

    The pool of soil organic carbon (SOC) in the Arctic is disproportionally large compared to those in other biomes. This large quantity of SOC accumulated over millennia due to slow rates of decomposition relative to net primary productivity. Decomposition is constrained by low temperatures and nutrient concentrations, which limit soil microbial activity. We investigated how nutrients limit bacterial and fungal biomass and community composition in organic and mineral soils within moist acidic tussock tundra ecosystems. We sampled two experimental arrays of moist acidic tussock tundra that included fertilized and non-fertilized control plots. One array included plots that had been fertilized annually since 1989 and the other since 2006. Fertilization significantly altered overall bacterial community composition and reduced evenness, to a greater degree in organic than mineral soils, and in the 1989 compared to the 2006 site. The relative abundance of copiotrophic α-Proteobacteria and β-Proteobacteria was higher in fertilized than control soils, and oligotrophic Acidobacteria were less abundant in fertilized than control soils at the 1989 site. Fungal community composition was less sensitive to increased nutrient availability, and fungal responses to fertilization were not consistent between soil horizons and sites. We detected two ectomycorrhizal genera, Russula and Cortinarius spp., associated with shrubs. Their relative abundance was not affected by fertilization despite increased dominance of their host plants in the fertilized plots. Our results indicate that fertilization, which has been commonly used to simulate warming in Arctic tundra, has limited applicability for investigating fungal dynamics under warming. PMID:25324836

  5. The response of Arctic vegetation and soils following an unusually severe tundra fire

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bret-Harte, M. Syndonia; Mack, Michelle C.; Shaver, Gaius R.; Huebner, Diane C.; Johnston, Miriam; Mojica, Camilo A.; Pizano, Camila; Reiskind, Julia A.

    2013-01-01

    Fire causes dramatic short-term changes in vegetation and ecosystem function, and may promote rapid vegetation change by creating recruitment opportunities. Climate warming likely will increase the frequency of wildfire in the Arctic, where it is not common now. In 2007, the unusually severe Anaktuvuk River fire burned 1039 km2 of tundra on Alaska's North Slope. Four years later, we harvested plant biomass and soils across a gradient of burn severity, to assess recovery. In burned areas, above-ground net primary productivity of vascular plants equalled that in unburned areas, though total live biomass was less. Graminoid biomass had recovered to unburned levels, but shrubs had not. Virtually all vascular plant biomass had resprouted from surviving underground parts; no non-native species were seen. However, bryophytes were mostly disturbance-adapted species, and non-vascular biomass had recovered less than vascular plant biomass. Soil nitrogen availability did not differ between burned and unburned sites. Graminoids showed allocation changes consistent with nitrogen stress. These patterns are similar to those seen following other, smaller tundra fires. Soil nitrogen limitation and the persistence of resprouters will likely lead to recovery of mixed shrub–sedge tussock tundra, unless permafrost thaws, as climate warms, more extensively than has yet occurred. PMID:23836794

  6. Evaluation of Moderate-Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) Snow Albedo Product (MCD43A) over Tundra

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Zhuosen; Schaaf, Crystal B.; Chopping, Mark J.; Strahler, Alan H.; Wang, Jindi; Roman, Miguel O.; Rocha, Adrian V.; Woodcock, Curtis E.; Shuai, Yanmin

    2012-01-01

    This study assesses the MODIS standard Bidirectional Reflectance Distribution Function (BRDF)/Albedo product, and the daily Direct Broadcast BRDF/Albedo algorithm at tundra locations under large solar zenith angles and high anisotropic diffuse illumination and multiple scattering conditions. These products generally agree with ground-based albedo measurements during the snow cover period when the Solar Zenith Angle (SZA) is less than 70deg. An integrated validation strategy, including analysis of the representativeness of the surface heterogeneity, is performed to decide whether direct comparisons between field measurements and 500- m satellite products were appropriate or if the scaling of finer spatial resolution airborne or spaceborne data was necessary. Results indicate that the Root Mean Square Errors (RMSEs) are less than 0.047 during the snow covered periods for all MCD43 albedo products at several Alaskan tundra areas. The MCD43 1- day daily albedo product is particularly well suited to capture the rapidly changing surface conditions during the spring snow melt. Results also show that a full expression of the blue sky albedo is necessary at these large SZA snow covered areas because of the effects of anisotropic diffuse illumination and multiple scattering. In tundra locations with dark residue as a result of fire, the MODIS albedo values are lower than those at the unburned site from the start of snowmelt.

  7. Mapping wildfire burn severity in the Arctic Tundra from downsampled MODIS data

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kolden, Crystal A.; Rogan, John

    2013-01-01

    Wildfires are historically infrequent in the arctic tundra, but are projected to increase with climate warming. Fire effects on tundra ecosystems are poorly understood and difficult to quantify in a remote region where a short growing season severely limits ground data collection. Remote sensing has been widely utilized to characterize wildfire regimes, but primarily from the Landsat sensor, which has limited data acquisition in the Arctic. Here, coarse-resolution remotely sensed data are assessed as a means to quantify wildfire burn severity of the 2007 Anaktuvuk River Fire in Alaska, the largest tundra wildfire ever recorded on Alaska's North Slope. Data from Landsat Thematic Mapper (TM) and downsampled Moderate-resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) were processed to spectral indices and correlated to observed metrics of surface, subsurface, and comprehensive burn severity. Spectral indices were strongly correlated to surface severity (maximum R2 = 0.88) and slightly less strongly correlated to substrate severity. Downsampled MODIS data showed a decrease in severity one year post-fire, corroborating rapid vegetation regeneration observed on the burned site. These results indicate that widely-used spectral indices and downsampled coarse-resolution data provide a reasonable supplement to often-limited ground data collection for analysis and long-term monitoring of wildfire effects in arctic ecosystems.

  8. Soils of Sub-Antarctic tundras: diversity and basic chemical characteristics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abakumov, Evgeny; Vlasov, Dmitry; Mukhametova, Nadezhda

    2014-05-01

    Antarctic peninsula is known as specific part of Antarctica, which is characterizes by humid and relatively warm climate of so-called sub Antarctic (maritime) zone. Annual precipitation and long above zero period provides the possibility of sustainable tundra's ecosystem formation. Therefore, the soil diversity of these tundra landscapes is maximal in the whole Antarctic. Moreover, the thickness of parent material debris's is also highest and achieves a 1 or 2 meters as highest. The presence of higher vascular plants Deshampsia antarctica which is considered as one of the main edificators provides the development of humus accumulation in upper solum. Penguins activity provides an intensive soil fertilization and development of plant communities with increased density. All these factors leads to formation of specific and quite diverse soil cover in sub Antarctic tundra's. These ecosystems are presented by following permafrost affected soils: Leptosols, Lithoosols, Crysols, Gleysols, Peats and Ornhitosols. Also the post Ornhitosols are widely spreaded in subantarcic ecosystems, they forms on the penguin rockeries during the plant succession development, leaching of nutrients and organic matter mineralization. "Amphibious" soils are specific for seasonal lakes, which evaporates in the end if Australian summer. These soils have specific features of bio sediments and soils as well. Soil chemical characteristic as well as organic matter features discussed in comparison with Antacrtic continental soil in presentation.

  9. CO2 flux measurements in Russian Far East tundra using eddy covariance and closed chamber techniques

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Zamolodchikov, D.G.; Karelin, D.V.

    2003-01-01

    The objective of this study was to estimate the CO 2 exchange of a tundra ecosystem in the Russian Far East using the eddy covariance technique using closed-chamber measurements as a reference. An eddy covariance tower was placed near the Lavrentiya settlement (Chukotskiy Peninsula, Russia, 65 deg 36 min N, 171 deg 04 min W) within a typical tundra landscape. During the 85 d of continuous measurements [Days 205-289, 2000] the CO 2 exchange of the studied ecosystem was found to be close to equilibrium (a carbon sink at 10.2 gC/m 2 ). In the late summer period (Days 205-240) the ecosystem sequestered 32.1 gC/m 2 , whereas in autumn (Days 241-289), it was functioning as a carbon source of 21.9 gC/m 2 . Model-based estimates of ecosystem respiration and gross primary production were obtained over the period of observations. These are the first eddy covariance-based measurements performed in the Russian tundra

  10. Modeling dynamics of tundra plant communities on the Yamal Peninsula, Russia, in response to climate change and grazing pressure

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Yu, Q; Epstein, H E; Frost, G V; Walker, D A; Forbes, B C

    2011-01-01

    Understanding the responses of the arctic tundra biome to a changing climate requires knowledge of the complex interactions among the climate, soils and biological system. This study investigates the individual and interaction effects of climate change and reindeer grazing across a variety of climate zones and soil texture types on tundra vegetation community dynamics using an arctic vegetation model that incorporates the reindeer diet, where grazing is a function of both foliar nitrogen concentration and reindeer forage preference. We found that grazing is important, in addition to the latitudinal climate gradient, in controlling tundra plant community composition, explaining about 13% of the total variance in model simulations for all arctic tundra subzones. The decrease in biomass of lichen, deciduous shrub and graminoid plant functional types caused by grazing is potentially dampened by climate warming. Moss biomass had a nonlinear response to increased grazing intensity, and such responses were stronger when warming was present. Our results suggest that evergreen shrubs may benefit from increased grazing intensity due to their low palatability, yet a growth rate sensitivity analysis suggests that changes in nutrient uptake rates may result in different shrub responses to grazing pressure. Heavy grazing caused plant communities to shift from shrub tundra toward moss, graminoid-dominated tundra in subzones C and D when evergreen shrub growth rates were decreased in the model. The response of moss, lichen and forbs to warming varied across the different subzones. Initial vegetation responses to climate change during transient warming are different from the long term equilibrium responses due to shifts in the controlling mechanisms (nutrient limitation versus competition) within tundra plant communities.

  11. Australian Alps: Kosciuszko, Alpine and Namadgi National Parks (Second Edition

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nicole Porter

    2017-02-01

    Full Text Available Reviewed: Australian Alps: Kosciuszko, Alpine and Namadgi National Parks (Second Edition By Deidre Slattery. Clayton South, Australia: CSIRO Publishing, 2015. xvii + 302 pp. AU$ 45.00, US$ 35.95. ISBN 978-1-486-30171-3.

  12. Quantitative ecological relationships in the alpine grassland of ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    A survey, based on 56 000 points at 102 sampling sites in the Tsehlanyane valley of the Oxbow (Madibamatso) Dam catchment in the alpine grassland of Lesotho, indicates that the area is generally in good condition. Physiographic and floristic criteria were measured and the association between pairs of criteria statistically ...

  13. Alpine glacial topography and the rate of rock column uplift

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Pedersen, Vivi Kathrine; Egholm, D.L.; Nielsen, S.B.

    2010-01-01

    The present study investigates the influence of alpine glacial erosion on the morphology and relief distribution of mountain regions associated with varying rock column uplift rates. We take a global approach and analyse the surface area distribution of all mountain regions affected by glacial...

  14. Classification of the eastern alpine vegetation of Lesotho | Morris ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Five vegetation communities in the alpine catchment of Lesotho were identified by hierarchical classification of the botanical composition data. Discriminant analysis indicated that these communities occupy particular topographic positions. The community-environmental relationships identified in this study were similar to ...

  15. Progressive dysarthria and ataxia | McAlpine | South Sudan Medical ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    South Sudan Medical Journal. Journal Home · ABOUT · Advanced Search · Current Issue · Archives · Journal Home > Vol 8, No 1 (2015) >. Log in or Register to get access to full text downloads. Username, Password, Remember me, or Register. Progressive dysarthria and ataxia. Lynsey McAlpine, Fiona Cran, Eluzai Hakim ...

  16. 77 FR 48950 - Alpine County Resource Advisory Committee

    Science.gov (United States)

    2012-08-15

    ... committee is authorized under the Secure Rural Schools and Community Self-Determination Act (Pub. L. 112-141... held at the Alpine Early Learning Center, 100 Foothill Road, Markleeville, CA. Written comments may be... interpreting, assistive listening devices or other reasonable accommodation for access to the meeting please...

  17. Resistance and resilience of alpine lake fauna to fish introductions

    Science.gov (United States)

    R.A. Knapp; K.R. Matthews; O. Sarnelle

    2001-01-01

    Abstract. This paper reports on the response by amphibians, benthic macroinvertebrates, and zooplankton in naturally fishless alpine lakes to fish introductions and subsequent fish disappearance. We assessed resistance (the degree to which a system is altered when the environment changes) by comparing faunal distribution and abundance in lakes that have never been...

  18. [Fine root nitrogen contents and morphological adaptations of alpine plants].

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Salpagarova, F.S.; van Logtestijn, R. S.; Onipchenko, Vladimir G.; Akhmetzhanova, A.A.; Agafonov, V. A.

    Nitrogen and carbon contents of fine roots were studied for 92 alpine plant species in the Northwest Caucasus. Nitrogen content ranged from 0.43% (Bromus variegatus) to 3.75% (Corydalis conorhiza) with mean value 1.3%. Carbon content ranged from 40.3% (Corydalis conorhiza) to 51.7% (Empetrum nigrum)

  19. Nitrogen accumulation and partitioning in a High Arctic tundra ecosystem from extreme atmospheric N deposition events

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Choudhary, Sonal, E-mail: S.Choudhary@sheffield.ac.uk [Department of Animal and Plant Sciences, University of Sheffield, Western Bank, Sheffield S10 2TN (United Kingdom); Management School, University of Sheffield, Conduit Road, Sheffield S10 1FL (United Kingdom); Blaud, Aimeric [Department of Animal and Plant Sciences, University of Sheffield, Western Bank, Sheffield S10 2TN (United Kingdom); Osborn, A. Mark [Department of Animal and Plant Sciences, University of Sheffield, Western Bank, Sheffield S10 2TN (United Kingdom); School of Applied Sciences, RMIT University, PO Box 71, Bundoora, VIC 3083 (Australia); Press, Malcolm C. [School of Biosciences, University of Birmingham, Edgbaston, Birmingham B15 2TT (United Kingdom); Manchester Metropolitan University, Manchester, M15 6BH (United Kingdom); Phoenix, Gareth K. [Department of Animal and Plant Sciences, University of Sheffield, Western Bank, Sheffield S10 2TN (United Kingdom)

    2016-06-01

    Arctic ecosystems are threatened by pollution from recently detected extreme atmospheric nitrogen (N) deposition events in which up to 90% of the annual N deposition can occur in just a few days. We undertook the first assessment of the fate of N from extreme deposition in High Arctic tundra and are presenting the results from the whole ecosystem {sup 15}N labelling experiment. In 2010, we simulated N depositions at rates of 0, 0.04, 0.4 and 1.2 g N m{sup −2} yr{sup −1}, applied as {sup 15}NH{sub 4}{sup 15}NO{sub 3} in Svalbard (79{sup °}N), during the summer. Separate applications of {sup 15}NO{sub 3}{sup −} and {sup 15}NH{sub 4}{sup +} were also made to determine the importance of N form in their retention. More than 95% of the total {sup 15}N applied was recovered after one growing season (~ 90% after two), demonstrating a considerable capacity of Arctic tundra to retain N from these deposition events. Important sinks for the deposited N, regardless of its application rate or form, were non-vascular plants > vascular plants > organic soil > litter > mineral soil, suggesting that non-vascular plants could be the primary component of this ecosystem to undergo measurable changes due to N enrichment from extreme deposition events. Substantial retention of N by soil microbial biomass (70% and 39% of {sup 15}N in organic and mineral horizon, respectively) during the initial partitioning demonstrated their capacity to act as effective buffers for N leaching. Between the two N forms, vascular plants (Salix polaris) in particular showed difference in their N recovery, incorporating four times greater {sup 15}NO{sub 3}{sup −} than {sup 15}NH{sub 4}{sup +}, suggesting deposition rich in nitrate will impact them more. Overall, these findings show that despite the deposition rates being extreme in statistical terms, biologically they do not exceed the capacity of tundra to sequester pollutant N during the growing season. Therefore, current and future extreme events

  20. Nitrogen accumulation and partitioning in a High Arctic tundra ecosystem from extreme atmospheric N deposition events

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Choudhary, Sonal; Blaud, Aimeric; Osborn, A. Mark; Press, Malcolm C.; Phoenix, Gareth K.

    2016-01-01

    Arctic ecosystems are threatened by pollution from recently detected extreme atmospheric nitrogen (N) deposition events in which up to 90% of the annual N deposition can occur in just a few days. We undertook the first assessment of the fate of N from extreme deposition in High Arctic tundra and are presenting the results from the whole ecosystem 15 N labelling experiment. In 2010, we simulated N depositions at rates of 0, 0.04, 0.4 and 1.2 g N m −2 yr −1 , applied as 15 NH 4 15 NO 3 in Svalbard (79 ° N), during the summer. Separate applications of 15 NO 3 − and 15 NH 4 + were also made to determine the importance of N form in their retention. More than 95% of the total 15 N applied was recovered after one growing season (~ 90% after two), demonstrating a considerable capacity of Arctic tundra to retain N from these deposition events. Important sinks for the deposited N, regardless of its application rate or form, were non-vascular plants > vascular plants > organic soil > litter > mineral soil, suggesting that non-vascular plants could be the primary component of this ecosystem to undergo measurable changes due to N enrichment from extreme deposition events. Substantial retention of N by soil microbial biomass (70% and 39% of 15 N in organic and mineral horizon, respectively) during the initial partitioning demonstrated their capacity to act as effective buffers for N leaching. Between the two N forms, vascular plants (Salix polaris) in particular showed difference in their N recovery, incorporating four times greater 15 NO 3 − than 15 NH 4 + , suggesting deposition rich in nitrate will impact them more. Overall, these findings show that despite the deposition rates being extreme in statistical terms, biologically they do not exceed the capacity of tundra to sequester pollutant N during the growing season. Therefore, current and future extreme events may represent a major source of eutrophication. - Highlights: • High Arctic tundra demonstrated a very

  1. Alpine bistort (Bistorta vivipara) in edge habitat associates with fewer but distinct ectomycorrhizal fungal species: a comparative study of three contrasting soil environments in Svalbard.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mundra, Sunil; Bahram, Mohammad; Eidesen, Pernille Bronken

    2016-11-01

    Bistorta vivipara is a widespread arctic-alpine ectomycorrhizal (ECM) plant species. Recent findings suggest that fungal communities associated with B. vivipara roots appear random over short distances, but at larger scales, environmental filtering structure fungal communities. Habitats in highly stressful environments where specialist species with narrower niches may have an advantage represent unique opportunity to test the effect of environmental filtering. We utilised high-throughput amplicon sequencing to identify ECM communities associated with B. vivipara in Svalbard. We compared ECM communities in a core habitat where B. vivipara is frequent (Dryas-heath) with edge habitats representing extremes in terms of nutrient availability where B. vivipara is less frequent (bird-manured meadow and a nutrient-depleted mine tilling). Our analysis revealed that soil conditions in edge habitats favour less diverse but more distinct ECM fungal communities with functional traits adapted to local conditions. ECM richness was overall lower in both edge habitats, and the taxonomic compositions of ECM fungi were in line with our functional expectations. Stress-tolerant genera such as Laccaria and Hebeloma were abundant in nutrient-poor mine site whereas functional competitors genera such as Lactarius and Russula were dominant in the nutrient-rich bird-cliff site. Our results suggest that ECM communities in rare edge habitats are most likely not subsets of the larger pool of ECM fungi found in natural tundra, and they may represent a significant contribution to the overall diversity of ECM fungi in the Arctic.

  2. UAS applications in high alpine, snow-covered terrain

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bühler, Y.; Stoffel, A.; Ginzler, C.

    2017-12-01

    Access to snow-covered, alpine terrain is often difficult and dangerous. Hence parameters such as snow depth or snow avalanche release and deposition zones are hard to map in situ with adequate spatial and temporal resolution and with spatial continuous coverage. These parameters are currently operationally measured at automated weather stations and by observer networks. However such isolated point measurements are not able to capture the information spatial continuous and to describe the high spatial variability present in complex mountain topography. Unmanned Aerial Systems (UAS) have the potential to fill this gap by frequently covering selected high alpine areas with high spatial resolution down to ground resolutions of even few millimeters. At the WSL Institute for Snow and Avalanche Research SLF we test different photogrammetric UAS with visual and near infrared bands. During the last three years we were able to gather experience in more than 100 flight missions in extreme terrain. By processing the imagery applying state-of-the-art structure from motion (SfM) software, we were able to accurately document several avalanche events and to photogrammetrically map snow depth with accuracies from 1 to 20 cm (dependent on the flight height above ground) compare to manual snow probe measurements. This was even possible on homogenous snow surfaces with very little texture. A key issue in alpine terrain is flight planning. We need to cover regions at high elevations with large altitude differences (up to 1 km) with high wind speeds (up to 20 m/s) and cold temperatures (down to - 25°C). Only a few UAS are able to cope with these environmental conditions. We will give an overview on our applications of UAS in high alpine terrain that demonstrate the big potential of such systems to acquire frequent, accurate and high spatial resolution geodata in high alpine, snow covered terrain that could be essential to answer longstanding questions in avalanche and snow hydrology

  3. Methane and nitrous oxide fluxes from four tundra ecotopes in Ny-Ålesund of the High Arctic.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Qingqing; Zhu, Renbin; Wang, Qing; Xu, Hua

    2014-07-01

    During the summers of 2008 and 2009, net methane (CH₄) and nitrous oxide (N₂O) fluxes were investigated from 4 tundra ecotopes: normal lowland tundra (LT), bird sanctuary tundra (BT), the tundra in an abandoned coal mine (CT) and the tundra in scientific bases (ST) in Ny-Ålesund of the High Arctic. Tundra soils in CT (184.5 ± 40.0 μg CH4/(m²·hr)) and ST (367.6 ± 92.3μg CH4/(m²·hr)) showed high CH4 emissions due to the effects of human activities, whereas high CH4 uptake or low emission occurred in the soils of LT and BT. The lowland tundra soils (mean, -4.4-4.3μg N₂O/(m²·hr)) were weak N₂O sources and even sinks. Bird activity increased N₂O emissions from BT with the mean flux of 7.9μgN2O/(m(2)·hr). The mean N₂O fluxes from CT (45.4 ± 10.2 μg N₂O/(m²·hr)) and ST (78.8 ± 18.5μg N₂O/(m²·hr)) were one order of magnitude higher than those from LT and BT, indicating that human activities significantly increased N₂O emissions from tundra soils. Soil total carbon and water regime were important factors affecting CH₄ fluxes from tundra soils. The N₂O fluxes showed a significant positive correlation with ammonia nitrogen (NH₄(+)-N) contents (r=0.66, ptundra soils. The CH4 and N₂O fluxes did not correspond to the temperature variations of soil at 0-15 cm depths. Overall our results implied that human activities might have greater effects on soil CH₄ and N₂O emissions than current climate warming in Ny-Ålesund, High Arctic. Copyright © 2014. Published by Elsevier B.V.

  4. Detection and molecular characterization of the mosquito-borne filarial nematode Setaria tundra in Danish roe deer (Capreolus capreolus).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Enemark, Heidi Larsen; Oksanen, Antti; Chriél, Mariann; le Fèvre Harslund, Jakob; Woolsey, Ian David; Al-Sabi, Mohammad Nafi Solaiman

    2017-04-01

    Setaria tundra is a mosquito-borne filarial nematode of cervids in Europe. It has recently been associated with an emerging epidemic disease causing severe morbidity and mortality in reindeer and moose in Finland. Here, we present the first report of S. tundra in six roe deer ( Capreolus capreolus ) collected between October 2010 and March 2014 in Denmark. The deer originated from various localities across the country: the eastern part of the Jutland peninsular and four locations on the island Zealand. With the exception of one deer, with parasites residing in a transparent cyst just under the liver capsule, worms (ranging from 2 to >20/deer) were found free in the peritoneal cavity. The worms were identified as S. tundra by morphological examination and/or molecular typing of the mitochondrial 12S rRNA and cox1 genes, which showed 99.1-99.8% identity to previously published S. tundra isolates from Europe. Roe deer are generally considered as asymptomatic carriers and their numbers in Denmark have increased significantly in recent decades. In light of climatic changes which result in warmer, more humid weather in Scandinavia greater numbers of mosquitoes and, especially, improved conditions for development of parasite larvae in the mosquito vectors are expected, which may lead to increasing prevalence of S. tundra . Monitoring of this vector-borne parasite may thus be needed in order to enhance the knowledge of factors promoting its expansion and prevalence as well as predicting disease outbreaks.

  5. Carbon storage in permafrost and soils of the mammoth tundra-steppe biome: Role in the global carbon budget

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zimov, N. S.; Zimov, S. A.; Zimova, A. E.; Zimova, G. M.; Chuprynin, V. I.; Chapin, F. S.

    2009-01-01

    During the Last Glacial Maximum (LGM), atmospheric CO2 concentration was 80-100 ppmv lower than in pre-industrial times. At that time steppe-tundra was the most extensive biome on Earth. Some authors assume that C storage in that biome was very small, similar to today's deserts, and that the terrestrial carbon (C) reservoir increased at the Pleistocene-Holocene transition (PHT) by 400-1300 Gt. To estimate C storage in the entire steppe-tundra biome we used data of C storage in soils of this biome that persisted in permafrost of Siberia and Alaska and developed a model that describes C accumulation in soils and in permafrost. The model shows a slow but consistent C increase in soil when permafrost appears. At the PHT, C-rich frozen loess of Europe and South of Siberia thawed and lost most of its carbon. Soil carbon decreases as tundra-steppe changes to forest, steppes and tundra. As a result, over 1000 Gt C was released to the atmosphere, oceans, and other terrestrial ecosystems. The model results also show that restoring the tundra-steppe ecosystem would enhance soil C storage, while providing other important ecosystem services.

  6. Analysis Of The Land Surface Temperature And NDVI Using MODIS Data On The Arctic Tundra During The Last Decade

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mattar, C.; Duran-Alarcon, C.; Jimenez-Munoz, J. C.; Sobrino, J. A.

    2013-12-01

    The arctic tundra is one of the most sensible biome to climate conditions which has experienced important changes in the spatial distribution of temperature and vegetation in the last decades. In this paper we analyzed the spatio-temporal trend of the Land Surface Temperature (LST) and the Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI) over the arctic tundra biome during the last decade (2001-2012) derived from Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) land products MOD11C3 (LST) and MOD13C2 (NDVI) were used. Anomalies for each variable were analyzed at monthly level, and the magnitude and statistical significance of the trends were computed using the non-parametric tests of Sen's Slope and Mann-Kendal respectively. The results obtained from MODIS LST data showed a significant increase (p-value tundra in the last decade. In the case of the NDVI, the trend was positive (increase on NDVI) but statistically not significant (p-value tundra regions defined in the Circumpolar Arctic Vegetation Map have presented positive and statistically significant trends in NDVI and LST. Values of trends obtained from MODIS data over all the tundra regions were +1.10 [°C/dec] in the case of LST and +0.005 [NDVI value/dec] in the case of NDVI.

  7. Molecular detection of hematozoa infections in tundra swans relative to migration patterns and ecological conditions at breeding grounds

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ramey, Andrew M.; Ely, Craig R.; Schmutz, Joel A.; Pearce, John M.; Heard, Darryl J.

    2012-01-01

    Tundra swans (Cygnus columbianus) are broadly distributed in North America, use a wide variety of habitats, and exhibit diverse migration strategies. We investigated patterns of hematozoa infection in three populations of tundra swans that breed in Alaska using satellite tracking to infer host movement and molecular techniques to assess the prevalence and genetic diversity of parasites. We evaluated whether migratory patterns and environmental conditions at breeding areas explain the prevalence of blood parasites in migratory birds by contrasting the fit of competing models formulated in an occupancy modeling framework and calculating the detection probability of the top model using Akaike Information Criterion (AIC). We described genetic diversity of blood parasites in each population of swans by calculating the number of unique parasite haplotypes observed. Blood parasite infection was significantly different between populations of Alaska tundra swans, with the highest estimated prevalence occurring among birds occupying breeding areas with lower mean daily wind speeds and higher daily summer temperatures. Models including covariates of wind speed and temperature during summer months at breeding grounds better predicted hematozoa prevalence than those that included annual migration distance or duration. Genetic diversity of blood parasites in populations of tundra swans appeared to be relative to hematozoa prevalence. Our results suggest ecological conditions at breeding grounds may explain differences of hematozoa infection among populations of tundra swans that breed in Alaska.

  8. Slow recovery of lichen on burned caribou winter range in Alaska tundra: potential influences of climate warming and other disturbance factors

    Science.gov (United States)

    Randi Jandt; Kyle Joly; C. Randy Meyers; Charles. Racine

    2008-01-01

    Lichen regeneration timelines are needed to establish sound fire management guidelines for caribou (Rangifer tarandus) winter range. Paired burned and unburned permanent vegetative cover transects were established after 1981, 1977, and 1972 tundra fires in northwestern Alaska to document regrowth of tundra vegetation including caribou forage...

  9. The role of summer precipitation and summer temperature in establishment and growth of dwarf shrub Betula nana in northeast Siberian tundra

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Li, Bingxi; Heijmans, Monique M P D; Berendse, Frank

    2016-01-01

    It is widely believed that deciduous tundra-shrub dominance is increasing in the pan-Arctic region, mainly due to rising temperature. We sampled dwarf birch (Betula nana L.) at a northeastern Siberian tundra site and used dendrochronological methods to explore the relationship between climatic...

  10. Alaska's Living Tundra. Alaska Wildlife Week, 25-29 April 1988. Unit 6: Primary Teacher's Guide; Upper Elementary Teacher's Guide; Junior/Senior High School Teacher's Guide; Supplement.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Quinlan, Susan E.

    Despite its cold and barren appearance, Alaska's tundra supports a surprising variety of insects, birds, and mammals. In this document, three teacher's guides (for primary, upper elementary, and junior and senior high schools) and a supplementary resource packet present a comprehensive unit of study on Alaska's living tundra. The five lessons in…

  11. Des broussailles dans les prairies alpines

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Olivier Camacho

    2009-03-01

    Full Text Available Landscape closing due to the decline in agricultural activity is considered to be a major problem in the Alps. Abondance Valley provides a good example of this phenomenon and is also representative of a paradox commonly found in the Northern French Alps: the mountainsides and alpine pastures are still used, whereas they are becoming increasingly afforested. Environmental conditions play a major role in the localisation of agricultural land uses, but they are not sufficient to explain why pastures still in use are being invaded by shrub. Even if cutting makes it possible to effectively control the encroachment by woody species, this is not true for uncut pastures where grazing is not able to keep up with grass production. This situation is repeated every year and is the likely cause of the colonisation by woody species. To ensure their forage system and to simplify their work, farmers tend to establish grazing units that are oversized in relation to the needs of their animals. They implement compensatory practices that consist of mechanical maintenance as a complement to grazing to limit the dynamics of woody species. These labour-intensive practices are not used on all of the pastures. The analysis of farmers’ practices by agronomists is therefore a useful complement to studies of physical and socio-economic environments, at the level of the grazed field as well as at that of the valley as a whole.La dégradation des paysages par suite du recul de l’activité agricole est considérée comme un enjeu majeur dans les Alpes. La vallée d’Abondance illustre bien ce phénomène de fermeture de l’espace mais elle est en outre représentative d’un paradoxe assez répandu dans les Alpes du nord françaises : les versants et les alpages sont encore exploités et pourtant ils se boisent progressivement. Les conditions de milieux jouent un rôle majeur sur la localisation des usages agricoles de l'espace, mais elles ne peuvent pas suffire pour

  12. Innovation in the plural of the alpine cre-actors

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andréa Finger-Stich

    2009-06-01

    Full Text Available The capacity to innovate for a sustainable development of alpine territories cannot depend only on economic, legal and political conditions defined by the State at national and international levels. It depends also on local conditions that situate historically and geographically the actors in a continuity of social and ecological relationships. This approach highlights the collective – thus organisational – dimensions of the innovation process, including the imagination, the development, the implementation and even the diffusion of a new practice. Our point of view is that for contributing to the sustainable development of the Alps, innovations need to change the ecological, political, social and cultural relationships engaging the actors in these territories. This change affects as much the object territory as the subject actor of the territory. This is why innovating in the Alps means also innovating the Alps and the alpine actors (Cosalp, 2008. Based on a research about local people’s participation in the management of alpine communal forests, the article shows the importance of local interactions involving actors of diverse occupation, gender, age and origins1.La capacité d’innovation pour un développement durable des territoires alpins ne peut dépendre uniquement de conditions économiques, légales et politiques définies par les Etats aux échelles nationale et internationale. Elle dépend aussi de conditions locales, qui situent historiquement et géographiquement les acteurs dans une continuité de relations sociales et écologiques. Cette perspective accentue l’importance de la dimension collective, donc organisationnelle, du processus d’innovation, allant de l’imagination, puis au développement, à la réalisation – voire la diffusion – d’une nouvelle pratique. Le point de vue de cet article est qu’une innovation, pour contribuer au développement durable des Alpes, doit changer les relations

  13. Does NDVI reflect variation in the structural attributes associated with increasing shrub dominance in arctic tundra?

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Boelman, Natalie T; Gough, Laura; McLaren, Jennie R; Greaves, Heather

    2011-01-01

    This study explores relationships between the normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI) and structural characteristics associated with deciduous shrub dominance in arctic tundra. Our structural measures of shrub dominance are stature, branch abundance, aerial per cent woody stem cover (deciduous and evergreen species), and per cent deciduous shrub canopy cover. All measurements were taken across a suite of transects that together represent a gradient of deciduous shrub height. The transects include tussock tundra shrub and riparian shrub tundra communities located in the northern foothills of the Brooks Range, in northern Alaska. Plot-level NDVI measurements were made in 2010 during the snow-free period prior to deciduous shrub leaf-out (early June, NDVI pre-leaf ), at the point in the growing season when canopy NDVI has reached half of its maximum growing season value (mid-June, NDVI demi-leaf ) and during the period of maximum leaf-out (late July, NDVI peak-leaf ). We found that: (1) NDVI pre-leaf is best suited to capturing variation in the per cent woody stem cover, maximum shrub height, and branch abundance, particularly between 10 and 50 cm height in the canopy; (2) NDVI peak-leaf is best suited to capturing variation in deciduous canopy cover; and (3) NDVI demi-leaf does not capture variability in any of our measures of shrub dominance. These findings suggest that in situ NDVI measurements made prior to deciduous canopy leaf-out could be used to identify small differences in maximum shrub height, woody stem cover, and branch abundance (particularly between 10 and 50 cm height in the canopy). Because shrubs are increasing in size and regional extent in several regions of the Arctic, investigation into spectrally based tools for monitoring these changes are worthwhile as they provide a first step towards development of remotely sensed techniques for quantifying associated changes in regional carbon cycling, albedo, radiative energy balance, and wildlife

  14. Linkages Among Climate, Fire, and Thermoerosion in Alaskan Tundra Over the Past Three Millennia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chipman, M. L.; Hu, F. S.

    2017-12-01

    Amplified Arctic warming may facilitate novel tundra disturbance regimes, as suggested by recent increases in the rate and extent of thermoerosion and fires in some tundra areas. Thermoerosion and wildfire can exacerbate warming by releasing large permafrost carbon stocks, and interactions between disturbance regimes can lead to complex ecosystem feedbacks. We conducted geochemical and charcoal analyses of lake sediments from an Alaskan lake to identify thermoerosion and fire events over the past 3,000 years. Thermoerosion was inferred from lake sediments in the context of modern soil data from retrogressive thaw slumps (RTS). Magnetic susceptibility (MS), Ca:K, and Ca:Sr increased with depth in modern RTS soils and were higher on recently exposed than older slump surfaces. Peaks in bulk density, % CaCO3, Ca:K, Ca:Sr, and MS values in the sediments suggest at least 18 thermoerosion events in the Loon Lake watershed over the past 3,000 years. Charcoal analysis identifies 22 fires over the same period at this site. Temporal variability in these records suggests climate-driven responses of both thermoerosion and fire disturbance regimes, with fewer RTS episodes and fire events during the Little Ice Age than the Medieval Climate Anomaly. Moreover, RTS activity lagged behind catchment fires by 20-30 years (>90% confidence interval), implying that fires facilitated thermoerosion on decadal time scales, possibly because of prolonged active-layer deepening following fire and postfire proliferation of insulative shrub cover. These results highlight the potential for complex interactions between climate, vegetation, and tundra disturbance in response to ongoing warming.

  15. Ecotypic differences in the phenology of the tundra species Eriophorum vaginatum reflect sites of origin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Parker, Thomas C; Tang, Jianwu; Clark, Mahalia B; Moody, Michael M; Fetcher, Ned

    2017-11-01

    Eriophorum vaginatum is a tussock-forming sedge that contributes significantly to the structure and primary productivity of moist acidic tussock tundra. Locally adapted populations (ecotypes) have been identified across the geographical distribution of E. vaginatum ; however, little is known about how their growth and phenology differ over the course of a growing season. The growing season is short in the Arctic and therefore exerts a strong selection pressure on tundra species. This raises the hypothesis that the phenology of arctic species may be poorly adapted if the timing and length of the growing season change. Mature E. vaginatum tussocks from across a latitudinal gradient (65-70°N) were transplanted into a common garden at a central location (Toolik Lake, 68°38'N, 149°36'W) where half were warmed using open-top chambers. Over two growing seasons (2015 and 2016), leaf length was measured weekly to track growth rates, timing of senescence, and biomass accumulation. Growth rates were similar across ecotypes and between years and were not affected by warming. However, southern populations accumulated significantly more biomass, largely because they started to senesce later. In 2016, peak biomass and senescence of most populations occurred later than in 2015, probably induced by colder weather at the beginning of the growing season in 2016, which caused a delayed start to growth. The finish was delayed as well. Differences in phenology between populations were largely retained between years, suggesting that the amount of time that these ecotypes grow has been selected by the length of the growing seasons at their respective home sites. As potential growing seasons lengthen, E. vaginatum may be unable to respond appropriately as a result of genetic control and may have reduced fitness in the rapidly warming Arctic tundra.

  16. The influence of soil organic matter chemistry and site/soil properties in predicting the decomposability of tundra soils

    Science.gov (United States)

    Matamala, R.; Jastrow, J. D.; Fan, Z.; Liang, C.; Calderon, F.; Michaelson, G.; Mishra, U.; Ping, C. L.

    2017-12-01

    With the increase in high latitude warming, there is a need to better understand the potential vulnerability of soil organic matter (SOM) stored in Arctic regions. In this study, we used mid infrared spectroscopy (MidIR) to determine the influence of soil chemistry and site properties in the short-term mineralization potential of SOM stored in tundra soils. Soils from the active and permafrost layers were collected from four tundra sites on the Coastal Plain, and Arctic Foothills of the North Slope of Alaska and were incubated for 60 days at a range of temperatures. Site and soil properties including acidic versus non-acidic tundra, lowland versus upland areas, total soil organic carbon (TOC) and total nitrogen (TN) concentrations, 60-day carbon mineralization potential (CMP), MidIR spectra and the chemical composition of the SOM stored in these soils were determined. Partial least squares (PLS) models for CMP versus MidIR spectra were produced upon splitting the dataset into site and soil properties categories. We found that SOM composition determined by MidIR spectroscopy was most effective in predicting CMP for tundra soils and it was most relevant for the active-layer mineral and upper permafrost soil horizons and/or soils with C concentrations of 10% or lower. Analysis of the factor loadings and standardized beta coefficients from the CMP PLS models indicated that spectral bands associated with clay contents, phenolic OH, aliphatic, silicates, carboxylic acids, and polysaccharides were influential for lower TOC soils, but these bands were less important for higher TOC soils. High TOC soils were influenced by a combination of other factors. Our results suggest that different factors affect the short-term CMP of SOM in tundra soils depending on the amount of TOC present. We show MidIR as a powerful tool for quickly and reasonably estimating the short-term CMP of tundra soils. Widespread application of MidIR measurements to already collected and archived tundra

  17. Invasion of terrestrial enchytraeids into two postglacial tundras: North-eastern Greenland and the Arctic Archipelago of Canada (Enchytraeidae, Oligochaeta)

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Christensen, Bent; Dózsa-Farkas, Klára

    2006-01-01

    The aim was to study the invasion of terrestrial enchytraeids into the two postglacial tundras, North-eastern Greenland and the Arctic Archipelago of Canada. The majority of species recorded have a wide distribution in the Northern Hemisphere and the species diversity is considerably lower than...... that of potential source regions indicating either strong selection or varied dispersal ability. It appears that the Archipelago is influenced mainly from North America and North-eastern Greenland from Europe while the specialized fauna of the ancient Beringian tundra is of minor importance. The two alternative...

  18. Plant and microbial responses to nitrogen and phosphorus addition across an elevational gradient in subarctic tundra.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sundqvist, Maja K; Liu, Zhanfeng; Giesler, Reiner; Wardle, David A

    2014-07-01

    Temperature and nutrients are major limiting factors in subarctic tundra. Experimental manipulation of nutrient availability along elevational gradients (and thus temperature) can improve our understanding of ecological responses to climate change. However, no study to date has explored impacts of nutrient addition along a tundra elevational gradient, or across contrasting vegetation types along any elevational gradient. We set up a full factorial nitrogen (N) and phosphorus (P) fertilization experiment in each of two vegetation types (heath and meadow) at 500 m, 800 m, and 1000 m elevation in northern Swedish tundra. We predicted that plant and microbial communities in heath or at lower elevations would be more responsive to N addition while communities in meadow or at higher elevations would be more responsive to P addition, and that fertilizer effects would vary more with elevation for the heath than for the meadow. Although our results provided little support for these predictions, the relationship between nutrient limitation and elevation differed between vegetation types. Most plant and microbial properties were responsive to N and/or P fertilization, but responses often varied with elevation and/or vegetation type. For instance, vegetation density significantly increased with N + P fertilization relative to the other fertilizer treatments, and this increase was greatest at the lowest elevation for the heath but at the highest elevation for the meadow. Arbuscular mycorrhizae decreased with P fertilization at 500 m for the meadow, but with all fertilizer treatments in both vegetation types at 800 m. Fungal to bacterial ratios were enhanced by N+ P fertilization for the two highest elevations in the meadow only. Additionally, microbial responses to fertilization were primarily direct rather than indirect via plant responses, pointing to a decoupled response of plant and microbial communities to nutrient addition and elevation. Because our study shows how two

  19. The Geometry of Large Tundra Lakes Observed in Historical Maps and Satellite Images

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sudakov, Ivan; Essa, Almabrok; Mander, Luke; Gong, Ming; Kariyawasam, Tharanga

    2017-10-01

    Tundra lakes are key components of the Arctic climate system because they represent a source of methane to the atmosphere. In this paper, we aim to analyze the geometry of the patterns formed by large ($>0.8$ km$^2$) tundra lakes in the Russian High Arctic. We have studied images of tundra lakes in historical maps from the State Hydrological Institute, Russia (date 1977; scale $0.21166$ km/pixel) and in Landsat satellite images derived from the Google Earth Engine (G.E.E.; date 2016; scale $0.1503$ km/pixel). The G.E.E. is a cloud-based platform for planetary-scale geospatial analysis on over four decades of Landsat data. We developed an image-processing algorithm to segment these maps and images, measure the area and perimeter of each lake, and compute the fractal dimension of the lakes in the images we have studied. Our results indicate that as lake size increases, their fractal dimension bifurcates. For lakes observed in historical maps, this bifurcation occurs among lakes larger than $100$ km$^2$ (fractal dimension $1.43$ to $1.87$). For lakes observed in satellite images this bifurcation occurs among lakes larger than $\\sim$100 km$^2$ (fractal dimension $1.31$ to $1.95$). Tundra lakes with a fractal dimension close to $2$ have a tendency to be self-similar with respect to their area--perimeter relationships. Area--perimeter measurements indicate that lakes with a length scale greater than $70$ km$^2$ are power-law distributed. Preliminary analysis of changes in lake size over time in paired lakes (lakes that were visually matched in both the historical map and the satellite imagery) indicate that some lakes in our study region have increased in size over time, whereas others have decreased in size over time. Lake size change during this 39-year time interval can be up to half the size of the lake as recorded in the historical map.

  20. The Geometry of Large Tundra Lakes Observed in Historical Maps and Satellite Images

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ivan Sudakov

    2017-10-01

    Full Text Available The climate of the Arctic is warming rapidly and this is causing major changes to the cycling of carbon and the distribution of permafrost in this region. Tundra lakes are key components of the Arctic climate system because they represent a source of methane to the atmosphere. In this paper, we aim to analyze the geometry of the patterns formed by large (> 0.8 km 2 tundra lakes in the Russian High Arctic. We have studied images of tundra lakes in historical maps from the State Hydrological Institute, Russia (date 1977; scale 0.21166 km/pixel and in Landsat satellite images derived from the Google Earth Engine (G.E.E.; date 2016; scale 0.1503 km/pixel. The G.E.E. is a cloud-based platform for planetary-scale geospatial analysis on over four decades of Landsat data. We developed an image-processing algorithm to segment these maps and images, measure the area and perimeter of each lake, and compute the fractal dimension of the lakes in the images we have studied. Our results indicate that as lake size increases, their fractal dimension bifurcates. For lakes observed in historical maps, this bifurcation occurs among lakes larger than 100 km 2 (fractal dimension 1.43 to 1.87 . For lakes observed in satellite images this bifurcation occurs among lakes larger than ∼100 km 2 (fractal dimension 1.31 to 1.95 . Tundra lakes with a fractal dimension close to 2 have a tendency to be self-similar with respect to their area–perimeter relationships. Area–perimeter measurements indicate that lakes with a length scale greater than 70 km 2 are power-law distributed. Preliminary analysis of changes in lake size over time in paired lakes (lakes that were visually matched in both the historical map and the satellite imagery indicate that some lakes in our study region have increased in size over time, whereas others have decreased in size over time. Lake size change during this 39-year time interval can be up to half the size of the lake as recorded in the

  1. Human impact on tundra environment at the Ny-Ålesund Station, Svalbard

    OpenAIRE

    Jadwiga Krzyszowska, Anna

    1989-01-01

    Studies were performed in Ny-Alesund, Spitsbergen, in June and July 1986 in order to gain an insight into the effect of activities of the polar research station on the nearby environment. It was found that chemical and mechanical factors were the most detrimental to the tundra environment. Fuel oil spills (110 m3 in 1986), which spread via surface and ground waters, were the most damaging of the chemical factors. Domestic sewage polluted the waters of Kolhamna Bay within an area of only 0.5 h...

  2. Ecosystem Respiration Rates of Arctic Tundra Mesocosms in Response to Cold-Season Temperatures

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oberbauer, S. F.; Moser, J. G.; Olivas, P. C.; Starr, G.; Mortazavi, B.

    2013-12-01

    The cold season in the Arctic extends over 8 to 9 mo, during which air temperatures often reach as low as -40 °C. However, as a result of the insulating layer created by snow cover, temperatures seldom fall below -15 °C, and are likely warm enough to support some metabolism. Little research has been conducted on arctic plants and tundra during the cold season, despite its length and the fact that warming is predicted to be greatest during this period. The primary focus of cold-season research has been on rates of winter ecosystem respiration (ER) for estimates of annual carbon balance. The majority of these measurements during the winter or at winter temperatures indicate that some respiration is occurring. Although rates are low, they may contribute substantially to the annual carbon balance because of the length of the cold season. However, estimates of respiration at low temperatures differ substantially, have been taken at different temperatures using different methodologies, and importantly almost none provide quantitative relationships across a range of temperatures. We measured respiration rates of intact arctic tundra monoliths from 15 to -15 °C at 5 °C steps to facilitate improved model estimates of tundra respiration. Six tundra monoliths (~900 cm2) taken from Toolik Field Station, Alaska were conditioned for the cold season in growth chambers at shortened photoperiods and low, but above-freezing temperatures. Desired temperatures were obtained with a combination of growth chambers and a modified freezer. The average of five samplings of [CO2] at each temperature step was used to estimate the ER rates. Measurements were conducted with a closed system using incubation periods of 30 to 180 min, depending on the temperature. Carbon dioxide concentrations were measured by syringe samples injected into a N2 gas stream flowing through an infrared gas analyzer. Rates of ER calculated on an area basis were close to zero at -15 °C, but increased steadily with

  3. Delineation of Tundra Swan Cygnus c. columbianus populations in North America: geographic boundaries and interchange

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ely, Craig R.; Sladen, William J. L.; Wilson, Heather M.; Savage, Susan E.; Sowl, Kristine M.; Henry, Bill; Schwitters, Mike; Snowden, James

    2014-01-01

    North American Tundra Swans Cygnus c. columbianus are composed of two wellrecognised populations: an Eastern Population (EP) that breeds across northern Canada and north of the Brooks Range in Alaska, which migrates to the eastern seaboard of the United States, and a Western Population (WP) that breeds in coastal regions of Alaska south of the Brooks Range and migrates to western North America. We present results of a recent major ringing effort from across the breeding range in Alaska to provide a better definition of the geographic extent of the migratory divide in Alaska. We also reassess the staging and winter distributions of these populations based on locations of birds tracked using satellite transmitters, and recent recoveries and sightings of neck-collared birds. Summer sympatry of EP and WP Tundra Swans is very limited, and largely confined to a small area in northwest Alaska. Autumn migration pathways of EP and WP Tundra swans abut in southwest Saskatchewan, a region where migrating WP birds turn west, and EP birds deviate abruptly eastward. Overall, from 1989 to 2013 inclusive, 2.6% of recoveries or resightings reported to the USGS Bird Banding Laboratory were of birds that moved from the domain of the population in which they were initially captured to within the range of the other population; a proportion roughly comparable to the results of Limpert et al. (1991) for years before 1990. Of the 70 cross-boundary movements reported since 1989, 39% were of birds marked on breeding areas and 61% were of birds marked on wintering areas. Dispersing swans (i.e. those that made crossboundary movements) did not differ with respect to age or sex from those that did not move between populations. The Brooks Range in northern Alaska effectively separates the two populations within Alaska, but climate-induced changes in tundra breeding habitats and losses of wetlands on staging areas may alter the distribution for both of these populations.

  4. Hybrid image classification technique for land-cover mapping in the Arctic tundra, North Slope, Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chaudhuri, Debasish

    Remotely sensed image classification techniques are very useful to understand vegetation patterns and species combination in the vast and mostly inaccessible arctic region. Previous researches that were done for mapping of land cover and vegetation in the remote areas of northern Alaska have considerably low accuracies compared to other biomes. The unique arctic tundra environment with short growing season length, cloud cover, low sun angles, snow and ice cover hinders the effectiveness of remote sensing studies. The majority of image classification research done in this area as reported in the literature used traditional unsupervised clustering technique with Landsat MSS data. It was also emphasized by previous researchers that SPOT/HRV-XS data lacked the spectral resolution to identify the small arctic tundra vegetation parcels. Thus, there is a motivation and research need to apply a new classification technique to develop an updated, detailed and accurate vegetation map at a higher spatial resolution i.e. SPOT-5 data. Traditional classification techniques in remotely sensed image interpretation are based on spectral reflectance values with an assumption of the training data being normally distributed. Hence it is difficult to add ancillary data in classification procedures to improve accuracy. The purpose of this dissertation was to develop a hybrid image classification approach that effectively integrates ancillary information into the classification process and combines ISODATA clustering, rule-based classifier and the Multilayer Perceptron (MLP) classifier which uses artificial neural network (ANN). The main goal was to find out the best possible combination or sequence of classifiers for typically classifying tundra type vegetation that yields higher accuracy than the existing classified vegetation map from SPOT data. Unsupervised ISODATA clustering and rule-based classification techniques were combined to produce an intermediate classified map which was

  5. Arctic Tundra Vegetation Functional Types Based on Photosynthetic Physiology and Optical Properties

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huemmrich, Karl Fred; Gamon, John A.; Tweedie, Craig E.; Campbell, Petya K. Entcheva; Landis, David R.; Middleton, Elizabeth M.

    2013-01-01

    Non-vascular plants (lichens and mosses) are significant components of tundra landscapes and may respond to climate change differently from vascular plants affecting ecosystem carbon balance. Remote sensing provides critical tools for monitoring plant cover types, as optical signals provide a way to scale from plot measurements to regional estimates of biophysical properties, for which spatial-temporal patterns may be analyzed. Gas exchange measurements were collected for pure patches of key vegetation functional types (lichens, mosses, and vascular plants) in sedge tundra at Barrow, AK. These functional types were found to have three significantly different values of light use efficiency (LUE) with values of 0.013 plus or minus 0.0002, 0.0018 plus or minus 0.0002, and 0.0012 plus or minus 0.0001 mol C mol (exp -1) absorbed quanta for vascular plants, mosses and lichens, respectively. Discriminant analysis of the spectra reflectance of these patches identified five spectral bands that separated each of these vegetation functional types as well as nongreen material (bare soil, standing water, and dead leaves). These results were tested along a 100 m transect where midsummer spectral reflectance and vegetation coverage were measured at one meter intervals. Along the transect, area-averaged canopy LUE estimated from coverage fractions of the three functional types varied widely, even over short distances. The patch-level statistical discriminant functions applied to in situ hyperspectral reflectance data collected along the transect successfully unmixed cover fractions of the vegetation functional types. The unmixing functions, developed from the transect data, were applied to 30 m spatial resolution Earth Observing-1 Hyperion imaging spectrometer data to examine variability in distribution of the vegetation functional types for an area near Barrow, AK. Spatial variability of LUE was derived from the observed functional type distributions. Across this landscape, a

  6. Characterizing organic matter lability in Alaskan tundra soils using mid-infrared spectroscopy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fan, Z.; Matamala, R.; Jastrow, J. D.; Liang, C.; Calderon, F.; Michaelson, G. J.; Ping, C. L.; Mishra, U.; Hofmann, S. M.

    2015-12-01

    Soils in permafrost regions contain large amounts of soil organic carbon (SOC) that is preserved in a relatively undecomposed state due to cold and often wet conditions, yet the potential lability of these SOC stocks is still largely unknown. Traditional methods of assessing SOC lability (e.g., laboratory incubation studies) are labor intensive and time consuming. Fourier-transform mid-infrared spectroscopy (MidIR) provides a means to quickly estimate SOC quantity and quality based on the wealth of spectral information. In this study, we explored the possibility of linking MidIR spectra with SOC lability in Arctic tundra soils. Soils from four sites on the North Slope of Alaska were used in this study: a wet non-acidic tundra site in the coastal plain (CP), two moist acidic tundra sites between the northern foothills and the coastal plain (HC and SH), and another moist acidic tundra site in the northern foothills (HV). Active-layer organic and mineral soils and upper permafrost soils from the four sites were incubated for 60 days at -1, 1, 4, 8 and 16 °C. Thawed soils were allowed to drain to field capacity. Carbon dioxide (CO2) production was measured throughout the study. The chemical composition (e.g., total organic carbon and nitrogen) and MidIR spectra of soil samples were obtained before and after the incubations. CO2 production varied among soils and temperatures. CO2 production was greatest at 16 °C for CP and SH organic layers and for HC and HV permafrost layers. These trends among soil layers and sites remained similar at all temperatures. We found a good correlation between MidIR and cumulative 60-day CO2 production across different soils and temperatures. Characteristic MidIR bands and band ratios previously identified in the literature were also correlated with total CO2 production. For example, several band ratios (such as the ratio of aliphatics to clay or the ratio of lignin or phenolics to minerals) in the mineral active layer were highly

  7. Enhanced biological degradation of crude oil in a Spitsbergen tundra site

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Sveum, P.; Faksness, L.-G.

    1993-01-01

    A series of oil-contaminated tundra plots on Spitsbergen was treated with combinations of five different fertilizer additives. Both organic and mineral nutrient sources were used, alone or in combination. Biological degradation of oil was recorded in all of the plots. The extent of degradation depended on the type of fertilizer added. The local conditions influence oil degradation significantly, as well as the effect of the fertilizer. Urea, SkogAN (a slow releasing fertilizer), and a blend of fish meals all give high degrees of oil degradation. Both the microbial parameters and the total heterotrophic respiration are influenced by the addition of fertilizers. 6 refs., 13 figs., 3 tabs

  8. Impact of climatic change on alpine ecosystems: inference and prediction

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nigel G. Yoccoz

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available Alpine ecosystems will be greatly impacted by climatic change, but other factors, such as land use and invasive species, are likely to play an important role too. Climate can influence ecosystems at several levels. We describe some of them, stressing methodological approaches and available data. Climate can modify species phenology, such as flowering date of plants and hatching date in insects. It can also change directly population demography (survival, reproduction, dispersal, and therefore species distribution. Finally it can effect interactions among species – snow cover for example can affect the success of some predators. One characteristic of alpine ecosystems is the presence of snow cover, but surprisingly the role played by snow is relatively poorly known, mainly for logistical reasons. Even if we have made important progress regarding the development of predictive models, particularly so for distribution of alpine plants, we still need to set up observational and experimental networks which properly take into account the variability of alpine ecosystems and of their interactions with climate.Les écosystèmes alpins vont être grandement influencés par les changements climatiques à venir, mais d’autres facteurs, tels que l’utilisation des terres ou les espèces invasives, pourront aussi jouer un rôle important. Le climat peut influencer les écosystèmes à différents niveaux, et nous en décrivons certains, en mettant l’accent sur les méthodes utilisées et les données disponibles. Le climat peut d’abord modifier la phénologie des espèces, comme la date de floraison des plantes ou la date d’éclosion des insectes. Il peut ensuite affecter directement la démographie des espèces (survie, reproduction, dispersion et donc à terme leur répartition. Il peut enfin agir sur les interactions entre espèces – le couvert neigeux par exemple modifie le succès de certains prédateurs. Une caractéristique des

  9. MILK COAGULATION PROPERTIES OF CATTLE BREEDS REARED IN ALPINE AREA

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Giulio Visentin

    2015-09-01

    Full Text Available The aim of the present study was to apply mid-infrared spectroscopy prediction models developed for milk coagulation properties (MCP to a spectral dataset of 123,240 records collected over a 2-year period in the Alpine area, and to investigate sources of variation of the predicted MCP. Mixed linear models included fixed effects of breed, month and year of sampling, days in milk, parity, and the interactions between the main effects. Random effects were herd nested within breed, cow nested within breed, and the residual. All fixed effects were significant (P<0.05 in explaining the variation of MCP. In particular, milk clotting characteristics varied significantly among breeds, and local Alpine Grey breed exhibited the most favourable processing characteristics. Milk coagulation properties varied across lactation and were at their worst after the peak.

  10. Hydrologic response to valley-scale structure in alpine headwaters

    Science.gov (United States)

    Weekes, Anne A.; Torgersen, Christian E.; Montgomery, David R.; Woodward, Andrea; Bolton, Susan M.

    2015-01-01

    Few systematic studies of valley-scale geomorphic drivers of streamflow regimes in complex alpine headwaters have compared response between catchments. As a result, little guidance is available for regional-scale hydrological research and monitoring efforts that include assessments of ecosystem function. Physical parameters such as slope, elevation range, drainage area and bedrock geology are often used to stratify differences in streamflow response between sampling sites within an ecoregion. However, these metrics do not take into account geomorphic controls on streamflow specific to glaciated mountain headwaters. The coarse-grained nature of depositional features in alpine catchments suggests that these landforms have little water storage capacity because hillslope runoff moves rapidly just beneath the rock mantle before emerging in fluvial networks. However, recent studies show that a range of depositional features, including talus slopes, protalus ramparts and 'rock-ice' features may have more storage capacity than previously thought.

  11. A New GLORIA (Global Research Initiative in Alpine Environments Site in Southwestern Montana

    Science.gov (United States)

    Apple, M. E.; Warden, J. E.; Apple, C. J.; Pullman, T. Y.; Gallagher, J. H.

    2008-12-01

    Global climate change is predicted to have a major impact on the alpine environments and plants of western North America. Alpine plant species and treelines may migrate upwards due to warmer temperatures. Species composition, vegetation cover, and the phenology of photosynthesis, flowering, pollination, and seed dispersal may change. The Global Research Initiative in Alpine Environments (GLORIA) is a network of alpine sites established with the goal of understanding the interactions between climate change and alpine plants. The Continental Divide traverses Southwestern Montana, where the flora contains representative species from both sides of the divide. In the summer of 2008, we established a GLORIA site in southwestern Montana east of the Continental Divide with the objective of determining whether the temperature changes at the site, and if so, how temperature changes influence alpine plants. We are monitoring soil temperature along with species composition and percent cover of alpine plants at four sub-summits along an ascending altitudinal gradient. We placed the treeline, lower alpine, and upper alpine sites on Mt. Fleecer (45°49'36.06"N, 112°48'08.18"W, 2886.2 m (9469 ft)) and the highest sub-summit on Keokirk Mountain, (45°35'37.94"N, 112°57'03.89"W, 2987.3 m (9801 ft)) in the Pioneer Range. Interesting species on these mountains include Lewisia pygmaea, the Pygmy Bitterroot, Silene acaulis, the Moss Campion, Eritrichium nanum, the Alpine Forget-Me-Not, Lloydia serotina, the Alpine Lily, and Pinus albicaulis, the Whitebark Pine. This new site will remain in place indefinitely. Baseline and subsequent data from this site will be linked with the global network of GLORIA sites with which we will assess changes in alpine flora.

  12. Spatial distribution and environmental analysis of the alpine flora in the Pyrenees

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    D. Gómez

    2017-09-01

    Full Text Available On the basis of the digital edition of the “Atlas of the vascular flora of the Pyrenees” (www.florapyrenaea. org, the alpine flora of this mountain range is delimited in order to know its diversity and the different patterns of its spatial distribution, along with some other environmental characteristics. The Pyrenean alpine flora is made up of 645 taxa (630 species and 15 subspecies. All the administrative regions harbour more than 60% of the alpine plants, with Catalonia and Aragon reaching the highest values (around 90%. Along the altitudinal gradient, the highest plant diversity is found between 2300 and 2600 m. a. s. l., although 25% of the total alpine flora goes beyond 3000 m. On the other hand, a remarkable number of alpine plants live in the lowlands, and thus more than 300 alpine plants can be found below 1500 m. The average altitude range of the alpine plants is 1369 m, 300 m wider than that observed for the whole Pyrenean flora. Life-forms, habitat distribution and habitat naturalness of alpine plants are significantly different from those of the whole Pyrenean flora. Distribution of abundance categories also shows values of rarity significantly lower among alpine plants than for the whole flora. More than half the Pyrenean endemic plants are present in the alpine flora. High diversity and wide ecological amplitude of the alpine flora must be taken into account either when considering vulnerability of alpine plants facing “global change” or when addressing conservation policies for the whole Pyrenees from a common perspective.

  13. Brittle fracture damage around the Alpine Fault, New Zealand

    Science.gov (United States)

    Williams, J. N.; Toy, V.; Smith, S. A. F.; Boulton, C. J.; Massiot, C.; Mcnamara, D. D.

    2017-12-01

    We use field and drill-core samples to characterize macro- to micro-scale brittle fracture networks within the hanging-wall of New Zealand's Alpine Fault, an active plate-boundary fault that is approaching the end of its seismic cycle. Fracture density in the hanging-wall is roughly constant for distances of up to 500 m from the principal slip zone gouges (PSZs). Fractures >160 m from the PSZs are typically open and parallel to the regional mylonitic foliation or host rock schistosity, and likely formed as unloading joints during rapid exhumation of the hanging-wall at shallow depths. Fractures within c. 160 m of the PSZs are broadly oriented shear-fractures filled with gouge or cataclasite, and are interpreted to constitute the hanging-wall damage zone of the Alpine Fault. This is comparable to the 60-200 m wide "geophysical damage zone" estimated from low seismic wave velocities surrounding the Alpine Fault. Veins are pervasive within the c. 20 m-thick hanging-wall cataclasites and are most commonly filled by calcite, chlorite, muscovite and K-feldspar. Notably, there is a set of intragranular clast-hosted veins, as well as a younger set of veins that cross-cut both clasts and cataclasite matrix. The intragranular veins formed prior to cataclasis or during synchronous cataclasis and calcite-silicate mineralisation. Broad estimates for the depth of vein formation indicate that the cataclasites formed a c. 20 m wide actively deforming zone at depths of c. 4-8 km. Conversely, the cross-cutting veins are interpreted to represent off-fault damage within relatively indurated cataclasites following slip localization onto the <10 cm wide smectite-bearing PSZ gouges at depths of <4 km. Our observations therefore highlight a strong depth-dependence of the width of the actively deforming zone within the brittle seismogenic crust around the Alpine Fault.

  14. Mapping alpine soils using color positive and color infrared photographs

    Science.gov (United States)

    Burns, S.

    1980-01-01

    During a soil survey of the Indian Peaks area of the Colorado Front Range, it was found that large scale color positive photographs taken in the autumn were extremely useful for mapping alpine soils. Smaller scale color infrared photos were also helpful for delineation of mapping units. The soil mapping units were deduced on the basis of landforms and snow accumulation which is reflected in patterns of vegetational communities.

  15. Injuries among male and female World Cup alpine skiers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Flørenes, T W; Bere, T; Nordsletten, L; Heir, S; Bahr, R

    2009-12-01

    Limited knowledge exists on injuries among professional alpine skiers. To describe the risk of injury and the injury pattern among competitive World Cup alpine skiers during the competitive season. Retrospective interviews were performed with all World Cup athletes from 10 nations at the end of the 2006-7 and 2007-8 winter seasons, and all acute injuries occurring during the 4.5-month competitive season were recorded. If the athlete was not present, their coaches or medical personnel were interviewed. A total of 191 acute injuries were recorded among 521 World Cup alpine skiers. As many as 86 injuries (45%) occurred during World Cup/World Ski Championship competitions, corresponding to an injury rate of 9.8 injuries per 1000 runs (95% CI 7.8 to 11.9). The injury rate was found to increase with increasing speed (slalom 4.9 injuries per 1000 runs, 95% CI 2.5 to 7.4--giant slalom 9.2, 5.1 to 13.3--super-G 11.0, 5.2 to 16.8--downhill 17.2, 11.6 to 22.7). The most frequently injured body part was the knee, with 68 injuries (36%), and 37 of these were severe. The overall injury rate was higher in males than in females, but not for knee injuries. The risk of injury among World Cup athletes in alpine skiing is even higher than previously reported. The knee is the most commonly injured body part and with many severe injuries. Injury rate increased with a higher speed and was higher among males than in females.

  16. Tourism and Water: Themes of the Alpine Convention

    Science.gov (United States)

    Imhof, R.

    2012-04-01

    1) The contribution reflects the personal opinion of the author and does not necessarily reflect the point of view of the Permanent Secretariat. The Alpine Convention is a multilateral framework treaty signed in 1991 by the eight states of the Alpine bow as well as the European Community. Its main objectives are the sustainable development of the Alpine territory and the safeguarding of the interests of the people living within it, embracing the environmental, social and economic dimensions in the broadest sense. In order to achieve its objectives, over the years the Framework Convention has been equipped with a large number of thematic protocols, e.g. on tourism. The overall objective of the Protocol on Tourism, which first came into force in 2002, is to contribute to sustainable development in the Alpine region within the existing institutional framework, by encouraging environmentally-friendly tourism through specific measures and recommendations which take the interests of both the local population and tourists into account. The provisions of the Protocol on Tourism primarily concern tourism management and controlling tourist flows, structural developments such as ski lifts and ski slopes, accommodation and the balanced development of economically weak areas. Guidelines, development plans, sectoral plans have to be adopted at the appropriate territorial level in order to enable to assess the impact of tourism development on, inter alia, water. This extends also to ski slopes developments. For example the production of artificial snow production may be authorized only if the location's hydrological, climatic and ecological conditions allow. Water is listed among the twelve themes in relation to which the Contracting Parties are supposed to take measures and coordinate their policies (Article 2 of the Framework Convention). The Alpine Convention aims to preserve and re-establish healthy water systems, especially keeping waters clean and protecting the natural

  17. Effects of eccentric cycle ergometry in alpine skiers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gross, M; Lüthy, F; Kroell, J; Müller, E; Hoppeler, H; Vogt, M

    2010-08-01

    Eccentric cycling, where the goal is to resist the pedals, which are driven by a motor, increases muscle strength and size in untrained subjects. We hypothesized that it could also be beneficial for athletes, particularly in alpine skiing, which involves predominantly eccentric contractions at longer muscle lengths. We investigated the effects of replacing part of regular weight training with eccentric cycling in junior male alpine skiers using a matched-pair design. Control subjects ( N=7) executed 1-h weight sessions 3 times per week, which included 4-5 sets of 4 leg exercises. The eccentric group ( N=8) performed only 3 sets, followed by continuous sessions on the eccentric ergometer for the remaining 20 min. After 6 weeks, lean thigh mass increased significantly only in the eccentric group. There was a groupxtime effect on squat-jump height favouring the eccentric group, which also experienced a 6.5% improvement in countermovement-jump height. The ability to finely modulate muscle force during variable eccentric cycling improved 50% (p=0.004) only in the eccentric group. Although eccentric cycling did not significantly enhance isometric leg strength, we believe it is beneficial for alpine skiers because it provides an efficient means for hypertrophy while closely mimicking the type of muscle actions encountered while skiing. (c) Georg Thieme Verlag KG Stuttgart . New York.

  18. Prevalence of low back pain in alpine ski instructors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peacock, Nola; Walker, James A; Fogg, Reed; Dudley, Kurt

    2005-02-01

    Mailed survey to random sample of a specific population. To examine the lifetime and point prevalence of low back pain among alpine ski instructors. The lifetime prevalence for back pain is up to 60% among some athletes. Published literature documents back pain among athletes participating in many sports. However, the prevalence of low back pain among alpine ski instructors has not been established. Surveys were mailed to 500 randomly selected members of the Professional Ski Instructors of America. The lifetime and point prevalence were determined by respondents' report regarding history of low back pain and current back pain. Two hundred four (75% of the 272 respondents) reported a history of low back pain. Eighty-five of those who responded (31%) reported current back pain. Over 9% of respondents missed 10 or more days of work because of back pain. The lifetime prevalence of back pain among respondents was similar to the general population. The respondents reported more lifetime prevalence of back pain than athletes of many other sports. The high prevalence of back pain among ski instructors may increase cost and decrease revenue for the employer. Prevention training in this population may decrease the prevalence of back pain and lessen costs to the employer and the alpine ski instructor.

  19. Aspects on muscle properties and use in competitive Alpine skiing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tesch, P A

    1995-03-01

    This brief report describes the physiological demands in competitive Alpine skiing as well as the physiological profile of elite skiers. Maximal heart rate is typically attained by the end of either of the four Alpine ski disciplines. The giant slalom probably calls for the largest reliance upon aerobic energy metabolism and oxygen uptake may increase to 75%-100% of maximal aerobic power. Although high caliber skiers typically show increased maximal aerobic power, it is unlikely that this is an important factor determining success in skiing. Also, anaerobic energy provision accounts for more than half of the total energy yield. Accordingly, plasma and muscle lactate accumulation is substantial after a single race. Similarly, during skiing there is a high rate of glycogen utilization that eventually may result in depletion of muscle glycogen stores by the end of a day of intense skiing. Muscles of Alpine skiers do not possess a distinct fiber type composition and, if anything, skiers tend to show a preponderance of slow twitch fibers. This concords with the recruitment of both muscle fiber types during slalom or giant slalom. Elite skiers show increased knee extensor strength. This seems warranted because there is great reliance upon slow and forceful eccentric muscle actions when performing turns in the giant slalom or slalom.

  20. Study on the Design of Garbage Removal Products for Alpine Scenic Spots

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sun, Wenling; Zhao, Junqi; Lyu, Jianhua

    2018-01-01

    Due to the constraints of the alpine terrain and other objective factors, at present, the garbage collection and removal in China's alpine scenic areas are in a relatively backward situation, which makes the garbage removal more difficult, thus leading to the high risk and difficulty for the sanitation workers to operate. By using the unique ropeway facilities in alpine scenic areas, the article makes a tentative plan for the improvement of the garbage removal facilities in alpine scenic areas, and gives the design verification based on the relevant knowledge of mechanical principle and Theory of mechanics.

  1. Alpine biodiversity and assisted migration: The case of the American pika (Ochotona princeps)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wilkening, Jennifer L.; Ray, Chris; Ramsay, Nathan G.; Klingler, Kelly

    2015-01-01

    Alpine mammals are predicted to be among the species most threatened by climate change, due to the projected loss and further fragmentation of alpine habitats. As temperature or precipitation regimes change, alpine mammals may also be faced with insurmountable barriers to dispersal. The slow rate or inability to adjust to rapidly shifting environmental conditions may cause isolated alpine species to become locally extirpated, resulting in reduced biodiversity. One proposed method for mitigating the impacts of alpine species loss is assisted migration. This method, which involves translocating a species to an area with more favourable climate and habitat characteristics, has become the subject of debate and controversy in the conservation community. The uncertainty associated with climate change projections, coupled with the thermal sensitivity of many alpine mammals, makes it difficult to a priori assess the efficacy of this technique as a conservation management tool. Here we present the American pika (Ochotona princeps) as a case study. American pikas inhabit rocky areas throughout the western US, and populations in some mountainous areas have become locally extirpated in recent years. We review known climatic and habitat requirements for this species, and also propose protocols designed to reliably identify favourable relocation areas. We present data related to the physiological constraints of this species and outline specific requirements which must be addressed for translocation of viable populations, including wildlife disease and genetic considerations. Finally, we discuss potential impacts on other alpine species and alpine communities, and overall implications for conserving alpine biodiversity in a changing climate.

  2. An assessment of the carbon balance of arctic tundra: comparisons among observations, process models, and atmospheric inversions

    Science.gov (United States)

    McGuire, A.D.; Christensen, T.R.; Hayes, D.; Heroult, A.; Euskirchen, E.; Yi, Y.; Kimball, J.S.; Koven, C.; Lafleur, P.; Miller, P.A.; Oechel, W.; Peylin, P.; Williams, M.

    2012-01-01

    Although arctic tundra has been estimated to cover only 8% of the global land surface, the large and potentially labile carbon pools currently stored in tundra soils have the potential for large emissions of carbon (C) under a warming climate. These emissions as radiatively active greenhouse gases in the form of both CO2 and CH4 could amplify global warming. Given the potential sensitivity of these ecosystems to climate change and the expectation that the Arctic will experience appreciable warming over the next century, it is important to assess whether responses of C exchange in tundra regions are likely to enhance or mitigate warming. In this study we compared analyses of C exchange of Arctic tundra between 1990–1999 and 2000–2006 among observations, regional and global applications of process-based terrestrial biosphere models, and atmospheric inversion models. Syntheses of the compilation of flux observations and of inversion model results indicate that the annual exchange of CO2 between arctic tundra and the atmosphere has large uncertainties that cannot be distinguished from neutral balance. The mean estimate from an ensemble of process-based model simulations suggests that arctic tundra acted as a sink for atmospheric CO2 in recent decades, but based on the uncertainty estimates it cannot be determined with confidence whether these ecosystems represent a weak or a strong sink. Tundra was 0.6 °C warmer in the 2000s compared to the 1990s. The central estimates of the observations, process-based models, and inversion models each identify stronger sinks in the 2000s compared with the 1990s. Similarly, the observations and the applications of regional process-based models suggest that CH4 emissions from arctic tundra have increased from the 1990s to 2000s. Based on our analyses of the estimates from observations, process-based models, and inversion models, we estimate that arctic tundra was a sink for atmospheric CO2 of 110 Tg C yr-1 (uncertainty between a

  3. The 'Guetsch' Alpine wind power test site; Alpine Test Site Guetsch. Handbuch und Fachtagung

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Cattin, R.

    2008-12-15

    This final report for the Swiss Federal Office of Energy (SFOE) takes a look at the influence of icing-up on the operation of wind turbines in mountainous areas. Within the Swiss research project 'Alpine Test Site Guetsch', extensive icing studies were carried out at the Guetsch site near Andermatt, Switzerland. This document deals with the following subjects: Information about ice formation on structures, in particular with respect to wind turbines, standards and international research activities, wind measurements under icing-up conditions, estimation of the frequency of icing-up conditions, effects of icing-up on wind turbines, ice detection, measures available for de-icing and anti-icing as well as ice throw. A list of factors to be taken into account by the planners and operators of wind turbines in alpine environments is presented.

  4. Limited alpine climatic warming and modeled phenology advancement for three alpine species in the Northeast United States.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kimball, Kenneth D; Davis, Michael L; Weihrauch, Douglas M; Murray, Georgia L D; Rancourt, Kenneth

    2014-09-01

    • Most alpine plants in the Northeast United States are perennial and flower early in the growing season, extending their limited growing season. Concurrently, they risk the loss of reproductive efforts to late frosts. Quantifying long-term trends in northeastern alpine flower phenology and late-spring/early-summer frost risk is limited by a dearth of phenology and climate data, except for Mount Washington, New Hampshire (1916 m a.s.l.).• Logistic phenology models for three northeastern US alpine species (Diapensia lapponica, Carex bigelowii and Vaccinium vitis-idaea) were developed from 4 yr (2008-2011) of phenology and air temperature measurements from 12 plots proximate to Mount Washington's long-term summit meteorological station. Plot-level air temperature, the logistic phenology models, and Mount Washington's climate data were used to hindcast model yearly (1935-2011) floral phenology and frost damage risk for the focal species.• Day of year and air growing degree-days with threshold temperatures of -4°C (D. lapponica and C. bigelowii) and -2°C (V. vitis-idaea) best predicted flowering. Modeled historic flowering dates trended significantly earlier but the 77-yr change was small (1.2-2.1 d) and did not significantly increase early-flowering risk from late-spring/early-summer frost damage.• Modeled trends in phenological advancement and sensitivity for three northeastern alpine species are less pronounced compared with lower elevations in the region, and this small shift in flower timing did not increase risk of frost damage. Potential reasons for limited earlier phenological advancement at higher elevations include a slower warming trend and increased cloud exposure with elevation and/or inadequate chilling requirements. © 2014 Botanical Society of America, Inc.

  5. Carbon dioxide sources from Alaska driven by increasing early winter respiration from Arctic tundra

    Science.gov (United States)

    Commane, Róisín; Lindaas, Jakob; Benmergui, Joshua; Luus, Kristina A.; Chang, Rachel Y.-W.; Daube, Bruce C.; Euskirchen, Eugénie S.; Henderson, John M.; Karion, Anna; Miller, John B.; Miller, Scot M.; Parazoo, Nicholas C.; Randerson, James T.; Sweeney, Colm; Tans, Pieter; Thoning, Kirk; Veraverbeke, Sander; Miller, Charles E.; Wofsy, Steven C.

    2017-05-01

    High-latitude ecosystems have the capacity to release large amounts of carbon dioxide (CO2) to the atmosphere in response to increasing temperatures, representing a potentially significant positive feedback within the climate system. Here, we combine aircraft and tower observations of atmospheric CO2 with remote sensing data and meteorological products to derive temporally and spatially resolved year-round CO2 fluxes across Alaska during 2012-2014. We find that tundra ecosystems were a net source of CO2 to the atmosphere annually, with especially high rates of respiration during early winter (October through December). Long-term records at Barrow, AK, suggest that CO2 emission rates from North Slope tundra have increased during the October through December period by 73% ± 11% since 1975, and are correlated with rising summer temperatures. Together, these results imply increasing early winter respiration and net annual emission of CO2 in Alaska, in response to climate warming. Our results provide evidence that the decadal-scale increase in the amplitude of the CO2 seasonal cycle may be linked with increasing biogenic emissions in the Arctic, following the growing season. Early winter respiration was not well simulated by the Earth System Models used to forecast future carbon fluxes in recent climate assessments. Therefore, these assessments may underestimate the carbon release from Arctic soils in response to a warming climate.

  6. The surface energy balance of a polygonal tundra site in northern Siberia – Part 2: Winter

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    J. Boike

    2011-06-01

    Full Text Available In this study, we present the winter time surface energy balance at a polygonal tundra site in northern Siberia based on independent measurements of the net radiation, the sensible heat flux and the ground heat flux from two winter seasons. The latent heat flux is inferred from measurements of the atmospheric turbulence characteristics and a model approach. The long-wave radiation is found to be the dominant factor in the surface energy balance. The radiative losses are balanced to about 60 % by the ground heat flux and almost 40 % by the sensible heat fluxes, whereas the contribution of the latent heat flux is small. The main controlling factors of the surface energy budget are the snow cover, the cloudiness and the soil temperature gradient. Large spatial differences in the surface energy balance are observed between tundra soils and a small pond. The ground heat flux released at a freezing pond is by a factor of two higher compared to the freezing soil, whereas large differences in net radiation between the pond and soil are only observed at the end of the winter period. Differences in the surface energy balance between the two winter seasons are found to be related to differences in snow depth and cloud cover which strongly affect the temperature evolution and the freeze-up at the investigated pond.

  7. Bacterial community structure and soil properties of a subarctic tundra soil in Council, Alaska.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Hye Min; Jung, Ji Young; Yergeau, Etienne; Hwang, Chung Yeon; Hinzman, Larry; Nam, Sungjin; Hong, Soon Gyu; Kim, Ok-Sun; Chun, Jongsik; Lee, Yoo Kyung

    2014-08-01

    The subarctic region is highly responsive and vulnerable to climate change. Understanding the structure of subarctic soil microbial communities is essential for predicting the response of the subarctic soil environment to climate change. To determine the composition of the bacterial community and its relationship with soil properties, we investigated the bacterial community structure and properties of surface soil from the moist acidic tussock tundra in Council, Alaska. We collected 70 soil samples with 25-m intervals between sampling points from 0-10 cm to 10-20 cm depths. The bacterial community was analyzed by pyrosequencing of 16S rRNA genes, and the following soil properties were analyzed: soil moisture content (MC), pH, total carbon (TC), total nitrogen (TN), and inorganic nitrogen (NH4+ and NO3-). The community compositions of the two different depths showed that Alphaproteobacteria decreased with soil depth. Among the soil properties measured, soil pH was the most significant factor correlating with bacterial community in both upper and lower-layer soils. Bacterial community similarity based on jackknifed unweighted unifrac distance showed greater similarity across horizontal layers than through the vertical depth. This study showed that soil depth and pH were the most important soil properties determining bacterial community structure of the subarctic tundra soil in Council, Alaska. © 2014 The Authors. FEMS Microbiology Ecology published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd on behalf of the Federation of European Microbiological Societies.

  8. Effect of Tundra Fires on Stream Chemistry in Alaska's Yukon-Kuskokwim Delta

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jimmie, J. A.; Mann, P. J.; Schade, J. D.; Natali, S.; Fiske, G.; Holmes, R. M.

    2017-12-01

    Surface air temperatures in the Arctic have been increasing at approximately twice the global average, contributing to myriad changes including shifting vegetation, thawing permafrost, and altered surface and groundwater hydrology. Wildfire frequency and intensity has also been increasing, and in summer 2015, more area burned in the Yukon-Kuskowkwim Delta than in the previous 64 years combined. We investigated the impact of tundra fire on stream water chemistry, and by extension, on the movement of nutrients and organic matter between terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems. Using a high-resolution Digital Elevation Model, we characterized the contributing sub-watershed area at each of our stream water sampling locations and calculated the percent of each sub-watershed that was burned in summer 2015. We found that nitrate, ammonium, and phosphate concentrations increased with burn area in a watershed, indicating that terrestrial inputs of these constituents to aquatic systems increased following fire. Patterns were less striking for dissolved organic carbon and dissolved organic nitrogen, but there was a positive relationship between burn area and the concentration of these constituents as well. These results highlight the significant impact of tundra fires on terrestrial-aquatic linkages in the Arctic, and suggest that these impacts may increase in the future if fire in Arctic and boreal regions continues to become more common.

  9. Ecohydrologic Changes due to Tree Expansion into Tundra in the Polar Urals, Russia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ivanov, V. Y.; Wang, J.; El Sharif, H. A.; Liu, D.; Sheshukov, A. Y.; Mazepa, V.; Shiyatov, S.; Sokolov, A.

    2017-12-01

    The Arctic has been warming at an accelerating rate over the last several decades and the changing climate has caused the invasion of trees and shrubs into tundra across the polar regions of Alaska, Canada, and Russia. These vegetation changes may have the potential to impact regional hydrology and climate. This study aims to develop mechanistic and quantitative understanding of implications of forest encroachment into tundra. Specifically, for several areas with well-documented larch and spruce expansion in the Polar Urals and southern Yamal Peninsula of Russia over 1960-2010s, we hypothesize that the encroachment process alters the seasonality of energy budget characterized by enhanced total evapotranspiration and concomitant subsurface warming. We are collecting a comprehensive set of field observational data on micrometeorology, snow conditions, radiative fluxes, tree sap flows, soil temperature, moisture, and heat fluxes, and active layer thickness. A novel model of maximum entropy production (MEP) is used to derive the surface energy budgets as the partition of radiative fluxes into turbulent and conductive heat fluxes across the ecotone interface. We are presenting preliminary findings that illustrate the identified differences of seasonal snow and heat budget regimes for two contrasting sites: one of which has experienced a recent tree encroachment, while for the other this process has not yet occurred. Observed and modeled heat fluxes are used to inform a comprehensive physical model to study the impact of vegetation encroachment process on the permafrost dynamics.

  10. Sea ice, rain-on-snow and tundra reindeer nomadism in Arctic Russia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Forbes, Bruce C; Kumpula, Timo; Meschtyb, Nina; Laptander, Roza; Macias-Fauria, Marc; Zetterberg, Pentti; Verdonen, Mariana; Skarin, Anna; Kim, Kwang-Yul; Boisvert, Linette N; Stroeve, Julienne C; Bartsch, Annett

    2016-11-01

    Sea ice loss is accelerating in the Barents and Kara Seas (BKS). Assessing potential linkages between sea ice retreat/thinning and the region's ancient and unique social-ecological systems is a pressing task. Tundra nomadism remains a vitally important livelihood for indigenous Nenets and their large reindeer herds. Warming summer air temperatures have been linked to more frequent and sustained summer high-pressure systems over West Siberia, Russia, but not to sea ice retreat. At the same time, autumn/winter rain-on-snow (ROS) events have become more frequent and intense. Here, we review evidence for autumn atmospheric warming and precipitation increases over Arctic coastal lands in proximity to BKS ice loss. Two major ROS events during November 2006 and 2013 led to massive winter reindeer mortality episodes on the Yamal Peninsula. Fieldwork with migratory herders has revealed that the ecological and socio-economic impacts from the catastrophic 2013 event will unfold for years to come. The suggested link between sea ice loss, more frequent and intense ROS events and high reindeer mortality has serious implications for the future of tundra Nenets nomadism. © 2016 The Authors.

  11. Reduced arctic tundra productivity linked with landform and climate change interactions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lara, Mark J.; Nitze, Ingmar; Grosse, Guido; Martin, Philip; McGuire, A. David

    2018-01-01

    Arctic tundra ecosystems have experienced unprecedented change associated with climate warming over recent decades. Across the Pan-Arctic, vegetation productivity and surface greenness have trended positively over the period of satellite observation. However, since 2011 these trends have slowed considerably, showing signs of browning in many regions. It is unclear what factors are driving this change and which regions/landforms will be most sensitive to future browning. Here we provide evidence linking decadal patterns in arctic greening and browning with regional climate change and local permafrost-driven landscape heterogeneity. We analyzed the spatial variability of decadal-scale trends in surface greenness across the Arctic Coastal Plain of northern Alaska (~60,000 km²) using the Landsat archive (1999–2014), in combination with novel 30 m classifications of polygonal tundra and regional watersheds, finding landscape heterogeneity and regional climate change to be the most important factors controlling historical greenness trends. Browning was linked to increased temperature and precipitation, with the exception of young landforms (developed following lake drainage), which will likely continue to green. Spatiotemporal model forecasting suggests carbon uptake potential to be reduced in response to warmer and/or wetter climatic conditions, potentially increasing the net loss of carbon to the atmosphere, at a greater degree than previously expected.

  12. Microbial Community and Functional Gene Changes in Arctic Tundra Soils in a Microcosm Warming Experiment

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ziming Yang

    2017-09-01

    Full Text Available Microbial decomposition of soil organic carbon (SOC in thawing Arctic permafrost is important in determining greenhouse gas feedbacks of tundra ecosystems to climate. However, the changes in microbial community structure during SOC decomposition are poorly known. Here we examine these changes using frozen soils from Barrow, Alaska, USA, in anoxic microcosm incubation at −2 and 8°C for 122 days. The functional gene array GeoChip was used to determine microbial community structure and the functional genes associated with SOC degradation, methanogenesis, and Fe(III reduction. Results show that soil incubation after 122 days at 8°C significantly decreased functional gene abundance (P < 0.05 associated with SOC degradation, fermentation, methanogenesis, and iron cycling, particularly in organic-rich soil. These observations correspond well with decreases in labile SOC content (e.g., reducing sugar and ethanol, methane and CO2 production, and Fe(III reduction. In contrast, the community functional structure was largely unchanged in the −2°C incubation. Soil type (i.e., organic vs. mineral and the availability of labile SOC were among the most significant factors impacting microbial community structure. These results demonstrate the important roles of microbial community in SOC degradation and support previous findings that SOC in organic-rich Arctic tundra is highly vulnerable to microbial degradation under warming.

  13. Disentangling the coupling between sea ice and tundra productivity in Svalbard.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Macias-Fauria, Marc; Karlsen, Stein Rune; Forbes, Bruce C

    2017-08-17

    The rapid decline in Arctic sea ice poses urgent questions concerning its ecological effects, such as on tundra terrestrial productivity. However, reported sea ice/terrestrial productivity linkages have seldom been constrained, and the mechanism governing them remains elusive, with a diversity of spatial scales and metrics proposed, at times in contradiction to each other. In this study, we use spatially explicit remotely sensed sea ice concentration and high-resolution terrestrial productivity estimates (Normalised Difference Vegetation Index, NDVI) across the Svalbard Archipelago to describe local/sub-regional and large-scale components of sea ice/terrestrial productivity coupling. Whereas the local/sub-regional component is attributed to sea breeze (cold air advection from ice-covered ocean onto adjacent land during the growing season), the large-scale component might reflect co-variability of sea ice and tundra productivity due to a common forcing, such as large-scale atmospheric circulation (North Atlantic Oscillation, NAO). Our study clarifies the range of mechanisms in sea ice/terrestrial productivity coupling, allowing the generation of testable hypotheses about its past, present, and future dynamics across the Arctic.

  14. Herbivores rescue diversity in warming tundra by modulating trait-dependent species losses and gains.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kaarlejärvi, Elina; Eskelinen, Anu; Olofsson, Johan

    2017-09-04

    Climate warming is altering the diversity of plant communities but it remains unknown which species will be lost or gained under warming, especially considering interactions with other factors such as herbivory and nutrient availability. Here, we experimentally test effects of warming, mammalian herbivory and fertilization on tundra species richness and investigate how plant functional traits affect losses and gains. We show that herbivory reverses the impact of warming on diversity: in the presence of herbivores warming increases species richness through higher species gains and lower losses, while in the absence of herbivores warming causes higher species losses and thus decreases species richness. Herbivores promote gains of short-statured species under warming, while herbivore removal and fertilization increase losses of short-statured and resource-conservative species through light limitation. Our results demonstrate that both rarity and traits forecast species losses and gains, and mammalian herbivores are essential for preventing trait-dependent extinctions and mitigate diversity loss under warming and eutrophication.Warming can reduce plant diversity but it is unclear which species will be lost or gained under interacting global changes. Kaarlejärvi et al. manipulate temperature, herbivory and nutrients in a tundra system and find that herbivory maintains diversity under warming by reducing species losses and promoting gains.

  15. Carbon dioxide sources from Alaska driven by increasing early winter respiration from Arctic tundra.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Commane, Róisín; Lindaas, Jakob; Benmergui, Joshua; Luus, Kristina A; Chang, Rachel Y-W; Daube, Bruce C; Euskirchen, Eugénie S; Henderson, John M; Karion, Anna; Miller, John B; Miller, Scot M; Parazoo, Nicholas C; Randerson, James T; Sweeney, Colm; Tans, Pieter; Thoning, Kirk; Veraverbeke, Sander; Miller, Charles E; Wofsy, Steven C

    2017-05-23

    High-latitude ecosystems have the capacity to release large amounts of carbon dioxide (CO 2 ) to the atmosphere in response to increasing temperatures, representing a potentially significant positive feedback within the climate system. Here, we combine aircraft and tower observations of atmospheric CO 2 with remote sensing data and meteorological products to derive temporally and spatially resolved year-round CO 2 fluxes across Alaska during 2012-2014. We find that tundra ecosystems were a net source of CO 2 to the atmosphere annually, with especially high rates of respiration during early winter (October through December). Long-term records at Barrow, AK, suggest that CO 2 emission rates from North Slope tundra have increased during the October through December period by 73% ± 11% since 1975, and are correlated with rising summer temperatures. Together, these results imply increasing early winter respiration and net annual emission of CO 2 in Alaska, in response to climate warming. Our results provide evidence that the decadal-scale increase in the amplitude of the CO 2 seasonal cycle may be linked with increasing biogenic emissions in the Arctic, following the growing season. Early winter respiration was not well simulated by the Earth System Models used to forecast future carbon fluxes in recent climate assessments. Therefore, these assessments may underestimate the carbon release from Arctic soils in response to a warming climate.

  16. Invertebrate communities of Arctic tundra ponds as related to proximity to drill site reserve pits

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Byron, E.; Williams, N.; Hoffman, R.; Elder, B.

    1994-01-01

    Aquatic invertebrate communities were assessed for diversity and abundance in North Slope tundra ponds of Prudhoe Bay, Alaska during the summer of 1992 as part of an evaluation of potential effects of exposure to petroleum drill site reserve pits (previously used for storing drill site wastes). The invertebrate communities of these shallow, tundra ponds provide abundant food for migratory, aquatic birds that use this area during the summer breeding season. The study was designed to compare abundance and diversity estimates of invertebrates in ponds surrounding the drill sites that differed in distance (and presumed exposure) to drill site reserve pits. The pits, themselves, were not sampled as part of this study. Invertebrate abundance and diversity estimates, assessed as standard biological criteria, were evaluated relative to water chemistry of the ponds, distance to the gravel pads or reserve pits, and pond morphometry. The results indicated the importance of pond morphometry in determining the structure of the invertebrate community. Shallow, exposed ponds tended to be dominated by different invertebrate communities than deeper, narrow ponds at the margins of frost polygons. In contrast, pond chemistry and relative exposure to drill sites were not predictive of invertebrate abundance or diversity

  17. Physicochemical and Microbiological Characteristics of Tundra Soils on the Rybachii Peninsula

    Science.gov (United States)

    Evdokimova, G. A.; Mozgova, N. P.; Myazin, V. A.

    2018-01-01

    The Rybachii Peninsula is composed of Proterozoic sedimentary rocks and differs sharply from the rest of the Kola Peninsula in its geological structure, topographic forms, and parent rocks. It is dominated by Al-Fe-humus soils formed on moraines with an admixture of local rock fragments, including slates. Organic horizons of tundra soils in the peninsula are less acid than those on granitoids of adjacent mainland of the Kola Peninsula. The content of exchangeable calcium in the organic horizons varies from 17.4 to 68.0 cmolc/kg, and the content of water-soluble carbon reaches 400 mg/100 g amounting to 1-2% of the total soil organic matter content. The total number of bacteria in the organic horizons of tundra soils varies from 3.5 × 109 to 4.8 × 109 cells/g; and bacterial biomass varies from 0.14 to 0.19 mg/g. The length of fungal mycelium and its biomass in the organic horizons are significant (>1000 m/g soil). The biomass of fungal mycelium in the organic horizons exceeds the bacterial biomass by seven times in podzols (Albic Podzols) and by ten times in podbur (Entic Podzol), dry-peat soil (Folic Histosol), and low-moor peat soil (Sapric Histosol).

  18. 100% Retention of Snowpack Derived Nitrogen Over 10 Years in High Arctic Tundra

    Science.gov (United States)

    Choudhary, S.; Tye, A. M.; Young, S. D.; West, H. M.; Phoenix, G. K.

    2013-12-01

    Tundra ecosystems are susceptible to atmospheric nitrogen (N) deposition, increasing as a result of anthropogenic activities as well as climate change. Depositions that get accumulated within the snowpack during winter months are released in spring during snowmelt, providing a periodic input of reactive N in the melt water to such nutrient limited ecosystems. Identifying ecosystem N retention and allocation and how this change over time is important to understanding the long-term consequences of such N depositions to these ecosystems. We reanalysed 10 years later an atmospheric N deposition study established in Svalbard that in 2001 used 15N isotope tracers to determine the fate of N released from melting snowpack. Applications of 15N (99 atom%) at 0.1 and 0.5 g N m-2 were made immediately after snowmelt in 2001 as either Na15NO3 or 15NH4Cl. These applications were approximately 1 × and 5 × the yearly atmospheric deposition rates. In both the previous short-term (one week to two years after 15N tracer application) and our long-term re-sampling (10 years after 15N tracer application), ~67% of the total applied 15N was retained in the ecosystem, irrespective of the N forms or N dose. This meant the tundra had 100% long-term N retention after initial partitioning, suggesting a highly conservative N cycling. Bryophytes, followed by the organic soil horizon and then the microbial biomass formed the greatest short-term 15N sink. Maximum changes in 15N retention from the short- to long-term were observed in the microbial 15N pools, with ~75% of the 15N in soil located in its biomass during the initial partitioning (July 2001) decreasing to ~17% 10 years later. This indicates significant microbial N turnover mostly into stable humus N. In contrast, vascular plants, particularly Salix polaris, showed significant increases (~60%) in their 15N retention after 10 years, indicating a high capacity for acting as a long-term N sink in this tundra ecosystem. Because the largest

  19. THE HYDRAULIC CHARACTERISTICS AND GEOCHEMISTRY OF HYPORHEIC AND PARAFLUVIAL ZONES IN ARCTIC TUNDRA STREAMS, NORTH SLOPE, ALASKA

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sodium bromide and Rhodamine WT were used as conservative tracers to examine the hydrologic characteristics of seven tundra streams in Arctic Alaska, during the summers of 1994-1996. Continuous tracer additions were conducted in seven rivers ranging from 1st to 5th order with sam...

  20. Soil nutrients, landscape age, and Sphagno-Eriophoretum vaginati plant communities in Arctic moist-acidic Tundra landscapes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Joel Mercado-Diaz; William Gould; Grizelle Gonzalez

    2014-01-01

    Most research exploring the relationship between soil chemistry and vegetation in Alaskan Arctic tundra landscapes has focused on describing differences in soil elemental concentrations (e.g. C, N and P) of areas with contrasting vegetation types or landscape age. In this work we assess the effect of landscape age on physico-chemical parameters in organic and mineral...

  1. An application of plot-scale NDVI in predicting carbon dioxide exchange and leaf area index in heterogeneous subarctic tundra

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Dagg, J.; Lafleur, P.

    2010-01-01

    This paper reported on a study that examined the flow of carbon into and out of tundra ecosystems. It is necessary to accurately predict carbon dioxide (CO 2 ) exchange in the Tundra because of the impacts of climate change on carbon stored in permafrost. Understanding the relationships between the normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI) and vegetation and CO 2 exchange may explain how small-scale variation in vegetation community extends to remotely sensed estimates of landscape characteristics. In this study, CO 2 fluxes were measured with a portable chamber in a range of Tundra vegetation communities. Biomass and leaf area were measured with destructive harvest, and NDVI was obtained using a hand-held infrared camera. There was a weak correlation between NDVI and leaf area index in some vegetation communities, but a significant correlation between NDVI and biomass, including mosses. NDVI was found to be strongly related to photosynthetic activity and net CO 2 uptake in all vegetation groups. However, NDVI related to ecosystem respiration only in wet sedge. It was concluded that at plot scale, the ability of NDVI to predict ecosystem properties and CO 2 exchange in heterogeneous Tundra vegetation is variable.

  2. Carbon storage in permafrost and soils of the mammoth tundra-steppe biome: role in the global carbon budget

    Science.gov (United States)

    N.S. Zimov; S.A. Zimov; A.E. Zimova; G.M. Zimova; V.I. Chuprynin; F.S. Chapin

    2009-01-01

    During the Last Glacial Maximum (LGM), atmospheric CO2 concentration was 80-100 ppmv lower than in preindustrial times. At that time steppe-tundra was the most extensive biome on Earth. Some authors assume that C storage in that biome was very small, similar to today's deserts, and that the terrestrial carbon (C) reservoir increased at the...

  3. Shrub canopies influence soil temperatures but not nutrient dynamics: An experimental test of tundra snow–shrub interactions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Myers-Smith, Isla H; Hik, David S

    2013-01-01

    Shrubs are the largest plant life form in tundra ecosystems; therefore, any changes in the abundance of shrubs will feedback to influence biodiversity, ecosystem function, and climate. The snow–shrub hypothesis asserts that shrub canopies trap snow and insulate soils in winter, increasing the rates of nutrient cycling to create a positive feedback to shrub expansion. However, previous work has not been able to separate the abiotic from the biotic influences of shrub canopies. We conducted a 3-year factorial experiment to determine the influences of canopies on soil temperatures and nutrient cycling parameters by removing ∼0.5 m high willow (Salix spp.) and birch (Betula glandulosa) shrubs, creating artificial shrub canopies and comparing these manipulations to nearby open tundra and shrub patches. Soil temperatures were 4–5°C warmer in January, and 2°C cooler in July under shrub cover. Natural shrub plots had 14–33 cm more snow in January than adjacent open tundra plots. Snow cover and soil temperatures were similar in the manipulated plots when compared with the respective unmanipulated treatments, indicating that shrub canopy cover was a dominant factor influencing the soil thermal regime. Conversely, we found no strong evidence of increased soil decomposition, CO2 fluxes, or nitrate or ammonia adsorbtion under artificial shrub canopy treatments when compared with unmanipulated open tundra. Our results suggest that the abiotic influences of shrub canopy cover alone on nutrient dynamics are weaker than previously asserted. PMID:24198933

  4. [CO2-exchange in tundra ecosystems of Vaygach Island during the unusually warm and dry vegetation season].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zamolodchikov, D G

    2015-01-01

    In summer of 2013, field studies of CO2-exchange in tundra ecosystems of Vaygach Island have been conducted using the chamber method. The models are developed that establish relationships between CO2 fluxes and key ecological factors such as temperature, photosynthetic active radiation, leaf mass of vascular plants, and depth of thawing. According to the model estimates, in 2013 vegetation season tundra ecosystems of Vaygach Island have been appearing to be a CO2 source to the atmosphere (31.9 ± 17.1 g C m(-2) season(-1)) with gross primary production equal to 136.6 ± 18.9 g C m(-2) season(-1) and ecosystem respiration of 168.5 ± ± 18.4 g C m(-2) season(-1). Emission of CO2 from the soil surface (soil respiration) has been equal, on the average, to 67.3% of the ecosystem respiration. The reason behind carbon losses by tundra ecosystems seems to be unusually warm and dry weather conditions in 2013 summer. The air temperature during summer months has been twice as high as the climatic norm for 1961-1990. Last decades, researches in the circumpolar Arctic revealed a growing trend to the carbon sink from the atmosphere to tundra ecosystems. This trend can be interrupted by unusually warm weather situations becoming more frequent and of larger scale.

  5. Long-term experimental warming alters community composition of ascomycetes in Alaskan moist and dry arctic tundra.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Semenova, Tatiana A; Morgado, Luis N; Welker, Jeffrey M; Walker, Marilyn D; Smets, Erik; Geml, József

    2015-01-01

    Arctic tundra regions have been responding to global warming with visible changes in plant community composition, including expansion of shrubs and declines in lichens and bryophytes. Even though it is well known that the majority of arctic plants are associated with their symbiotic fungi, how fungal community composition will be different with climate warming remains largely unknown. In this study, we addressed the effects of long-term (18 years) experimental warming on the community composition and taxonomic richness of soil ascomycetes in dry and moist tundra types. Using deep Ion Torrent sequencing, we quantified how OTU assemblage and richness of different orders of Ascomycota changed in response to summer warming. Experimental warming significantly altered ascomycete communities with stronger responses observed in the moist tundra compared with dry tundra. The proportion of several lichenized and moss-associated fungi decreased with warming, while the proportion of several plant and insect pathogens and saprotrophic species was higher in the warming treatment. The observed alterations in both taxonomic and ecological groups of ascomycetes are discussed in relation to previously reported warming-induced shifts in arctic plant communities, including decline in lichens and bryophytes and increase in coverage and biomass of shrubs. © 2014 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  6. Polygonal tundra geomorphological change in response to warming alters future CO2 and CH4 flux on the Barrow Peninsula

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lara, Mark J.; McGuire, A. David; Euskirchen, Eugénie S.; Tweedie, Craig E.; Hinkel, Kenneth M.; Skurikhin, Alexei N.; Romanovsky, Vladimir E.; Grosse, Guido; Bolton, W. Robert; Genet, Helene

    2015-01-01

    The landscape of the Barrow Peninsula in northern Alaska is thought to have formed over centuries to millennia, and is now dominated by ice-wedge polygonal tundra that spans drained thaw-lake basins and interstitial tundra. In nearby tundra regions, studies have identified a rapid increase in thermokarst formation (i.e., pits) over recent decades in response to climate warming, facilitating changes in polygonal tundra geomorphology. We assessed the future impact of 100 years of tundra geomorphic change on peak growing season carbon exchange in response to: (i) landscape succession associated with the thaw-lake cycle; and (ii) low, moderate, and extreme scenarios of thermokarst pit formation (10%, 30%, and 50%) reported for Alaskan arctic tundra sites. We developed a 30 × 30 m resolution tundra geomorphology map (overall accuracy:75%; Kappa:0.69) for our ~1800 km² study area composed of ten classes; drained slope, high center polygon, flat-center polygon, low center polygon, coalescent low center polygon, polygon trough, meadow, ponds, rivers, and lakes, to determine their spatial distribution across the Barrow Peninsula. Land-atmosphere CO2 and CH4 flux data were collected for the summers of 2006–2010 at eighty-two sites near Barrow, across the mapped classes. The developed geomorphic map was used for the regional assessment of carbon flux. Results indicate (i) at present during peak growing season on the Barrow Peninsula, CO2 uptake occurs at -902.3 106gC-CO2 day−1(uncertainty using 95% CI is between −438.3 and −1366 106gC-CO2 day−1) and CH4 flux at 28.9 106gC-CH4 day−1(uncertainty using 95% CI is between 12.9 and 44.9 106gC-CH4 day−1), (ii) one century of future landscape change associated with the thaw-lake cycle only slightly alter CO2 and CH4 exchange, while (iii) moderate increases in thermokarst pits would strengthen both CO2uptake (−166.9 106gC-CO2 day−1) and CH4 flux (2.8 106gC-CH4 day−1) with geomorphic change from

  7. Polygonal tundra geomorphological change in response to warming alters future CO2 and CH4 flux on the Barrow Peninsula.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lara, Mark J; McGuire, A David; Euskirchen, Eugenie S; Tweedie, Craig E; Hinkel, Kenneth M; Skurikhin, Alexei N; Romanovsky, Vladimir E; Grosse, Guido; Bolton, W Robert; Genet, Helene

    2015-04-01

    The landscape of the Barrow Peninsula in northern Alaska is thought to have formed over centuries to millennia, and is now dominated by ice-wedge polygonal tundra that spans drained thaw-lake basins and interstitial tundra. In nearby tundra regions, studies have identified a rapid increase in thermokarst formation (i.e., pits) over recent decades in response to climate warming, facilitating changes in polygonal tundra geomorphology. We assessed the future impact of 100 years of tundra geomorphic change on peak growing season carbon exchange in response to: (i) landscape succession associated with the thaw-lake cycle; and (ii) low, moderate, and extreme scenarios of thermokarst pit formation (10%, 30%, and 50%) reported for Alaskan arctic tundra sites. We developed a 30 × 30 m resolution tundra geomorphology map (overall accuracy:75%; Kappa:0.69) for our ~1800 km² study area composed of ten classes; drained slope, high center polygon, flat-center polygon, low center polygon, coalescent low center polygon, polygon trough, meadow, ponds, rivers, and lakes, to determine their spatial distribution across the Barrow Peninsula. Land-atmosphere CO2 and CH4 flux data were collected for the summers of 2006-2010 at eighty-two sites near Barrow, across the mapped classes. The developed geomorphic map was used for the regional assessment of carbon flux. Results indicate (i) at present during peak growing season on the Barrow Peninsula, CO2 uptake occurs at -902.3 10(6) gC-CO2 day(-1) (uncertainty using 95% CI is between -438.3 and -1366 10(6) gC-CO2 day(-1)) and CH4 flux at 28.9 10(6) gC-CH4 day(-1) (uncertainty using 95% CI is between 12.9 and 44.9 10(6) gC-CH4 day(-1)), (ii) one century of future landscape change associated with the thaw-lake cycle only slightly alter CO2 and CH4 exchange, while (iii) moderate increases in thermokarst pits would strengthen both CO2 uptake (-166.9 10(6) gC-CO2 day(-1)) and CH4 flux (2.8 10(6) gC-CH4 day(-1)) with geomorphic change from low

  8. How spatial variation in areal extent and configuration of labile vegetation states affect the riparian bird community in Arctic tundra.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    John-André Henden

    Full Text Available The Arctic tundra is currently experiencing an unprecedented combination of climate change, change in grazing pressure by large herbivores and growing human activity. Thickets of tall shrubs represent a conspicuous vegetation state in northern and temperate ecosystems, where it serves important ecological functions, including habitat for wildlife. Thickets are however labile, as tall shrubs respond rapidly to both abiotic and biotic environmental drivers. Our aim was to assess how large-scale spatial variation in willow thicket areal extent, configuration and habitat structure affected bird abundance, occupancy rates and species richness so as to provide an empirical basis for predicting the outcome of environmental change for riparian tundra bird communities. Based on a 4-year count data series, obtained through a large-scale study design in low arctic tundra in northern Norway, statistical hierarchical community models were deployed to assess relations between habitat configuration and bird species occupancy and community richness. We found that species abundance, occupancy and richness were greatly affected by willow areal extent and configuration, habitat features likely to be affected by intense ungulate browsing as well as climate warming. In sum, total species richness was maximized in large and tall willow patches of small to intermediate degree of fragmentation. These community effects were mainly driven by responses in the occupancy rates of species depending on tall willows for foraging and breeding, while species favouring other vegetation states were not affected. In light of the predicted climate driven willow shrub encroachment in riparian tundra habitats, our study predicts that many bird species would increase in abundance, and that the bird community as a whole could become enriched. Conversely, in tundra regions where overabundance of large herbivores leads to decreased areal extent, reduced height and increased fragmentation

  9. Detection and molecular characterization of the mosquito-borne filarial nematode Setaria tundra in Danish roe deer (Capreolus capreolus

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Heidi Larsen Enemark

    2017-04-01

    Full Text Available Setaria tundra is a mosquito-borne filarial nematode of cervids in Europe. It has recently been associated with an emerging epidemic disease causing severe morbidity and mortality in reindeer and moose in Finland. Here, we present the first report of S. tundra in six roe deer (Capreolus capreolus collected between October 2010 and March 2014 in Denmark. The deer originated from various localities across the country: the eastern part of the Jutland peninsular and four locations on the island Zealand. With the exception of one deer, with parasites residing in a transparent cyst just under the liver capsule, worms (ranging from 2 to >20/deer were found free in the peritoneal cavity. The worms were identified as S. tundra by morphological examination and/or molecular typing of the mitochondrial 12S rRNA and cox1 genes, which showed 99.1–99.8% identity to previously published S. tundra isolates from Europe. Roe deer are generally considered as asymptomatic carriers and their numbers in Denmark have increased significantly in recent decades. In light of climatic changes which result in warmer, more humid weather in Scandinavia greater numbers of mosquitoes and, especially, improved conditions for development of parasite larvae in the mosquito vectors are expected, which may lead to increasing prevalence of S. tundra. Monitoring of this vector-borne parasite may thus be needed in order to enhance the knowledge of factors promoting its expansion and prevalence as well as predicting disease outbreaks.

  10. Migration of Tundra Swans (Cygnus columbianus) Wintering in Japan Using Satellite Tracking: Identification of the Eastern Palearctic Flyway.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Wenbo; Doko, Tomoko; Fujita, Go; Hijikata, Naoya; Tokita, Ken-Ichi; Uchida, Kiyoshi; Konishi, Kan; Hiraoka, Emiko; Higuchi, Hiroyoshi

    2016-02-01

    Migration through the Eastern Palearctic (EP) flyway by tundra swans (Cygnus columbianus) has not been thoroughly documented. We satellite-tracked the migration of 16 tundra swans that winter in Japan. The objectives of this study were 1) to show the migration pattern of the EP flyway of tundra swans; 2) to compare this pattern with the migration pattern of whooper swans; and 3) to identify stopover sites that are important for these swans' conservation. Tundra swans were captured at Kutcharo Lake, Hokkaido, in 2009-2012 and satellite-tracked. A new method called the "MATCHED (Migratory Analytical Time Change Easy Detection) method" was developed. Based on median, the spring migration began on 18 April and ended on 27 May. Autumn migration began on 9 September and ended on 2 November. The median duration of the spring and autumn migrations were 48 and 50 days, respectively. The mean duration at one stopover site was 5.5 days and 6.8 days for the spring and autumn migrations, respectively. The number of stopover sites was 3.0 and 2.5 for the spring and autumn migrations, respectively. The mean travel distances for the spring and autumn migrations were 6471 and 6331 km, respectively. Seven migration routes passing Sakhalin, the Amur River, and/or Kamchatka were identified. There were 15, 32, and eight wintering, stopover, and breeding sites, respectively. The migration routes and staging areas of tundra swans partially overlap with those of whooper swans, whose migration patterns have been previously documented. The migration patterns of these two swan species that winter in Japan confirm the importance of the Amur River, Udyl' Lake, Shchastya Bay, Aniva Bay, zaliv Chayvo Lake, zal Piltun Lake, zaliv Baykal Lake, Kolyma River, Buyunda River, Sen-kyuyel' Lake, and northern coastal areas of the Sea of Okhotsk.

  11. Satellite-Based Evidence for Shrub and Graminoid Tundra Expansion in Northern Quebec from 1986-2010

    Science.gov (United States)

    McManus, K. M.; Morton, D. C.; Masek, J. G.; Wang, D.; Sexton, J. O.; Nagol, J.; Ropars, P.; Boudreau, S.

    2012-01-01

    Global vegetation models predict rapid poleward migration of tundra and boreal forest vegetation in response to climate warming. Local plot and air-photo studies have documented recent changes in high-latitude vegetation composition and structure, consistent with warming trends. To bridge these two scales of inference, we analyzed a 24-year (1986-2010) Landsat time series in a latitudinal transect across the boreal forest-tundra biome boundary in northern Quebec province, Canada. This region has experienced rapid warming during both winter and summer months during the last forty years. Using a per-pixel (30 m) trend analysis, 30% of the observable (cloud-free) land area experienced a significant (p tundra contributed preferentially to the greening trend, while forested areas were less likely to show significant trends in NDVI. These trends reflect increasing leaf area, rather than an increase in growing season length, because Landsat data were restricted to peak-summer conditions. The average NDVI trend (0.007/yr) corresponds to a leaf-area index (LAI) increase of 0.6 based on the regional relationship between LAI and NDVI from the Moderate Resolution Spectroradiometer (MODIS). Across the entire transect, the area-averaged LAI increase was 0.2 during 1986-2010. A higher area-averaged LAI change (0.3) within the shrub-tundra portion of the transect represents a 20-60% relative increase in LAI during the last two decades. Our Landsat-based analysis subdivides the overall high-latitude greening trend into changes in peak-summer greenness by cover type. Different responses within and among shrub, graminoid, and tree-dominated cover types in this study indicate important fine-scale heterogeneity in vegetation growth. Although our findings are consistent with community shifts in low-biomass vegetation types over multi-decadal time scales, the response in tundra and forest ecosystems to recent warming was not uniform.

  12. Modeling long-term changes in tundra carbon balance following wildfire, climate change, and potential nutrient addition.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jiang, Yueyang; Rastetter, Edward B; Shaver, Gaius R; Rocha, Adrian V; Zhuang, Qianlai; Kwiatkowski, Bonnie L

    2017-01-01

    To investigate the underlying mechanisms that control long-term recovery of tundra carbon (C) and nutrients after fire, we employed the Multiple Element Limitation (MEL) model to simulate 200-yr post-fire changes in the biogeochemistry of three sites along a burn severity gradient in response to increases in air temperature, CO 2 concentration, nitrogen (N) deposition, and phosphorus (P) weathering rates. The simulations were conducted for severely burned, moderately burned, and unburned arctic tundra. Our simulations indicated that recovery of C balance after fire was mainly determined by the internal redistribution of nutrients among ecosystem components (controlled by air temperature), rather than the supply of nutrients from external sources (e.g., nitrogen deposition and fixation, phosphorus weathering). Increases in air temperature and atmospheric CO 2 concentration resulted in (1) a net transfer of nutrient from soil organic matter to vegetation and (2) higher C : nutrient ratios in vegetation and soil organic matter. These changes led to gains in vegetation biomass C but net losses in soil organic C stocks. Under a warming climate, nutrients lost in wildfire were difficult to recover because the warming-induced acceleration in nutrient cycles caused further net nutrient loss from the system through leaching. In both burned and unburned tundra, the warming-caused acceleration in nutrient cycles and increases in ecosystem C stocks were eventually constrained by increases in soil C : nutrient ratios, which increased microbial retention of plant-available nutrients in the soil. Accelerated nutrient turnover, loss of C, and increasing soil temperatures will likely result in vegetation changes, which further regulate the long-term biogeochemical succession. Our analysis should help in the assessment of tundra C budgets and of the recovery of biogeochemical function following fire, which is in turn necessary for the maintenance of wildlife habitat and tundra

  13. Summer temperature increase has distinct effects on the ectomycorrhizal fungal communities of moist tussock and dry tundra in Arctic Alaska.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morgado, Luis N; Semenova, Tatiana A; Welker, Jeffrey M; Walker, Marilyn D; Smets, Erik; Geml, József

    2015-02-01

    Arctic regions are experiencing the greatest rates of climate warming on the planet and marked changes have already been observed in terrestrial arctic ecosystems. While most studies have focused on the effects of warming on arctic vegetation and nutrient cycling, little is known about how belowground communities, such as fungi root-associated, respond to warming. Here, we investigate how long-term summer warming affects ectomycorrhizal (ECM) fungal communities. We used Ion Torrent sequencing of the rDNA internal transcribed spacer 2 (ITS2) region to compare ECM fungal communities in plots with and without long-term experimental warming in both dry and moist tussock tundra. Cortinarius was the most OTU-rich genus in the moist tundra, while the most diverse genus in the dry tundra was Tomentella. On the diversity level, in the moist tundra we found significant differences in community composition, and a sharp decrease in the richness of ECM fungi due to warming. On the functional level, our results indicate that warming induces shifts in the extramatrical properties of the communities, where the species with medium-distance exploration type seem to be favored with potential implications for the mobilization of different nutrient pools in the soil. In the dry tundra, neither community richness nor community composition was significantly altered by warming, similar to what had been observed in ECM host plants. There was, however, a marginally significant increase in OTUs identified as ECM fungi with the medium-distance exploration type in the warmed plots. Linking our findings of decreasing richness with previous results of increasing ECM fungal biomass suggests that certain ECM species are favored by warming and may become more abundant, while many other species may go locally extinct due to direct or indirect effects of warming. Such compositional shifts in the community might affect nutrient cycling and soil organic C storage. © 2014 The Authors. Global Change

  14. Vascular plant flora of the alpine zone in the southern Rocky Mountains, U.S.A

    Science.gov (United States)

    James F. Fowler; B. E. Nelson; Ronald L. Hartman

    2014-01-01

    Field detection of changes in occurrence, distribution, or abundance of alpine plant species is predicated on knowledge of which species are in specific locations. The alpine zone of the Southern Rocky Mountain Region has been systematically inventoried by the staff and floristics graduate students from the Rocky Mountain Herbarium over the last 27 years. It is...

  15. Milk yield and quality of Aosta cattle breeds in Alpine pasture

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M. Bianchi

    2010-01-01

    Full Text Available Alpine breeding systems are an example of sustainable integration between land management and productive processes; the inherent forage exploitation has characterized and modified landscape and environment. Moreover, alpine pasture has increased its importance for the multifunctional features attributed in the recent years to mountain productive activities (Agabriel et al., 2001.

  16. High solar radiation hinders tree regeneration above the alpine treeline in northern Ecuador

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bader, M.; Geloof, van I.; Rietkerk, M.

    2007-01-01

    Many tropical alpine treelines lie below their climatic potential, because of natural or anthropogenic causes. Forest extension above the treeline depends on the ability of trees to establish in the alpine environment. This ability may be limited by different factors, such as low temperatures,

  17. High solar radiation hinders tree regeneration above the alpine treeline in northern Ecuador

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bader, M.Y.; Geloof, I. van; Rietkerk, M.G.

    2007-01-01

    Many tropical alpine treelines lie below their climatic potential, because of natural or anthropogenic causes. Forest extension above the treeline depends on the ability of trees to establish in the alpine environment. This ability may be limited by different factors, such as low

  18. A simple spatial model exploring positive feedbacks at tropical alpine treelines

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bader, M.; Rietkerk, M.; Bregt, A.K.

    2008-01-01

    Climate change could cause alpine treelines to shift in altitude or to change their spatial pattern, but little is known about the drivers of treeline dynamics and patterning. The position and patterns of tropical alpine treelines are generally attributed to land use, especially burning. Species

  19. Area burned in alpine treeline ecotones reflects region-wide trends

    Science.gov (United States)

    C. Alina Cansler; Donald McKenzie; Charles B. Halpern

    2016-01-01

    The direct effects of climate change on alpine treeline ecotones – the transition zones between subalpine forest and non-forested alpine vegetation – have been studied extensively, but climate-induced changes in disturbance regimes have received less attention. To determine if recent increases in area burned extend to these higher-elevation landscapes, we analysed...

  20. Intermediate and long-term anaerobic performance of elite Alpine skiers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bacharach, D W; von Duvillard, S P

    1995-03-01

    Physiological requirements of Alpine skiing, demanding power from both aerobic and anaerobic sources, were first reported in 1965 by Bengt Saltin and coworkers. An update on the physiology of Alpine skiing was presented by Karlsson and colleagues in 1978, and their work remains a benchmark for most current research dealing with Alpine skiers. These works have identified muscular strength and complex motor skill abilities as essential to the competitive ski racer. The energy demands of Alpine ski racing dominate the range between 45 and 2 min. Since the late 1970s, many researchers have reported a variety of tests that associate test scores to skiing performance. Traditionally, short tests of anaerobic power such as the 30-s Wingate test have been used to reflect anaerobic capacity. Only recently have researchers and coaches begun to question whether a test that is shorter in duration than most skiing performances can estimate anaerobic power as it relates to Alpine ski racing. This study reviews current literature relative to physiological requirements for Alpine skiing as well as relating 18 nationally ranked male (N = 10) and female (N = 8) Alpine ski racers' USSA national points lists for slalom and giant slalom to power measures from 30-s and 90-s Wingate cycle ergometer tests. Further directions of physiological research in Alpine skiing are also offered.

  1. Dairy cattle on Norwegian alpine rangelands – grazing preferences and milk quality

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Sickel, H; Abrahamsen, R K; Eldegard, K; Lunnan, T; Norderhaug, A; Petersen, M.A.; Sickel, M.; Steenhuisen, F.; Ohlson, M.

    2014-01-01

    The results from the study ‘Effects of vegetation and grazing preferences on the quality of alpine dairy products’ will be presented. The main objective of the project was to investigate the connections bet - ween alpine rangeland vegetation, landscape use and grazing preferences of free ranging

  2. The application of refraction seismics in alpine permafrost studies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Draebing, Daniel

    2017-04-01

    Permafrost studies in alpine environments focus on landslides from permafrost-affected rockwalls, landslide deposits or periglacial sediment dynamics. Mechanical properties of soils or rocks are influenced by permafrost and changed strength properties affect these periglacial processes. To assess the effects of permafrost thaw and degradation, monitoring techniques for permafrost distribution and active-layer thaw are required. Seismic wave velocities are sensitive to freezing and, therefore, refraction seismics presents a valuable tool to investigate permafrost in alpine environments. In this study, (1) laboratory and field applications of refraction seismics in alpine environments are reviewed and (2) data are used to quantify effects of rock properties (e.g. lithology, porosity, anisotropy, saturation) on p-wave velocities. In the next step, (3) influence of environmental factors are evaluated and conclusions drawn on permafrost differentiation within alpine periglacial landforms. This study shows that p-wave velocity increase is susceptible to porosity which is pronounced in high-porosity rocks. In low-porosity rocks, p-wave velocity increase is controlled by anisotropy decrease due to ice pressure (Draebing and Krautblatter, 2012) which enables active-layer and permafrost differentiation at rockwall scale (Krautblatter and Draebing, 2014; Draebing et al., 2016). However, discontinuity distribution can result in high anisotropy effects on seismic velocities which can impede permafrost differentiation (Phillips et al., 2016). Due to production or deposition history, porosity can show large spatial differences in deposited landforms. Landforms with large boulders such as rock glaciers and moraines show highest p-wave velocity differences between active-layer and permafrost which facilitates differentiation (Draebing, 2016). Saturation with water is essential for the successful application of refraction seismics for permafrost detection and can be controlled at

  3. [Recreational and competitive alpine skiing. Typical injury patterns and possibilities for prevention].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brucker, P U; Katzmaier, P; Olvermann, M; Huber, A; Waibel, K; Imhoff, A B; Spitzenpfeil, P

    2014-01-01

    Alpine skiing is the most popular winter sport discipline in Germany and is performed by more than 4 million recreational sportsmen and ski racing athletes. Compared to other sports, however, the injury rate in alpine skiing is quite high. Especially the knee joint is the most commonly injured area of the musculoskeletal system. Knee injuries are classified as severe in a high percentage of cases. In this review article, epidemiologic data and typical injury patterns in recreational alpine skiing and in competitive alpine ski racing are compared. In addition, the potentials of preventive methods in alpine skiing are presented and evaluated with a special focus on orthotic devices and protection wear as injury prevention equipment.

  4. Does NDVI reflect variation in the structural attributes associated with increasing shrub dominance in arctic tundra?

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Boelman, Natalie T [Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory, Columbia University, 61 Route 9W, Palisades, NY 10964 (United States); Gough, Laura; McLaren, Jennie R [Department of Biology, University of Texas at Arlington, Arlington, TX 76019 (United States); Greaves, Heather, E-mail: nboelman@ldeo.columbia.edu [Department of Forest Ecosystems and Society, Oregon State University, 321 Richardson Hall, Corvallis, OR 97331 (United States)

    2011-07-15

    This study explores relationships between the normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI) and structural characteristics associated with deciduous shrub dominance in arctic tundra. Our structural measures of shrub dominance are stature, branch abundance, aerial per cent woody stem cover (deciduous and evergreen species), and per cent deciduous shrub canopy cover. All measurements were taken across a suite of transects that together represent a gradient of deciduous shrub height. The transects include tussock tundra shrub and riparian shrub tundra communities located in the northern foothills of the Brooks Range, in northern Alaska. Plot-level NDVI measurements were made in 2010 during the snow-free period prior to deciduous shrub leaf-out (early June, NDVI{sub pre-leaf}), at the point in the growing season when canopy NDVI has reached half of its maximum growing season value (mid-June, NDVI{sub demi-leaf}) and during the period of maximum leaf-out (late July, NDVI{sub peak-leaf}). We found that: (1) NDVI{sub pre-leaf} is best suited to capturing variation in the per cent woody stem cover, maximum shrub height, and branch abundance, particularly between 10 and 50 cm height in the canopy; (2) NDVI{sub peak-leaf} is best suited to capturing variation in deciduous canopy cover; and (3) NDVI{sub demi-leaf} does not capture variability in any of our measures of shrub dominance. These findings suggest that in situ NDVI measurements made prior to deciduous canopy leaf-out could be used to identify small differences in maximum shrub height, woody stem cover, and branch abundance (particularly between 10 and 50 cm height in the canopy). Because shrubs are increasing in size and regional extent in several regions of the Arctic, investigation into spectrally based tools for monitoring these changes are worthwhile as they provide a first step towards development of remotely sensed techniques for quantifying associated changes in regional carbon cycling, albedo, radiative

  5. Energy fluxes in a high Arctic tundra heath subjected to strong climate warming

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lund, M.; Hansen, B. U.; Pedersen, S. H.; Stiegler, C.; Tamstorf, M. P.

    2012-12-01

    During recent decades the observed warming in the Arctic has been almost twice as large as the global average. The implications of such strong warming on surface energy balance, regulating permafrost thaw, hydrology, soil stability and carbon mineralization, need to be assessed. In Zackenberg, northeast Greenland, measurements of energy balance components in various environments have been performed since late 90's, coordinated by Zackenberg Ecological Research Operations. During 1996-2009, mean annual temperature in the area has increased by ca. 0.15 °C yr-1; while maximum thaw depth has increased by 1.4-1.8 cm yr-1. Eddy covariance measurements of energy fluxes have been performed in a Cassiope heath plant community, a commonly occurring tundra ecosystem type in circumpolar middle and high Arctic areas, in Zackenberg allowing for detailed investigations of relationships between energy fluxes and meteorological and soil physical characteristics. As the available data set spans more than a decade, possible trends in energy flux components resulting from warming related changes such as earlier snow melt, increased active layer depth and higher temperatures can be investigated. This presentation will focus on the mid-summer period from which eddy covariance measurements are available. The summer-time energy partitioning at the Zackenberg tundra heath site will be characterized using ratios of sensible, latent and ground heat flux to net radiation and Bowen ratio, whereas the surface characteristics will be described using surface resistance, McNaughton and Jarvis Ω value and Priestley-Taylor α coefficient. Furthermore, we aim to estimate the full year, all energy balance components for the tundra heath site using Snow Model (Liston and Elder 2006) for the dark winter period during which no eddy covariance measurements are available. The snow cover duration in the area is a major regulator of the energy partitioning. Early results point towards high summer

  6. Thaw pond dynamics and carbon emissions in a Siberian lowland tundra landscape

    Science.gov (United States)

    van Huissteden, Ko; Heijmans, Monique; Dean, Josh; Meisel, Ove; Goovaerts, Arne; Parmentier, Frans-Jan; Schaepman-Strub, Gabriela; Belelli Marchesini, Luca; Kononov, Alexander; Maximov, Trofim; Borges, Alberto; Bouillon, Steven

    2017-04-01

    Arctic climate change induces drastic changes in permafrost surface wetness. As a result of thawing ground ice bodies, ice wedge troughs and thaw ponds are formed. Alternatively, ongoing thaw may enhance drainage as a result of increased interconnectedness of thawing ice wedge troughs, as inferred from a model study (Liljedahl et al., 2016, Nature Geoscience, DOI: 10.1038/NGEO2674). However, a recent review highlighted the limited predictability of consequences of thawing permafrost on hydrology (Walvoord and Kurylyk, 2016, Vadose Zone J., DOI:10.2136/vzj2016.01.0010). Overall, these changes in tundra wetness modify carbon cycling in the Arctic and in particular the emissions of CO2 and CH4 to the atmosphere, providing a possibly positive feedback on climate change. Here we present the results of a combined remote sensing, geomorphological, vegetation and biogechemical study of thaw ponds in Arctic Siberian tundra, at Kytalyk research station near Chokurdakh, Indigirka lowlands. The station is located in an area dominated by Pleistocene ice-rich 'yedoma' sediments and drained thaw lake bottoms of Holocene age. The development of three types of ponds in the Kytalyk area (polygon centre ponds, ice wedge troughs and thaw ponds) has been traced with high resolution satellite and aerial imagery. The remote sensing data show net areal expansion of all types of ponds. Next to formation of new ponds, local vegetation change from dry vegetation types to wet, sedge-dominated vegetation is common. Thawing ice wedges and thaw ponds show an increase in area and number at most studied locations. In particular the area of polygon centre ponds increased strongly between 2010 and 2015, but this is highly sensitive to antecedent precipitation conditions. Despite a nearly 60% increase of the area of thawing ice wedge troughs, there is no evidence of decreasing water surfaces by increasing drainage through connected ice wedge troughs. The number of thaw ponds shows an equilibrium

  7. Detection of tundra trail damage near Barrow, Alaska using remote imagery

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hinkel, K. M.; Eisner, W. R.; Kim, C. J.

    2017-09-01

    In the past several decades, the use of all-terrain vehicles (ATVs) has proliferated in many Arctic communities in North America. One example is the village of Barrow, Alaska. This coastal community has only local roads, so all access to the interior utilizes off-road machines. These 4-wheel vehicles are the primary means of tundra traverse and transport in summer by hunters and berry-pickers, and by village residents accessing summer camps. Traveling cross-country is difficult due to the large number of thermokarst lakes, wetlands, and streams, and tundra trails tend to follow dryer higher ground while avoiding areas of high microrelief such as high-centered ice-wedge polygons. Thus, modern ATV trails tend to follow the margins of drained or partially drained thermokarst lake basins where it is flat and relatively dry, and these trails are heavily used. The deeply-ribbed tires of the heavy and powerful ATVs cause damage by destroying the vegetation and disturbing the underlying organic soil. Exposure of the dark soil enhances summer thaw and leads to local thermokarst of the ice-rich upper permafrost. The damage increases over time as vehicles continue to follow the same track, and sections eventually become unusable; this is especially true where the trail crosses ice-wedge troughs. Deep subsidence in the ponded troughs results in ATV users veering to avoid the wettest area, which leads to a widening of the damaged area. Helicopter surveys, site visits, and collection of ground penetrating radar data were combined with time series analysis of high-resolution aerial and satellite imagery for the period 1955-2014. The analysis reveals that there are 507 km of off-road trails on the Barrow Peninsula. About 50% of the total trail length was developed before 1955 in association with resource extraction, and an additional 40% were formed between 1979 and 2005 by ATVs. Segments of the more modern trail are up to 100 m wide. Damage to the tundra is especially pronounced

  8. Understanding Pan-Arctic Tundra Vegetation Change Through Long-term Remotely Sensed Data

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bhatt, U.; Walker, D. A.; Bieniek, P.; Raynolds, M. K.; Epstein, H. E.; Comiso, J. C.; Pinzon, J. E.; Tucker, C. J.

    2012-12-01

    The goal of this paper is to present an analysis of the seasonality of tundra vegetation variability and change using long-term remotely sensed data as well as ground based measurements and reanalyses. An increase of Pan-Arctic tundra vegetation greenness has been documented using the remotely sensed Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI). Coherent variability between NDVI, springtime coastal sea ice (passive microwave) and land surface temperatures (AVHRR) has also been established. Satellite based snow and cloud cover data sets are being incorporated into this analysis. The Arctic tundra is divided into domains based on Treshnikov divisions that are modified based on floristic provinces. There is notable heterogeneity in Pan-Arctic vegetation and climate trends, which necessitates a regional analysis. This study uses remotely sensed weekly 25-km sea ice concentration, weekly surface temperature, and bi-weekly NDVI from 1982 to 2010. The GIMMS NDVI3g data has been corrected for biases during the spring and fall, with special focus on the Arctic. Trends of Maximum NDVI (MaxNDVI), Time Integrated NDVI (TI-NDVI), Summer Warmth Index (SWI, sum of degree months above freezing during May-August), and open water area are calculated for the Pan Arctic. Remotely sensed snow data trends suggest varying patterns throughout the Arctic and may in part explain the heterogeneous MaxNDVI trends. Standard climate data (station, reanalysis, and model data) and ground observations are used in the analysis to provide additional support for hypothesized mechanisms. Overall, we find that trends over the 30-year record are changing as evidenced by the following examples from recent years. The sea ice decline has increased in Eurasia and slowed in North America. The weekly AVHRR landsurface temperatures reveal that there has been summer cooling over Eurasia and that the warming over North America has slowed. The MaxNDVI rates of change have diverged between N. America and Eurasia

  9. Decadal changes in tundra land cover on Yamal Peninsula, Northwest Siberia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Forbes, B. C.; Kumpula, T.; Macias-Fauria, M.

    2017-12-01

    The Yamal-Nenets Okrug in Russia has experienced significant changes in land use and climate in recent decades. Average year-round air temperatures have increased ca. 2°C since the 1970's, with much - but not all - of the warming taking place in winter. In association with ongoing summer warming, the annual growth of erect deciduous shrubs has been accelerating while growing season seasonality has diminished, characterized by shifts in the spatial patterns of key phenological parameters. We prepared LANDSAT-derived land cover classifications for 1988 and 2014 using change detection analysis, supported by extensive ground truthing bolstered with data from Very High-Resolution (VHR) imagery (e.g. Quickbird-2, Worldview-2/3). Research was conducted within summer reindeer pastures utilized by the Yarsalinksi sovhoz, whose animals are collectively owned, as well as many privately-owned herds. The area represents bioclimatic Subzone D of the Circumpolar Arctic Vegetation Map and covers about 8500 km2. This is a key subzone for several reasons: (1) it includes Bovanenkovo, the first and largest gas deposit on Yamal to be developed; (2) it is a zone of extremely active periglacial processes (e.g. active layer detachment slides, lake drainage and recent methane-mediated craters); and (3) it is characterized by steadily increasing growth of tall willow shrubs (Salix spp.), which comprise an important source of fodder by reindeer migrating through the area in summer. These results are unique as our dataset: (1) covers sizable inland regions lying entirely within the Russian tundra zone; (2) derives from extensive ground truthing; and (3) treats all plant taxonomic groups (vascular, bryophytes, lichens) at the plot scale. Here we present the first such classifications, based on LANDSAT images from 1988 and 2014. We identify 16 classes ranging from bare ground and drained lakes, anthropogenic disturbances, through several wetland types, to various dwarf and erect tundra shrub

  10. Tall shrub and tree expansion in Siberian tundra ecotones since the 1960s.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Frost, Gerald V; Epstein, Howard E

    2014-04-01

    Circumpolar expansion of tall shrubs and trees into Arctic tundra is widely thought to be occurring as a result of recent climate warming, but little quantitative evidence exists for northern Siberia, which encompasses the world's largest forest-tundra ecotonal belt. We quantified changes in tall shrub and tree canopy cover in 11, widely distributed Siberian ecotonal landscapes by comparing very high-resolution photography from the Cold War-era 'Gambit' and 'Corona' satellite surveillance systems (1965-1969) with modern imagery. We also analyzed within-landscape patterns of vegetation change to evaluate the susceptibility of different landscape components to tall shrub and tree increase. The total cover of tall shrubs and trees increased in nine of 11 ecotones. In northwest Siberia, alder (Alnus) shrubland cover increased 5.3-25.9% in five ecotones. In Taymyr and Yakutia, larch (Larix) cover increased 3.0-6.7% within three ecotones, but declined 16.8% at a fourth ecotone due to thaw of ice-rich permafrost. In Chukotka, the total cover of alder and dwarf pine (Pinus) increased 6.1% within one ecotone and was little changed at a second ecotone. Within most landscapes, shrub and tree increase was linked to specific geomorphic settings, especially those with active disturbance regimes such as permafrost patterned-ground, floodplains, and colluvial hillslopes. Mean summer temperatures increased at most ecotones since the mid-1960s, but rates of shrub and tree canopy cover expansion were not strongly correlated with temperature trends and were better correlated with mean annual precipitation. We conclude that shrub and tree cover is increasing in tundra ecotones across most of northern Siberia, but rates of increase vary widely regionally and at the landscape scale. Our results indicate that extensive changes can occur within decades in moist, shrub-dominated ecotones, as in northwest Siberia, while changes are likely to occur much more slowly in the highly continental

  11. Demographic outcomes of diverse migration strategies assessed in a metapopulation of tundra swans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ely, Craig R; Meixell, Brandt W

    2016-01-01

    Migration is a prominent aspect of the life history of many avian species, but the demographic consequences of variable migration strategies have only infrequently been investigated, and rarely when using modern technological and analytical methods for assessing survival, movement patterns, and long-term productivity in the context of life history theory. We monitored the fates of 50 satellite-implanted tundra swans (Cygnus columbianus) over 4 years from five disparate breeding areas in Alaska, and used known-fate analyses to estimate monthly survival probability relative to migration distance, breeding area, migratory flyway, breeding status, and age. We specifically tested whether migratory birds face a trade-off, whereby long-distance migrants realize higher survival rates at the cost of lower productivity because of reduced time on breeding areas relative to birds that migrate shorter distances and spend more time on breeding areas. Annual migration distances varied significantly among breeding areas (1020 to 12720 km), and were strongly negatively correlated with time spent on breeding areas (r = -0.986). Estimates of annual survival probability varied by wintering area (Pacific coast, Alaska Peninsula, and Eastern seaboard) and ranged from 0.79 (95%CI: 0.70-0.88) to 1.0, depending on criteria used to discern mortalities from radio failures. We did not find evidence for a linear relationship between migration distance and survival as swans from the breeding areas with the shortest and longest migration distances had the highest survival probabilities. Survival was lower in the first year post-marking than in subsequent years, but there was not support for seasonal differences in survival. Productivity varied among breeding populations and was generally inversely correlated to survival, but not migration distance or time spent on breeding areas. Tundra swans conformed to a major tenet of life history theory, as populations with the highest survival

  12. Winter precipitation and snow accumulation drive the methane sink or source strength of Arctic tussock tundra.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blanc-Betes, Elena; Welker, Jeffrey M; Sturchio, Neil C; Chanton, Jeffrey P; Gonzalez-Meler, Miquel A

    2016-08-01

    Arctic winter precipitation is projected to increase with global warming, but some areas will experience decreases in snow accumulation. Although Arctic CH4 emissions may represent a significant climate forcing feedback, long-term impacts of changes in snow accumulation on CH4 fluxes remain uncertain. We measured ecosystem CH4 fluxes and soil CH4 and CO2 concentrations and (13) C composition to investigate the metabolic pathways and transport mechanisms driving moist acidic tundra CH4 flux over the growing season (Jun-Aug) after 18 years of experimental snow depth increases and decreases. Deeper snow increased soil wetness and warming, reducing soil %O2 levels and increasing thaw depth. Soil moisture, through changes in soil %O2 saturation, determined predominance of methanotrophy or methanogenesis, with soil temperature regulating the ecosystem CH4 sink or source strength. Reduced snow (RS) increased the fraction of oxidized CH4 (Fox) by 75-120% compared to Ambient, switching the system from a small source to a net CH4 sink (21 ± 2 and -31 ± 1 mg CH4  m(-2)  season(-1) at Ambient and RS). Deeper snow reduced Fox by 35-40% and 90-100% in medium- (MS) and high- (HS) snow additions relative to Ambient, contributing to increasing the CH4 source strength of moist acidic tundra (464 ± 15 and 3561 ± 97 mg CH4  m(-2)  season(-1) at MS and HS). Decreases in Fox with deeper snow were partly due to increases in plant-mediated CH4 transport associated with the expansion of tall graminoids. Deeper snow enhanced CH4 production within newly thawed soils, responding mainly to soil warming rather than to increases in acetate fermentation expected from thaw-induced increases in SOC availability. Our results suggest that increased winter precipitation will increase the CH4 source strength of Arctic tundra, but the resulting positive feedback on climate change will depend on the balance between areas with more or less snow accumulation than they are currently

  13. Exchange of CO2 in Arctic tundra: impacts of meteorological variations and biological disturbance

    Science.gov (United States)

    López-Blanco, Efrén; Lund, Magnus; Williams, Mathew; Tamstorf, Mikkel P.; Westergaard-Nielsen, Andreas; Exbrayat, Jean-François; Hansen, Birger U.; Christensen, Torben R.

    2017-10-01

    An improvement in our process-based understanding of carbon (C) exchange in the Arctic and its climate sensitivity is critically needed for understanding the response of tundra ecosystems to a changing climate. In this context, we analysed the net ecosystem exchange (NEE) of CO2 in West Greenland tundra (64° N) across eight snow-free periods in 8 consecutive years, and characterized the key processes of net ecosystem exchange and its two main modulating components: gross primary production (GPP) and ecosystem respiration (Reco). Overall, the ecosystem acted as a consistent sink of CO2, accumulating -30 g C m-2 on average (range of -17 to -41 g C m-2) during the years 2008-2015, except 2011 (source of 41 g C m-2), which was associated with a major pest outbreak. The results do not reveal a marked meteorological effect on the net CO2 uptake despite the high interannual variability in the timing of snowmelt and the start and duration of the growing season. The ranges in annual GPP (-182 to -316 g C m-2) and Reco (144 to 279 g C m-2) were > 5 fold larger than the range in NEE. Gross fluxes were also more variable (coefficients of variation are 3.6 and 4.1 % respectively) than for NEE (0.7 %). GPP and Reco were sensitive to insolation and temperature, and there was a tendency towards larger GPP and Reco during warmer and wetter years. The relative lack of sensitivity of NEE to meteorology was a result of the correlated response of GPP and Reco. During the snow-free season of the anomalous year of 2011, a biological disturbance related to a larvae outbreak reduced GPP more strongly than Reco. With continued warming temperatures and longer growing seasons, tundra systems will increase rates of C cycling. However, shifts in sink strength will likely be triggered by factors such as biological disturbances, events that will challenge our forecasting of C states.

  14. Protection of large alpine infrastructures against natural hazards

    Science.gov (United States)

    Robl, Jörg; Scheikl, Manfred; Hergarten, Stefan

    2013-04-01

    Large infrastructures in alpine domains are threatened by a variety of natural hazards like debris flows, rock falls and snow avalanches. Especially linear infrastructure including roads, railway lines, pipe lines and power lines passes through the entire mountain range and the impact of natural hazards can be expected along a distance over hundreds of kilometers. New infrastructure projects like storage power plants or ski resorts including access roads are often located in remote alpine domains without any historical record of hazardous events. Mitigation strategies against natural hazards require a detailed analysis on the exposure of the infrastructure to natural hazards. Following conventional concepts extensive mapping and documentation of surface processes over hundreds to several thousand km² of steep alpine domain is essential but can be hardly performed. We present a case study from the Austrian Alps to demonstrate the ability of a multi-level concept to describe the impact of natural hazards on infrastructure by an iterative process. This includes new state of the art numerical models, modern field work and GIS-analysis with an increasing level of refinement at each stage. A set of new numerical models for rock falls, debris flows and snow avalanches was designed to operate with information from field in different qualities and spatial resolutions. Our analysis starts with simple and fast cellular automata for rockfalls and debrisflows to show the exposure of the infrastructure to natural hazards in huge domains and detects "high risk areas" that are investigated in more detail in field in the next refinement level. Finally, sophisticated 2D- depth averaged fluid dynamic models for all kinds of rapid mass movements are applied to support the development of protection structures.

  15. A molecular phylogeny of Alpine subterranean Trechini (Coleoptera: Carabidae)

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-01-01

    Background The Alpine region harbours one of the most diverse subterranean faunas in the world, with many species showing extreme morphological modifications. The ground beetles of tribe Trechini (Coleoptera, Carabidae) are among the best studied and widespread groups with abundance of troglobionts, but their origin and evolution is largely unknown. Results We sequenced 3.4 Kb of mitochondrial (cox1, rrnL, trnL, nad1) and nuclear (SSU, LSU) genes of 207 specimens of 173 mostly Alpine species, including examples of all subterranean genera but two plus a representation of epigean taxa. We applied Bayesian methods and maximum likelihood to reconstruct the topology and to estimate divergence times using a priori rates obtained for a related ground beetle genus. We found three main clades of late Eocene-early Oligocene origin: (1) the genus Doderotrechus and relatives; (2) the genus Trechus sensu lato, with most anisotopic subterranean genera, including the Pyrenean lineage and taxa from the Dinaric Alps; and (3) the genus Duvalius sensu lato, diversifying during the late Miocene and including all subterranean isotopic taxa. Most of the subterranean genera had an independent origin and were related to epigean taxa of the same geographical area, but there were three large monophyletic clades of exclusively subterranean species: the Pyrenean lineage, a lineage including subterranean taxa from the eastern Alps and the Dinarides, and the genus Anophthalmus from the northeastern Alps. Many lineages have developed similar phenotypes independently, showing extensive morphological convergence or parallelism. Conclusions The Alpine Trechini do not form a homogeneous fauna, in contrast with the Pyrenees, and show a complex scenario of multiple colonisations of the subterranean environment at different geological periods and through different processes. Examples go from populations of an epigean widespread species going underground with little morphological modifications to

  16. Climate change and tourism in the alpine regions of Switzerland

    OpenAIRE

    Bürki, R; Abegg, B; Elsasser, H

    2007-01-01

    For many alpine areas in Switzerland, winter tourism is the most important source of income, and snow-reliability is one of the key elements of the offers made by tourism in the Alps. 85% of Switzerland’s current ski resorts can be designated as snow-reliable. If climate change occurs, the level of snow-reliability will rise from 1200 m up to 1800 m over the next few decades. Only 44% of the ski resorts wouldthen still be snow-reliable. While some regions may be able to maintain their winter ...

  17. Inversion Tectonics in the Alpine Foreland, Eastern Alps (Austria)

    OpenAIRE

    Martínez Granado, Pablo

    2017-01-01

    [eng] In this thesis, the 3D structure and kinematics of the locally and mildly inverted Lower Austria Mesozoic Basin beneath the Alpine-Carpathian fold-and-thrust belt is described. This study has been carried out by the integrative interpretation of 2D and 3D seismic surveys, well and geophysical logs data and gravity maps. A basin-scale, 3D structural model has been carried out, focused on the sub-thrust and foreland zones. The Late Eocene to Early Miocene Alpine–Carpathian fold-and-thrus...

  18. Carboxylic acids in high elevation Alpine glacier snow

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maupetit, FrançOis; Delmas, Robert J.

    1994-08-01

    Fresh-snow samples were collected on an event basis on the Glacier de la Girose (3360 m above sea level (asl)) in the southern French Alps, during winters and early springs 1990 and 1991. In addition, a 13-m firn core was recovered in 1991 at the Col du Dôme (4250 m asl), a cold glacier in the northern French Alps, offering the complete seasonal record of alpine precipitation during 3.5 years. All samples were analyzed for total formate and acetate and for major ions using ion chromatography. The acidity-alkalinity was accurately measured using a titration technique. An almost perfect ion balance was achieved for this data set. In absence of Saharan dust transport, the high alpine snow is slightly acid (H+ ˜ 2-20 μEq L-1). HCOOT and CH3COOT are generally present in alpine acid snow at very low concentrations: 0.3-0.6 μEq L-1 in winter (January to February) and 0.6-2 μEq L-1 in early spring (March to April). At Col du Dôme, total acetate concentrations of ˜1 μEq L-1 are observed in summer. It remains unclear from our results what the major sources of carboxylic acids are, and in particular of acetic acid, in the wintertime continental free troposphere, while it appears that formic and acetic acids are presumably mainly derived from natural sources in spring and summer. The total contribution of formic and acetic acids to free acidity is, on average, less than 15-20%. Contrary to major ions which are present in wider concentration ranges and show large variations from one snowfall to the other, HCOOT and CH3COOT are surprisingly stable in acid alpine snow. The only significant deviation of HCOOT and CH3COOT from their mean values (up to 9 and 5 μEq L-1, respectively) are observed in case of Saharan dust transport, when precipitation pH is shifted from acid toward alkaline conditions. These observations suggest a pH partitioning effect between the aqueous and gas phases, formic and acetic acids being dissolved and neutralized as salts in alkaline cloudwater

  19. CAR LEADEX Level 1C Artic Sea Ice and Tundra Radiation Measurements (CAR_LEADEX_L1C) at GES DISC

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — CAR LEADEX mission measured bidirectional reflectance functions for four common arctic surfaces: snow covered sea ice, melt season sea ice, snow covered tundra, and...

  20. Changing Seasonality of Panarctic Tundra Vegetation in Relationship to Climatic Variables

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bhatt, Uma S.; Walker, Donald A.; Raynolds, Martha K.; Bieniek, Peter A.; Epstein, Howard E.; Comiso, Josefino C.; Pinzon, Jorge E.; Tucker, Compton J.; Steele, Michael; Ermold, Wendy; hide

    2017-01-01

    Potential climate drivers of Arctic tundra vegetation productivity are investigated to understand recent greening and browning trends documented by maximum normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI) (MaxNDVI) and time-integrated NDVI (TI-NDVI) for 19822015. Over this period, summer sea ice has continued to decline while oceanic heat content has increased. The increases in summer warmth index (SWI) and NDVI have not been uniform over the satellite record. SWI increased from 1982 to the mid-1990s and remained relatively flat from 1998 onwards until a recent upturn. While MaxNDVI displays positive trends from 19822015, TI-NDVI increased from 1982 until 2001 and has declined since. The data for the first and second halves of the record were analyzed and compared spatially for changing trends with a focus on the growing season. Negative trends for MaxNDVI and TI-NDVI were more common during 19992015 compared to 19821998.

  1. The effect of vascular plants on carbon turnover and methane emissions from a tundra wetland

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Strom, L; Ekberg, A; Mastepanov, M

    2003-01-01

    This paper investigates how vascular plants affect carbon flow and the formation and emission of the greenhouse gas methane (CH4 ) in an arctic wet tundra ecosystem in NE Greenland. We present a field experiment where we studied, in particular, how species-specific root exudation patterns affect...... an intact peat-plant monolith system collected at the field site in NE Greenland to the laboratory, sealed it hermetically and studied the decomposition of (14) C-labelled acetate injected at the depth of methanogenic activity. After 4 h, (14) CH4 emission from the monolith could be observed. In conclusion......, allocation of recently fixed carbon to the roots of certain species of vascular plants affects substrate quality and influence CH4 formation....

  2. A continuous-flow periphyton bioassay: tests of nutrient limitation in a tundra stream

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Peterson, B.J.; Hobbie, J.E.; Corliss, T.L.; Kriet, K.

    1983-01-01

    The effect of added nutrients on the periphyton of a tundra stream was tested during July and August. Flow-through systems consisting of a bank of clear plastic tubes containing racks of microscope slides were suspended from floats in the stream. Nutrients were enriched in the experimental tubes by siphoning concentrated nutrient solutions from Mariotte bottles into the upstream end of each tube. Slides from each tube were assayed at 2-6 day intervals for chlorophyll content and photosynthetic 14 CO 2 uptake. Levels of chlorophyll and CO 2 uptake were significantly higher than the controls both in the tubes with 10μg PO 4 -P>liter -1 of stream water and in those with P plus 100 μg NH 4 NO 3 -N.liter. Nitrogen alone gave no stimulation

  3. Fungi benefit from two decades of increased nutrient availability in tundra heath soil

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Rinnan, Riikka; Michelsen, Anders; Bååth, Erland

    2013-01-01

    If microbial degradation of carbon substrates in arctic soil is stimulated by climatic warming, this would be a significant positive feedback on global change. With data from a climate change experiment in Northern Sweden we show that warming and enhanced soil nutrient availability, which...... is a predicted long-term consequence of climatic warming and mimicked by fertilization, both increase soil microbial biomass. However, while fertilization increased the relative abundance of fungi, warming caused only a minimal shift in the microbial community composition based on the phospholipid fatty acid...... of complex organic compounds such as vanillin, while warming has had no such effects. Furthermore, the NLFA-to-PLFA ratio for (13)C-incorporation from acetate increased in warmed plots but not in fertilized ones. Thus, fertilization cannot be used as a proxy for effects on warming in arctic tundra soils...

  4. Influence of iron redox cycling on organo-mineral associations in Arctic tundra soil

    Science.gov (United States)

    Herndon, Elizabeth; AlBashaireh, Amineh; Singer, David; Roy Chowdhury, Taniya; Gu, Baohua; Graham, David

    2017-06-01

    Arctic tundra stores large quantities of soil organic matter under varying redox conditions. As the climate warms, these carbon reservoirs are susceptible to increased rates of decomposition and release to the atmosphere as the greenhouse gases carbon dioxide (CO2) and methane (CH4). Geochemical interactions between soil organic matter and minerals influence decomposition in many environments but remain poorly understood in Arctic tundra systems and are not considered in decomposition models. The accumulation of iron (Fe) oxyhydroxides and organo-iron precipitates at redox interfaces may be particularly important for carbon cycling given that ferric iron [Fe(III)] species can enhance decomposition by serving as terminal electron acceptors in anoxic soils or inhibit microbial decomposition by binding organic molecules. Here, we examine chemical properties of solid-phase Fe and organic matter in organic and mineral horizons within the seasonally thawed active layer of Arctic tundra on the North Slope of Alaska. Spectroscopic techniques, including micro-X-ray fluorescence (μXRF) mapping, micro-X-ray absorption near-edge structure (μXANES) spectroscopy, and Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR), were coupled with chemical sequential extractions and physical density fractionations to evaluate the spatial distribution and speciation of Fe-bearing phases and associated organic matter in soils. Organic horizons were enriched in poorly crystalline and crystalline iron oxides, and approximately 60% of total Fe stored in organic horizons was calculated to derive from upward translocation from anoxic mineral horizons. Ferrihydrite and goethite were present as coatings on mineral grains and plant debris, and in aggregates with clays and particulate organic matter. Minor amounts of ferrous iron [Fe(II)] were present in iron sulfides (i.e., pyrite and greigite) in mineral horizon soils and iron phosphates (vivianite) in organic horizons. Concentrations of organic

  5. Doubled volatile organic compound emissions from subarctic tundra under simulated climate warming

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Faubert, Patrick; Tiiva, Paivi; Rinnan, Åsmund

    2010-01-01

    • Biogenic volatile organic compound (BVOC) emissions from arctic ecosystems are important in view of their role in global atmospheric chemistry and unknown feedbacks to global warming. These cold ecosystems are hotspots of climate warming, which will be more severe here than averaged over...... the globe. We assess the effects of climatic warming on non-methane BVOC emissions from a subarctic heath. • We performed ecosystem-based chamber measurements and gas chromatography-mass spectrometry (GC-MS) analyses of the BVOCs collected on adsorbent over two growing seasons at a wet subarctic tundra...... heath hosting a long-term warming and mountain birch (Betula pubescens ssp. czerepanovii) litter addition experiment. • The relatively low emissions of monoterpenes and sesquiterpenes were doubled in response to an air temperature increment of only 1.9-2.5°C, while litter addition had a minor influence...

  6. Carbon-degrading enzyme activities stimulated by increased nutrient availability in Arctic tundra soils.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Akihiro Koyama

    Full Text Available Climate-induced warming of the Arctic tundra is expected to increase nutrient availability to soil microbes, which in turn may accelerate soil organic matter (SOM decomposition. We increased nutrient availability via fertilization to investigate the microbial response via soil enzyme activities. Specifically, we measured potential activities of seven enzymes at four temperatures in three soil profiles (organic, organic/mineral interface, and mineral from untreated native soils and from soils which had been fertilized with nitrogen (N and phosphorus (P since 1989 (23 years and 2006 (six years. Fertilized plots within the 1989 site received annual additions of 10 g N · m(-2 · year(-1 and 5 g P · m(-2 · year(-1. Within the 2006 site, two fertilizer regimes were established--one in which plots received 5 g N · m(-2 · year(-1 and 2.5 g P · m(-2 · year(-1 and one in which plots received 10 g N · m(-2 · year(-1 and 5 g P · m(-2 · year(-1. The fertilization treatments increased activities of enzymes hydrolyzing carbon (C-rich compounds but decreased phosphatase activities, especially in the organic soils. Activities of two enzymes that degrade N-rich compounds were not affected by the fertilization treatments. The fertilization treatments increased ratios of enzyme activities degrading C-rich compounds to those for N-rich compounds or phosphate, which could lead to changes in SOM chemistry over the long term and to losses of soil C. Accelerated SOM decomposition caused by increased nutrient availability could significantly offset predicted increased C fixation via stimulated net primary productivity in Arctic tundra ecosystems.

  7. Circumpolar arctic tundra biomass and productivity dynamics in response to projected climate change and herbivory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yu, Qin; Epstein, Howard; Engstrom, Ryan; Walker, Donald

    2017-09-01

    Satellite remote sensing data have indicated a general 'greening' trend in the arctic tundra biome. However, the observed changes based on remote sensing are the result of multiple environmental drivers, and the effects of individual controls such as warming, herbivory, and other disturbances on changes in vegetation biomass, community structure, and ecosystem function remain unclear. We apply ArcVeg, an arctic tundra vegetation dynamics model, to estimate potential changes in vegetation biomass and net primary production (NPP) at the plant community and functional type levels. ArcVeg is driven by soil nitrogen output from the Terrestrial Ecosystem Model, existing densities of Rangifer populations, and projected summer temperature changes by the NCAR CCSM4.0 general circulation model across the Arctic. We quantified the changes in aboveground biomass and NPP resulting from (i) observed herbivory only; (ii) projected climate change only; and (iii) coupled effects of projected climate change and herbivory. We evaluated model outputs of the absolute and relative differences in biomass and NPP by country, bioclimate subzone, and floristic province. Estimated potential biomass increases resulting from temperature increase only are approximately 5% greater than the biomass modeled due to coupled warming and herbivory. Such potential increases are greater in areas currently occupied by large or dense Rangifer herds such as the Nenets-occupied regions in Russia (27% greater vegetation increase without herbivores). In addition, herbivory modulates shifts in plant community structure caused by warming. Plant functional types such as shrubs and mosses were affected to a greater degree than other functional types by either warming or herbivory or coupled effects of the two. © 2017 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  8. Implications of a lightning-rich tundra biome for permafrost carbon and vegetation dynamics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Y.; Veraverbeke, S.; Randerson, J. T.

    2017-12-01

    Lightning is a major ignition source of wildfires in circumpolar boreal forests but rarely occurs in arctic tundra. While theoretical and empirical work suggests that climate change will increase lightning strikes in temperate regions, much less is known about future changes in lightning across terrestrial ecosystems at high northern latitudes. Here we analyzed the spatial and temporal patterns of lightning flash rate (FR) from the satellite observations and surface detection networks. Regression models between the observed FR from the Optical Transient Detector on the MicroLab-1 satellite (later renamed OV-1) and meteorological parameters, including surface temperature (T), convective available potential energy (CAPE), and convective precipitation (CP) from ECMWF (European Centre for Medium-Range Weather Forecasts) ERA-interim reanalysis, were established and assessed. We found that FR had significant linear correlations with CAPE and CP, and a strong non-linear relationship with T. The statistical model based on T and CP can reproduce most of the spatial and temporal variability in FR in the circumpolar region. By using the regression model and meteorological predictions from 24 earth system models in the Coupled Model Intercomparison Project Phase 5 (CMIP5), we estimated the spatial distribution of FR by the end of the 21st century. Due to increases in surface temperature and convection, modeled FR shows substantial increase in northern biomes, including a 338% change in arctic tundra and a 185% change in regions with permafrost soil carbon reservoirs. These changes highlight a new mechanism by which permafrost carbon is vulnerable to the sustained impacts of climate warming. Increased fire in a warmer and lightning-rich future near the treeline has the potential to accelerate the northward migration of trees, which may further enhance warming and the abundance of lightning strikes.

  9. Microbial functional diversity covaries with permafrost thaw-induced environmental heterogeneity in tundra soil.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yuan, Mengting M; Zhang, Jin; Xue, Kai; Wu, Liyou; Deng, Ye; Deng, Jie; Hale, Lauren; Zhou, Xishu; He, Zhili; Yang, Yunfeng; Van Nostrand, Joy D; Schuur, Edward A G; Konstantinidis, Konstantinos T; Penton, Christopher R; Cole, James R; Tiedje, James M; Luo, Yiqi; Zhou, Jizhong

    2018-01-01

    Permafrost soil in high latitude tundra is one of the largest terrestrial carbon (C) stocks and is highly sensitive to climate warming. Understanding microbial responses to warming-induced environmental changes is critical to evaluating their influences on soil biogeochemical cycles. In this study, a functional gene array (i.e., geochip 4.2) was used to analyze the functional capacities of soil microbial communities collected from a naturally degrading permafrost region in Central Alaska. Varied thaw history was reported to be the main driver of soil and plant differences across a gradient of minimally, moderately, and extensively thawed sites. Compared with the minimally thawed site, the number of detected functional gene probes across the 15-65 cm depth profile at the moderately and extensively thawed sites decreased by 25% and 5%, while the community functional gene β-diversity increased by 34% and 45%, respectively, revealing decreased functional gene richness but increased community heterogeneity along the thaw progression. Particularly, the moderately thawed site contained microbial communities with the highest abundances of many genes involved in prokaryotic C degradation, ammonification, and nitrification processes, but lower abundances of fungal C decomposition and anaerobic-related genes. Significant correlations were observed between functional gene abundance and vascular plant primary productivity, suggesting that plant growth and species composition could be co-evolving traits together with microbial community composition. Altogether, this study reveals the complex responses of microbial functional potentials to thaw-related soil and plant changes and provides information on potential microbially mediated biogeochemical cycles in tundra ecosystems. © 2017 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  10. Vegetation-associated impacts on arctic tundra bacterial and microeukaryotic communities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shi, Yu; Xiang, Xingjia; Shen, Congcong; Chu, Haiyan; Neufeld, Josh D; Walker, Virginia K; Grogan, Paul

    2015-01-01

    The Arctic is experiencing rapid vegetation changes, such as shrub and tree line expansion, due to climate warming, as well as increased wetland variability due to hydrological changes associated with permafrost thawing. These changes are of global concern because changes in vegetation may increase tundra soil biogeochemical processes that would significantly enhance atmospheric CO2 concentrations. Predicting the latter will at least partly depend on knowing the structure, functional activities, and distributions of soil microbes among the vegetation types across Arctic landscapes. Here we investigated the bacterial and microeukaryotic community structures in soils from the four principal low Arctic tundra vegetation types: wet sedge, birch hummock, tall birch, and dry heath. Sequencing of rRNA gene fragments indicated that the wet sedge and tall birch communities differed significantly from each other and from those associated with the other two dominant vegetation types. Distinct microbial communities were associated with soil pH, ammonium concentration, carbon/nitrogen (C/N) ratio, and moisture content. In soils with similar moisture contents and pHs (excluding wet sedge), bacterial, fungal, and total eukaryotic communities were correlated with the ammonium concentration, dissolved organic nitrogen (DON) content, and C/N ratio. Operational taxonomic unit (OTU) richness, Faith's phylogenetic diversity, and the Shannon species-level index (H') were generally lower in the tall birch soil than in soil from the other vegetation types, with pH being strongly correlated with bacterial richness and Faith's phylogenetic diversity. Together, these results suggest that Arctic soil feedback responses to climate change will be vegetation specific not just because of distinctive substrates and environmental characteristics but also, potentially, because of inherent differences in microbial community structure. Copyright © 2015, American Society for Microbiology. All Rights

  11. Object-Based Mapping of the Circumpolar Taiga-Tundra Ecotone with MODIS Tree Cover

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ranson, K. J.; Montesano, P. M.; Nelson, R.

    2011-01-01

    The circumpolar taiga tundra ecotone was delineated using an image-segmentation-based mapping approach with multi-annual MODIS Vegetation Continuous Fields (VCF) tree cover data. Circumpolar tree canopy cover (TCC) throughout the ecotone was derived by averaging MODIS VCF data from 2000 to 2005 and adjusting the averaged values using linear equations relating MODIS TCC to Quickbird-derived tree cover estimates. The adjustment helped mitigate VCF's overestimation of tree cover in lightly forested regions. An image segmentation procedure was used to group pixels representing similar tree cover into polygonal features (segmentation objects) that form the map of the transition zone. Each polygon represents an area much larger than the 500 m MODIS pixel and characterizes the patterns of sparse forest patches on a regional scale. Those polygons near the boreal/tundra interface with either (1) mean adjusted TCC values from5 to 20%, or (2) mean adjusted TCC values greater than 5% but with a standard deviation less than 5% were used to identify the ecotone. Comparisons of the adjusted average tree cover data were made with (1) two existing tree line definitions aggregated for each 1 degree longitudinal interval in North America and Eurasia, (2) Landsat-derived Canadian proportion of forest cover for Canada, and (3) with canopy cover estimates extracted from airborne profiling lidar data that transected 1238 of the TCC polygons. The adjusted TCC from MODIS VCF shows, on average, less than 12% TCC for all but one regional zone at the intersection with independently delineated tree lines. Adjusted values track closely with Canadian proportion of forest cover data in areas of low tree cover. A comparison of the 1238 TCC polygons with profiling lidar measurements yielded an overall accuracy of 67.7%.

  12. Water uptake of Alaskan tundra evergreens during the winter-spring transition.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moser, Jonathan G; Oberbauer, Steven F; Sternberg, Leonel da S L; Ellsworth, Patrick Z; Starr, Gregory; Mortazavi, Behzad; Olivas, Paulo C

    2016-02-01

    The cold season in the Arctic extends over 8 to 9 mo, yet little is known about vascular plant physiology during this period. Evergreen species photosynthesize under the snow, implying that they are exchanging water with the atmosphere. However, liquid water available for plant uptake may be limited at this time. The study objective was to determine whether evergreen plants are actively taking up water while under snow and/or immediately following snowmelt during spring thaw. In two in situ experiments, one at the plot level and another at the individual species level, (2)H-labeled water was used as a tracer injected beneath the snow, after which plant stems and leaves were tested for the presence of the label. In separate experiments, excised shoots of evergreen species were exposed to (2)H-labeled water for ∼5 s or 60 min and tested for foliar uptake of the label. In both the plot-level and the species-level experiments, some (2)H-labeled water was found in leaves and stems. Additionally, excised individual plant shoots exposed to labeled water for 60 min took up significantly more (2)H-label than shoots exposed ∼5 s. Evergreen tundra plants take up water under snow cover, some via roots, but also likely by foliar uptake. The ability to take up water in the subnivean environment allows evergreen tundra plants to take advantage of mild spring conditions under the snow and replenish carbon lost by winter respiration. © 2016 Botanical Society of America.

  13. Isotopic insights into methane production, oxidation, and emissions in Arctic polygon tundra.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vaughn, Lydia J S; Conrad, Mark E; Bill, Markus; Torn, Margaret S

    2016-10-01

    Arctic wetlands are currently net sources of atmospheric CH4 . Due to their complex biogeochemical controls and high spatial and temporal variability, current net CH4 emissions and gross CH4 processes have been difficult to quantify, and their predicted responses to climate change remain uncertain. We investigated CH4 production, oxidation, and surface emissions in Arctic polygon tundra, across a wet-to-dry permafrost degradation gradient from low-centered (intact) to flat- and high-centered (degraded) polygons. From 3 microtopographic positions (polygon centers, rims, and troughs) along the permafrost degradation gradient, we measured surface CH4 and CO2 fluxes, concentrations and stable isotope compositions of CH4 and DIC at three depths in the soil, and soil moisture and temperature. More degraded sites had lower CH4 emissions, a different primary methanogenic pathway, and greater CH4 oxidation than did intact permafrost sites, to a greater degree than soil moisture or temperature could explain. Surface CH4 flux decreased from 64 nmol m(-2)  s(-1) in intact polygons to 7 nmol m(-2)  s(-1) in degraded polygons, and stable isotope signatures of CH4 and DIC showed that acetate cleavage dominated CH4 production in low-centered polygons, while CO2 reduction was the primary pathway in degraded polygons. We see evidence that differences in water flow and vegetation between intact and degraded polygons contributed to these observations. In contrast to many previous studies, these findings document a mechanism whereby permafrost degradation can lead to local decreases in tundra CH4 emissions. © 2016 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  14. Age-specific survival of tundra swans on the lower Alaska Peninsula

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meixell, Brandt W.; Lindberg, Mark S.; Conn, Paul B.; Dau, Christian P.; Sarvis, John E.; Sowl, Kristine M.

    2013-01-01

    The population of Tundra Swans (Cygnus columbianus columbianus) breeding on the lower Alaska Peninsula represents the southern extremity of the species' range and is uniquely nonmigratory. We used data on recaptures, resightings, and recoveries of neck-collared Tundra Swans on the lower Alaska Peninsula to estimate collar loss, annual apparent survival, and other demographic parameters for the years 1978–1989. Annual collar loss was greater for adult males fitted with either the thinner collar type (0.34) or the thicker collar type (0.15) than for other age/sex classes (thinner: 0.10, thicker: 0.04). The apparent mean probability of survival of adults (0.61) was higher than that of immatures (0.41) and for both age classes varied considerably by year (adult range: 0.44–0.95, immature range: 0.25–0.90). To assess effects of permanent emigration by age and breeding class, we analyzed post hoc the encounter histories of swans known to breed in our study area. The apparent mean survival of known breeders (0.65) was generally higher than that of the entire marked sample but still varied considerably by year (range 0.26–1.00) and indicated that permanent emigration of breeding swans was likely. We suggest that reductions in apparent survival probability were influenced primarily by high and variable rates of permanent emigration and that immigration by swans from elsewhere may be important in sustaining a breeding population at and near Izembek National Wildlife Refuge.

  15. Temporal changes in soil bacterial diversity and humic substances degradation in subarctic tundra soil.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Park, Ha Ju; Chae, Namyi; Sul, Woo Jun; Lee, Bang Yong; Lee, Yoo Kyung; Kim, Dockyu

    2015-04-01

    Humic substances (HS), primarily humic acids (HA) and fulvic acids (FA), are the largest constituent of soil organic matter. In microcosm systems with subarctic HS-rich tundra soil (site AK 1-75; approximately 5.6 °C during the thawing period) from Council, Alaska, the HA content significantly decreased to 48% after a 99-day incubation at 5 °C as part of a biologically mediated process. Accordingly, levels of FA, a putative byproduct of HA degradation, consistently increased to 172% during an identical incubation process. Culture-independent microbial community analysis showed that during the microcosm experiments, the relative abundance of phyla Proteobacteria (bacteria) and Euryarchaeota (archaea) largely increased, indicating their involvement in HS degradation. When the indigenous bacteria in AK 1-75 were enriched in an artificial mineral medium spiked with HA, the changes in relative abundance were most conspicuous in Proteobacteria (from 60.2 to 79.0%), specifically Betaproteobacteria-related bacteria. One hundred twenty-two HA-degrading bacterial strains, primarily from the genera Paenibacillus (phylum Firmicutes) and Pseudomonas (class Gammaproteobacteria), were cultivated from AK 1-75 and nearby sites. Through culture-dependent analysis with these bacterial isolates, we observed increasing HS-degradation rates in parallel with rising temperatures in a range of 0 °C to 20 °C, with the most notable increase occurring at 8 °C compared to 6 °C. Our results indicate that, although microbial-mediated HS degradation occurs at temperature as low as 5 °C in tundra ecosystems, increasing soil temperature caused by global climate change could enhance HS degradation rates. Extending the thawing period could also increase degradation activity, thereby directly affecting nearby microbial communities and rhizosphere environments.

  16. Microbial iron oxidation in the Arctic tundra and its implications for biogeochemical cycling.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Emerson, David; Scott, Jarrod J; Benes, Joshua; Bowden, William B

    2015-12-01

    The role that neutrophilic iron-oxidizing bacteria play in the Arctic tundra is unknown. This study surveyed chemosynthetic iron-oxidizing communities at the North Slope of Alaska near Toolik Field Station (TFS) at Toolik Lake (lat 68.63, long -149.60). Microbial iron mats were common in submerged habitats with stationary or slowly flowing water, and their greatest areal extent is in coating plant stems and sediments in wet sedge meadows. Some Fe-oxidizing bacteria (FeOB) produce easily recognized sheath or stalk morphotypes that were present and dominant in all the mats we observed. The cool water temperatures (9 to 11°C) and reduced pH (5.0 to 6.6) at all sites kinetically favor microbial iron oxidation. A microbial survey of five sites based on 16S rRNA genes found a predominance of Proteobacteria, with Betaproteobacteria and members of the family Comamonadaceae being the most prevalent operational taxonomic units (OTUs). In relative abundance, clades of lithotrophic FeOB composed 5 to 10% of the communities. OTUs related to cyanobacteria and chloroplasts accounted for 3 to 25% of the communities. Oxygen profiles showed evidence for oxygenic photosynthesis at the surface of some mats, indicating the coexistence of photosynthetic and FeOB populations. The relative abundance of OTUs belonging to putative Fe-reducing bacteria (FeRB) averaged around 11% in the sampled iron mats. Mats incubated anaerobically with 10 mM acetate rapidly initiated Fe reduction, indicating that active iron cycling is likely. The prevalence of iron mats on the tundra might impact the carbon cycle through lithoautotrophic chemosynthesis, anaerobic respiration of organic carbon coupled to iron reduction, and the suppression of methanogenesis, and it potentially influences phosphorus dynamics through the adsorption of phosphorus to iron oxides. Copyright © 2015, American Society for Microbiology. All Rights Reserved.

  17. Shrub encroachment in Arctic tundra: Betula nana effects on above- and belowground litter decomposition.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McLaren, Jennie R; Buckeridge, Kate M; van de Weg, Martine J; Shaver, Gaius R; Schimel, Joshua P; Gough, Laura

    2017-05-01

    Rapid arctic vegetation change as a result of global warming includes an increase in the cover and biomass of deciduous shrubs. Increases in shrub abundance will result in a proportional increase of shrub litter in the litter community, potentially affecting carbon turnover rates in arctic ecosystems. We investigated the effects of leaf and root litter of a deciduous shrub, Betula nana, on decomposition, by examining species-specific decomposition patterns, as well as effects of Betula litter on the decomposition of other species. We conducted a 2-yr decomposition experiment in moist acidic tundra in northern Alaska, where we decomposed three tundra species (Vaccinium vitis-idaea, Rhododendron palustre, and Eriophorum vaginatum) alone and in combination with Betula litter. Decomposition patterns for leaf and root litter were determined using three different measures of decomposition (mass loss, respiration, extracellular enzyme activity). We report faster decomposition of Betula leaf litter compared to other species, with support for species differences coming from all three measures of decomposition. Mixing effects were less consistent among the measures, with negative mixing effects shown only for mass loss. In contrast, there were few species differences or mixing effects for root decomposition. Overall, we attribute longer-term litter mass loss patterns to patterns created by early decomposition processes in the first winter. We note numerous differences for species patterns between leaf and root decomposition, indicating that conclusions from leaf litter experiments should not be extrapolated to below-ground decomposition. The high decomposition rates of Betula leaf litter aboveground, and relatively similar decomposition rates of multiple species below, suggest a potential for increases in turnover in the fast-decomposing carbon pool of leaves and fine roots as the dominance of deciduous shrubs in the Arctic increases, but this outcome may be tempered by

  18. Arctic biodiversity: Increasing richness accompanies shrinking refugia for a cold-associated tundra fauna

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hope, Andrew; Waltari, Eric; Malaney, Jason L.; Payer, David C.; Cook, J.A.; Talbot, Sandra L.

    2015-01-01

    As ancestral biodiversity responded dynamically to late-Quaternary climate changes, so are extant organisms responding to the warming trajectory of the Anthropocene. Ecological predictive modeling, statistical hypothesis tests, and genetic signatures of demographic change can provide a powerful integrated toolset for investigating these biodiversity responses to climate change, and relative resiliency across different communities. Within the biotic province of Beringia, we analyzed specimen localities and DNA sequences from 28 mammal species associated with boreal forest and Arctic tundra biomes to assess both historical distributional and evolutionary responses and then forecasted future changes based on statistical assessments of past and present trajectories, and quantified distributional and demographic changes in relation to major management regions within the study area. We addressed three sets of hypotheses associated with aspects of methodological, biological, and socio-political importance by asking (1) what is the consistency among implications of predicted changes based on the results of both ecological and evolutionary analyses; (2) what are the ecological and evolutionary implications of climate change considering either total regional diversity or distinct communities associated with major biomes; and (3) are there differences in management implications across regions? Our results indicate increasing Arctic richness through time that highlights a potential state shift across the Arctic landscape. However, within distinct ecological communities, we found a predicted decline in the range and effective population size of tundra species into several discrete refugial areas. Consistency in results based on a combination of both ecological and evolutionary approaches demonstrates increased statistical confidence by applying cross-discipline comparative analyses to conservation of biodiversity, particularly considering variable management regimes that seek

  19. The Contribution of Old Carbon to Respiration from Alaskan Tundra Following Permafrost Thaw

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schuur, E. A.; Vogel, J. G.; Crummer, K. G.; Lee, H.; Sickman, J. O.; Dutta, K.

    2007-12-01

    More than 450 Pg of soil carbon (C) has accumulated in high latitude ecosystems after the retreat of the last major ice sheets. Recent studies suggest that, due to climate warming, these ecosystems may no longer be accumulating C, and in some cases may be losing stored C to the atmosphere. We used radiocarbon measurements of carbon dioxide to detect the age of C respired from tussock tundra near Denali National Park, Alaska. At this tundra site, permafrost has been observed to warm and thaw over the past several decades, causing the ground surface to subside as ice volume in the soil decreased. We established three sites within this area that differed in vegetation and surface topography; both characteristics varied in relation to the degree of permafrost thaw. We made radiocarbon measurements of ecosystem respiration, incubations of soil organic matter, and incubations of above and belowground plant biomass to determine the age and isotopic value of C respired from these sites. Over the study period from 2004 to 2006, ecosystem respiration radiocarbon values averaged from +35‰ to +95‰ in different months across sites. For soil incubations, surface soil radiocarbon was elevated relative both to ecosystem respiration and the current atmospheric radiocarbon value, demonstrating the significant contribution from C fixed over the past years to several decades. The deeper soil, in contrast, had respiration isotope values that averaged below zero, reflecting the significant effect of radioactive decay on the isotope content of deeper soil layers. The plant and soil incubations were combined in a multi- source mixing model to determine probable contributions from these different sources to ecosystem respiration. Deep soil respiration generally averaged between 5-15% of total ecosystem respiration, but reached as high as 40% in some months. When aggregated across the growing season, the two sites undergoing more disturbance from permafrost thaw had on average 2-3 times

  20. Ameloblastic fibroma in an alpine chamois (Rupicapra rupicapra).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Scaglione, F E; Iussich, S; Grande, D; Carpignano, M; Chiappino, L; Sereno, A; Ferroglio, E; Bollo, E

    2015-04-01

    Spontaneous odontogenic tumors are neoplasms characterized by a mixed odontogenic ectomesenchymal and odontogenic epithelial origin; they are rare in both humans and animals. A 3-year-old male Alpine Chamois (Rupicapra rupicapra) was found dead in north-west Italy, and was referred for the necropsy to the Department of Veterinary Sciences of the University of Turin (Italy). At the external examination a 10 × 8 cm, exophytic, red-pink, smooth, firm and ulcerated mass was observed on the inferior lip. Histologically the tumor was characterized by spindle shaped cells arranged in bundles in an abundant hyaline matrix. Multifocal and rare chords of odontogenic epithelium mixed with rare melanocytes that penetrate the neoplasia were visible. Immunohistochemistry showed a clear cytokeratin positivity of epithelial clusters. Macroscopical, histological and immunohistochemical findings were consistent with a diagnosis of locally infiltrative ameloblastic fibroma. To our best knowledge, this is the first report of this tumor in a wild ungulate and in Alpine Chamois. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  1. Impact of the Chernobyl fallout in the alpine environment

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Gastberger, M.; Lettner, H.; Hofmann, W.; Pohl-Rueling, J.; Steinhaeusler, N.F.; Hubmer, A.

    1997-01-01

    In Austria the alpine regions received the highest fallout contamination, showing a very inhomogeneous spatial distribution of the surface deposition. About half of the national territory is within alpine regions, which are very different in times of underlying bedrock and soil characteristic. Since this is the controlling factor for the radionuclide uptake of the vegetation, it is crucial for the long-term effects of radioactive fallout. Different studies have been carried out in the Province of Salzburg (area: 7154 km 2 ) over the past ten years, addressing a broad spectrum of issues, such as: measurement of the spatial distribution of the fallout, research in monitoring techniques comparison of theoretical calculations with actual in vivo-measurements of nuclide uptake by man for different population groups, and the investigation of biological effects. When considering the radioecological effects of the Chernobyl fallout a distinction has to be made between the short-term effects immediately following the fallout and the long-term effects. While the short term effects are controlled by the physical characteristics of the fallout, similar for the whole region, the long-term effects are more determined by the radioecological properties of the environments affected which are much more variable than the fallout-characteristics

  2. Estimation of Alpine Skier Posture Using Machine Learning Techniques

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nemec, Bojan; Petrič, Tadej; Babič, Jan; Supej, Matej

    2014-01-01

    High precision Global Navigation Satellite System (GNSS) measurements are becoming more and more popular in alpine skiing due to the relatively undemanding setup and excellent performance. However, GNSS provides only single-point measurements that are defined with the antenna placed typically behind the skier's neck. A key issue is how to estimate other more relevant parameters of the skier's body, like the center of mass (COM) and ski trajectories. Previously, these parameters were estimated by modeling the skier's body with an inverted-pendulum model that oversimplified the skier's body. In this study, we propose two machine learning methods that overcome this shortcoming and estimate COM and skis trajectories based on a more faithful approximation of the skier's body with nine degrees-of-freedom. The first method utilizes a well-established approach of artificial neural networks, while the second method is based on a state-of-the-art statistical generalization method. Both methods were evaluated using the reference measurements obtained on a typical giant slalom course and compared with the inverted-pendulum method. Our results outperform the results of commonly used inverted-pendulum methods and demonstrate the applicability of machine learning techniques in biomechanical measurements of alpine skiing. PMID:25313492

  3. Estimation of alpine skier posture using machine learning techniques.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nemec, Bojan; Petrič, Tadej; Babič, Jan; Supej, Matej

    2014-10-13

    High precision Global Navigation Satellite System (GNSS) measurements are becoming more and more popular in alpine skiing due to the relatively undemanding setup and excellent performance. However, GNSS provides only single-point measurements that are defined with the antenna placed typically behind the skier's neck. A key issue is how to estimate other more relevant parameters of the skier's body, like the center of mass (COM) and ski trajectories. Previously, these parameters were estimated by modeling the skier's body with an inverted-pendulum model that oversimplified the skier's body. In this study, we propose two machine learning methods that overcome this shortcoming and estimate COM and skis trajectories based on a more faithful approximation of the skier's body with nine degrees-of-freedom. The first method utilizes a well-established approach of artificial neural networks, while the second method is based on a state-of-the-art statistical generalization method. Both methods were evaluated using the reference measurements obtained on a typical giant slalom course and compared with the inverted-pendulum method. Our results outperform the results of commonly used inverted-pendulum methods and demonstrate the applicability of machine learning techniques in biomechanical measurements of alpine skiing.

  4. Erosion of the French Alpine foreland controlled by crustal thickening

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schwartz, Stéphane; Gautheron, Cécile; Audin, Laurence; Nomade, Jérôme; Dumont, Thierry; Barbarand, Jocelyn; Pinna-Jamme, Rosella; van der Beek, Peter

    2017-04-01

    In alpine-type collision belts, deformation of the foreland may occur as a result of forward propagation of thrusting and is generally associated with thin-skinned deformation mobilizing the sedimentary cover in fold-and-thrust belts. Locally, foreland deformation can involve crustal-scale thrusting and produce large-scale exhumation of crystalline basement resulting in significant relief generation. In this study, we investigate the burial and exhumation history of Tertiary flexural basins located in the western Alpine foreland, at the front of the Digne thrust-sheet (SE France), using low-temperature apatite fission-track (AFT) and (U-Th)/He (AHe) thermochronology. Based on the occurrence of partially to totally reset apatite grain ages, we document 3.3 to 4.0 km burial of these basins remnants between 12-6 Ma, related to thin-skinned thrust-sheet emplacement without major relief generation. The onset of exhumation is dated at 6 Ma and is linked to erosion associated with subsequent relief development. This evolution does not appear controlled by major climate changes (Messinian crisis) or by European slab breakoff. Rather, we propose that the erosional history of the Digne thrust-sheet corresponds to basement involvement in foreland deformation, leading to crustal thickening and the incipient formation of a new external crystalline massif. Our study highlights the control of deep-crustal tectonic processes on foreland relief development and its erosional response at mountain fronts.

  5. Estimation of Alpine Skier Posture Using Machine Learning Techniques

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bojan Nemec

    2014-10-01

    Full Text Available High precision Global Navigation Satellite System (GNSS measurements are becoming more and more popular in alpine skiing due to the relatively undemanding setup and excellent performance. However, GNSS provides only single-point measurements that are defined with the antenna placed typically behind the skier’s neck. A key issue is how to estimate other more relevant parameters of the skier’s body, like the center of mass (COM and ski trajectories. Previously, these parameters were estimated by modeling the skier’s body with an inverted-pendulum model that oversimplified the skier’s body. In this study, we propose two machine learning methods that overcome this shortcoming and estimate COM and skis trajectories based on a more faithful approximation of the skier’s body with nine degrees-of-freedom. The first method utilizes a well-established approach of artificial neural networks, while the second method is based on a state-of-the-art statistical generalization method. Both methods were evaluated using the reference measurements obtained on a typical giant slalom course and compared with the inverted-pendulum method. Our results outperform the results of commonly used inverted-pendulum methods and demonstrate the applicability of machine learning techniques in biomechanical measurements of alpine skiing.

  6. Évolution de l’environnement alpin

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Philippe Schoeneich

    2009-03-01

    Full Text Available L’évolution de l’environnement alpin au XXIe siècle sera conditionnée par le changement climatique. Celui-ci pourrait conduire à des climats inconnus à ce jour dans les Alpes, avec comme conséquence une crise environnementale majeure et durable. Face à ces défis, les financements de recherche restent insuffisants pour la recherche appliquée aux milieux de montagne. Les financements nationaux privilégient souvent la recherche polaire au détriment des hautes altitudes, alors que les financements de type Interreg prennent insuffisamment en compte les besoins de recherche fondamentale, préalable nécessaire à l’élaboration de scénarios. Une évolution se dessine depuis deux ou trois ans vers des projets en réseau à l’échelle alpine. Le présent article fait le point sur les principaux enjeux qui attendent la recherche environnementale alpine et sur la capacité des programmes de recherche à répondre aux besoins. La première partie sur les changements climatiques est fondée sur les rapports récents : rapport de synthèse IPCC 2007 (IPCC 2007, rapport IPCC sur l’Europe (Alcamo et al. 2007, rapport de synthèse du programme ClimChAlp (Prudent-Richard et al., 2008. On y trouvera des bibliographies complètes et circonstanciées. La deuxième partie se base sur une analyse des appels d’offres récents ou en cours, et des projets soumis et financés.The way the Alpine environment will evolve in the 21st century depends upon climate change. This could lead to climates never before seen in the Alps, resulting in a major and lasting environmental crisis. In the face of these challenges, funding is still insufficient for specialised research on mountain environments. State funding often prioritises polar research at the expense of high altitude areas, whereas funding schemes from bodies such as Interreg do not sufficiently address the need for fundamental research, which is nevertheless a necessary first step prior to

  7. Project SHARE Sustainable Hydropower in Alpine Rivers Ecosystems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mammoliti Mochet, Andrea

    2010-05-01

    SHARE - Sustainable Hydropower in Alpine Rivers Ecosystems is a running project early approved and co funded by the European regional development fund in the context of the European Territorial Cooperation Alpine Space programme 2007 - 2013: the project is formally ongoing from August 2009 and it will end July 2012. Hydropower is the most important renewable resource for electricity production in alpine areas: it has advantages for the global CO2 balance but creates serious environmental impacts. RES-e Directives require renewable electricity enhance but, at the same time, the Water Framework Directive obliges member States to reach or maintain a water bodies "good" ecological status, intrinsically limiting the hydropower exploitation. Administrators daily face an increasing demand of water abstraction but lack reliable tools to rigorously evaluate their effects on mountain rivers and the social and economical outputs on longer time scale. The project intends to develop, test and promote a decision support system to merge on an unprejudiced base, river ecosystems and hydropower requirements. This approach will be led using existing scientific tools, adjustable to transnational, national and local normative and carried on by permanent panel of administrators and stakeholders. Scientific knowledge related to HP & river management will be "translated" by the communication tools and spent as a concrete added value to build a decision support system. In particular, the Multicriteria Analysis (MCA) will be applied to assess different management alternatives where a single-criterion approach (such as cost-benefit analysis) falls short, especially where environmental, technical, economic and social criteria can't be quantified by monetary values. All the existing monitoring databases will be used and harmonized with new information collected during the Pilot case studies. At the same time, all information collected will be available to end users and actors of related

  8. Comparison of Standard and Newer Balance Tests in Recreational Alpine Skiers and Ski Novices

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vjekoslav Cigrovski

    2017-03-01

    Full Text Available Alpine skiers should physically prepare for skiing due to the specific body movements it requires. As balance is essential for the success of competitive alpine skiers, we investigated its importance during preparation for alpine skiing in recreational skiers. We included 24 male participants; twelve recreational skiers just after 10 days of alpine skiing, and twelve alpine ski novices. All participants were tested with two balance tests (BAL40 and GYKO. Participants of the two groups did not differ significantly in the results of the BAL40 standard balance test. In contrast, we found significant differences in four out of six variables measured with the GYKO test performed on BOSU trainer during the two-feet stand. Participants specifically differed in the variables overall average body tilt (p=0.02, overall average deviation of body tilt (p=0.00, overall medio-lateral average body tilt (p=0.01, and overall medio-lateral average deviation of body tilt (0.00. Average results were lower for participants of the group of recreational skiers than for participants of the novice alpine ski group, suggesting that balance is important for recreational skiers, either as an acquired trait during skiing, or the result of conditioning training in the preparation period for skiing. According to the results, we would advise recreational skiers as well as people planning to be involved in alpine skiing as a new recreational activity to include balance exercises in the preparation period.

  9. Differences in Sensation Seeking Between Alpine Skiers, Snowboarders and Ski Tourers

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Martin Kopp, Mirjam Wolf, Gerhard Ruedl, Martin Burtscher

    2016-03-01

    Full Text Available Despite different injury rates and injury patterns previous personality related research in the field of downhill winter sports did not subdivide between different alpine slope users. In this study, we tried to find out whether the personality trait sensation seeking differs between skiers, snowboarders and ski tourers. In a cross-sectional survey 1185 persons (726 alpine skiers, 321 snowboarders and 138 ski tourers comparable in age and sex were electronically questioned with the sensation seeking scale (SSS-V comprising the four factors thrill and adventure seeking, experiences seeking, disinhibition and boredom susceptibility. Kruskal-Wallis Tests revealed a significantly higher total score of the SSS-V for snowboarders in comparison to alpine skiers and ski tourers (H(2 = 41.5, p < 0.001. Ski tourers and snowboarders scored significantly higher in the dimensions “thrill- and adventure-seeking” and “experience-seeking” than alpine skiers. Furthermore, snowboarders showed higher scores in “disinhibition” related to alpine skiers and ski tourers and “boredom susceptibility” compared to alpine skiers. Data show differences in the personality trait sensation seeking in people practising different winter sports. As snowboarders showed higher SS-scores compared to alpine skiers and ski tourers prevention and information programs might benefit from a selective approach focusing on special characteristics of the respective group.

  10. Geocryological hazards and destructive exogenic geological processes on lines of linear constructions of tundra and forest-tundra zones of Western Siberia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ospennikov, E. N.; Hilimonjuk, V. Z.

    2009-04-01

    Economic development of northern oil-and gas-bearing regions, even by application of shift method, is accompanied by a construction of the linear transport systems including automobile- and railways. Construction of such roads is connected with the risks caused by the whole complex of hazards, defined by the environmental features of the region, including flat surface with strong marshiness, development of a peat, fine-grained and easily eroded friable sedimentations, as well as by complicated geocryological conditions. Geocryological conditions of Western Siberia area are characterized by a rather high heterogeneity. This implies the strong variability of permafrost soils distribution, their thickness and continuity, depths of seasonal thawing and frost penetration, and also intact development of geocryological processes and phenomena. Thermokarst, thermo erosion and thermo-abrasion develop in the natural conditions. These processes are caused by partial degradation of permafrost. A frost heave also occurs during their seasonal or long-term freezing. Failure of an environment, which is always peculiar to construction of the roads, causes reorganization of geocryological systems that is accompanied by occurrence of dangerous geocryological processes, such as technogenic thermokarst (with formation of various negative forms of a relief: from fine subsidence up to small and average sized lakes), frost heave ground (with formation frost mound in height up to 0,5 - 1,5 meters and more), thermal erosion (gullies and ravines with volume of the born material up to several thousand cubic meters). Development of these destructive processes in a road stripes leads to emergencies owing to deformations and destructions of an earthen cloth, and to failure of natural tundra and forest-tundra ecosystems. The methodical approaches based on typification and zoning of the area by its environmental complex have been developed for an estimation of geocryological hazards at linear

  11. Evolutionary diversification of cryophilic Grylloblatta species (Grylloblattodea: Grylloblattidae in alpine habitats of California

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Roderick George K

    2010-06-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Climate in alpine habitats has undergone extreme variation during Pliocene and Pleistocene epochs, resulting in repeated expansion and contraction of alpine glaciers. Many cold-adapted alpine species have responded to these climatic changes with long-distance range shifts. These species typically exhibit shallow genetic differentiation over a large geographical area. In contrast, poorly dispersing organisms often form species complexes within mountain ranges, such as the California endemic ice-crawlers (Grylloblattodea: Grylloblattidae: Grylloblatta. The diversification pattern of poorly dispersing species might provide more information on the localized effects of historical climate change, the importance of particular climatic events, as well as the history of dispersal. Here we use multi-locus genetic data to examine the phylogenetic relationships and geographic pattern of diversification in California Grylloblatta. Results Our analysis reveals a pattern of deep genetic subdivision among geographically isolated populations of Grylloblatta in California. Alpine populations diverged from low elevation populations and subsequently diversified. Using a Bayesian relaxed clock model and both uncalibrated and calibrated measurements of time to most recent common ancestor, we reconstruct the temporal diversification of alpine Grylloblatta populations. Based on calibrated relaxed clock estimates, evolutionary diversification of Grylloblatta occurred during the Pliocene-Pleistocene epochs, with an initial dispersal into California during the Pliocene and species diversification in alpine clades during the middle Pleistocene epoch. Conclusions Grylloblatta species exhibit a high degree of genetic subdivision in California with well defined geographic structure. Distinct glacial refugia can be inferred within the Sierra Nevada, corresponding to major, glaciated drainage basins. Low elevation populations are sister to alpine populations

  12. Net Primary Production and Carbon Stocks for Subarctic Mesic-Dry Tundras with Contrasting Microtopography, Altitude, and Dominant Species

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Campioli, Matteo; Michelsen, Anders; Demey, A

    2009-01-01

    Mesic-dry tundras are widespread in the Arctic but detailed assessments of net primary production (NPP) and ecosystem carbon (C) stocks are lacking. We addressed this lack of knowledge by determining the seasonal dynamics of aboveground vascular NPP, annual NPP, and whole-ecosystem C stocks in five...... mesic-dry tundras in Northern Sweden with contrasting microtopography, altitude, and dominant species. Those measurements were paralleled by the stock assessments of nitrogen (N), the limiting nutrient. The vascular production was determined by harvest or in situ growing units, whereas the nonvascular...... hermaphroditum is more productive than Cassiope tetragona vegetation. Although the large majority of the apical NPP occurred in early-mid season (85%), production of stems and evergreen leaves proceeded until about 2 weeks before senescence. Most of the vascular vegetation was belowground (80%), whereas most...

  13. Radiocesium and 129I along the Russian coast. Preliminary results from th Swedish-Russian tundra ecology expedition

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Josefsson, D.; Holm, E.; Persson, B.R.; Roos, P.; Kilius, L.

    1995-01-01

    During the summer 1994 a joint Swedish-Russian expedition, Tundra Ecology 94, examined the coast of the Siberian tundra. The cruise passed the Barents Sea, the Kara Sea, The Laptev Sea and reached 170 o E in the East Siberian Sea. Most of the projects dealt with land based research which lead to a ship route close to the shore. The sampling was performed both offshore and onshore, but with emphasis on sea water and sediment sampling. At approximately 30 stations water samples were taken both at the surface and in near bottom water for the determination of 134 Cs, 137 Cs, 90 Sr, 129 I and 239,240 P concentrations. At these stations also sediment cores were taken. Some of the results from the expedition are presented in the present paper. 1 fig., 1 tab

  14. Biomechanical factors influencing the performance of elite Alpine ski racers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hébert-Losier, Kim; Supej, Matej; Holmberg, Hans-Christer

    2014-04-01

    Alpine ski racing is a popular international winter sport that is complex and challenging from physical, technical, and tactical perspectives. Despite the vast amount of scientific literature focusing on this sport, including topical reviews on physiology, ski-snow friction, and injuries, no review has yet addressed the biomechanics of elite alpine ski racers and which factors influence performance. In World Cup events, winning margins are often mere fractions of a second and biomechanics may well be a determining factor in podium place finishes. The aim of this paper was to systematically review the scientific literature to identify the biomechanical factors that influence the performance of elite alpine ski racers, with an emphasis on slalom, giant slalom, super-G, and downhill events. Four electronic databases were searched using relevant medical subject headings and key words, with an additional manual search of reference lists, relevant journals, and key authors in the field. Articles were included if they addressed human biomechanics, elite alpine skiing, and performance. Only original research articles published in peer-reviewed journals and in the English language were reviewed. Articles that focused on skiing disciplines other than the four of primary interest were excluded (e.g., mogul, ski-cross and freestyle skiing). The articles subsequently included for review were quality assessed using a modified version of a validated quality assessment checklist. Data on the study population, design, location, and findings relating biomechanics to performance in alpine ski racers were extracted from each article using a standard data extraction form. A total of 12 articles met the inclusion criteria, were reviewed, and scored an average of 69 ± 13% (range 40-89%) upon quality assessment. Five of the studies focused on giant slalom, four on slalom, and three on downhill disciplines, although these latter three articles were also relevant to super-G events

  15. Disentangling the mechanisms of the coupling between sea ice and tundra productivity: cold air advection vs. arctic amplification.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Macias-Fauria, M.; Karlsen, S. R.; Forbes, B. C.

    2016-12-01

    Changes in arctic terrestrial productivity have been associated with the decline in sea ice extent, concentration, and volume observed at a pan-Arctic scale during the last decades, on the basis that most tundra ecosystems lay close to the sea. However the mechanisms for this coupling remain elusive, and despite overall trend agreements between different components of the Arctic system, no clear hypothesis has successfully explained the heterogeneous spatial and temporal patterns of sea ice and tundra productivity. Here we propose two mechanisms through which sea ice might influence tundra productivity: (1) by advecting cold air from sea ice to the adjacent land during the growing season (cold air advection, local-to-regional control); (2) via changes in the regional climate linked to the snow-ice albedo feedbacks (arctic amplification, regional-to-pan-Arctic controls). We used 8-day Normalised Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI MODIS) and concurrent sea ice concentration data (Norwegian Sea Ice Service) to test the relative influence of cold air advection vs. arctic amplification over the Svalbard Archipelago (period 2000-2014). Singular Value Decomposition (SVD) analyses suggest that cold air advection affects tundra productivity in regions/periods where/when sea ice is close to the adjacent land during the growing season, whereas a more regional signal appears when sea ice is distant ( >100km) from the coast. Further analyses were performed using the same approach over the pan-Arctic region using bi-weekly NDVI (GIMMS-NDVI3g) and sea ice extent (NASA/JAXA dataset; period 1981-2015). We interpret that cold air advection locally causes temperatures in the adjacent land to drop ("true coupling"), whereas in the arctic amplification scenario both NDVI and regional sea ice concentration are collinearly related to warmer, regional-to-pan-Arctic temperatures. Our results offer a mechanism that successfully explains NDVI/sea ice coupling and its heterogeneous spatial and

  16. Warming of subarctic tundra increases emissions of all three important greenhouse gases - carbon dioxide, methane, and nitrous oxide.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Voigt, Carolina; Lamprecht, Richard E; Marushchak, Maija E; Lind, Saara E; Novakovskiy, Alexander; Aurela, Mika; Martikainen, Pertti J; Biasi, Christina

    2017-08-01

    Rapidly rising temperatures in the Arctic might cause a greater release of greenhouse gases (GHGs) to the atmosphere. To study the effect of warming on GHG dynamics, we deployed open-top chambers in a subarctic tundra site in Northeast European Russia. We determined carbon dioxide (CO 2 ), methane (CH 4 ), and nitrous oxide (N 2 O) fluxes as well as the concentration of those gases, inorganic nitrogen (N) and dissolved organic carbon (DOC) along the soil profile. Studied tundra surfaces ranged from mineral to organic soils and from vegetated to unvegetated areas. As a result of air warming, the seasonal GHG budget of the vegetated tundra surfaces shifted from a GHG sink of -300 to -198 g CO 2 -eq m -2 to a source of 105 to 144 g CO 2 -eq m -2 . At bare peat surfaces, we observed increased release of all three GHGs. While the positive warming response was dominated by CO 2 , we provide here the first in situ evidence of increasing N 2 O emissions from tundra soils with warming. Warming promoted N 2 O release not only from bare peat, previously identified as a strong N 2 O source, but also from the abundant, vegetated peat surfaces that do not emit N 2 O under present climate. At these surfaces, elevated temperatures had an adverse effect on plant growth, resulting in lower plant N uptake and, consequently, better N availability for soil microbes. Although the warming was limited to the soil surface and did not alter thaw depth, it increased concentrations of DOC, CO 2, and CH 4 in the soil down to the permafrost table. This can be attributed to downward DOC leaching, fueling microbial activity at depth. Taken together, our results emphasize the tight linkages between plant and soil processes, and different soil layers, which need to be taken into account when predicting the climate change feedback of the Arctic. © 2016 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  17. Water chemistry of tundra lakes in the periglacial zone of the Bellsund Fiord (Svalbard) in the summer of 2013.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Szumińska, Danuta; Szopińska, Małgorzata; Lehmann-Konera, Sara; Franczak, Łukasz; Kociuba, Waldemar; Chmiel, Stanisław; Kalinowski, Paweł; Polkowska, Żaneta

    2018-05-15

    Climate changes observed in the Arctic (e.g. permafrost degradation, glacier retreat) may have significant influence on sensitive polar wetlands. The main objectives of this paper are defining chemical features of water within six small arctic lakes located in Bellsund (Svalbard) in the area of continuous permafrost occurrence. The unique environmental conditions of the study area offer an opportunity to observe phenomena influencing water chemistry, such as: chemical weathering, permafrost thawing, marine aerosols, atmospheric deposition and biological inputs. In the water samples collected during the summer 2013, detailed tundra lake water chemistry characteristics regarding ions, trace elements, pH and specific electrolytic conductivity (SEC 25 ) analysis were determined. Moreover, water chemistry of the studied lakes was compared to the water samples from the Tyvjobekken Creek and precipitation water samples. As a final step of data analysis, Principal Component Analysis (PCA) was performed. Detailed chemical analysis allowed us to conclude what follows: (1) Ca 2+ , Mg 2+ , SO 4 2- , Sr are of geogenic origin, (2) NO 3 - present in tundra lakes and the Tyvjobekken Creek water samples (ranging from 0.31 to 1.69mgL - 1 and from 0.25 to 1.58mgL - 1 respectively) may be of mixed origin, i.e. from biological processes and permafrost thawing, (3) high contribution of non-sea-salt SO 4 2- >80% in majority of studied samples indicate considerable inflow of sulphate-rich air to the study area, (4) high content of chlorides in tundra lakes (range: 25.6-32.0% meqL - 1 ) indicates marine aerosol influence, (5) PCA result shows that atmospheric transport may constitute a source of Mn, Co, Ni, Cu, Ga, Ba and Cd. However, further detailed inter-season and multi-seasonal study of tundra lakes in the Arctic are recommended. Especially in terms of detailed differentiation of sources influence (atmospheric transport vs. permafrost degradation). Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All

  18. Simulating the effects of soil organic nitrogen and grazing on arctic tundra vegetation dynamics on the Yamal Peninsula, Russia

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Yu Qin; Epstein, Howard; Walker, Donald

    2009-01-01

    Sustainability of tundra vegetation under changing climate on the Yamal Peninsula, northwestern Siberia, home to the world's largest area of reindeer husbandry, is of crucial importance to the local native community. An integrated investigation is needed for better understanding of the effects of soils, climate change and grazing on tundra vegetation in the Yamal region. In this study we applied a nutrient-based plant community model-ArcVeg-to evaluate how two factors (soil organic nitrogen (SON) levels and grazing) interact to affect tundra responses to climate warming across a latitudinal climatic gradient on the Yamal Peninsula. Model simulations were driven by field-collected soil data and expected grazing patterns along the Yamal Arctic Transect (YAT), within bioclimate subzones C (high arctic), D (northern low arctic) and E (southern low arctic). Plant biomass and NPP (net primary productivity) were significantly increased with warmer bioclimate subzones, greater soil nutrient levels and temporal climate warming, while they declined with higher grazing frequency. Temporal climate warming of 2 deg. C caused an increase of 665 g m -2 in total biomass at the high SON site in subzone E, but only 298 g m -2 at the low SON site. When grazing frequency was also increased, total biomass increased by only 369 g m -2 at the high SON site in contrast to 184 g m -2 at the low SON site in subzone E. Our results suggest that high SON can support greater plant biomass and plant responses to climate warming, while low SON and grazing may limit plant response to climate change. In addition to the first order factors (SON, bioclimate subzones, grazing and temporal climate warming), interactions among these significantly affect plant biomass and productivity in the arctic tundra and should not be ignored in regional scale studies.

  19. Effects of Unsaturated Microtopography on Nitrate Concentrations in Tundra Ecosystems: Examples from Polygonal Terrain and Degraded Peat Plateaus

    Science.gov (United States)

    Heikoop, J. M.; Arendt, C. A.; Newman, B. D.; Charsley-Groffman, L.; Perkins, G.; Wilson, C. J.; Wullschleger, S.

    2017-12-01

    Under the auspices of the Next Generation Ecosystem Experiment - Arctic, we have been studying hydrogeochemical signals in Alaskan tundra ecosystems underlain by continuous permafrost (Barrow Environmental Observatory (BEO)) and discontinuous permafrost (Seward Peninsula). The Barrow site comprises largely saturated tundra associated with the low gradient Arctic Coastal Plain. Polygonal microtopography, however, can result in slightly raised areas that are unsaturated. In these areas we have previously demonstrated production and accumulation of nitrate, which, based on nitrate isotopic analysis, derives from microbial degradation. Our Seward Peninsula site is located in a much steeper and generally well-drained watershed. In lower-gradient areas at the top and bottom of the watershed, however, the tundra is generally saturated, likely because of the presence of underlying discontinuous permafrost inhibiting infiltration. These settings also contain microtopographic features, though in the form of degraded peat plateaus surrounded by wet graminoid sag ponds. Despite being very different microtopographic features in a very different setting with distinct vegetation, qualitatively similar nitrate accumulation patterns as seen in polygonal terrain were observed. The highest nitrate pore water concentration observed in an unsaturated peat plateau was approximately 5 mg/L, whereas subsurface pore water concentrations in surrounding sag ponds were generally below the limit of detection. Nitrate isotopes indicate this nitrate results from microbial mineralization and nitrification based on comparison to the nitrate isotopic composition of reduced nitrogen sources in the environment and the oxygen isotope composition of site pore water. Nitrate concentrations were most similar to those found in low-center polygon rims and flat-centered polygon centers at the BEO, but were significantly lower than the maximum concentrations seen in the highest and driest polygonal features

  20. Contrasting above- and belowground organic matter decomposition and carbon and nitrogen dynamics in response to warming in High Arctic tundra.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blok, Daan; Faucherre, Samuel; Banyasz, Imre; Rinnan, Riikka; Michelsen, Anders; Elberling, Bo

    2017-12-13

    Tundra regions are projected to warm rapidly during the coming decades. The tundra biome holds the largest terrestrial carbon pool, largely contained in frozen permafrost soils. With warming, these permafrost soils may thaw and become available for microbial decomposition, potentially providing a positive feedback to global warming. Warming may directly stimulate microbial metabolism but may also indirectly stimulate organic matter turnover through increased plant productivity by soil priming from root exudates and accelerated litter turnover rates. Here, we assess the impacts of experimental warming on turnover rates of leaf litter, active layer soil and thawed permafrost sediment in two high-arctic tundra heath sites in NE-Greenland, either dominated by evergreen or deciduous shrubs. We incubated shrub leaf litter on the surface of control and warmed plots for 1 and 2 years. Active layer soil was collected from the plots to assess the effects of 8 years of field warming on soil carbon stocks. Finally, we incubated open cores filled with newly thawed permafrost soil for 2 years in the active layer of the same plots. After field incubation, we measured basal respiration rates of recovered thawed permafrost cores in the lab. Warming significantly reduced litter mass loss by 26% after 1 year incubation, but differences in litter mass loss among treatments disappeared after 2 years incubation. Warming also reduced litter nitrogen mineralization and decreased the litter carbon to nitrogen ratio. Active layer soil carbon stocks were reduced 15% by warming, while soil dissolved nitrogen was reduced by half in warmed plots. Warming had a positive legacy effect on carbon turnover rates in thawed permafrost cores, with 10% higher respiration rates measured in cores from warmed plots. These results demonstrate that warming may have contrasting effects on above- and belowground tundra carbon turnover, possibly governed by microbial resource availability. © 2017 John

  1. Alpine Windharvest: development of information base regarding potentials and the necessary technical, legal and socio-economic conditions for expanding wind energy in the Alpine Space - Alpine Space wind map - Modeling approach

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Schaffner, B.; Remund, J. [Meteotest, Berne (Switzerland)

    2005-07-01

    This report presents describes the development work carried out by the Swiss meteorology specialists of the company METEOTEST as part of a project carried out together with the Swiss wind-energy organisation 'Suisse Eole'. The framework for the project is the EU Interreg IIIB Alpine Space Programme, a European Community Initiative Programme funded by the European Regional Development Fund. The project investigated the use of digital relief-analysis. The series of reports describes the development and use of a basic information system to aid the investigation of the technical, legal and socio-economical conditions for the use of wind energy in the alpine area. This report discusses two modelling approaches investigated for use in the definition of a wind map for the alpine area. The method chosen and its application are discussed. The various sources of information for input to the model are listed and discussed.

  2. Temperature signal in suspended sediment export from an Alpine catchment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Costa, Anna; Molnar, Peter; Stutenbecker, Laura; Bakker, Maarten; Silva, Tiago A.; Schlunegger, Fritz; Lane, Stuart N.; Loizeau, Jean-Luc; Girardclos, Stéphanie

    2018-01-01

    Suspended sediment export from large Alpine catchments ( > 1000 km2) over decadal timescales is sensitive to a number of factors, including long-term variations in climate, the activation-deactivation of different sediment sources (proglacial areas, hillslopes, etc.), transport through the fluvial system, and potential anthropogenic impacts on the sediment flux (e.g. through impoundments and flow regulation). Here, we report on a marked increase in suspended sediment concentrations observed near the outlet of the upper Rhône River Basin in the mid-1980s. This increase coincides with a statistically significant step-like increase in basin-wide mean air temperature. We explore the possible explanations of the suspended sediment rise in terms of changes in water discharge (transport capacity), and the activation of different potential sources of fine sediment (sediment supply) in the catchment by hydroclimatic forcing. Time series of precipitation and temperature-driven snowmelt, snow cover, and ice melt simulated with a spatially distributed degree-day model, together with erosive rainfall on snow-free surfaces, are tested to explore possible reasons for the rise in suspended sediment concentration. We show that the abrupt change in air temperature reduced snow cover and the contribution of snowmelt, and enhanced ice melt. The results of statistical tests show that the onset of increased ice melt was likely to play a dominant role in the suspended sediment concentration rise in the mid-1980s. Temperature-driven enhanced melting of glaciers, which cover about 10 % of the catchment surface, can increase suspended sediment yields through an increased contribution of sediment-rich glacial meltwater, increased sediment availability due to glacier recession, and increased runoff from sediment-rich proglacial areas. The reduced extent and duration of snow cover in the catchment are also potential contributors to the rise in suspended sediment concentration through

  3. Characterising hydrological behaviour of springs draining different alpine formations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Volze, N.; Smoorenburg, M.; Kienzler, P.; Naef, F.; Rabenstein, L.; Kinzelbach, W.

    2012-04-01

    The project SACflood (Susceptibility of alpine catchment flood runoff to changes in meteorological boundary conditions) concentrates on alpine areas and wants to identify catchments that show a damped reaction to runoff but may react unexpectedly strong to increased precipitation as observed in 2005 in the Schächen. The catchment showed a delayed and damped behaviour for smaller precipitation events but reacted with strongly increased discharge when a threshold amount of rainfall was reached, causing a flood with high damages. This is attributed to the complex interaction of storage and drainage mechanisms that are not yet well enough understood. Typical alpine geomorphic formations are identified that are likely to be associated with large storages which could considerably delay runoff reaction but still contribute to flow within a timescale relevant for flood formation. From these geomorphic formations deep drainage is measured as outflow from several springs. In addition natural tracers are measured in the springs. On a steep hill slope, associated to one of the observed springs, ground water levels are observed. Geoelectric profiles were recorded to depict the structure of the underground. Discharge measurements from the springs show remarkable differences between the sites. After long dry periods certain springs do not react to rainfall immediately but need considerable amounts of rain to increase discharge. Even steep slopes as well as large talus areas can substantially delay runoff. Observations of the groundwater levels reveal an unexpected picture of the underground. The water table is not as often assumed above the bedrock but at a depth of several meters within the highly fractured bedrock material. This can result in a much higher storage capacity of such slopes despite the steepness of the surface. On the basis of the results from field work conceptual ideas are developed. The influence of parameters such as the depth of the unsaturated zone and the

  4. Crossing thresholds: Analysis of hazardous tipping points in alpine catchments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lutzmann, Silke; Sass, Oliver

    2016-04-01

    Steep mountain channels or torrents in small alpine catchments are characterized by high geomorphic activity with sediment dynamics being inherently nonlinear and threshold-mediated. Localized, high intensity rainstorms can drive torrential systems past a tipping point resulting in a sudden onset of hazardous events like (flash-) flooding, heavy bedload transport or debris flows. Such responses exhibit an abrupt switch in the fluvial system's mode (e.g. transport / supply limited). Changes in functional connectivity may persist beyond the tipping point. Torrential hazards cause costly damage in the densely populated Alpine Region. Thus, there is a rising interest in potential effects of climate change on torrential sediment dynamics. Understanding critical conditions close to tipping points is important to reduce uncertainty in predicting sediment fluxes. In this study we aim at (i) establishing threshold precipitation characteristics for the Eastern Alps of Austria. Precipitation is hypothesized to be the main forcing factor of torrential events. (ii) How do thresholds vary in space and time? (iii) The effect of external triggers is strongly mediated by the internal disposition of catchments to respond. Which internal conditions are critical for susceptibility? (iv) Is there a change in magnitude or frequency in the recent past and what can be expected for the future? The 71 km2 catchment of the river Schöttlbach in the East Alpine Region of Styria (Austria) is monitored since a heavy precipitation event resulted in a catastrophic flood in July 2011. Sediment mobilization from slopes as well as within-channel storage and bedload transport are regularly measured using photogrammetric methods and sediment impact sensors. Thus, detailed knowledge exists on magnitude and spatial propagation of sediment waves through the catchment. The associated hydro-meteorological (pre-) conditions can be inferred from a dense station network. Changing bedload transport rates and

  5. Cesium-137 inventories in Alaskan Tundra, lake and marine sediments: An indicator of recent organic material transport?

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Grebmeier, J.M.; Cooper, L.W.; Larsen, I.L.; Solis, C.; Olsen, C.R.

    1993-01-01

    Tundra sampling was accomplished in 1989--1990 at Imnavait Creek, Alaska (68 degree 37' N, 149 degree 17' W). Inventories of 137 Cs (102--162 mBq/cm 2 ) are close to expectations, based upon measured atmospheric deposition for this latitude. Accumulated inventories of 137 Cs in tundra decrease by up to 50% along a transect to Prudhoe Bay (70 degree 13' N, 148 degree 30' W). Atmospheric deposition of 137 Cs decreased with latitude in the Arctic, but declines in deposition would have been relatively small over this distance (200 km). This suggests a recent loss of 137 Cs and possibly associated organic matter from tundra over the northern portions of the transect between Imnavait Creek and Prudhoe Bay. Sediments from Toolik Lake (68 degree 38' N, 149 degree 38' W) showed widely varying 137 Cs inventories, from a low of 22 mBq/cm 2 away from the lake inlet, to a high between 140 to >200 mBq/cm 2 near the main stream inflow. This was indicative of recent accumulation of cesium and possibly organic material associated with it in arctic lakes, although additional sampling is needed

  6. Diurnal patterns of gas-exchange and metabolic pools in tundra plants during three phases of the arctic growing season.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Patankar, Rajit; Mortazavi, Behzad; Oberbauer, Steven F; Starr, Gregory

    2013-02-01

    Arctic tundra plant communities are subject to a short growing season that is the primary period in which carbon is sequestered for growth and survival. This period is often characterized by 24-h photoperiods for several months a year. To compensate for the short growing season tundra plants may extend their carbon uptake capacity on a diurnal basis, but whether this is true remains unknown. Here, we examined in situ diurnal patterns of physiological activity and foliar metabolites during the early, mid, and late growing season in seven arctic species under light-saturated conditions. We found clear diurnal patterns in photosynthesis and respiration, with midday peaks and midnight lulls indicative of circadian regulation. Diurnal patterns in foliar metabolite concentrations were less distinct between the species and across seasons, suggesting that metabolic pools are likely governed by proximate external factors. This understanding of diurnal physiology will also enhance the parameterization of process-based models, which will aid in better predicting future carbon dynamics for the tundra. This becomes even more critical considering the rapid changes that are occurring circumpolarly that are altering plant community structure, function, and ultimately regional and global carbon budgets.

  7. ‘Blood’ Kinship and Kinship in Christ’s Blood: Nomadic Evangelism in the Nenets Tundra

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tatiana Vagramenko

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available The article addresses a conflicting encounter of two ideologies of kinship, ‘natural’ and ‘religious’, among the newly established Evangelical communities of Nenets in the Polar Ural and Yamal tundra. An ideology of Christian kinship, as an outcome of ‘spiritual re-birth’, was introduced through Nenets religious conversion. The article argues that although the born-again experience often turned against ancestral traditions and Nenets traditional kinship ties, the Nenets kinship system became a platform upon which the conversion mechanism was furthered and determined in the Nenets tundra. The article examines missionary initiatives and Nenets religiosity as kin-based activities, the outcome of which was twofold. On one side, it was the realignment of Nenets traditional kinship networks. On other side, it was the indigenisation of the Christian concept of kinship according to native internal cultural logic. Evangelical communities in the tundra were plunged into the traditional practices of Nenets kinship networks, economic exchanges, and marriage alliances. Through negotiation of traditional Nenets kinship and Christian kinship, converted Nenets developed new imaginaries, new forms of exchanges, and even new forms of mobility.

  8. Divergent hydrological responses to 20th century climate change in shallow tundra ponds, western Hudson Bay Lowlands

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wolfe, Brent B.; Light, Erin M.; Macrae, Merrin L.; Hall, Roland I.; Eichel, Kaleigh; Jasechko, Scott; White, Jerry; Fishback, LeeAnn; Edwards, Thomas W. D.

    2011-12-01

    The hydrological fate of shallow tundra lakes and ponds under conditions of continued warming remains uncertain, but has important implications for wildlife habitat and biogeochemical cycling. Observations of unprecedented pond desiccation, in particular, signify catastrophic loss of aquatic habitat in some Arctic locations. Shallow tundra ponds are a ubiquitous feature in the western Hudson Bay Lowlands (HBL), a region that has undergone intense warming over the past ˜50 years. But it remains unknown how hydrological processes in these ponds have responded. Here, we use cellulose-inferred pond water oxygen isotope records from sediment cores, informed by monitoring of modern pond water isotope compositions during the 2009 and 2010 ice-free seasons, to reconstruct hydrological conditions of four shallow tundra ponds in the western HBL over the past three centuries. Following an interval of relative hydrological stability during the early part of the records, results reveal widely differing hydrological responses to 20th century climate change among the study sites, which is largely dependent on hydrological connectivity of the basins within their respective surrounding peatlands. These findings suggest the 20th century has been characterized by an increasingly dynamic landscape that has variably influenced surface water balance - a factor that is likely to play a key role in determining the future water balance of ponds in this region.

  9. Diurnal patterns of gas-exchange and metabolic pools in tundra plants during three phases of the arctic growing season

    Science.gov (United States)

    Patankar, Rajit; Mortazavi, Behzad; Oberbauer, Steven F; Starr, Gregory

    2013-01-01

    Arctic tundra plant communities are subject to a short growing season that is the primary period in which carbon is sequestered for growth and survival. This period is often characterized by 24-h photoperiods for several months a year. To compensate for the short growing season tundra plants may extend their carbon uptake capacity on a diurnal basis, but whether this is true remains unknown. Here, we examined in situ diurnal patterns of physiological activity and foliar metabolites during the early, mid, and late growing season in seven arctic species under light-saturated conditions. We found clear diurnal patterns in photosynthesis and respiration, with midday peaks and midnight lulls indicative of circadian regulation. Diurnal patterns in foliar metabolite concentrations were less distinct between the species and across seasons, suggesting that metabolic pools are likely governed by proximate external factors. This understanding of diurnal physiology will also enhance the parameterization of process-based models, which will aid in better predicting future carbon dynamics for the tundra. This becomes even more critical considering the rapid changes that are occurring circumpolarly that are altering plant community structure, function, and ultimately regional and global carbon budgets. PMID:23467719

  10. Detours of Trans-alpine Goods Transport by Road

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Flavio V. Ruffini

    2009-03-01

    Full Text Available La question des détours dans le transport transalpin de marchandises sur route figure constamment parmi les priorités des politiques de circulation. La pléthore de critères relatifs à la définition d’un détour a donné naissance à des points de vue divergents au sein des différents pays alpins, rendant le débat d’autant plus complexe. Le présent article propose des critères relatifs à la définition d’un détour ainsi qu’une analyse des détours faits en 2004 par les poids lourds franchissant les Alpes autrichiennes et suisses. L’analyse des détours faits par les poids lourds tend à démontrer qu’ils n’empruntent que rarement les itinéraires les plus courts. Il est intéressant de souligner que très peu de détours sont faits par le col du Saint-Gotthard. Mais suivant le mode de calcul choisi, jusqu’à 740 000 poids lourds sur 1 996 000 font un détour de plus de 60 km par le col de Brenner alors que 18,1 % des véhicules pourraient emprunter un itinéraire plus court en passant par le col du Saint-Gothard et 11,5 % en passant par le col du San Bernardino. En théorie, la déviation vers des itinéraires plus courts des véhicules qui font un détour de plus de 60 km générerait une hausse de la circulation de 38 % au col du Saint-Gothard et de 149 % au col du San Bernardino. Aux cols de Brenner et de Tauern, la circulation diminuerait de 31 % et 16 % respectivement.Detours of trans-alpine freight transport by road are a constant issue on the traffic-policy agenda. A plethora of criteria regarding the definition of detours leads to diverging opinions prevailing in the individual Alpine countries and serves to complicate the discussion even further. This paper presents criteria regarding the definition of traffic detours as well as an analysis of the detours taken by heavy goods vehicles (trucks at the Austrian and Swiss Alpine crossings in the year 2004. The analysis of routes taken goes to show that

  11. Decadal changes of weather types in the alpine region

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Stefanicki, G.; Talkner, P.; Weber, R.O. [Paul Scherrer Inst. (PSI), Villigen (Switzerland)

    1997-06-01

    The annual occurrence of different weather types of Schuepp`s synoptic classification in the Alpine region has changed since the beginning of its recording 1945. The annual frequency (number of days) of convective types has increased and that of advective types has decreased. In parallel the number of long-lasting convective episodes rose and the number of long-lasting advective episodes lessened. Most of the change took place in winter. The frequencies of different weather types and the annual mean of certain meteorological parameters are significantly correlated. Moreover, there is a strong interdependence between the subclass of high pressure types and the North Atlantic Oscillation (NAO) index. (author) 3 figs., 3 refs.

  12. Canalization of freeze tolerance in an alpine grasshopper.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hawes, Timothy C

    2015-10-01

    In the Rock and Pillar Range, New Zealand, the alpine grasshopper, Sigaus australis Hutton, survives equilibrium freezing (EF) all-year round. A comparison of freeze tolerance (FT) in grasshoppers over four austral seasons for a 1 year period finds that: (a) the majority (>70%) of the sample population of grasshoppers survive single freeze-stress throughout the year; (b) exposure to increased freeze stress (multiple freeze-stress events) does not lead to a loss of freeze tolerance; and (c) responses to increased freeze stress reveal seasonal tuning of the FT adaptation to environmental temperatures. The Rock and Pillar sample population provides a clear example of the canalization of the FT adaptation. Seasonal variability in the extent of tolerance of multiple freezing events indicates that physiology is modulated to environmental temperatures by phenotypic plasticity - i.e. the FT adaptation is permanent and adjustable. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  13. National alpine ski team career and education survey.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Salmoni, A W; Rogers, R J

    1988-12-01

    Past and current National Alpine Ski Team (NAST) members were surveyed via a mailed questionnaire regarding their educational progress and attainment, career path, parental education and income, as well as their perceptions as to the effect of skiing on dimensions of personal development. The questionnaire was completed by 86% of the total possible (64 of 74) respondents. Although it was found that educational progress was retarded by involvement in elite level skiing, this conclusion could only be drawn if it was assumed that in skiers between 13 and 21 years of age, each one year change in chronological age is 'normally' accompanied by similar academic progress. It was found that upon retirement from NAST 78% of the skiers continued their formal education, with a high level of success. These results were compared to other studies concerning educational attainment.

  14. The Changing Seasonality of Tundra Nutrient Cycling: Implications for Arctic Ecosystem Function

    Science.gov (United States)

    Weintraub, M. N.; Steltzer, H.; Sullivan, P.; Schimel, J.; Wallenstein, M. D.; Darrouzet-Nardi, A.; Segal, A. D.

    2011-12-01

    Arctic soils contain large stores of carbon (C) and may act as a significant CO2 source with warming. However, the key to understanding tundra soil processes is nitrogen (N), as both plant growth and decomposition are N limited. However, current models of tundra ecosystems assume that while N limits plant growth, C limits decomposition. In addition, N availability is strongly seasonal with relatively high concentrations early in the growing season followed by a pronounced crash. We need to understand the controls on this seasonality to predict responses to climate change, but there are multiple questions that need answers: 1) What causes the seasonality in N? 2) Does microbial activity switch seasonally between C and N limitation? 3) How will a lengthening of the growing season alter overall ecosystem C and N dynamics, as a result of differential extension of the periods before and after the nutrient crash? We hypothesized that microbial activity is C limited early in the growing season, when N availability is higher and root exudate C is unavailable, and that microbial activity becomes N limited in response to plant N uptake and immobilization stimulated by root C. To address these questions we are conducting an accelerated snow-melt X warming field experiment in an Alaskan moist acidic arctic tundra community, and following plant and soil dynamics. Changes in the timing of C and N interactions in the different treatments will enable us to develop an enhanced mechanistic understanding of why the nutrient crash occurs and what the implications are for a lengthening of the arctic growing season. In 2010 we successfully accelerated snowmelt by 4 days. Both earlier snowmelt and warming accelerated early season plant life history events, with a few exceptions. However, responses to the combined treatment could not always be predicted from single factor effects. End of season life history events occurred later in response to the treatments, again with a few exceptions

  15. Comparison of Forest and Tundra Ecosystems Npp with Remote Sensing and Ground Observation Data

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ivanova, Yuliya; Ovchinnikova, Nataly; Kryazhimskiy, Fedor; Maklakov, Kirill

    2012-07-01

    In this study we compared two models for NPP estimate: an estimate based on satellite data and an estimate based on biomass calculation for tundra in the Yamal Peninsula and for forest ecosystems at the West Sayan Mountains. Ground NPP estimates were done for the same study areas which made it possible to identify the most significant parameters, specific to each model, that affect the estimates. The main difficulty in NPP-related studies is that current NPP values in an ecosystem cannot be determined exactly. Estimates, however, are feasible, and they can be made using a variety of methods. Thus, it seems important to see the ways in which these methods are different from each other and to find out how close the resulting values are. If these are dissimilar, the parameters used to make NPP estimates should be compared in order to identify the stage that can give rise to defects and errors, and to under- and overestimates. In this study we estimated NPP using the following two approaches: NPP calculation based on ground-truth measurements, such as calculation of plant phytomass on the studied area based on morphometric measurements (height, stem diameter, crown volume, etc.) and variations in this phytomass over a certain time period. NPP calculation based on satellite remote sensing data, using the data of satellite spectral channels and the data on underlying terrain. In this study we used MODIS/TERRA 8-day composite images, namely MOD09A1 and MOD11A2, with the spatial resolution 500 m and 1 km, respectively, obtained from EOS Data Gateway. Different models evaluate NPP using different physical values, with dissimilar temporal and spatial distributions. The NPP values evaluated by two models differ inherently. We used both of the models: GLO-PEM end MODIS-NPP. The study area is situated in the south of the Krasnoyarskii Krai, at the West Sayan Mountains, where the Institute of Forest SB RAS has been conducting observations since 1960. In this area altitudinal

  16. Statistical Downscaling Of Local Climate In The Alpine Region

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kaspar, Severin; Philipp, Andreas; Jacobeit, Jucundus

    2016-04-01

    The impact of climate change on the alpine region was disproportional strong in the past decades compared to the surrounding areas, which becomes manifest in a higher increase in surface air temperature. Beside the thermal changes also implications for the hydrological cycle may be expected, acting as a very important factor not only for the ecosystem but also for mankind, in the form of water security or considering economical aspects like winter tourism etc. Therefore, in climate impact studies, it is necessary to focus on variables with high influence on the hydrological cycle, for example temperature, precipitation, wind, humidity and radiation. The aim of this study is to build statistical downscaling models which are able to reproduce temperature and precipitation at the mountainous alpine weather stations Zugspitze and Sonnblick and to further project these models into the future to identify possible changes in the behavior of these climate variables and with that in the hydrological cycle. Beside facing a in general very complex terrain in this high elevated regions, we have the advantage of a more direct atmospheric influence on the meteorology of the exposed weather stations from the large scale circulation. Two nonlinear statistical methods are developed to model the station-data series on a daily basis: On the one hand a conditional classification approach was used and on the other hand a model based on artificial neural networks (ANNs) was built. The latter is in focus of this presentation. One of the important steps of developing a new model approach is to find a reliable predictor setup with e.g. informative predictor variables or adequate location and size of the spatial domain. The question is: Can we include synoptic background knowledge to identify an optimal domain for an ANN approach? The yet developed ANN setups and configurations show promising results in downscaling both, temperature (up to 80 % of explained variance) and precipitation (up

  17. Functional traits and root morphology of alpine plants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pohl, Mandy; Stroude, Raphaël; Buttler, Alexandre; Rixen, Christian

    2011-09-01

    Vegetation has long been recognized to protect the soil from erosion. Understanding species differences in root morphology and functional traits is an important step to assess which species and species mixtures may provide erosion control. Furthermore, extending classification of plant functional types towards root traits may be a useful procedure in understanding important root functions. In this study, pioneer data on traits of alpine plant species, i.e. plant height and shoot biomass, root depth, horizontal root spreading, root length, diameter, tensile strength, plant age and root biomass, from a disturbed site in the Swiss Alps are presented. The applicability of three classifications of plant functional types (PFTs), i.e. life form, growth form and root type, was examined for above- and below-ground plant traits. Plant traits differed considerably among species even of the same life form, e.g. in the case of total root length by more than two orders of magnitude. Within the same root diameter, species differed significantly in tensile strength: some species (Geum reptans and Luzula spicata) had roots more than twice as strong as those of other species. Species of different life forms provided different root functions (e.g. root depth and horizontal root spreading) that may be important for soil physical processes. All classifications of PFTs were helpful to categorize plant traits; however, the PFTs according to root type explained total root length far better than the other PFTs. The results of the study illustrate the remarkable differences between root traits of alpine plants, some of which cannot be assessed from simple morphological inspection, e.g. tensile strength. PFT classification based on root traits seems useful to categorize plant traits, even though some patterns are better explained at the individual species level.

  18. Close-Range Sensing Techniques in Alpine Terrain

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rutzinger, M.; Höfle, B.; Lindenbergh, R.; Oude Elberink, S.; Pirotti, F.; Sailer, R.; Scaioni, M.; Stötter, J.; Wujanz, D.

    2016-06-01

    Early career researchers such as PhD students are a main driving force of scientific research and are for a large part responsible for research innovation. They work on specialized topics within focused research groups that have a limited number of members, but might also have limited capacity in terms of lab equipment. This poses a serious challenge for educating such students as it is difficult to group a sufficient number of them to enable efficient knowledge transfer. To overcome this problem, the Innsbruck Summer School of Alpine Research 2015 on close-range sensing techniques in Alpine terrain was organized in Obergurgl, Austria, by an international team from several universities and research centres. Of the applicants a group of 40 early career researchers were selected with interest in about ten types of specialized surveying tools, i.e. laser scanners, a remotely piloted aircraft system, a thermal camera, a backpack mobile mapping system and different grade photogrammetric equipment. During the one-week summer school, students were grouped according to their personal preference to work with one such type of equipment under guidance of an expert lecturer. All students were required to capture and process field data on a mountain-related theme like landslides or rock glaciers. The work on the assignments lasted the whole week but was interspersed with lectures on selected topics by invited experts. The final task of the summer school participants was to present and defend their results to their peers, lecturers and other colleagues in a symposium-like setting. Here we present the framework and content of this summer school which brought together scientists from close-range sensing and environmental and geosciences.

  19. Aerodynamic drag modeling of alpine skiers performing giant slalom turns.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meyer, Frédéric; Le Pelley, David; Borrani, Fabio

    2012-06-01

    Aerodynamic drag plays an important role in performance for athletes practicing sports that involve high-velocity motions. In giant slalom, the skier is continuously changing his/her body posture, and this affects the energy dissipated in aerodynamic drag. It is therefore important to quantify this energy to understand the dynamic behavior of the skier. The aims of this study were to model the aerodynamic drag of alpine skiers in giant slalom simulated conditions and to apply these models in a field experiment to estimate energy dissipated through aerodynamic drag. The aerodynamic characteristics of 15 recreational male and female skiers were measured in a wind tunnel while holding nine different skiing-specific postures. The drag and the frontal area were recorded simultaneously for each posture. Four generalized and two individualized models of the drag coefficient were built, using different sets of parameters. These models were subsequently applied in a field study designed to compare the aerodynamic energy losses between a dynamic and a compact skiing technique. The generalized models estimated aerodynamic drag with an accuracy of between 11.00% and 14.28%, and the individualized models estimated aerodynamic drag with an accuracy between 4.52% and 5.30%. The individualized model used for the field study showed that using a dynamic technique led to 10% more aerodynamic drag energy loss than using a compact technique. The individualized models were capable of discriminating different techniques performed by advanced skiers and seemed more accurate than the generalized models. The models presented here offer a simple yet accurate method to estimate the aerodynamic drag acting upon alpine skiers while rapidly moving through the range of positions typical to turning technique.

  20. Signatures of Late Pleistocene fluvial incision in an Alpine landscape

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leith, Kerry; Fox, Matthew; Moore, Jeffrey R.

    2018-02-01

    Uncertainty regarding the relative efficacy of fluvial and glacial erosion has hindered attempts to quantitatively analyse the Pleistocene evolution of alpine landscapes. Here we show that the morphology of major tributaries of the Rhone River, Switzerland, is consistent with that predicted for a landscape shaped primarily by multiple phases of fluvial incision following a period of intense glacial erosion after the mid-Pleistocene transition (∼0.7 Ma). This is despite major ice sheets reoccupying the region during cold intervals since the mid-Pleistocene. We use high-resolution LiDAR data to identify a series of convex reaches within the long-profiles of 18 tributary channels. We propose these reaches represent knickpoints, which developed as regional uplift raised tributary bedrock channels above the local fluvial baselevel during glacial intervals, and migrated upstream as the fluvial system was re-established during interglacial periods. Using a combination of integral long-profile analysis and stream-power modelling, we find that the locations of ∼80% of knickpoints in our study region are consistent with that predicted for a fluvial origin, while the mean residual error over ∼100 km of modelled channels is just 26.3 m. Breaks in cross-valley profiles project toward the elevation of former end-of-interglacial channel elevations, supporting our model results. Calculated long-term uplift rates are within ∼15% of present-day measurements, while modelled rates of bedrock incision range from ∼1 mm/yr for low gradient reaches between knickpoints to ∼6-10 mm/yr close to retreating knickpoints, typical of observed rates in alpine settings. Together, our results reveal approximately 800 m of regional uplift, river incision, and hillslope erosion in the lower half of each tributary catchment since 0.7 Ma.

  1. Mortality rates of the Alpine Chamois : the influence of snow-meteorological factors

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Jonas, T.; Geiger, F.; Jenny, H.

    2008-01-01

    Especially for animals inhabiting alpine areas, winter environmental conditions can be limiting. Cold temperatures, hampered food availability and natural perils are just three of many potential threats that mountain ungulates face in winter. Understanding their sensitivity to climate variability is

  2. Effect of altitude and season on microbial activity, abundance and community structure in Alpine forest soils

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Siles, J. A.; Cajthaml, Tomáš; Minerbi, S.; Margesin, R.

    2016-01-01

    Roč. 92, č. 3 (2016), fiw008 ISSN 0168-6496 Institutional support: RVO:61388971 Keywords : Alpine soil s * forest * altitude Subject RIV: EE - Microbiology, Virology Impact factor: 3.720, year: 2016

  3. A Retrospective Analysis of Concurrent Pathology in ACL-Reconstructed Knees of Elite Alpine Ski Racers

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jordan, Matthew J; Doyle-Baker, Patricia; Heard, Mark

    2017-01-01

    BACKGROUND: Anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) tear is the most frequent injury in alpine ski racing, and there is a high prevalence of ACL reinjury. Limited data exist on the concurrent pathology with primary ACL tears in elite alpine ski racers and the magnitude of injury progression after primary...... ACL reconstruction (ACLR). PURPOSE: To evaluate (1) the involvement of intra-articular and multiligament pathologies at the time of primary ACLR, (2) the subsequent progression in meniscal/chondral injuries, and (3) the occurrence of ACL reinjury in elite alpine ski racers. STUDY DESIGN: Case series......; Level of evidence, 4. METHODS: Primary ACLR operative reports (n = 28) were obtained for 32 elite alpine ski racers along with the reports of 20 operative procedures that occurred subsequent to primary ACLR. Operative reports were evaluated to identify the presence/location of multiligament injury...

  4. Collembola at three alpine subarctic sites resistant to twenty years of experimental warming

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Alatalo, J.M.; Jägerbrand, A.K.; Čuchta, Peter

    2015-01-01

    Roč. 5, December (2015), s. 18161 ISSN 2045-2322 Institutional support: RVO:60077344 Keywords : Collembola * alpine subarctic sites * experimental warming Subject RIV: EH - Ecology, Behaviour Impact factor: 5.228, year: 2015

  5. The role of competition along productivity gradients: experimental comparison of four alpine communities in the Caucasus.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Onipchenko, V.G.; Blinnikov, M.S.; Gerasimova, M.A.; Volkova, E.V.; Cornelissen, J.H.C.

    2009-01-01

    Question. Competitive and facilitative interactions among plant species in different abiotic environments potentially link productivity, vegetation structure, species composition and functional diversity. We investigated these interactions among four alpine communities along an environmental

  6. EXPLORING THE POTENTIAL OF AERIAL PHOTOGRAMMETRY FOR 3D MODELLING OF HIGH-ALPINE ENVIRONMENTS

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    K. Legat

    2016-03-01

    Based on the very promising results, some general recommendations for aerial photogrammetry processing in high-alpine areas are made to achieve best possible accuracy of the final 3D-, 2.5D- and 2D products.

  7. Ontogenetic niche shifts in three Vaccinium species on a sub-alpine mountain side

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Auffret, Alistair G.; Meineri, Eric; Bruun, Hans Henrik

    2010-01-01

    Background: Climate warming in arctic and alpine regions is expected to result in the altitudinal migration of plant species, but current predictions neglect differences between species' regeneration niche and established niche. Aims: To examine potential recruitment of Vaccinium myrtillus, V...

  8. Alpine treeline and timberline dynamics during the Holocene in the Northern Romanian Carpathians

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anca GEANTĂ

    2014-11-01

    Full Text Available High altitude environments (treeline and alpine communities are particularly sensitive to climate changes, disturbances and land-use changes due to their limited tolerance and adaptability range, habitat fragmentation and habitat restriction. The current and future climate warming is anticipated to shift the tree- and timberlines upwards thus affecting alpine plant communities and causing land-cover change and fragmentation of alpine habitats. An upslope movement of some trees, shrubs and cold adapted alpine herbs as a response to the current climate warming has already been noted in many montane and subalpine regions.Four Holocene peat and lacustrine sediment sequences located between 1670 and 1918 m a.s.l. (Fig.1, in the Rodna Mountains (Northern Romania, Eastern Carpathians are used with the aim to determine: i the sensitivity of high mountain habitats to climate, fire and land use changes; ii tree- and timberline shifts: and iii the influence of landscape topography on trees and shrubs.

  9. Pathogenic Yersinia enterocolitica O:3 isolated from a hunted wild alpine ibex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Joutsen, S; Sarno, E; Fredriksson-Ahomaa, M; Cernela, N; Stephan, R

    2013-03-01

    Occurrence of Yersinia spp. in wild ruminants was studied and the strains were characterized to get more information on the epidemiology of enteropathogenic Yersinia in the wildlife. In total, faecal samples of 77 red deer, 60 chamois, 55 roe deer and 27 alpine ibex were collected during 3 months of the hunting season in 2011. The most frequently identified species was Y. enterocolitica found in 13%, 10%, 4% and 2% of roe deer, red deer, alpine ibex and chamois, respectively. Interestingly, one Y. enterocolitica O:3 strain, isolated from an alpine ibex, carried the important virulence genes located on the virulence plasmid (yadA and virF) and in the chromosome (ail, hreP, myfA and ystA). Most of the Y. enterocolitica strains belonged to biotype 1A of which 14 were ystB positive. Further studies are needed to clarify the importance of alpine ibex as a reservoir of pathogenic Y. enterocolitica.

  10. Changing snow cover in tundra ecosystems tips the Arctic carbon balance

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zona, D.; Hufkens, K.; Gioli, B.; Kalhori, A. A. M.; Oechel, W. C.

    2014-12-01

    The Arctic environment has witnessed important changes due to global warming, resulting in increased surface air temperatures and rain events which both exacerbate snow cover deterioration (Semmens et al, 2013; Rennert et al, 2009; White et al, 2007; Min et al, 2008; Sharp et al, 2013; Schaeffer et al, 2013). Snow cover duration is declining by almost 20% per decade, a far higher rate than model estimates (Derksen and Brown, 2012). Concomitant with increasing temperatures and decreasing snow cover duration, the length of the arctic growing season is reported to have increased by 1.1 - 4.9 days per decade since 1951 (Menzel et al, 2006), and, plant productivity and CO2 uptake from arctic vegetation are strongly influenced by changes in growing season length (Myneni et al., 1997; Schaefer et al., 2005; Euskirchen et al., 2006). Based on more than a decade of eddy flux measurements in Arctic tundra ecosystems across the North slope of Alaska, and remotely sensed snow cover data, we show that earlier snow melt in the spring increase C uptake while an extended snow free period in autumn is associated with a higher C loss. Here we present the impacts of changes in snow cover dynamics between spring and autumn in arctic tundra ecosystems on the carbon dynamics and net C balance of the Alaskan Arctic. ReferencesDerksen, C., Brown R. (2012) Geophys. Res. Lett., doi:10.1029/2012GL053387 Euskirchen, E.S., et al. (2006) Glob. Change Biol., 12, 731-750. Menzel, A., et al. 2006. Glob. Change Biol., 12, 1969-1976. Min SK, Zhang X, Zweirs F (2008) Science 320: 518-520. Rennert K J, Roe G, Putkonen J and Bitz C M (2009) J. Clim. 22 2302-15. Schaefer, K., Denning A.S., Leonard O. (2005) Global Biogeochem. Cycles, 19, GB3017. Schaeffer, S. M., Sharp, E., Schimel, J. P. & Welker, J. M. (2013). Soil- plant N processes in a High Arctic ecosystem, NW Greenland are altered by long-term experimental warming and higher rainfall. Glob. Change Biol., 11, 3529-39. doi: 10.1111/gcb.12318

  11. Tundra fire disturbance homogonizes belowground food web structure, function and dynamics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moore, J. C.; Pressler, Y.; Koltz, A.; Asmus, A.; Simpson, R.

    2016-12-01

    Tundra fires on Alaska's North Slope are on the rise due to increased lightning strikes since 2000. On July 16, 2007 lightning ignited the Anaktuvuk River fire, burning a 40-by-10 mile swath of tundra about 24 miles north of Toolik Field Station. The fire burned 401 square miles, was visible from space, and released more than 2.3 million tons of carbon into the atmosphere. A large amount of the organic layer of the soil was burned, changing the over all composition of the site and exposing deeper soil horizons. Due to fundamental transitions in soil characteristics and vegetation we hypothesized that the belowground food web community would be affected both in terms of biomass and location within the soil profile. Microbial biomass was reduced with burn severity. In the lower organic horizon there was a significant reduction in fungal biomass but we did not observe this effect in the upper organic soil. We did not observe a significant effect of burn severity on individual group biomass within higher trophic levels. Canonical Discriminant Analysis using the biomass estimates of the functional groups in the food webs found that the webs are becoming increasingly homogenized in the severely burned site compared to the moderately burned and unburned sites. The unburned soils differed significantly from soil at both burn sites; the greatest effects on food web structure were at the lower organic depth, whereas. We modeled the effects of the fire on soil organic matter processing rates and energy flow through the three food webs. The model estimated a decrease in C and N mineralization with fire severity, due in large part to the loss of organic material. While the organic horizon at the unburned site had 12 times greater C and N mineralization than the mineral soils, we observed little to no difference in C and N mineralization between the organic and mineral soil horizons in the moderately and severely burned sites. Our results show that the fire significantly altered

  12. Consequences of artic ground squirrels on soil carbon loss from Siberian tundra

    Science.gov (United States)

    Golden, N. A.; Natali, S.; Zimov, N.

    2014-12-01

    A large pool of organic carbon (C) has been accumulating in the Arctic for thousands of years. Much of this C has been frozen in permafrost and unavailable for microbial decomposition. As the climate warms and permafrost thaws, the fate of this large C pool will be driven not only by climatic conditions, but also by ecosystem changes brought about by arctic animal populations. In this project we studied arctic ground squirrels (Spermophilus parryii), which are widely-distributed throughout the Arctic. These social mammals create subterranean burrows that mix soil layers, increase aeration, alter soil moisture and temperature, and redistribute soil nutrients, all of which may impact microbial decomposition. We examined the effects of arctic ground squirrel activity on soil C mineralization in dry heath tundra underlain by continuous permafrost in the Kolyma River watershed in northeast Siberia, Russia. Vegetation cover was greatly reduced on the ground squirrel burrows (80% of ground un-vegetated), compared to undisturbed sites (35% of ground un-vegetated). Soils from ground squirrel burrows were also significantly dryer and warmer. To examine effects of ground squirrel activity on microbial respiration, we conducted an 8-day incubation of soil fromburrows and from adjacent undisturbed tundra. In addition, we assessed the impact of nutrient addition by including treatments with low and high levels of nitrogen addition. Microbial respiration (per gram soil) was three-fold higher in incubated soils from the undisturbed sites compared to soils collected from the burrows. The lower rates of respiration from the disturbed soils may have been a result of lower carbon quality or low soil moisture. High nitrogen addition significantly increased respiration in the undisturbed soils, but not in the disturbed burrow soils, which suggests that microbial respiration in the burrow soils was not primarily limited by nitrogen. These results demonstrate the importance of wildlife

  13. Spectral determination of concentrations of functionally diverse pigments in increasingly complex arctic tundra canopies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boelman, Natalie T; Magney, Troy S; Logan, Barry A; Griffin, Kevin L; Eitel, Jan U H; Greaves, Heather; Prager, Case M; Vierling, Lee A

    2016-09-01

    As the Arctic warms, tundra vegetation is becoming taller and more structurally complex, as tall deciduous shrubs become increasingly dominant. Emerging studies reveal that shrubs exhibit photosynthetic resource partitioning, akin to forests, that may need accounting for in the "big leaf" net ecosystem exchange models. We conducted a lab experiment on sun and shade leaves from S. pulchra shrubs to determine the influence of both constitutive (slowly changing bulk carotenoid and chlorophyll pools) and facultative (rapidly changing xanthophyll cycle) pigment pools on a suite of spectral vegetation indices, to devise a rapid means of estimating within canopy resource partitioning. We found that: (1) the PRI of dark-adapted shade leaves (PRIo) was double that of sun leaves, and that PRIo was sensitive to variation among sun and shade leaves in both xanthophyll cycle pool size (V + A + Z) (r (2) = 0.59) and Chla/b (r (2) = 0.64); (2) A corrected PRI (difference between dark and illuminated leaves, ΔPRI) was more sensitive to variation among sun and shade leaves in changes to the epoxidation state of their xanthophyll cycle pigments (dEPS) (r (2) = 0.78, RMSE = 0.007) compared to the uncorrected PRI of illuminated leaves (PRI) (r (2) = 0.34, RMSE = 0.02); and (3) the SR680 index was correlated with each of (V + A + Z), lutein, bulk carotenoids, (V + A + Z)/(Chla + b), and Chla/b (r (2) range = 0.52-0.69). We suggest that ΔPRI be employed as a proxy for facultative pigment dynamics, and the SR680 for the estimation of constitutive pigment pools. We contribute the first Arctic-specific information on disentangling PRI-pigment relationships, and offer insight into how spectral indices can assess resource partitioning within shrub tundra canopies.

  14. MODIS Tree Cover Validation for the Circumpolar Taiga-Tundra Transition Zone

    Science.gov (United States)

    Montesano, P. M.; Nelson, R.; Sun, G.; Margolis, H.; Kerber, A.; Ranson, K. J.

    2009-01-01

    A validation of the 2005 500m MODIS vegetation continuous fields (VCF) tree cover product in the circumpolar taiga-tundra ecotone was performed using high resolution Quickbird imagery. Assessing the VCF's performance near the northern limits of the boreal forest can help quantify the accuracy of the product within this vegetation transition area. The circumpolar region was divided into longitudinal zones and validation sites were selected in areas of varying tree cover where Quickbird imagery is available in Google Earth. Each site was linked to the corresponding VCF pixel and overlaid with a regular dot grid within the VCF pixel's boundary to estimate percent tree crown cover in the area. Percent tree crown cover was estimated using Quickbird imagery for 396 sites throughout the circumpolar region and related to the VCF's estimates of canopy cover for 2000-2005. Regression results of VCF inter-annual comparisons (2000-2005) and VCF-Quickbird image-interpreted estimates indicate that: (1) Pixel-level, inter-annual comparisons of VCF estimates of percent canopy cover were linearly related (mean R(sup 2) = 0.77) and exhibited an average root mean square error (RMSE) of 10.1 % and an average root mean square difference (RMSD) of 7.3%. (2) A comparison of image-interpreted percent tree crown cover estimates based on dot counts on Quickbird color images by two different interpreters were more variable (R(sup 2) = 0.73, RMSE = 14.8%, RMSD = 18.7%) than VCF inter-annual comparisons. (3) Across the circumpolar boreal region, 2005 VCF-Quickbird comparisons were linearly related, with an R(sup 2) = 0.57, a RMSE = 13.4% and a RMSD = 21.3%, with a tendency to over-estimate areas of low percent tree cover and anomalous VCF results in Scandinavia. The relationship of the VCF estimates and ground reference indicate to potential users that the VCF's tree cover values for individual pixels, particularly those below 20% tree cover, may not be precise enough to monitor 500m pixel

  15. Response of alpine vegetation growth dynamics to snow cover phenology on the Tibetan Plateau

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, X.; Wu, C.

    2017-12-01

    Alpine vegetation plays a crucial role in global energy cycles with snow cover, an essential component of alpine land cover showing high sensitivity to climate change. The Tibetan Plateau (TP) has a typical alpine vegetation ecosystem and is rich of snow resources. With global warming, the snow of the TP has undergone significant changes that will inevitably affect the growth of alpine vegetation, but observed evidence of such interaction is limited. In particular, a comprehensive understanding of the responses of alpine vegetation growth to snow cover variability is still not well characterized on TP region. To investigate this, we calculated three indicators, the start (SOS) and length (LOS) of growing season, and the maximum of normalized difference vegetation index (NDVImax) as proxies of vegetation growth dynamics from the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) data for 2000-2015. Snow cover duration (SCD) and melt (SCM) dates were also extracted during the same time frame from the combination of MODIS and the Interactive Multi-sensor Snow and Ice Mapping System (IMS) data. We found that the snow cover phenology had a strong control on alpine vegetation growth dynamics. Furthermore, the responses of SOS, LOS and NDVImax to snow cover phenology varied among plant functional types, eco-geographical zones, and temperature and precipitation gradients. The alpine steppes showed a much stronger negative correlation between SOS and SCD, and also a more evidently positive relationship between LOS and SCD than other types, indicating a longer SCD would lead to an earlier SOS and longer LOS. Most areas showed positive correlation between SOS and SCM, while a contrary response was also found in the warm but drier areas. Both SCD and SCM showed positive correlations with NDVImax, but the relationship became weaker with the increase of precipitation. Our findings provided strong evidences between vegetation growth and snow cover phenology, and changes in

  16. [Anglo-russian terminological glossary for freestyle skiing, alpine skiing, snowboard and ski jumping

    OpenAIRE

    2014-01-01

    Ce glossaire contient les traductions des mots les plus utiles en russe et en anglais pour les sports du ski acrobatique, ski alpin, snowboard et saut à ski dans le contexte des Jeux Olympiques et Paralympiques d'hiver à Sochi 2014. This glossary contains translations of the most useful words in Russian and English for the sports of freestyle skiing, alpine skiing, snowboard and ski jumping within the context of the 2014 Olympic Winter Games and Paralympic Winter Games in Sochi.

  17. Expert – Non-expert differences in visual behaviour during alpine slalom skiing

    OpenAIRE

    Decroix, Marjolein; Wazir, Mohd Rozilee Wazir Norjali; Zeuwts, Linus; Deconinck, Frederik; Lenoir, Matthieu; Vansteenkiste, Pieter

    2017-01-01

    The aim of this study was to investigate visual behaviour of expert and non-expert ski athletes during an alpine slalom. Fourteen non-experts and five expert slalom skiers completed an alpine slalom course in an indoor ski slope while wearing a head-mounted eye tracking device. Experts completed the slalom clearly faster than non-experts, but no significant difference was found in timing and position of the turn initiation. Although both groups already looked at future obstacles approximately...

  18. Experimental warming increases herbivory by leaf-chewing insects in an alpine plant community

    OpenAIRE

    Birkemoe, Tone; Bergmann, Saskia; Hasle, Toril Elisabet; Klanderud, Kari

    2016-01-01

    Abstract Climate warming is predicted to affect species and trophic interactions worldwide, and alpine ecosystems are expected to be especially sensitive to changes. In this study, we used two ongoing climate warming (open?top chambers) experiments at Finse, southern Norway, to examine whether warming had an effect on herbivory by leaf?chewing insects in an alpine Dryas heath community. We recorded feeding marks on the most common vascular plant species in warmed and control plots at two expe...

  19. Seeds of alpine plants are short lived: implications for long-term conservation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mondoni, Andrea; Probert, Robin J; Rossi, Graziano; Vegini, Emanuele; Hay, Fiona R

    2011-01-01

    Alpine plants are considered one of the groups of species most sensitive to the direct and indirect threats to ecosystems caused by land use and climate change. Collecting and banking seeds of plant species is recognized as an effective tool for providing propagating material to re-establish wild plant populations and for habitat repair. However, seeds from cold wet environments have been shown to be relatively short lived in storage, and therefore successful long-term seed conservation for alpine plants may be difficult. Here, the life spans of 69 seed lots representing 63 related species from alpine and lowland locations from northern Italy are compared. Seeds were placed into experimental storage at 45 °C and 60 % relative humidity (RH) and regularly sampled for germination. The time taken in storage for viability to fall to 50 % (p(50)) was determined using probit analysis and used as a measure of relative seed longevity between seed lots. Across species, p(50) at 45 °C and 60 % RH varied from 4·7 to 95·5 d. Seed lots from alpine populations/species had significantly lower p(50) values compared with those from lowland populations/species; the lowland seed lots showed a slower rate of loss of germinability, higher initial seed viability, or both. Seeds were progressively longer lived with increased temperature and decreased rainfall at the collecting site. Seeds of alpine plants are short lived in storage compared with those from lowland populations/related taxa. The lower resistance to ageing in seeds of alpine plants may arise from low selection pressure for seed resistance to ageing and/or damage incurred during seed development due to the cool wet conditions of the alpine climate. Long-term seed conservation of several alpine species using conventional seed banking methods will be problematic.

  20. Domibacillus tundrae sp. nov., isolated from active layer soil of tussock tundra in Alaska, and emended description of the genus Domibacillus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gyeong, Hye Ryeon; Baek, Kiwoon; Hwang, Chung Yeon; Park, Key Hun; Kim, Hye Min; Lee, Hong Kum; Lee, Yoo Kyung

    2015-10-01

    A novel Gram-stain-positive, spore-forming, aerobic, motile and rod-shaped bacterium designated strain PAMC 80007T was isolated from an active layer soil sample of Council, Alaska. Optimal growth of strain PAMC 80007T was observed at 30 °C, pH 7.0 and in the presence of 2 % (w/v) NaCl. Phylogenetic analysis based on 16S rRNA gene sequence indicated that strain PAMC 80007T belonged to the genus Domibacillus. This strain was closely related to Domibacillus enclensis (98.3 %), Domibacillus robiginosus (98.3 %) and Domibacillus indicus (97.2 %). Genomic DNA G+C content was 43.5 mol% and genomic relatedness analyses based on the average nucleotide identity and the genome-to-genome distance showed that strain PAMC 80007T is clearly distinguished from the closely related species of the genus Domibacillus. The major fatty acids (>5 %) were iso-C15 : 0 (24.7 %), C16 : 1ω11c (16.8 %), anteiso-C15 : 0 (16.5 %), C16 : 0 (15.6 %) and anteiso-C17 : 0 (8.7 %). The major respiratory isoprenoid quinones were menaquinone-6 (MK-6) and menaquinone-7 (MK-7), and the polar lipid profile contained diphosphatidylglycerol, phosphatidylglycerol, phosphoglycolipid, phospholipid and two unidentified lipids. meso-Diaminopimelic acid (type A1γ) was present in the cell-wall peptidoglycan, and the major whole-cell sugar was ribose with a minor quantity of glucose. Results from a polyphasic study suggested that strain PAMC 80007T represents a novel species of the genus Domibacillus for which the name Domibacillus tundrae sp. nov. is proposed. The type strain is PAMC 80007T ( = JCM 30371T = KCTC 33549T = DSM 29572T). An emended description of the genus Domibacillus is also provided.

  1. Energy Consumption and Greenhouse Gas Emissions Resulting From Tourism Travel in an Alpine Setting

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rainer Unger

    2016-11-01

    Full Text Available Tourism—with its social, economic, and ecological dimensions—can be an important driver of sustainable development of alpine communities. Tourism is essential for local people's incomes and livelihoods, but it can also have a major impact on the local environment, landscape aesthetics, and (mainly through tourist transport global climate change. A project currently underway is developing the Austrian mountain municipality of Alpbach into a role model for competitive and sustainable year-round alpine tourism using an integrated and spatially explicit approach that considers energy demand and supply related to housing, infrastructure, and traffic in the settlement and the skiing area. As the first outcome of the project, this article focuses on the development of the Model of Alpine Tourism and Transportation, a geographic information system–based tool for calculating, in detail, energy consumption and greenhouse gas emissions resulting from travel to a single alpine holiday destination. Analysis results show that it is crucial to incorporate both direct and indirect energy use and emissions as each contributes significantly to the climate impact of travel. The study fills a research gap in carbon impact appraisal studies of tourism transport in the context of alpine tourism at the destination level. Our findings will serve as a baseline for the development of comprehensive policies and agendas promoting the transformation toward sustainable alpine tourism.

  2. Is grazing exclusion effective in restoring vegetation in degraded alpine grasslands in Tibet, China?

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    Yan Yan

    2015-06-01

    Full Text Available Overgrazing is considered one of the key disturbance factors that results in alpine grassland degradation in Tibet. Grazing exclusion by fencing has been widely used as an approach to restore degraded grasslands in Tibet since 2004. Is the grazing exclusion management strategy effective for the vegetation restoration of degraded alpine grasslands? Three alpine grassland types were selected in Tibet to investigate the effect of grazing exclusion on plant community structure and biomass. Our results showed that species biodiversity indicators, including the Pielou evenness index, the Shannon–Wiener diversity index, and the Simpson dominance index, did not significantly change under grazing exclusion conditions. In contrast, the total vegetation cover, the mean vegetation height of the community, and the aboveground biomass were significantly higher in the grazing exclusion grasslands than in the free grazed grasslands. These results indicated that grazing exclusion is an effective measure for maintaining community stability and improving aboveground vegetation growth in alpine grasslands. However, the statistical analysis showed that the growing season precipitation (GSP plays a more important role than grazing exclusion in which influence on vegetation in alpine grasslands. In addition, because the results of the present study come from short term (6–8 years grazing exclusion, it is still uncertain whether these improvements will be continuable if grazing exclusion is continuously implemented. Therefore, the assessments of the ecological effects of the grazing exclusion management strategy on degraded alpine grasslands in Tibet still need long term continued research.

  3. Environmental and vegetation controls on the spatial variability of CH4 emission from wet-sedge and tussock tundra ecosystems in the Arctic.

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    McEwing, Katherine Rose; Fisher, James Paul; Zona, Donatella

    Despite multiple studies investigating the environmental controls on CH 4 fluxes from arctic tundra ecosystems, the high spatial variability of CH 4 emissions is not fully understood. This makes the upscaling of CH 4 fluxes from plot to regional scale, particularly challenging. The goal of this study is to refine our knowledge of the spatial variability and controls on CH 4 emission from tundra ecosystems. CH 4 fluxes were measured in four sites across a variety of wet-sedge and tussock tundra ecosystems in Alaska using chambers and a Los Gatos CO 2 and CH 4 gas analyser. All sites were found to be sources of CH 4 , with northern sites (in Barrow) showing similar CH 4 emission rates to the southernmost site (ca. 300 km south, Ivotuk). Gross primary productivity (GPP), water level and soil temperature were the most important environmental controls on CH 4 emission. Greater vascular plant cover was linked with higher CH 4 emission, but this increased emission with increased vascular plant cover was much higher (86 %) in the drier sites, than the wettest sites (30 %), suggesting that transport and/or substrate availability were crucial limiting factors for CH 4 emission in these tundra ecosystems. Overall, this study provides an increased understanding of the fine scale spatial controls on CH 4 flux, in particular the key role that plant cover and GPP play in enhancing CH 4 emissions from tundra soils.

  4. Fungi benefit from two decades of increased nutrient availability in tundra heath soil.

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    Rinnan, Riikka; Michelsen, Anders; Bååth, Erland

    2013-01-01

    If microbial degradation of carbon substrates in arctic soil is stimulated by climatic warming, this would be a significant positive feedback on global change. With data from a climate change experiment in Northern Sweden we show that warming and enhanced soil nutrient availability, which is a predicted long-term consequence of climatic warming and mimicked by fertilization, both increase soil microbial biomass. However, while fertilization increased the relative abundance of fungi, warming caused only a minimal shift in the microbial community composition based on the phospholipid fatty acid (PLFA) and neutral lipid fatty acid (NLFA) profiles. The function of the microbial community was also differently affected, as indicated by stable isotope probing of PLFA and NLFA. We demonstrate that two decades of fertilization have favored fungi relative to bacteria, and increased the turnover of complex organic compounds such as vanillin, while warming has had no such effects. Furthermore, the NLFA-to-PLFA ratio for (13)C-incorporation from acetate increased in warmed plots but not in fertilized ones. Thus, fertilization cannot be used as a proxy for effects on warming in arctic tundra soils. Furthermore, the different functional responses suggest that the biomass increase found in both fertilized and warmed plots was mediated via different mechanisms.

  5. Fungi benefit from two decades of increased nutrient availability in tundra heath soil.

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    Riikka Rinnan

    Full Text Available If microbial degradation of carbon substrates in arctic soil is stimulated by climatic warming, this would be a significant positive feedback on global change. With data from a climate change experiment in Northern Sweden we show that warming and enhanced soil nutrient availability, which is a predicted long-term consequence of climatic warming and mimicked by fertilization, both increase soil microbial biomass. However, while fertilization increased the relative abundance of fungi, warming caused only a minimal shift in the microbial community composition based on the phospholipid fatty acid (PLFA and neutral lipid fatty acid (NLFA profiles. The function of the microbial community was also differently affected, as indicated by stable isotope probing of PLFA and NLFA. We demonstrate that two decades of fertilization have favored fungi relative to bacteria, and increased the turnover of complex organic compounds such as vanillin, while warming has had no such effects. Furthermore, the NLFA-to-PLFA ratio for (13C-incorporation from acetate increased in warmed plots but not in fertilized ones. Thus, fertilization cannot be used as a proxy for effects on warming in arctic tundra soils. Furthermore, the different functional responses suggest that the biomass increase found in both fertilized and warmed plots was mediated via different mechanisms.

  6. Changes in microbial communities along redox gradients in polygonized Arctic wet tundra soils

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Lipson, David A.; Raab, Theodore K.; Parker , Melanie; Kelley , Scott T.; Brislawn, Colin J.; Jansson, Janet K.

    2015-07-21

    This study investigated how microbial community structure and diversity varied with depth and topography in ice wedge polygons of wet tundra of the Arctic Coastal Plain in northern Alaska, and what soil variables explain these patterns. We observed strong changes in community structure and diversity with depth, and more subtle changes between areas of high and low topography, with the largest differences apparent near the soil surface. These patterns are most strongly correlated with redox gradients (measured using the ratio of reduced Fe to total Fe in acid extracts as a proxy): conditions grew more reducing with depth and were most oxidized in shallow regions of polygon rims. Organic matter and pH also changed with depth and topography, but were less effective predictors of the microbial community structure and relative abundance of specific taxa. Of all other measured variables, lactic acid concentration was the best, in combination with redox, for describing the microbial community. We conclude that redox conditions are the dominant force in shaping microbial communities in this landscape. Oxygen and other electron acceptors allowed for the greatest diversity of microbes: at depth the community was reduced to a simpler core of anaerobes, dominated by fermenters (Bacteroidetes and Firmicutes).

  7. Changes in microbial communities along redox gradients in polygonized Arctic wet tundra soils

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Lipson, David A.; Raab, Theodore K.; Parker , Melanie; Kelley , Scott T.; Brislawn, Colin J.; Jansson, Janet K.

    2015-08-01

    Summary This study investigated how microbial community structure and diversity varied with depth and topography in ice wedge polygons of wet tundra of the Arctic Coastal Plain in northern Alaska and what soil variables explain these patterns. We observed strong changes in community structure and diversity with depth, and more subtle changes between areas of high and low topography, with the largest differences apparent near the soil surface. These patterns are most strongly correlated with redox gradients (measured using the ratio of reduced Fe to total Fe in acid extracts as a proxy): conditions grew more reducing with depth and were most oxidized in shallow regions of polygon rims. Organic matter and pH also changed with depth and topography but were less effective predictors of the microbial community structure and relative abundance of specific taxa. Of all other measured variables, lactic acid concentration was the best, in combination with redox, for describing the microbial community. We conclude that redox conditions are the dominant force in shaping microbial communities in this landscape. Oxygen and other electron acceptors allowed for the greatest diversity of microbes: at depth the community was reduced to a simpler core of anaerobes,

  8. Measurements and modelling of snowmelt and turbulent heat fluxes over shrub tundra

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    D. Bewley

    2010-07-01

    Full Text Available Measurements of snowmelt and turbulent heat fluxes were made during the snowmelt periods of two years at two neighbouring tundra sites in the Yukon, one in a sheltered location with tall shrubs exposed above deep snow and the other in an exposed location with dwarf shrubs covered by shallow snow. The snow was about twice as deep in the valley as on the plateau at the end of each winter and melted out about 10 days later. The site with buried vegetation showed a transition from air-to-surface heat transfers to surface-to-air heat transfers as bare ground became exposed during snowmelt, but there were daytime transfers of heat from the surface to the air at the site with exposed vegetation even while snow remained on the ground. A model calculating separate energy balances for snow and exposed vegetation, driven with meteorological data from the sites, is found to be able to reproduce these behaviours. Averaged over 30-day periods the model gives about 8 Wm−2 more sensible heat flux to the atmosphere for the valley site than for the plateau site. Sensitivity of simulated fluxes to model parameters describing vegetation cover and density is investigated.

  9. Characteristics of summer-time energy exchange in a high Arctic tundra heath 2000–2010

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    Magnus Lund

    2014-07-01

    Full Text Available Global warming will bring about changes in surface energy balance of Arctic ecosystems, which will have implications for ecosystem structure and functioning, as well as for climate system feedback mechanisms. In this study, we present a unique, long-term (2000–2010 record of summer-time energy balance components (net radiation, R n; sensible heat flux, H; latent heat flux, LE; and soil heat flux, G from a high Arctic tundra heath in Zackenberg, Northeast Greenland. This area has been subjected to strong summer-time warming with increasing active layer depths (ALD during the last decades. We observe high energy partitioning into H, low partitioning into LE and high Bowen ratio (β=H/LE compared with other Arctic sites, associated with local climatic conditions dominated by onshore winds, slender vegetation with low transpiration activity and relatively dry soils. Surface saturation vapour pressure deficit (D s was found to be an important variable controlling within-year surface energy partitioning. Throughout the study period, we observe increasing H/R n and LE/R n and decreasing G/R n and β, related to increasing ALD and decreasing soil wetness. Thus, changes in summer-time surface energy balance partitioning in Arctic ecosystems may be of importance for the climate system.

  10. Long-term warming restructures Arctic tundra without changing net soil carbon storage.

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    Sistla, Seeta A; Moore, John C; Simpson, Rodney T; Gough, Laura; Shaver, Gaius R; Schimel, Joshua P

    2013-05-30

    High latitudes contain nearly half of global soil carbon, prompting interest in understanding how the Arctic terrestrial carbon balance will respond to rising temperatures. Low temperatures suppress the activity of soil biota, retarding decomposition and nitrogen release, which limits plant and microbial growth. Warming initially accelerates decomposition, increasing nitrogen availability, productivity and woody-plant dominance. However, these responses may be transitory, because coupled abiotic-biotic feedback loops that alter soil-temperature dynamics and change the structure and activity of soil communities, can develop. Here we report the results of a two-decade summer warming experiment in an Alaskan tundra ecosystem. Warming increased plant biomass and woody dominance, indirectly increased winter soil temperature, homogenized the soil trophic structure across horizons and suppressed surface-soil-decomposer activity, but did not change total soil carbon or nitrogen stocks, thereby increasing net ecosystem carbon storage. Notably, the strongest effects were in the mineral horizon, where warming increased decomposer activity and carbon stock: a 'biotic awakening' at depth.

  11. Identification of Previously Unknown Groups of Microorganisms Under the Tundra Snowpack

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    Schmidt, S.; Schadt, C. W.; Lipson, D. A.; Martin, A. P.

    2003-12-01

    Recent work has shown that microbial communities are active under snow. In fact, in some tundra soils these organisms reach their year-round peak in late winter. These communities can function at temperatures down to at least -5° C and are fuelled by dead plant material laid down in the Autumn. Until now the identity of these cold adapted microbial communities was a complete mystery. We used microbiological and molecular techniques to elucidate the phylogenetic composition of these under-snow microbial communities. At the broadest taxonomic level, we show that fungi dominate the under-snow world. More detailed molecular analyses revealed a high diversity within the fungi and we identified three clades that constitute major new groups of fungi (at the subphylum or class level) that have not been previously described or cultured. An abundance of hitherto unknown fungi that are active beneath the snow significantly broadens our understanding of both the diversity and biogeochemical functioning of fungi in cold environments.

  12. Doubled volatile organic compound emissions from subarctic tundra under simulated climate warming.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Faubert, Patrick; Tiiva, Päivi; Rinnan, Asmund; Michelsen, Anders; Holopainen, Jarmo K; Rinnan, Riikka

    2010-07-01

    *Biogenic volatile organic compound (BVOC) emissions from arctic ecosystems are important in view of their role in global atmospheric chemistry and unknown feedbacks to global warming. These cold ecosystems are hotspots of climate warming, which will be more severe here than averaged over the globe. We assess the effects of climatic warming on non-methane BVOC emissions from a subarctic heath. *We performed ecosystem-based cha