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Sample records for alaskan coastal tundra

  1. Spatial and Temporal Variation in Primary Productivity (NDVI) of Coastal Alaskan Tundra: Decreased Vegetation Growth Following Earlier Snowmelt

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Gamon, John A.; Huemmrich, K. Fred; Stone, Robert S.; Tweedie, Craig E.

    2015-01-01

    In the Arctic, earlier snowmelt and longer growing seasons due to warming have been hypothesized to increase vegetation productivity. Using the Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI) from both field and satellite measurements as an indicator of vegetation phenology and productivity, we monitored spatial and temporal patterns of vegetation growth for a coastal wet sedge tundra site near Barrow, Alaska over three growing seasons (2000-2002). Contrary to expectation, earlier snowmelt did not lead to increased productivity. Instead, productivity was associated primarily with precipitation and soil moisture, and secondarily with growing degree days, which, during this period, led to reduced growth in years with earlier snowmelt. Additional moisture effects on productivity and species distribution, operating over a longer time scale, were evident in spatial NDVI patterns associated with microtopography. Lower, wetter regions dominated by graminoids were more productive than higher, drier locations having a higher percentage of lichens and mosses, despite the earlier snowmelt at the more elevated sites. These results call into question the oft-stated hypothesis that earlier arctic growing seasons will lead to greater vegetation productivity. Rather, they agree with an emerging body of evidence from recent field studies indicating that early-season, local environmental conditions, notably moisture and temperature, are primary factors determining arctic vegetation productivity. For this coastal arctic site, early growing season conditions are strongly influenced by microtopography, hydrology, and regional sea ice dynamics, and may not be easily predicted from snowmelt date or seasonal average air temperatures alone. Our comparison of field to satellite NDVI also highlights the value of in-situ monitoring of actual vegetation responses using field optical sampling to obtain detailed information on surface conditions not possible from satellite observations alone.

  2. Herbivory and soil moisture drive long-term patterns of vegetation structure and function in Alaskan coastal tundra: results from resampling historic exclosures at Barrow

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Johnson, D. R.; Lara, M. J.; Shaver, G. R.; Tweedie, C.

    2010-12-01

    Herbivores can be strong drivers of vegetation structure whose effects often vary depending on such things as primary productivity, the species makeup and structure of plants and herbivores, and other factors. In the Arctic however, the strength and direction of these effects have been difficult to detect and often vary widely among tundra types. In the coastal tundra near Barrow Alaska, fluctuations of lemming populations have long intrigued researchers and exclosure treatments were established at various periods between the 1950’s (Naval Arctic Research Laboratory) and early 1970’s (International Biological Program). Approximately 25% of these exclosures and control plots remain intact and were resampled in 2002 and 2010. The plots provide one of the few opportunities to assess how arctic tundra might be structured and function in the absence of herbivores. Plant cover and abundance as well as biomass estimates indicated that herbivores have had varied effects among soil moisture regimes. While herbivore exclusion resulted in a decrease in vascular plant abundance and diversity in all communities, dryer sites became lichen dominated and wetter sites became moss dominant. Additionally between resampling dates, these patterns have intensified as control plot graminoid biomass has increased in wetter sites while deciduous shrub biomass has increased slightly in dryer site control plots. Exclusion also resulted in differences in functional characteristics as well. Generally across all moisture regimes, exclusion increased albedo and decreased active layer, NDVI (normalized difference vegetation index), and CO2 uptake. Drier sites showed little difference in CH4 efflux, while moist and wet sites showed significant decreases in CH4 efflux in the absence of herbivores. These results suggest that herbivores have a strong effect on ecosystem structure and function in this coastal tundra and effects have become more pronounced recently. Because theoretical

  3. Emissions of biogenic sulfur gases from Alaskan tundra

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    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.

  4. Emissions of biogenic sulfur gases from Alaskan tundra

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hines, Mark E.; Morrison, Michael C.

    1992-01-01

    Fluxes of the biogenic sulfur gases carbonyl sulfide (COS), dimethyl sulfide (DMS), methyl mercaptan (MeSH), and carbon disulfide (CS2) were determined for several freshwater and coastal marine tundra habitats using a dynamic enclosure method and gas chromatography. In the freshwater tundra sites, highest emissions, with a mean of 6.0 nmol/m(sup -2)H(sup -1) (1.5-10) occurred in the water-saturated wet meadow areas inhabited by grasses, sedges, and Sphagnum mosses. In the drier upland tundra sites, highest fluxes occurred in areas inhabited by mixed vegetation and labrador tea at 3.0 nmol/m(sup -2)h(sup -1) (0-8.3) and lowest fluxes were from lichen-dominated areas at 0.9 nmol/m(sup -2)h(sup -1). Sulfur emissions from a lake surface were also low at 0.8 nmol/m(sup -2)h(sup -1). Of the compounds measured, DMS was the dominant gas emitted from all of these sites. Sulfure emissions from the marine sites were up to 20-fold greater than fluxes in the freshwater habitats and were also dominated by DMS. Emissions of DMS were highest from intertidal soils inhabited by Carex subspathacea (150-250 nmol/m(sup -2)h(sup -1)). This Carex sp. was grazed thoroughly by geese and DMS fluxes doubled when goose feces were left within the flux chamber. Emissions were much lower from other types of vegetation which were more spatially dominant. Sulfure emissions from tundra were among the lowest reported in the literature. When emission data were extrapolated to include all tundra globally, the global flux of biogenic sulfur from this biome is 2-3 x 10(exp 8) g/yr. This represents less than 0.001 percent of the estimated annual global flux (approximately 50 Tg) of biogenic sulfur and less than 0.01 percent of the estimated terrestrial flux. The low emissions are attributed to the low availability of sulfate, certain hydrological characteristics of tundra, and the tendency for tundra to accumulate organic matter.

  5. Emissions of biogenic sulfur gases from Alaskan tundra

    SciTech Connect

    Hines, M.E.; Morrison, M.C.

    1992-10-30

    Fluxes of the biogenic sulfur gases carbonyl sulfide (COS), dimethyl sulfide (DMS), methyl mercaptan (MeSH), and carbon disulfide (CS{sub 2}) were determined from several freshwater and coastal marine tundra habitats using a dynamic enclosure method and gas chromatography. In the freshwater tundra sites, highest emissions, with a mean of 6.0 nmol m{sup {minus}2}h{sup {minus}1} (1.5-10) occurred in the water-saturated wet meadow areas inhabited by grasses, sedges, and Shpagnum mosses. In the drier upland tundra sites, highest fluxes occurred in areas inhabited by mixed vegetation and labrador tea at 3.0 nmol m{sup {minus}2}h{sup {minus}1} (0-8.3) and lowest fluxes were from lichen-dominated areas at 0.8 nmol m{sup {minus}2}h{sup {minus}1}. Sulfur emissions from a lake surface were also low at 0.8 nmol m{sup {minus}2}h{sup {minus}1}. Of the compounds measured, DMS was the dominant gas emitted from all of these sites. Sulfur emissions from the marine sites were up to 20-fold greater than fluxes in the freshwater habitats and were also dominated by DMS. Emissions of DMS were highest from intertidal soils inhabited by Carex subspathacea. This Carex sp. was grazed thoroughly by geese and DMS fluxes doubled when goose feces were left within the flux chamber. Emissions were much lower from other types of vegetation which were more spatially dominant. Sulfur emissions from tundra were among the lowest reported in the literature. When emission data were extrapolated to include all tundra globally, the global flux of biogenic sulfur from this biome is 2-3 x 10{sup 8} g yr{sup {minus}1}. This represents less than 0.001% of the estimated annual global flux of biogenic sulfur and <0.01% of the estimated terrestrial flux. The low emissions are attributed to the low availability of sulfate, certain hydrological characteristics of tundra, and the tendency for tundra to accumulate organic matter. 31 refs., 1 fig., 2 tabs.

  6. Atmospheric methane sources - Alaskan tundra bogs, an alpine fen, and a subarctic boreal marsh

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Sebacher, D. I.; Harriss, R. C.; Grice, S. S.; Bartlett, K. B.; Sebacher, S. M.

    1986-01-01

    Methane (CH4) flux measurements from Alaska tundra bogs, an alpine fen, and a subarctic boreal marsh were obtained at field sites ranging from Prudhoe Bay on the coast of the Arctic Ocean to the Alaskan Range south of Fairbanks during August 1984. In the tundra, average CH4 emission rates varied from 4.9 mg CH4 per sq m per day (moist tundra) to 119 mg CH4 per sq m per day (waterlogged tundra). Fluxes averaged 40 mg CH4 per sq m per day from wet tussock meadows in the Brooks Range and 289 mg Ch4 per sq m per day from an alpine fen in the Alaskan Range. The boreal marsh had an average CH4 emission rate of 106 mg CH4 per sq m per day. Significant emissions were detected in tundra areas where peat temperatures were as low as 4 C, and permafrost was only 25 cm below the ground surface. Emission rates from the 17 sites sampled were found to be logarithmically related to water levels at the sites. Extrapolation of the data to an estimate of the total annual CH4 emission from all arctic and boreal wetlands suggests that these ecosystems are a major source of atmospheric CH4 and could account for up to 23 percent of global CH4 emissions from wetlands.

  7. Recovery of plant biomass and soil N cycling in Alaskan tundra following an unusual fire

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bret-Harte, M. S.; Mack, M. C.; Huebner, D. C.; Johnston, M.; Shaver, G. R.

    2012-12-01

    Climate warming is likely to increase the frequency of disturbances in the Arctic. The Anaktuvuk River fire of 2007 burned 1039 km2 of northern Alaskan tundra; this was unprecedented for this vegetation, which is clonal, slow-growing, and long-lived. We harvested plant biomass and soils from severely and moderately burned areas and controls in 2011 to assess recovery of plant productivity and soil N cycling four years after the fire. Biomass of vascular plants had recovered to nearly control levels in moderately burned areas, due primarily to resprouting by graminoids, particularly Eriophorum vaginatum. Graminoid biomass was actually greater in moderately burned tundra than in unburned tundra. Deciduous shrub and evergreen shrub biomass in moderately burned tundra was approximately half that seen in unburned tundra, but non-vascular plant biomass was much less, so that total aboveground biomass in moderately burned tundra had not returned to control levels. Severely burned tundra had less of all components of the community than in moderately burned tundra, except that there was higher biomass of non-vascular plants, due to colonization by fire-following liverworts and mosses. Productivity of vascular plants was similar in unburned and severely burned tundra plots, and higher in moderately burned plots, due in part to higher soil N availability. Recovery of plant biomass was largely due to resprouting of species that survived the fire, though numerous seedlings were seen. Biomass of vascular plants has recovered rapidly in the moderately burned sites, while severely burned sites and nonvascular plants are recovering more slowly, but the relative abundance of different species differs from unburned tundra. The relationship between spectral indices (NDVI, EVI-2) collected at the plot level and either biomass or NPP varied with burn category, which may complicate assessments of NPP by remote sensing following fire.

  8. Revegetation of Alaskan Disturbed Sites by Native Tundra Species.

    DTIC Science & Technology

    1986-07-06

    In Press. Ecyomycorrihizal fungi of Salix rotundifolia Trautv. III. Resynthesized mycorrihizal-om-plexes and their surface phosphatase activity. Can. J...sedge seedlings. In addition, the organic mat may harbor mycorrhizal fungi that enhance seedling growth. (ii) Fertilizers should only be applied if...production in two tundra communities. Canadian Journal of Botany 52:103-116. Herbein, S.B. 1981. Soil phosphatases: Factors affecting enzyme activity in

  9. Revegetation of Alaskan Disturbed Sites by Native Tundra Species.

    DTIC Science & Technology

    1982-09-15

    Antibus, R.K., J.G. Croxdale, C.K. Miller, and A.E. Linkins. In Press. Ecyomycorrihizal fungi of Salix rotundifolia Trautv. III. Resynthesized mycorrihizal...typical of nutrient-poor sites (e.g. Empetrum nigrum), although there were species characteristic of fertile sites ( Salix pulchra), and infertile sites...tussock tundra, Eagle Creek, AK. Canadian Journal of Botany 58:1607-1611. McGraw, J.B., and G.R. Shaver. 1981. Seedling density and seedling survival

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    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.

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

    PubMed

    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

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

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    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.

  13. Temperature and plant species control over litter decomposition in Alaskan tundra

    SciTech Connect

    Hobbie, S.E.

    1996-11-01

    This study compared effects of increased temperature and litter from different Alaskan tundra plant species on cycling of carbon and nitrogen through litter and soil in microcosms. Warming between 4{degrees} and 10{degrees}C significantly increased rates of soil and litter respiration, litter decomposition, litter nitrogen release, and soil net nitrogen mineralization. Thus, future warming will directly increase rates of carbon and nitrogen cycling through litter and soil in tundra. In addition, differences among species` litter in rates of decomposition, N release, and effects on soil net nitrogen mineralization were sometimes larger than differences between the two temperature treatments within a species. Thus, changes in plant community structure and composition associated with future warming will have important consequences for how elements cycle through litter and soil in tundra. In general, species within a growth form (graminoids, evergreen shrubs, deciduous shrubs, and mosses) were more similar in their effects on decomposition than were species belonging to different growth forms, with gramminoid litter having the fastest rate and litter of deciduous shrubs and mosses having the slowest rates. Differences in rates of litter decomposition were more related to carbon quality than to nitrogen concentration. Increased abundance of deciduous shrubs with future climate warming will promote carbon storage, because of their relatively large allocation to woody stems that decompose slowly. Changes in moss abundance will also have important consequences for future carbon and nitrogen cycling, since moss litter is extremely recalcitrant and has a low potential to immobilize nitrogen. 82 refs., 8 figs., 7 tabs.

  14. Organic Carbon Sources in Coastal Southeast Alaskan Streams

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hood, E.; Edwards, R. T.; D'Amore, D. V.; Lange, B. J.

    2003-12-01

    Dissolved organic matter (DOM) is abundant in southeast Alaskan watersheds and plays an important role in the biological and physical processes in these aquatic systems. Nearly 30% of the land area in southeast Alaska is classified as wetlands, a large proportion of which are peatlands. Peatlands are thought to provide substantial DOM to surface waters. Another important source of carbon to streams is spawning anadromous salmon. This study examines how streamwater concentrations of DOC are influenced by 1) catchments soils and vegetation, particularly wetland extent and 2) the presence or absence of anadromous fish. Our goal is to characterize the quantity and quality of different DOM sources and to develop an understanding of how these sources influence seasonal trends in streamwater DOM in coastal freshwater systems in southeast Alaska. Surface water and well samples were collected on two contrasting streams near Juneau, Alaska: Peterson Creek, a brownwater, high-carbon stream in a wetland-dominated catchment and McGinnis Creek, a clearwater stream draining upland spruce forest and alpine tundra. Both streams have runs of pink, coho, and chum salmon from July-September. Streamwater DOC concentrations on Peterson Creek averaged 5-6 mg C L-1 during the early summer and increased to 8-12 mg C L-1 during late July and August. Streamwater DOC concentrations on McGinnis Creek were typically less than 1 mg C L-1 during the early summer but increased dramatically to 4-9 mg C L-1 during spates in August. Well samples collected upslope from the streamwater sampling sites on Peterson and McGinnis Creeks had a similar range in DOC concentrations (10-40 mg C L-1), however the wells on McGinnis Creek showed much higher seasonal variability. Our initial results suggest that the seasonal increase in DOC in both streams is primarily associated with the flushing of soluble organic carbon from catchment soils by late summer rains. However, leaching of DOC from salmon carcasses may

  15. Optimizing burn severity assessments in Alaskan tussock tundra from optical imagery

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Loboda, T. V.; Jenkins, L. K.; French, N. H.; Bourgeau-Chavez, L. L.

    2013-12-01

    Over the past decade Alaskan tundra has experienced an increase in fire occurrence prompting rising concerns in the scientific community. Fire occurrence in tundra ecosystems has the potential to release a large amount of organic carbon stored in the deep organic layer, modify soil moisture and respiration, and make more organic matter available for decomposition and future burning through impacts on the active depth layer. Monitoring and characterization of fire occurrence and impacts in extensive, remote, and largely inaccessible tundra regions rely on satellite observations of land surface and require robust approaches to burn severity measurements. The relatively low fire activity in tundra regions between 1950 and 2000 has resulted in overall lack of understanding of fire impacts on tundra landscapes outside the Seward Peninsula where tundra fire record is better known. Thus satellite-based mapping of burn severity is limited by the lack of quantified knowledge of fire-induced physical changes on the landscape on the one hand and the capabilities of optical remote sensing systems to capture those characteristics on the other. Here we present an analysis of satellite mapping of burn severity using multi-date Landsat imagery and two field-based measurements of burn severity - the operationally applied Composite Burn Index (CBI) and the more simplistic Burn Severity Index (BSI), also known as the Burn Severity Code Matrix. The BSI used here is a four-point scale (unburned, low, moderate, severe) assessed for the surface substrate and vegetation layers. The BSI and CBI used to compare to the remote sensing data were determined from the field data by converting the qualitative fractional assessment of burn severity within 10 x 10 m plots to a single value. Since both indices represent mostly ocular assessment of the fire-impacted surface, they can relate well to Landsat's optical sensors measurements. The analysis shows that overall satellite indices have closer

  16. Methane transport mechanisms and isotopic fractionation in emergent macrophytes of an Alaskan tundra lake

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Chanton, Jeffrey P.; Martens, Christopher S.; Kelley, Cheryl A.; Crill, Patrick M.; Showers, William J.

    1992-01-01

    The stable carbon isotopic composition of methane associated with and emitted by the two dominant emergent macrophytes abundant in the many Alaskan tundra lakes, Carex rostrata and Arctophila fulva, is determined. The carbon isotopic composition of the methane was -58.6 +/- 0.5 (n=2) for Arctophila and -66.6 +/- 2.5 (n=6) for Carex. The methane emitted by these species is depleted in C-13 by 12 per mil for Arctophila and 18 per mil for Carex relative to methane withdrawn from plant stems 1-2 cm below the waterline. The results suggest more rapid transport of (C-12)H4 relative to (C-13)H4 through plants to the atmosphere. Plant stem methane concentrations ranged from 0.2 to 4.0 percent in Arctophila, with an isotopic composition of -46.1 +/- 4.3 percent (n=8). Carex stem methane concentrations ranged from 150 to 1200 ppm, with an isotopic composition of -48.3 +/- 1.4 per mil (n=3).

  17. Biomarkers as Indicators of Respiration During Laboratory Incubations of Alaskan Arctic Tundra Permafrost Soils

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hutchings, J.; Schuur, E.; Bianchi, T. S.; Bracho, R. G.

    2015-12-01

    High latitude permafrost soils are estimated to store 1,330 - 1,580 Pg C, which account for ca. 40% of global soil C and nearly twice that of atmospheric C. Disproportionate heating of high latitude regions during climate warming potentially results in permafrost thaw and degradation of surficial and previously-frozen soil C. Understanding how newly-thawed soils respond to microbial degradation is essential to predicting C emissions from this region. Laboratory incubations have been a key tool in understanding potential respiration rates from high latitude soils. A recent study found that among the common soil measurements, C:N was the best predictor of C losses. Here, we analyzed Alaskan Arctic tundra soils from before and after a nearly 3-year laboratory incubation. Bulk geochemical values as well as the following biomarkers were measured: lignin, amino acids, n-alkanes, and glycerol dialkyl glycerol tetraethers (GDGT). We found that initial C:N did not predict C losses and no significant change in C:N between initial and final samples. The lignin acid to aldehyde (Ad:Al) degradation index showed the same results with a lack of C loss prediction and no significant change during the experiment. However, we did find that C:N and Ad:Al had a significant negative correlation suggesting behavior consistent with expectations. The failure to predict C losses was likely influenced by a number of factors, including the possibility that biomarkers were tracking a smaller fraction of slower cycling components of soil C. To better interpret these results, we also used a hydroxyproline-based amino acid degradation index and n-alkanes to estimate the contribution Sphagnum mosses to soil samples - known to have slower turnover times than vascular plants. Finally, we applied a GDGT soil temperature proxy to estimate the growing season soil temperatures before each incubation, as well as investigating the effects of incubation temperature on the index's temperature estimate.

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

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    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...

  19. An Authentic Voice in the Technocratic Wilderness: Alaskan Natives and the "Tundra Times."

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Daley, Patrick; James, Beverly

    1986-01-01

    Examines a pair of critical challenges to the cultural integrity of Alaskan Natives around 1960 as pivotal episodes in the process of native resistance to U. S. dominance. Historically evaluates the fragility of native culture in terms of the political, scientific, and economic interests expressed in the mainstream Alaskan press, particularly the…

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

    PubMed

    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.

  1. Plant growth form more important than temperature in controlling CH{sub 4} flux in Alaskan tundra communities

    SciTech Connect

    Verville, J.H.; Chapin, F.S. III.; Hobbie, S.E.

    1995-09-01

    We conducted species removals, vegetation and soil transplants, and air temperature manipulations in Alaskan wet meadow and upland tussock tundra communities to determine the relative importance of vegetation type and environmental variables in controlling CH{sub 4} flux. Removal of sedges in the wet meadow community significantly decreased CH{sub 4} flux, while moss removal had no significant effects on emissions. At 15 cm depth, pore water CH{sub 4} concentrations were higher in sedge removals, relative to control plots, suggesting that sedges contribute to CH{sub 4} emissions by transporting CH{sub 4} from anaerobic soil to the atmosphere, rather than by promoting methanogenesis. In reciprocal ecosystem transplants between the wet meadow and upland tussock tundra communities, CH{sub 4} flux was higher in the wet meadow site, but was unrelated to transplant origin. Soil temperature, thaw depth, and water table depth were correlated with CH{sub 4} flux, but their relative importance on a local level varied throughout the season. Plastic greenhouses placed over the wet meadow species removal plots increased soil moisture and air and soil temperatures, but did not affect CH{sub 4} flux. These results suggest that future changes in CH{sub 4} flux in response to climatic change will be more strongly mediated by large-scale changes in soil moisture and vegetation than by direct temperature effects on CH{sub 4} emissions.

  2. ERTS imagery applied to Alaskan coastal problems. [surface water circulation

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wright, F. F.; Sharma, G. D.; Burbank, D. C.; Burns, J. J.

    1974-01-01

    Along the Alaska coast, surface water circulation is relatively easy to study with ERTS imagery. Highly turbid river water, sea ice, and fluvial ice have proven to be excellent tracers of the surface waters. Sea truth studies in the Gulf of Alaska, Cook Inlet, Bristol Bay, and the Bering Strait area have established the reliability of these tracers. ERTS imagery in the MSS 4 and 5 bands is particularly useful for observing lower concentrations of suspended sediment, while MSS 6 data is best for the most concentrated plumes. Ice features are most clearly seen on MSS 7 imagery; fracture patterns and the movement of specific floes can be used to map circulation in the winter when runoff is restricted, if appropriate allowance is made for wind influence. Current patterns interpreted from satellite data are only two-dimensional, but since most biological activity and pollution are concentrated near the surface, the information developed can be of direct utility. Details of Alaska inshore circulation of importance to coastal engineering, navigation, pollution studies, and fisheries development have been clarified with satellite data. ERTS has made possible the analysis of circulation in many parts of the Alaskan coast.

  3. Species differences in whole plant carbon balance following winter dormancy in Alaskan tundra plants

    SciTech Connect

    Bret-Harte, M.S.; Chapin, F.S. III

    1995-09-01

    We froze ramets of seven vascular plant species and a mixed community of mosses common to upland tussock tundra for several months, then measured whole-plant photosynthesis and respiration in a growth chamber under simulated spring conditions, to examine whole plant carbon metabolism following winter dormancy. In addition, respiration and photosynthesis of aboveground stems and leaves were measured in the field in a spatial gradient away from a melting snowbank, at comparable developmental stages. Species differences in early respiration were not pronounced, but large differences were seen once development of leaves began. Root development in deciduous shrubs delayed their attainment of a positive whole plant carbon balance compared to that seen in aboveground stems and leaves alone, and partially compensated for differences in photosynthetic rates between shrubs and other species. Temporal patterns of carbon metabolism during spring growth may affect competitive balance in tussock tundra and vegetation response to global change.

  4. The modeled effects of fire on carbon balance and vegetation abundance in Alaskan tundra

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dietze, M. C.; Davidson, C. D.; Kelly, R.; Higuera, P. E.; Hu, F.

    2012-12-01

    Arctic climate is warming at a rate disproportionately faster than the rest of the world. Changes have been observed within the tundra that are attributed to this trend, including active layer thickening, shrub land expansion, and increases in fire frequency. Whether tundra remains a global net sink of carbon could depend upon the effects of fire on vegetation, specifically concerning the speed at which vegetation reestablishes, the stimulation of growth after fire, and the changes that occur in species composition during succession. While rapid regeneration of graminoid vegetation favors the spread of this functional type in early succession, late succession appears to favor shrub vegetation at abundances greater than those observed before fire. Possible reasons for this latter observation include changes in albedo, soil insulation, and soil moisture regimes. Here we investigate the course of succession after fire disturbance within tundra ecosystems, and the mechanisms involved. A series of simulated burn experiments were conducted on the burn site left by the 2007 Anaktuvuk River fire to access the behavior of the Ecosystem Demography model v2.2 (ED2) in the simulation of fire on the tundra. The land surface sub-model within ED is modified to improve simulate permafrost through the effects of an increased soil-column depth, a peat texture class, and the effects of wind compaction and depth hoar on snow density. Parameterization is conducted through Bayesian techniques used to constrain parameter distributions based upon data from a literature survey, field measurements at Toolik Lake, Alaska, and a data assimilation over three datasets. At each step, priority was assigned to measurements that could constrain parameters that account for the greatest explained variance in model output as determined through sensitivity analysis. Following parameterization, a series of simulations were performed to gauge the suitability of the model in predicting carbon balance and

  5. Spectral indices for remote sensing of phytomass and deciduous shrub changes in Alaskan arctic tundra

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kushida, K.; Hobara, S.; Tsuyuzaki, S.; Watanabe, M.; Harada, K.; Kim, Y.; Shaver, G. R.; Fukuda, M.

    2010-12-01

    The relationships between spectral indices, phytomass, and plant functional types were determined by using field observations of a moist acidic tundra (MAT) and a moist non-acidic tundra (MNT) in the Toolik Lake Long Term Ecological Research (LTER) site and a sedge-shrub tundra (SS) in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, Alaska, USA. For the MAT and MNT observations, among aboveground phytomass, aboveground vascular phytomass, and vascular plant green phytomass, vascular plant green phytomass was the most sensitive to an exponential function of the normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI). The coefficient of determination (R2) was 0.73. Vascular plant carbon and nitrogen were estimated with exponential functions of NDVI (R2 of 0.57 and 0.53, respectively). For the MAT, MNT, and SS observations, vascular plant green phytomass was more strongly correlated with an exponential function of NDVI (ENDVI, R2 of 0.62) than any other spectral indices. On the other hand, for deciduous shrub green phytomass, the strongest correlation was with a product of an exponential function of NDVI and a spectral index (MIR - RED)/(MIR + RED) (DSSI, R2 of 0.60). Here, MIR and RED denote the bands with wavelengths 2.09-2.35 and 0.63-0.69 µm, respectively. As a result of a regression analysis, 41% of the ENDVI variance and 60% of the DSSI variance were explained by deciduous shrub green phytomass. Up to 38% of the ENDVI variance and up to 10% of the DSSI variance were explained by green phytomass of evergreen shrubs and graminoids, and phytomass of mosses/lichens. These spectral indices were applicable to evaluating tundra plant community changes.

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

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    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.

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

    PubMed

    Ely, Craig R; Franson, J Christian

    2014-04-01

    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.

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

    DTIC Science & Technology

    1987-07-01

    Engineers 1982) and the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge ( ANWR ) (U.S. * Prepared by J. Brown. Department of Interior 1983). 00 Icr. 0 0 II A wide range of...perching birds [Walker et al. 19801) were flat- ( ANWR ), which was opened to winter seismic sur- tened. Erect dead sedges were also flattened and veys in...scraping occurred. In ter operations in ANWR show that dry tundra these areas the surface albedo was higher because (Fig. 22) was the most noticeably

  9. Summertime surface O3 behavior and deposition to tundra in the Alaskan Arctic

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Van Dam, Brie; Helmig, Detlev; Doskey, Paul V.; Oltmans, Samuel J.

    2016-07-01

    Atmospheric turbulence quantities, boundary layer ozone (O3) levels, and O3 deposition to the tundra surface were investigated at Toolik Lake, AK, during the 2011 summer season. Beginning immediately after snowmelt, a diurnal cycle of O3 in the atmospheric surface layer developed with daytime O3 maxima, and minima during low-light hours, resulting in a mean amplitude of 13 ppbv. This diurnal O3 cycle is far larger than observed at other high Arctic locations during the snow-free season. During the snow-free months of June, July, and August, O3 deposition velocities were ˜3 to 5 times faster than during May, when snow covered the ground most of the month. The overall mean O3 deposition velocity between June and August was 0.10 cm s-1. The month of June had the highest diurnal variation, with a median O3 deposition velocity of 0.2 cm s-1 during the daytime and 0.08 cm s-1 during low-light conditions. These values are slightly lower than previously reported summertime deposition velocities in northern latitudes over tundra or fen. O3 loss during low-light periods was attributed to a combination of surface deposition to the tundra and stable boundary layer conditions. We also hypothesize that emissions of reactive biogenic volatile organic compounds into the shallow boundary layer may contribute to nighttime O3 loss.

  10. The Contribution of Mosses to the Complex Pattern of Diurnal and Seasonal Metabolism the wet Coastal Tundra Ecosystems Near Barrow Alaska.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zona, D.; Oechel, W.; Hastings, S.; Oberbauer, S.; Kopetz, I.; Ikawa, H.

    2006-12-01

    Despite the abundance and importance bryophytes in the Alaskan Arctic tundra there is relatively little information on the role of these plants in determining the CO2 fluxes of Arctic tundra and, in particular, the environmental controls and climate change sensitivities of current and future photosynthesis in Arctic mosses. Studies in the tundra biome during the IBP program implicated high light together with high temperature as causes of decreases in photosynthesis in arctic mosses. Several authors have reported midday depression of moss photosynthesis due to high irradiance, even under optimum temperature and fully hydrated conditions. The focus of this study is to understand the role of Sphagnum ssp. mosses of various species, the dominant moss in the Alaska coastal wet Tundra on the total ecosystem carbon exchange throughout the season and in particular soon after snowmelt when the ecosystem is a carbon source. Our hypothesis is that the ecosystem carbon source activity during this critical period may be a result of sensitivity of mosses to light and photoinhibition in the absence of the protective canopy layer of vascular plants. In this study we measured daily courses of photosynthesis and fluorescence in the moss layer and we compare it to the total ecosystem carbon fluxes determined by the eddy covariance technique. The measurements were conducted in wet coastal tundra from June 2006, right after the snow melt, to August 2006 in the Biological Experimental Observatory (BEO) in Barrow, Alaska. The photosynthesis in the moss layer was found to be strongly inhibited when the radiation exceeded 800 ìmol m-2 s-1. Mosses remained fully hydrated throughout the season, precluding drying as a cause of decreased photosynthesis. Dark-adapted fluorescence measurements (Fv/Fm) showed a relatively low value (0.6) right after the snow melt, and remained fairly stable throughout the season. This low value was previously reported as characteristic of photoinhibited

  11. Studies of the Northern Alaskan Coastal System: Ongoing project work and synthesis activities

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Douglas, T. A.; Sturm, M.; Ashjian, C. J.; Jorgensen, T.; Oechel, W. C.; Ping, C.; Rhew, R. C.; Stieglitz, M.

    2006-12-01

    Six ongoing projects focus on a better understanding of processes occurring along the Arctic Alaskan Coast. These projects, grouped as "Studies of the Northern Alaskan Coastal System", or SNACS, combine field, laboratory, modeling and human dimensions research. They include: 1) an investigation of climate variability, ocean processes, sea ice, bowhead whales, and Inupiat subsistence whaling, 2) research on the impact of variability within the ocean and atmosphere on terrestrial fluxes of carbon dioxide, dissolved organic matter and energy, 3) an inventory and description of soil organic carbon fluxes and ground ice in the coastal environment, 4) a determination of whether arctic coastal terrestrial ecosystems are significant sources or sinks of atmospheric methyl halides, chloroform and methane, 5) development of generalized discharge- constituent relationships for arctic basins, and 6) an investigation of the processes controlling mercury deposition to the coastal system. Three broad themes unite the projects: 1) nutrient fluxes from rivers and shoreline erosion in the Arctic coastal zone, 2) impacts of cryospheric changes on the Alaskan Arctic Coast, and 3) potential rapid regime shifts controlled by atmospheric and meteorological processes that could affect the Alaskan Arctic Coast. Warming of the Arctic, particularly its impact on sea ice and nutrient transport in arctic rivers is already affecting fundamental coastal system processes. The six SNACS projects are helping to understand how these impacts will evolve and what their ramifications will be both within and outside of the Arctic.

  12. Annual patterns and budget of CO2 flux in an Alaskan arctic tussock tundra ecosystem at Atqasuk, Alaska

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Oechel, W. C.; Kalhori, A. A.; Burba, G. G.; Gioli, B.

    2013-12-01

    Arctic ecosystem functioning is not only critically affected by climate change, but also has the potential for major positive feedbacks on climate. There is however relatively little information available on the role, patterns, and vulnerabilities of CO2 fluxes during the non-summer seasons. Presented here is a year-around study of CO2 fluxes in an Alaskan Arctic tussock tundra ecosystem. Also presented are key environmental controls on CO2 fluxes as well as possible impacts of likely changes in season timing. This is aided by a new empirical quantification of seasons in the Arctic based on net radiation, which can help describe seasonal responses to greenhouse gas fluxes under climate change. The fluxes were computed using standard FluxNet methodology and corrected using standard WPL density terms, adjusted for influences of instrument surface heating. The results showed that the non-summer season comprises a significant source of carbon to the atmosphere. The summer period was a net sink of 10.83 g C m-2 yr-1, while the non-summer seasons released more than four times the CO2 uptake observed in the summer, resulting in a net annual source of 37.6 g C m-2 yr-1 to the atmosphere. This shows a change in this region of the Arctic from a long-term annual sink of CO2 from the atmosphere to an annual source of CO2 from the terrestrial ecosystem and soils to the atmosphere. The results presented here demonstrate that nearly continuous observations may be required in order to accurately calculate the annual NEE of Arctic ecosystems, and to build predictive understanding that can be used to estimate, with confidence, Arctic fluxes under future conditions. Daily CO2 fluxes over the year, average daily net radiation, average daily PAR, average daily air temperature and average daily soil respiration (at -5 cm).

  13. Permafrost Thaw, Soil Moisture and Plant Community Change Alter Organic Matter Decomposition in Alaskan Tundra

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Natali, S.; Mauritz, M.; Pegoraro, E.; Schuur, E.

    2015-12-01

    Climate warming in arctic tundra has been associated with increased plant productivity and a shift in plant community composition, specifically an increase in shrub cover, which can impact soil organic matter through changes in the size and composition of the leaf litter pool. Shifts in litter quantity and quality will in turn interact with changes in the soil environment as the climate continues to warm. We examined the effects of permafrost thaw, soil moisture changes, and plant community composition on leaf litter decomposition in an upland tundra ecosystem in Interior Alaska. We present warming and drying effects on decomposition rates of graminoid-dominated and shrub-dominated leaf litter mixtures over three years (2 cm depth), and annual decomposition of a common cellulose substrate (0-10 cm and 10-20 cm) over five years at a permafrost thaw and soil drying experiment. We expected that warming and drying would increase decomposition, and that decomposition would be greater in the shrub litter than in the graminoid litter mix. Decomposition of Betula nana, the dominant shrub, was 50% greater in the shrub-dominated litter mix compared to the graminoid-dominated litter. Surprisingly, there was no significant difference in total litter mass loss between graminoid and shrub litter mixtures, despite significant differences in decomposition rates of the dominant plant species when decomposed alone and in community mixtures. Drying decreased decomposition of B. nana and of the shrub community litter overall, but after two years there was no detected warming effect on shrub-community decomposition. In contrast to leaf litter decomposition, both warming and drying increased decomposition of the common substrate. Warming caused an almost twofold increase in cellulose decomposition in surface soil (0-10cm), and drying caused a twofold increase in cellulose decomposition from deeper organic layer soils (10-20cm). These results demonstrate the importance of interactions

  14. Impact of Climate and Fires on Abrupt Permafrost Thaw in Alaskan Tundra

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chipman, M. L.; Reents, C.; Greenberg, J. A.; Hu, F.

    2015-12-01

    Thermo-erosion from abrupt permafrost thaw is a key pulse disturbance in the Arctic that may impact the global carbon cycle. Abrupt thaw can occur when the permafrost active layer expands in response to climate warming and/or increased wildfire activity. Understanding these drivers of thermo-erosion is necessary to anticipate feedbacks in the Arctic, where summer temperature and fire frequency are predicted to increase. We examine modern and late-Holocene thermo-erosion in high-fire (Noatak) and low-fire (North Slope) tundra ecoregions of Alaska using a combination of remote-sensing and paleo-records. Lakes with active thaw features were identified through Landsat-7 image classification and time-series analysis based on observed 0.52-0.60 μm reflectance peaks following slump formation. We identified 1067 and 1705 lakes with active features between CE 2000-2012 in the Noatak and North Slope ecoregions, respectively. The density of features was higher in the highly flammable Noatak (0.04 versus 0.01 features km-2, respectively), suggesting that warmer climate and/or fires likely promote high thermo-erosional activity at present. To assess modern signals of thermo-erosion and identify past events, we analyzed soil profiles and lake-sediment cores from both ecoregions using X-ray fluorescence. The ratios of Ca:K and Ca:Sr increased with depth in permafrost soils, were higher in soils from younger versus older slump surfaces, and were significantly correlated with the ratio of carbonate to feldspar and clay minerals in lake sediments (r=0.96 and 0.93, P<0.0001, n=15). We interpret past increases in Ca:K, Ca:Sr, and δ13C as enhanced weathering of carbonate-rich permafrost soils associated with thermo-erosion. At the North Slope site, we identified ten episodes of thermoerosion over the past 6000 years and found strong correspondence to summer temperature trends. Events were more frequent at the Noatak site, where 15 thermo-erosional episodes and 26 fires occurred over

  15. Photosynthesis, plant growth and nitrogen nutrition in Alaskan tussock tundra: Response to experimental warming

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dynes, E.; Welker, J. M.; Moore, D. J.; Sullivan, P.; Ebbs, L.; Pattison, R.

    2009-12-01

    Temperature is predicted to rise significantly in northern latitudes over the next century. The Arctic tundra is a fragile ecosystem with low rates of photosynthesis and low nutrient mineralisation. Rising temperatures may increase photosynthetic capacity in the short term through direct stimulation of photosynthetic rates and also in the longer term due to enhanced nutrient availability. Different species and plant functional types may have different responses to warming which may have an impact on plant community structure. As part of the International Tundra Experiment (ITEX) to investigate the effects of warming on arctic vegetation, a series of open top chambers (OTCs) have been established at the Toolik Field Station (68°38’N, 149°36’W, elevation 720 m). This study employs 12 plots; 6 control plots and 6 warming plots covered with OTCs which maintain a temperature on average +1.54 °C degrees higher than ambient temperatures. The response of photosynthesis to temperature was measured using an infra-red gas analyzer (IRGA) with a cooling adaptor to manipulate leaf temperature and determine AMAX in two contrasting species, Eriophorum vaginatum (sedge) and Betula nana (shrub). Temperature within the chamber head of the IRGA was manipulated from 10 through 25 °C. We also measured the leaf area index of plots using a Decagon Accupar Ceptometer to provide insights into potential differences in canopy cover. In both OTC and control plots the photosynthetic rate of B. nana was greater than that of E. vaginatum, with the AMAX of B. nana peaking at 20.08°C and E. vaginatum peaking slightly lower at 19.7°C in the control plots. There was no apparent difference in the temperature optimum of photosynthesis of either species when exposed to the warming treatment. Although there was no difference in temperature optimum there were differences in the peak values of AMAX between treatment and control plots. In the case of B. nana, AMAX was higher in the OTCs than in

  16. Alder Expansion as a Coastal Warming Signal - Linking Coastal Alaskan Carbon to Vegetation Change with Climate

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Peteet, D. M.; Nichols, J. E.; Moy, C. M.; McGeachy, A.

    2014-12-01

    Corser Bog (60.5296364oN, 145.453858oW), 21 km east of Cordova, AK is a sphagnum-dominated peatland 42 m asl. adjacent to Sheridan Glacier and the Copper River Delta. Deglaciation at 11.5 ka began with shallow pond deposition, reflecting regional warmth with the pioneers Alnus crispa subsp. sinuata, Salix, and ferns colonizing the fresh, mineral soils on the landscape. Continued early Holocene warming/melting of glaciers led to the foundation species Alnus dominance and peatland formation, surrounded by shrubs such as Rubus spectabilis, Sambucus racemosa, and wetland species such as Myrica gale and Potentilla palustris. As Sphagnum peat accumulated, the highest rates of carbon accumulation for a few centuries are represented at 50 g/m2/a, similar to short-term very high rates in the early Holocene throughout the circumboreal region but varying within the early Holocene due to development of local wet, bryophytic environments. A shift to sedge peat regionally along the South-Central Alaskan coast 7.6 - 3.7 ka is paralleled by a more evaporative, drier climate with Rhododendron groenlandicum presence, lower carbon accumulation (13 g/m2/a), and minimal macrofossil preservation, which is paralleled regionally in coastal muskegs both to the northwest and southeast and by a hiatus in a nearby lake record. A cooler, moister climate is evident in Corser Bog with the shift to Sphagnum peat at 3.7 ka, regional shifts from sedge to Sphagnum peat throughout the entire coastline from Yakutat to Girdwood, AK and the demonstration of glacial advances in the region. Alnus pollen markedly increases to 60% in the uppermost sample, indicative of a major signal for glacial recession in this region.

  17. Long-term experimental warming alters community composition of ascomycetes in Alaskan moist and dry arctic tundra.

    PubMed

    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.

  18. Cesium-137 inventories in Alaskan Tundra, lake and marine sediments: An indicator of recent organic material transport?

    SciTech Connect

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

    1993-06-01

    Tundra sampling was accomplished in 1989--1990 at Imnavait Creek, Alaska (68{degree}37` N, 149{degree}17` W). Inventories of {sup 137}Cs (102--162 mBq/cm{sup 2}) are close to expectations, based upon measured atmospheric deposition for this latitude. Accumulated inventories of {sup 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 {sup 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 {sup 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 {sup 137}Cs inventories, from a low of 22 mBq/cm{sup 2} away from the lake inlet, to a high between 140 to >200 mBq/cm{sup 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.

  19. Plant carbon-nutrient interactions control CO{sub 2} exchange in Alaskan wet sedge tundra ecosystems

    SciTech Connect

    Johnson, L.C.; Shaver, G.R.; Cades, D.H.; Rastetter, E.; Nadelhoffer, K.; Giblin, A.; Laundre, J.; Stanley, A.

    2000-02-01

    The authors explored the long-term (8-yr) effects of separate field manipulations of temperature and nutrient availability on carbon balance in wet sedge tundra near the Arctic Long Term Ecological Research (LTER) site at Toolik Lake, Alaska. Their goals were (1) to assess the relative importance of chronic warming (with field greenhouses) and increased N and P availability (by fertilization) in controlling gross ecosystem photosynthesis, ecosystem respiration, and ultimately ecosystem C balance; and (2) to attempt to partition ecosystem responses to these treatments between plant and soil contributions. The authors present results of the effects of these manipulations on whole-system CO{sub 2} exchange over seasonal and duel cycles, and on nonrhizosphere soil microbial respiration using in situ soil incubations.

  20. InSAR detects possible thaw settlement in the Alaskan Arctic Coastal Plain

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Rykhus, Russell P.; Lu, Zhong

    2008-01-01

    Satellite interferometric synthetic aperture radar (InSAR) has proven to be an effective tool for monitoring surface deformation from volcanoes, earthquakes, landslides, and groundwater withdrawal. This paper seeks to expand the list of applications of InSAR data to include monitoring subsidence possibly associated with thaw settlement over the Alaskan Arctic Coastal Plain. To test our hypothesis that InSAR data are sufficiently sensitive to detect subsidence associated with thaw settlement, we acquired all Japanese Earth Resources Satellite-1 (JERS-1) L-band data available for the summers of 1996, 1997, and 1998 over two sites on the Alaska North Slope. The least amount of subsidence for both study sites was detected in the interferograms covering the summer of 1996 (2-3 cm), interferograms from 1997 and 1998 revealed that about 3 cm of subsidence occurred at the northern Cache One Lake site, and about 5 cm of subsidence was detected at the southern Kaparuk River site. These preliminary results illustrate the capacity of the L-band (24 cm) wavelength JERS-1 radar data to penetrate the short Arctic vegetation to monitor subsidence possibly associated with thaw settlement of the active layer and (or) other hydrologic changes over relatively large areas.

  1. The contribution of Alaskan, Siberian, and Canadian coastal polynas to the cold halocline layer of the Arctic Ocean

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Cavalieri, Donald J.; Martin, Seelye

    1994-01-01

    Numerous Arctic Ocean circulation and geochemical studies suggest that ice growth in polynyas over the Alaskan, Siberian, and Canadian continental shelves is a source of cold, saline water which contributes to the maintenance of the Arctic Ocean halocline. The purpose of this study is to estimate for the 1978-1987 winters the contributions of Arctic coastal polynyas to the cold halocline layer of the Arctic Ocean. The study uses a combination of satellite, oceanographic, and weather data to calculate the brine fluxes from the polynyas; then an oceanic box model is used to calculate their contributions to the cold halocline layer of the Arctic Ocean. This study complements and corrects a previous study of dense water production by coastal polynyas in the Barents, Kara, and Laptev Seas.

  2. Influence of human development and predators on nest survival of tundra birds, Arctic Coastal Plain, Alaska.

    PubMed

    Liebezeit, J R; Kendall, S J; Brown, S; Johnson, C B; Martin, P; McDonald, T L; Payer, D C; Rea, C L; Streever, B; Wildman, A M; Zack, S

    2009-09-01

    Nest predation may influence population dynamics of birds on the Arctic Coastal Plain (ACP) of Alaska, USA. Anthropogenic development on the ACP is increasing, which may attract nest predators by providing artificial sources of food, perches, den sites, and nest sites. Enhanced populations or concentrations of human-subsidized predators may reduce nest survival for tundra-nesting birds. In this study, we tested the hypothesis that nest survival decreases in proximity to human infrastructure. We monitored 1257 nests of 13 shorebird species and 619 nests of four passerine species at seven sites on the ACP from 2002 to 2005. Study sites were chosen to represent a range of distances to infrastructure from 100 m to 80 km. We used Cox proportional hazards regression models to evaluate the effects of background (i.e., natural) factors and infrastructure on nest survival. We documented high spatial and temporal variability in nest survival, and site and year were both included in the best background model. We did not detect an effect of human infrastructure on nest survival for shorebirds as a group. In contrast, we found evidence that risk of predation for passerine nests increased within 5 km of infrastructure. This finding provides quantitative evidence of a relationship between infrastructure and nest survival for breeding passerines on the ACP. A posteriori finer-scale analyses (within oil field sites and individual species) suggested that Red and Red-necked Phalaropes combined (Phalaropus fulicarius, P. lobatus) had lower productivity closer to infrastructure and in areas with higher abundance of subsidized predators. However, we did not detect such a relationship between infrastructure and nest survival for Semipalmated and Pectoral Sandpipers (Calidris pusilla, C. melanotos), the two most abundant shorebirds. High variability in environmental conditions, nest survival, and predator numbers between sites and years may have contributed to these inconsistent results

  3. Thermal regime of shallow water bodies in the coastal tundra zone of the Hudson Bay Lowlands

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Duguay, C. R.; Soliman, A. S.; Macrae, M. L.

    2011-12-01

    Many shallow lakes and ponds of the Arctic/sub-Arctic contain thick, organic-rich sediments, which have the potential to release significant amounts of CO2 or CH4 to the atmosphere if sediment decomposition rates increase in response to warmer temperatures caused by global warming. This may be exacerbated by a deepening of the seasonal sediment thaw depth in small water bodies that are underlain by permafrost. An important step in linking climatic conditions to rates of organic matter decomposition and gas production from shallow water bodies is an improved understanding of the thermal properties of lake sediments and how sediment temperatures fluctuate in response to changing air temperatures. This knowledge is also important if the ratio of terrestrial to aquatic landscape units in cold regions changes under a warmer climate. One approach that has been used in terrestrial permafrost environments is the examination of how mean annual permafrost surface temperature deviates from mean annual 2-m screen height air temperature (MAAT). The offset between MAAT and the mean annual sediment surface temperature (MASST) has been found to be much larger in deep aquatic systems (greater than 10 m) than in terrestrial permafrost systems due to the presence of the water column that can efficiently transfer heat through mixing. However, the efficiency of heat transfer in shallow water bodies is expected to larger in summer (thawed) than in winter (frozen) conditions, when thermal energy must move by conduction alone. The present study examined the efficiency of sediment heat transfer in shallow water bodies (less than 3 m) during summer and winter periods. Air, sediment and water temperatures of three shallow water bodies in the coastal tundra zone of the Hudson Bay Lowlands near Churchill, Manitoba, Canada were monitored (December 2009-August 2011). Arrays of thermistors and heat pulse probes were placed at 10 cm increments between 20 cm above the water/sediment interface and

  4. Identification of tundra land cover near Teshekpuk Lake, Alaska using SPOT satellite data

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Markon, Carl J.; Derksen, Dirk V.

    1994-01-01

    Tundra vegetation in the Teshekpuk Lake area of the Alaskan Arctic Coastal Plain was mapped to assess distribution andabundance of waterfowl habitats. Three SPOT satellite scenes were acquired and registered to a 20 m Universal Transverse Mercatorgrid. Two clustering techniques were used to develop statistical parameters by which the SPOT data were spectrally classified.Amaximum likelihood algorithm that correlated spectral classes with land cover types was applied to the SPOT data. Field data were usedto assist in spectral class labeling and vegetation descriptions. Twelve cover classes were mapped. The most common type was moistsedge meadow tundra (13.5%); the least common was moss/peat shoreline (0.2%). The moss/peat shoreline type, important to moultinggeese and other waterfowl, was spectrally identified using supervised clustering techniques. All other land cover types were identifiedusing unsupervised clustering techniques. Cover classes were described, and a tundra landscape profile produced.

  5. Mapping Deep Low Velocity Zones in Alaskan Arctic Coastal Permafrost using Seismic Surface Waves

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dou, S.; Ajo Franklin, J. B.; Dreger, D. S.

    2012-12-01

    Permafrost degradation may be an important amplifier of climate change; Thawing of near-surface sediments holds the potential of increasing greenhouse gas emissions due to microbial decomposition of preserved organic carbon. Recently, the characterization of "deep" carbon pools (several meters below the surface) in circumpolar frozen ground has increased the estimated amount of soil carbon to three times higher than what was previously thought. It is therefore potentially important to include the characteristics and processes of deeper permafrost strata (on the orders of a few to tens of meters below surface) in climate models for improving future predictions of accessible carbon and climate feedbacks. This extension is particularly relevant if deeper formations are not completely frozen and may harbor on-going microbial activity despite sub-zero temperatures. Unfortunately, the characterization of deep permafrost systems is non-trivial; logistics and drilling constraints often limit direct characterization to relatively shallow units. Geophysical measurements, either surface or airborne, are often the most effective tools for evaluating these regions. Of the available geophysical techniques, the analysis of seismic surface waves (e.g. MASW) has several unique advantages, mainly the ability to provide field-scale information with good depth resolution as well as penetration (10s to 100s of m with small portable sources). Surface wave methods are also able to resolve low velocity regions, a class of features that is difficult to characterize using traditional P-wave refraction methods. As part of the Department of Energy (DOE) Next-Generation Ecosystem Experiments (NGEE-Arctic) project, we conducted a three-day seismic field survey (May 12 - 14, 2012) at the Barrow Environmental Observatory, which is located within the Alaskan Arctic Coastal Plain. Even though permafrost at the study site is continuous, ice-rich and thick (>= 350m), our Multichannel Analysis of

  6. Nesting ecology of tundra swans on the coastal Yukon-Kuskokwim Delta, Alaska

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Babcock, C.A.; Fowler, A.C.; Ely, C.R.

    2002-01-01

    Nesting ecology of Tundra Swans (Cygnus columbianus columbianus) was studies the Kashunuk River near Old Chevak (61A?26a??N, 165A?27a??W), on the Yukon-Kuskokwim Delta of western Alaska from 1988-2000. Annual variation in snow-melt chronology, nesting phenology, nesting density, clutch size and nest success was examined. The same area (approximately 23 kmA?) was searched each year and nests were found as early as possible in the laying period. Laying initiation dates ranged from 1-27 May and hatch dates from 12 June a?? 4 July among pairs and years of study. The peak arrival of Tundra Swans and the phenology of nest initiation and hatch were highly correlated with the progression of ice and snow melt in spring. Nest density averaged 0.71 kmA? and 89% of nesting pairs hatched at least one egg. Incubation period ranged from 26 to 33 days with a median of 30 days. Clutch size varied significantly among years, driven by a low mean value of 3.4 eggs in 1999. Clutch sizes were generally larger than found in previous investigations on the Yukon-Kuskokwim Delta, and nearly one egg larger than reported for clutches from Alaskaa??s North Slope (=70A?N). There was no indication of reduced clutch size in years of late spring snow melt, although nesting density tended to be lower.

  7. Effect of thaw depth on fluxes of CO₂ and CH₄ in manipulated Arctic coastal tundra of Barrow, Alaska.

    PubMed

    Kim, Yongwon

    2015-02-01

    Changes in CO₂ and CH₄ emissions represent one of the most significant consequences of drastic climate change in the Arctic, by way of thawing permafrost, a deepened active layer, and decline of thermokarst lakes in the Arctic. This study conducted flux-measurements of CO₂ and CH₄, as well as environmental factors such as temperature, moisture, and thaw depth, as part of a water table manipulation experiment in the Arctic coastal plain tundra of Barrow, Alaska during autumn. The manipulation treatment consisted of draining, controlling, and flooding treated sections by adjusting standing water. Inundation increased CH₄ emission by a factor of 4.3 compared to non-flooded sections. This may be due to the decomposition of organic matter under a limited oxygen environment by saturated standing water. On the other hand, CO₂ emission in the dry section was 3.9-fold higher than in others. CH₄ emission tends to increase with deeper thaw depth, which strongly depends on the water table; however, CO₂ emission is not related to thaw depth. Quotients of global warming potential (GWPCO₂) (dry/control) and GWPCH₄ (wet/control) increased by 464 and 148%, respectively, and GWPCH₄ (dry/control) declined by 66%. This suggests that CO₂ emission in a drained section is enhanced by soil and ecosystem respiration, and CH₄ emission in a flooded area is likely stimulated under an anoxic environment by inundated standing water. The findings of this manipulation experiment during the autumn period demonstrate the different production processes of CO₂ and CH₄, as well as different global warming potentials, coupled with change in thaw depth. Thus the outcomes imply that the expansion of tundra lakes leads the enhancement of CH₄ release, and the disappearance of the lakes causes the stimulated CO₂ production in response to the Arctic climate change.

  8. 2015 DOE Final UF Report. Effects of Warming the Deep Soil and Permafrost on Ecosystem Carbon Balance in Alaskan Tundra. A Coupled Measurement and Modeling Approach

    SciTech Connect

    Schuur, Edward

    2015-06-11

    The major research goal of this project was to understand and quantify the fate of carbon stored in permafrost ecosystems using a combination of field and laboratory experiments to measure isotope ratios and C fluxes in a tundra ecosystem exposed to experimental warming. Field measurements centered on the establishment of a two-factor experimental warming using a snow fence and open top chambers to increase winter and summer temperatures alone, and in combination, at a tundra field site at the Eight Mile Lake watershed near Healy, Alaska. The objective of this experimental warming was to significantly raise air and deep soil temperatures and increase the depth of thaw beyond that of previous warming experiments. Detecting the loss and fate of the old permafrost C pool remains a major challenge. Because soil C has been accumulating in these ecosystems over the past 10,000 years, there is a strong difference between the radiocarbon isotopic composition of C deep in the soil profile and permafrost compared to that near the soil surface. This large range of isotopic variability is unique to radiocarbon and provides a valuable and sensitive fingerprint for detecting the loss of old soil C as permafrost thaws.

  9. All-weather ice information system for Alaskan arctic coastal shipping

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Gedney, R. T.; Jirberg, R. J.; Schertler, R. J.; Mueller, R. A.; Chase, T. L.; Kramarchuk, I.; Nagy, L. A.; Hanlon, R. A.; Mark, H.

    1977-01-01

    A near real-time ice information system designed to aid arctic coast shipping along the Alaskan North Slope is described. The system utilizes a X-band Side Looking Airborne Radar (SLAR) mounted aboard a U.S. Coast Guard HC-130B aircraft. Radar mapping procedures showing the type, areal distribution and concentration of ice cover were developed. In order to guide vessel operational movements, near real-time SLAR image data were transmitted directly from the SLAR aircraft to Barrow, Alaska and the U.S. Coast Guard icebreaker Glacier. In addition, SLAR image data were transmitted in real time to Cleveland, Ohio via the NOAA-GOES Satellite. Radar images developed in Cleveland were subsequently facsimile transmitted to the U.S. Navy's Fleet Weather Facility in Suitland, Maryland for use in ice forecasting and also as a demonstration back to Barrow via the Communications Technology Satellite.

  10. Modeling of Dense Water Production and Salt Transport from Alaskan Coastal Polynyas

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Signorini, Sergio R.; Cavalieri, Donald J.

    2000-01-01

    The main significance of this paper is that a realistic, three-dimensional, high-resolution primitive equation model has been developed to study the effects of dense water formation in Arctic coastal polynyas. The model includes realistic ambient stratification, realistic bottom topography, and is forced by time-variant surface heat flux, surface salt flux, and time-dependent coastal flow. The salt and heat fluxes, and the surface ice drift, are derived from satellite observations (SSM/I and NSCAT sensors). The model is used to study the stratification, salt transport, and circulation in the vicinity of Barrow Canyon during the 1996/97 winter season. The coastal flow (Alaska coastal current), which is an extension of the Bering Sea throughflow, is formulated in the model using the wind-transport regression. The results show that for the 1996/97 winter the northeastward coastal current exports 13% to 26% of the salt produced by coastal polynyas upstream of Barrow Canyon in 20 to 30 days. The salt export occurs more rapidly during less persistent polynyas. The inclusion of ice-water stress in the model makes the coastal current slightly weaker and much wider due to the combined effects of surface drag and offshore Ekman transport.

  11. Soils of loamy watersheds of coastal tundra in the north of Yakutia: Pedogenetic conditions and processes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gubin, S. V.; Lupachev, A. V.

    2017-02-01

    This paper considers regularities governing the formation of automorphic tundra soils on glacial loamy deposits containing relict organic matter mainly represented by very fine plant detritus. Drainage, microtopography, and cryoturbation activity are the major controls of the development of these soils. With an increase in drainage, the following pedogenetic trend is observed on the surface of yedoma (Ice Complex) areas: gleyzem-cryozem-cryometamorphic soil. The climate change in the Holocene induced quick transformation of topography and general landscape situation and promoted formation and development of cryogenic soil complexes in the considered territory. Upon the low intensity of pedogenesis, the features and properties of previous soil formation stages are often preserved in the soil profiles; these are: gleyzation, peat accumulation, and cryoturbation.

  12. Turbulent transports over tundra

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Fitzjarrald, David R.; Moore, Kathleen E.

    1992-01-01

    An extensive period of eddy correlation surface flux measurements was conducted at a site distant from the coast on the western Alaskan tundra. The surface exchange of heat and moisture over tundra during the summer was limited by a strong resistance to transfer from the upper soil layer through the ground cover, with canopy resistances to evaporation observed to be approximately 200 s/m. Though July 1988 was anomalously warm and dry in the region and August was close to normal temperature and rainfall, there was no appreciable difference in the canopy resistance between the periods. During the dry sunny period at the end of July, the observed evaporation rate was 2 mm/d. High canopy resistance led to an approximate equipartition of net radiation between latent and sensible heat, each accounting for 40 percent of the available energy, with heat balance apparently going into soil heat flux.

  13. Light-stress avoidance mechanisms in a Sphagnum-dominated wet coastal Arctic tundra ecosystem in Alaska.

    PubMed

    Zona, D; Oechel, Walter C; Richards, James H; Hastings, Steven; Kopetz, Irene; Ikawa, Hiroki; Oberbauer, Steven

    2011-03-01

    The Arctic experiences a high-radiation environment in the summer with 24-hour daylight for more than two months. Damage to plants and ecosystem metabolism can be muted by overcast conditions common in much of the Arctic. However, with climate change, extreme dry years and clearer skies could lead to the risk of increased photoxidation and photoinhibition in Arctic primary producers. Mosses, which often exceed the NPP of vascular plants in Arctic areas, are often understudied. As a result, the effect of specific environmental factors, including light, on these growth forms is poorly understood. Here, we investigated net ecosystem exchange (NEE) at the ecosystem scale, net Sphagnum CO2 exchange (NSE), and photoinhibition to better understand the impact of light on carbon exchange from a moss-dominated coastal tundra ecosystem during the summer season 2006. Sphagnum photosynthesis showed photoinhibition early in the season coupled with low ecosystem NEE. However, later in the season, Sphagnum maintained a significant CO2 uptake, probably for the development of subsurface moss layers protected from strong radiation. We suggest that the compact canopy structure of Sphagnum reduces light penetration to the subsurface layers of the moss mat and thereby protects the active photosynthetic tissues from damage. This stress avoidance mechanism allowed Sphagnum to constitute a significant percentage (up to 60%) of the ecosystem net daytime CO2 uptake at the end of the growing season despite the high levels of radiation experienced.

  14. A Comprehensive Modeling Approach Towards Understanding and Prediction of the Alaskan Coastal System Response to Changes in an Ice-diminished Arctic

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2008-01-01

    coastal system (Maslowski et al., 2007a, 2007b; Maslowski et al., 2004; Maslowski and Lipscomb 2003; Maslowski and Walczowski , 2002; Maslowski et al...Geophys. Res-Biogeosciences, 112, G04S49, doi:10.1029/2006JG000332. Clement, J.L., Maslowski, W., Cooper, L.W., Grebmeier, J.M., Walczowski , W. (2005...of the Alaskan Stream, J. Geophys. Res., 113, C07036, doi:10.1029/2007JC004341. Maslowski, W., D. Marble, W. Walczowski , U. Schauer, J. L. Clement

  15. Developing New Strategies for Coping with Weather: Work in Alaskan and Canadian Coastal Communities

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Atkinson, D. E.

    2014-12-01

    A changing climate is manifested at ground level through the day to day weather. For all Northern residents - community, industrial, operational and response - the need to think about the weather is ever present. Northern residents, and in particular, indigenous community residents, fully understand implications of the weather, however, a comment that has been heard more often is that old ways of knowing are not as reliable as they once were. Weather patterns seem less consistent and subject to more rapid fluctuations. Compromised traditional ways of knowing puts those who need to travel or hunt at greater risk. One response to adapt to this emerging reality is to make greater use of western sources of information, such as weather data and charts provided by NOAA's National Weather Service or Environment Canada. The federal weather agencies have very large and complex forecasting regions to cover, and so one problem is that it can be difficult to provide perfectly tailored forecasts, that cover all possible problems, right down to the very local scale in the communities. Only those affected have a complete feel for their own concerns. Thus, key to a strategy to improve the utility of available weather information is a linking of local-scale manifestations of problematic weather to the larger-scale weather patterns. This is done in two ways: by direct consultation with Northern residents, and by installation of equipment to measure parameters of interest to residents, which are not already being measured. This talk will overview projects in coastal Alaska and Canada targeting this objective. The challenge of designing and conducting interviews, and then of harvesting relevant information, will be visited using examples from the three major contexts: coastal community, industrial, and operational. Examples of how local comments can be married to weather products will be presented.

  16. The Role of Explicitly Modeling Bryophytes in Simulating Carbon Exchange and Permafrost Dynamics of an Arctic Coastal Tundra at Barrow, Alaska

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yuan, F.; Thornton, P. E.; McGuire, A. D.; Oechel, W. C.; Yang, B.; Tweedie, C. E.; Rogers, A.; Norby, R. J.

    2013-12-01

    Bryophyte cover is greater than 50% in many Arctic tundra ecosystems. In regions of the Arctic where shrubs are expanding it is expected that bryophyte cover will be substantially reduced. Such a loss in cover could influence the hydrological, biogeochemical, and permafrost dynamics of Arctic tundra ecosystems. The explicit representation of bryophyte physiological and biophysical processes in large-scale ecological and land surface models is rare, and we hypothesize that the representation of bryophytes has consequences for estimates of the exchange of water, energy, and carbon by these models. This study explicitly represents the effects of bryophyte function and structure on the exchange of carbon (e.g., summer photosynthesis effects) and energy (e.g., summer insulation effects) with the atmosphere in the Community Land Model (CLM-CN). The modified model was evaluated for its ability to simulate C exchange, soil temperature, and soil moisture since the 1970s at Barrow, Alaska through comparison with data from AmeriFlux sites, USDA Soil Climate Networks observation sites at Barrow, and other sources. We also compare the outputs of the CLM-CN simulations with those of the recently developed Dynamical Organic Soil coupled Terrestrial Ecosystem Model (DOS-TEM). Overall, our evaluation indicates that bryophytes are important contributors to land-atmospheric C exchanges in Arctic tundra and that they play an important role to permafrost thermal and hydrological processes which are critical to permafrost stability. Our next step in this study is to examine the climate system effects of explicitly representing bryophyte dynamics in the land surface model. Key Words: Bryophytes, Arctic coastal tundra, Vegetation composition, Net Ecosystem Exchange, Permafrost, Land Surface Model, Terrestrial Ecosystem Model

  17. Photosynthetic Characterization of Plant Functional Types from Coastal Tundra to Improve Representation of the Arctic in Earth System Models

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rogers, A.; Xu, C.; McDowell, N. G.; Sloan, V. L.; Norby, R. J.

    2012-12-01

    The primary goal of Earth System Models (ESMs) is to improve understanding and projection of future global change. In order to do this they must accurately represent the carbon fluxes associated with the terrestrial carbon cycle. Photosynthetic CO2 uptake is well described by the Farquhar, von Caemmerer and Berry model of photosynthesis, and most ESMs use a derivation of this model. One of the key parameters required by the Farquhar, von Caemmerer and Berry model is an estimate of the maximum rate of carboxylation by the enzyme Rubisco (Vc,max). In ESMs the parameter Vc,max is usually fixed for a given plant functional type (PFT) and often estimated from the empirical relationship between leaf N content and Vc,max. However, uncertainty in the estimation of Vc,max has been shown to account for significant variation in model estimation of gross primary production, particularly in the Arctic. As part of a new multidisciplinary project to improve the representation of the Arctic in ESMs (Next Generation Ecosystem Experiments - Arctic) we have begun to characterize photosynthetic parameters and N acquisition in the key Arctic PFTs. We measured the response of photosynthesis (A) to internal CO2 concentration (ci) in situ in two sedges (Carex aquatilis, Eriophorum angustifolium), a grass (Dupontia fisheri) and a forb (Petasites frigidus) growing on the Barrow Environmental Observatory, Barrow, AK. The values of Vc,max (normalized to 25oC) currently used to represent Arctic PFTs in ESMs are approximately half of the values we measured in these species in July, 2012, on the coastal tundra in Barrow. We hypothesize that these plants have a greater fraction of leaf N invested in Rubisco (FLNR) than is assumed by the models. The parameter Vc,max is used directly as a driver for respiration in some ESMs, and in other ESMs Vc,max is linked to leaf N content and N acquisition through FLNR. Therefore, these results have implications for ESMs beyond photosynthesis, and suggest that

  18. Long-term climate patterns in Alaskan surface temperature and precipitation and their biological consequences

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Simpson, James J.; Hufford, Gary L.; Fleming, Michael D.; Berg, Jared S.; Ashton, J.B.

    2002-01-01

    Mean monthly climate maps of Alaskan surface temperature and precipitation produced by the parameter-elevation regression on independent slopes model (PRISM) were analyzed. Alaska is divided into interior and coastal zones with consistent but different climatic variability separated by a transition region; it has maximum interannual variability but low long-term mean variability. Pacific decadal oscillation (PDO)- and El Nino Southern Oscillation (ENSO)-type events influence Alaska surface temperatures weakly (1-2/spl deg/C) statewide. PDO has a stronger influence than ENSO on precipitation but its influence is largely localized to coastal central Alaska. The strongest influence of Arctic oscillation (AO) occurs in northern and interior Alaskan precipitation. Four major ecosystems are defined. A major eco-transition zone occurs between the interior boreal forest and the coastal rainforest. Variability in insolation, surface temperature, precipitation, continentality, and seasonal changes in storm track direction explain the mapped ecosystems. Lack of westward expansion of the interior boreal forest into the western shrub tundra is influenced by the coastal marine boundary layer (enhanced cloud cover, reduced insolation, cooler surface and soil temperatures).

  19. Alaskan Voices.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Achatz, Mary, Ed.; Caldera, Debra, Ed.; Saylor, Brian; DeGross, Denny

    This paper examines the attitudes of adults and teenagers in 10 predominantly rural Alaskan communities toward their own health and well-being and that of children and families in their community. The communities were located across the state and ranged in size from populations of under 900 to over 50,000. The proportion of Alaska Natives in the…

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

    DTIC Science & Technology

    1983-09-01

    Provisional checklist to the vascular, bryophyte , and lichen flora of Prudhoe Bay, Alaska. In Ecological Investigations of the Tundra Biome in the Prudhoe Bay...4040) /Bib 33-4561/ Rastorfer, J.R., H.J. Webster and D.K. Smith (1973) Floristic and ecologic studies of bryophytes of selected habitats at...57: 1025-1033. (2759) /Bib 31-1286/ Steere, W.C. (1976) Ecology , phytogeography, and floristics of arctic Alaskan bryophytes . Journal of Hattori

  1. Spatial variation in landscape-level CO2 and CH4 fluxes from arctic coastal tundra: influence from vegetation, wetness, and the thaw lake cycle.

    PubMed

    Sturtevant, Cove S; Oechel, Walter C

    2013-09-01

    Regional quantification of arctic CO2 and CH4 fluxes remains difficult due to high landscape heterogeneity coupled with a sparse measurement network. Most of the arctic coastal tundra near Barrow, Alaska is part of the thaw lake cycle, which includes current thaw lakes and a 5500-year chronosequence of vegetated thaw lake basins. However, spatial variability in carbon fluxes from these features remains grossly understudied. Here, we present an analysis of whole-ecosystem CO2 and CH4 fluxes from 20 thaw lake cycle features during the 2011 growing season. We found that the thaw lake cycle was largely responsible for spatial variation in CO2 flux, mostly due to its control on gross primary productivity (GPP). Current lakes were significant CO2 sources that varied little. Vegetated basins showed declining GPP and CO2 sink with age (R(2) = 67% and 57%, respectively). CH4 fluxes measured from a subset of 12 vegetated basins showed no relationship with age or CO2 flux components. Instead, higher CH4 fluxes were related to greater landscape wetness (R(2) = 57%) and thaw depth (additional R(2) = 28%). Spatial variation in CO2 and CH4 fluxes had good satellite remote sensing indicators, and we estimated the region to be a small CO2 sink of -4.9 ± 2.4 (SE) g C m(-2) between 11 June and 25 August, which was countered by a CH4 source of 2.1 ± 0.2 (SE) g C m(-2) . Results from our scaling exercise showed that developing or validating regional estimates based on single tower sites can result in significant bias, on average by a factor 4 for CO2 flux and 30% for CH4 flux. Although our results are specific to the Arctic Coastal Plain of Alaska, the degree of landscape-scale variability, large-scale controls on carbon exchange, and implications for regional estimation seen here likely have wide relevance to other arctic landscapes.

  2. Moisture and temperature controls on vertical and lateral soil greenhouse gas emissions in the Alaskan coastal temperate rainforest

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    D'Amore, D. V.; Herendeen, P. A.; Yardley, R. R.; Walter, M. T.

    2013-12-01

    The Perhumid Coastal Temperate Rainforest (PCTR) of Alaska and British Columbia is a coastal margin where intense transformations and rapid transfers between atmosphere, land, and ocean characterize the carbon cycle. The cool climate and high precipitation in the PCTR support uptake of atmospheric CO2 by forest and peatland ecosystems. The PCTR has some of the densest terrestrial carbon stocks in the world that is mobilized and re-distributed as dissolved and particulate carbon in streams, and gaseous efflux from both terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems. These stocks may be vulnerable to changes in soil moisture and temperature regimes that may have notable impacts to terrestrial and marine resources. In particular, methane and nitrous oxide have the potential to be produced in substantial amounts in these wet, organic rich soils and exported via vertical and lateral flux pathways. We have established an integrated catchment observatory to measure the vertical and lateral carbon export, including all greenhouse gases, from terrestrial to both atmospheric and aquatic systems. Initial estimates of net ecosystem production produced from a mass balance carbon flux model in these experimental watersheds ranged from 1.1 to 2.8 Mg C ha-1 y-1. The dissolved component of this flux budget ranged up to 30% of the total carbon export from the watersheds. Soil moisture and temperature fluctuations drive the variability in the overall flux, but the magnitude of lateral carbon delivery is dependent on moisture and temperature conditions within different landscape types, especially peatlands. These observations from the PCTR highlight the importance of lateral carbon fluxes in the total ecosystem carbon budget in this coastal margin system.

  3. Siberian tundra ecosystem vegetation and carbon stocks four decades after wildfire

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Loranty, Michael M.; Natali, Susan M.; Berner, Logan T.; Goetz, Scott J.; Holmes, Robert M.; Davydov, Sergei P.; Zimov, Nikita S.; Zimov, Sergey A.

    2014-11-01

    Tundra ecosystem fire regimes are intensifying with important implications for regional and global carbon (C) and energy dynamics. Although a substantial portion of the tundra biome is located in Russia, the vast majority of accessible studies describe North American tundra fires. Here we use field observations and high-resolution satellite remote sensing observations to describe the effects of wildfire on ecosystem C pools and vegetation communities four decades after fire for a tundra ecosystem in northeastern Siberia. Our analyses reveal no differences between soil physical properties and C pools in burned and unburned tundra, which we attribute to low combustion of organic soil associated with low-severity fire. Field and remote sensing data show no differences in aboveground C pools and vegetation communities indicating recovery to prefire conditions. These results are comparable to observations of ecosystem recovery in North American tundra. An assessment of literature data indicate that the average annual area burned in Russian tundra is an order of magnitude larger than that of Alaskan tundra, highlighting a crucial need to assess Russian tundra fire regimes in order to understand the current and future role of the biome wide fire regime in regional and global C and energy dynamics.

  4. 2008 Report for the Project Entitled: A Comprehensive Modeling Approach Towards Understanding and Prediction of the Alaskan Coastal System Response to Changes in an Ice-diminished Arctic

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2008-01-01

    Maslowski et al., 2007a, 2007b; Maslowski et al., 2004; Maslowski and Lipscomb 2003; Maslowski and Walczowski , 2002; Maslowski et al., 2001; Maslowski...Biogeosciences, 112, G04S49, doi:10.1029/2006JG000332. Clement, J.L., Maslowski, W., Cooper, L.W., Grebmeier, J.M., Walczowski , W. (2005) Ocean circulation...Alaskan Stream, J. Geophys. Res., 113, C07036, doi:10.1029/2007JC004341. Maslowski, W., D. Marble, W. Walczowski , U. Schauer, J. L. Clement, and A. J

  5. A Comprehensive Modeling Approach Towards Understanding and Prediction of the Alaskan Coastal System Response to Changes in an Ice-diminished Arctic

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2009-01-01

    Walczowski , 2002; Maslowski et al., 2001; Maslowski et al., 2000; Clement et al., 2005; Clement et al., 2007; Cassano et al., 2001; Cassano et al., 2006a...Geophys. Res- Biogeosciences, 112, G04S49, doi:10.1029/2006JG000332. Clement, J.L., Maslowski, W., Cooper, L.W., Grebmeier, J.M., Walczowski , W. (2005...the flow of the Alaskan Stream, J. Geophys. Res., 113, C07036, doi:10.1029/2007JC004341. Maslowski, W., D. Marble, W. Walczowski , U. Schauer, J. L

  6. Tundra burning in 2007 - Did sea ice retreat matter?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Alexeev, Vladimir A.; Euskirchen, Eugénie S.; Cherry, Jessica E.; Busey, Robert C.

    2015-06-01

    The goal of this study was to assess the importance of the 2007 sea ice retreat for hydrologic conditions on the Alaskan North Slope, and how this may have influenced the outbreak of tundra fires in this region. This study concentrates on two years, 2007 and 1996, with different arctic sea ice conditions and tundra fire activity. The year of 2007 is characterized by a low summer sea ice extent (second lowest) and high tundra fire activity, while 1996 had high sea ice extent, and few tundra fires. Atmospheric lateral boundary forcing from the NCEP/NCAR Reanalysis drove the Weather Research and Forecast (WRF) model, along with varying sea ice surface forcing designed to delineate the role of sea ice. WRF runs successfully reproduced the differences between 1996 and 2007. Surprisingly, replacing sea ice conditions in 1996 run by those from 2007 and vice versa (2007 run with 1996 sea ice) did not change the overall picture. The atmospheric circulation in August of 1996 included a significant low-pressure system over the Beaufort and Chukchi Seas. However, in 2007, a high-pressure system dominated the circulation over the Beaufort Sea. It is argued that this difference in large-scale patterns, rather than retreat of sea ice, was responsible for anomalously dry and warm atmospheric conditions over the North Slope in summer and autumn 2007, suitable for high tundra fire activity. Circulation in 2012 is contrasted with that in 2007 to further stress its importance for local weather on the North Slope.

  7. Vertical profiles of trapped greenhouse gases in Alaskan permafrost active layers before the spring thaw

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Byun, Eunji; Yang, Ji-woong; Kim, Yongwon; Ahn, Jinho

    2015-04-01

    Seasonally frozen ground over permafrost is important in controlling annual greenhouse gas exchange between permafrost and atmosphere. Soil microbes decompose soil carbon and generate carbon dioxide and methane when they become activated. However, the actual greenhouse gas emission follows various efflux pathways. For example, seasonal freezing of the top soil layers can either restrain or press the gas emission from deeper layers. It has been reported that abrupt release of methane during spring is attributable to the emission of trapped gases that had failed to be released instantly after formation (1, 2). In order to examine the seasonally trapped greenhouse gases, we drilled five Alaskan permafrost cores before spring thaw; one from coastal tundra, two from typical boreal forests, one from area where fire occurred, and one from peat accumulated sites. Vertical profiles of carbon dioxide and methane concentrations were obtained with 5-10 cm depth intervals. We found methane peaks from two cores, indicating inhibition of methane efflux. We also analyzed organic carbon, nitrogen and water contents and compared them with the greenhouse gas profiles. We are continuing analysis for the soil temperature profiles of the sampling boreholes because the detailed temperature information might be related to microbial activity, and can be used as indirect indicators of soil water freezing and latent heat influences at some active layer depth (zero curtain effects). All the high-resolution analyses for subsurface environments may help to improve understanding greenhouse gas emission from permafrost regions. 1. Mastepanov M, et al. (2008) Large tundra methane burst during onset of freezing. Nature 456(7222):628-630. 2. Song C, et al. (2012) Large methane emission upon spring thaw from natural wetlands in the northern permafrost region. Environmental Research Letters 7(3):034009.

  8. Spatiotemporal patterns of tundra fires: late-Quaternary charcoal records from Alaska

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chipman, M. L.; Hudspith, V.; Higuera, P. E.; Duffy, P. A.; Kelly, R.; Oswald, W. W.; Hu, F. S.

    2015-07-01

    Anthropogenic climate change has altered many ecosystem processes in the Arctic tundra and may have resulted in unprecedented fire activity. Evaluating the significance of recent fires requires knowledge from the paleofire record because observational data in the Arctic span only several decades, much shorter than the natural fire rotation in Arctic tundra regions. Here we report results of charcoal analysis on lake sediments from four Alaskan lakes to infer the broad spatial and temporal patterns of tundra-fire occurrence over the past 35 000 years. Background charcoal accumulation rates are low in all records (range is 0-0.05 pieces cm-2 yr-1), suggesting minimal biomass burning across our study areas. Charcoal peak analysis reveals that the mean fire-return interval (FRI; years between consecutive fire events) ranged from ca. 1650 to 6050 years at our sites, and that the most recent fire events occurred from ca. 880 to 7030 years ago, except for the CE 2007 Anaktuvuk River Fire. These mean FRI estimates are longer than the fire rotation periods estimated for the past 63 years in the areas surrounding three of the four study lakes. This result suggests that the frequency of tundra burning was higher over the recent past compared to the late Quaternary in some tundra regions. However, the ranges of FRI estimates from our paleofire records overlap with the expected values based on fire-rotation-period estimates from the observational fire data, and the differences are statistically insignificant. Together with previous tundra-fire reconstructions, these data suggest that the rate of tundra burning was spatially variable and that fires were extremely rare in our study areas throughout the late Quaternary. Given the rarity of tundra burning over multiple millennia in our study areas and the pronounced effects of fire on tundra ecosystem processes such as carbon cycling, dramatic tundra ecosystem changes are expected if anthropogenic climate change leads to more

  9. Spatiotemporal patterns of tundra fires: late-Quaternary charcoal records from Alaska

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chipman, M. L.; Hudspith, V.; Higuera, P. E.; Duffy, P. A.; Kelly, R.; Oswald, W. W.; Hu, F. S.

    2015-02-01

    Anthropogenic climate change has altered many ecosystem processes in the Arctic tundra and may have resulted in unprecedented fire activity. Evaluating the significance of recent fires requires knowledge from the paleo-fire record because observational data in the Arctic span only several decades, much shorter than the natural fire rotation in Arctic tundra regions. Here we report results of charcoal analysis on lake sediments from four Alaskan lakes to infer the broad spatial and temporal patterns of tundra fire occurrence over the past 35 000 years. Background charcoal accumulation rates are low in all records (range = 0-0.05 pieces cm-2 year-1), suggesting minimal biomass burning across our study areas. Charcoal peak analysis reveals that the mean fire return interval (FRI; years between consecutive fire events) ranged from 1648 to 6045 years at our sites, and that the most recent fire events occurred from 882 to 7031 years ago, except for the CE 2007 Anaktuvuk River Fire. These mean FRI estimates are longer than the fire rotation periods estimated for the past 63 years in the areas surrounding three of the four study lakes. This result suggests that the frequency of tundra burning was higher over the recent past compared to the late Quaternary in some tundra regions. However, the ranges of FRI estimates from our paleo-fire records overlap with the expected values based on fire-rotation-period estimates from the observational fire data, and thus quantitative differences are not significant. Together with previous tundra-fire reconstructions, these data suggest that the rate of tundra burning was spatially variable and that fires were extremely rare in our study areas throughout the late Quaternary. Given the rarity of tundra burning over multiple millennia in our study areas and the pronounced effects of fire on tundra ecosystem processes such as carbon cycling, dramatic tundra ecosystem changes are expected if anthropogenic climate change leads to more frequent

  10. Rapid Vegetational Change in Coastal North America: The Response to Climate Since the LGM

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Peteet, Dorothy; Kneller, Margaret

    1999-01-01

    The late-glacial interval provided rapid shifts in climate which are mirrored by dramatic vegetational changes in North America. Through a transect of lake and mire sites from Connecticut to Virginia on the east coast and Kodiak Island on the western coast, we trace the warming following the LGM with the response of forests and tundra. A brief cold reversal in Virginia is seen from 12,260 to 12,200. The subsequent longer and extreme Younger Dryas event is marked in the southern New England - New Jersey region by dramatic boreal and deciduous forest changes. In the southeastern US, forests also change rapidly, with hemlock forest expansion suggesting increased moisture. In Kodiak Island, the warm, moist tundra of the Bolling/Allerod is replaced by colder, windswept Empetrum-dominated tundra during the Younger Dryas. The Pleistocene/Holocene shift in vegetation is remarkably pronounced in eastern North America as well as the Alaskan coastline. Response time of vegetation to climate change appears to be on the order of decades throughout these coastal locations, probably because of the proximity of sites to important ecotonal boundaries, and the magnitude of the events. Even in Virginia's Holocene record, a cold reversal inferred from increases in spruce and fir is noted at 7500 C14 yr BP. This response of the forests to a short-lived cooling shows the sensitivity of the biosphere to a rapid climate shifts.

  11. New York's TUNDRA.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    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)

  12. Structural complexity and land-surface energy exchange along a gradient from arctic tundra to boreal forest

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Thompson, C.; Beringer, J.; Chapin, F. S.; McGuire, A.D.

    2004-01-01

    Question: Current climate changes in the Alaskan Arctic, which are characterized by increases in temperature and length of growing season, could alter vegetation structure, especially through increases in shrub cover or the movement of treeline. These changes in vegetation structure have consequences for the climate system. What is the relationship between structural complexity and partitioning of surface energy along a gradient from tundra through shrub tundra to closed canopy forest? Location: Arctic tundra-boreal forest transition in the Alaskan Arctic. Methods: Along this gradient of increasing canopy complexity, we measured key vegetation characteristics, including community composition, biomass, cover, height, leaf area index and stem area index. We relate these vegetation characteristics to albedo and the partitioning of net radiation into ground, latent, and sensible heating fluxes. Results: Canopy complexity increased along the sequence from tundra to forest due to the addition of new plant functional types. This led to non-linear changes in biomass, cover, and height in the understory. The increased canopy complexity resulted in reduced ground heat fluxes, relatively conserved latent heat fluxes and increased sensible heat fluxes. The localized warming associated with increased sensible heating over more complex canopies may amplify regional warming, causing further vegetation change in the Alaskan Arctic.

  13. Social indicators study of Alaskan Coastal Villages I. Key informant summaries. Volume 2. Schedule B regions (Bristol Bay, Kodiak, Bering Straits). Final report

    SciTech Connect

    Brelsford, T.; Fienup-Riordan, A.; Jorgensen, J.; McNabb, S.; Petrivelli, P.

    1992-08-01

    The focus of this report is on Alaska Natives--Inupiaq and Yupik Eskimos, Athabascans, and Aleuts--for two important reasons: (1) Alaska Natives are numerically dominant populations in rural areas closest to potential offshore oil development sites and (2) their economic adjustments are most vulnerable to potential impacts from such development. This report is divided into Schedules A, B, and C. Comprising Schedules A and B are the study areas originally identified by Minerals Management Service for this study (North Slope, NANA, Bering Straits, Calista, Bristol Bay, Aleutian-Pribilof Islands, and Kodiak regions). Schedule C is comprised of communities that were added subsequent to the Exxon Valdez oil spill of 1989 in the Prince William Sound and Cook Inlet regions. One aim of this study was to document the attitudes and belief systems or ideologies about quality of life and well-being in the coastal, rural portions of Alaska.

  14. Women and Minorities in Alaskan Aviation. Alaskan Equity Publication.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Dordan, Mary Lou; Nicholson, Deborah

    This resource guide tells the story of Alaskan women and minority aviators and those in aviation-related businesses, from the early 20th century to the present. Developed for secondary students but also suitable for younger students, the guide combines six accounts of Alaskan women and minority aviators with classroom activities centered around…

  15. Oil production in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge: the technology and the Alaskan oil context

    SciTech Connect

    Powers, L.M.

    1989-02-01

    This report presents the results of an assessment of issues focusing on the oil-field technology being used to develop the Alaskan North Slope's oil resources and the likely configuration of that technology as it might be applied in the future to the coastal plain and the prospects for future North Slope oil production, especially the likelihood that the flow of oil through the Trans Alaskan Pipeline System will suffer a serious decline during the next decade.

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

    PubMed

    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

  17. Alaskan Commodities Irradiation Project

    SciTech Connect

    Zarling, J.P.; Swanson, R.B.; Logan, R.R.; Das, D.K.; Lewis, C.E.; Workman, W.G.; Tumeo, M.A.; Hok, C.I.; Birklid, C.A.; Bennett, F.L.

    1988-12-01

    The ninety-ninth US Congress commissioned a six-state food irradiation research and development program to evaluate the commercial potential of this technology. Hawaii, Washington, Iowa, Oklahoma and Florida as well as Alaska have participated in the national program; various food products including fishery products, red meats, tropical and citrus fruits and vegetables have been studied. The purpose of the Alaskan study was to review and evaluate those factors related to the technical and economic feasibility of an irradiator in Alaska. This options analysis study will serve as a basis for determining the state's further involvement in the development of food irradiation technology. 40 refs., 50 figs., 53 tabs.

  18. Cold season emissions dominate the Arctic tundra methane budget

    PubMed Central

    Zona, Donatella; Gioli, Beniamino; 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. PMID:26699476

  19. Cold season emissions dominate the Arctic tundra methane budget

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    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.

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

    PubMed

    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.

  1. An Alaskan legend

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Mann, H.; Blodgett, R.B.

    2009-01-01

    Jack Lee is a prominent personality, an Alaskan individualist and a skeptic worthy of remembrance if for no other reason than being inextricably associated with the catastrophic Katmai eruption in 1912. Jack remains a provocative reminder of Alaska's pre-1958 drilling and was quite possibly the earliest observer (excepting natives and possibly Russians) of the oil seeps in the area now encompassed by the Becharof National Wildlife Refuge. His observation of the impressive live oil seeps in the Ugashik and Becharof Lakes area, and his subsequent involvement in the early drilling entirely consumed his future interests. He is a firm believer that individualism and suspicion are powerful tools when forced to reconsider alternatives to readily accepted interpretations of modern exploration results. His individualism and sometimes annoying, but thought-provoking skepticism remains useful in any field where clich??s provide safe guards from new concepts.

  2. Decade time scale plot to landscape scale change in tundra ecosystem structure and function near Barrow, AK

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lin, D. H.; Johnson, D. R.; Lara, M. J.; Villarreal, S.; Hollister, R. D.; Webber, P. J.; Tweedie, C. E.

    2012-12-01

    Several models suggest shifts in tundra ecosystem structure and function are likely to affect the future state of the Arctic system and how these shifts may impact the global system. Validation of such predictions remains a challenge, however, due to the lack of sustained environmental observations throughout much of the Arctic. In the absence of sustained monitoring, relocating, rescuing, and retrospectively resampling historic research sites and datasets has proven to be an effective means to establish likely change scenarios and develop hypotheses of future change trajectories. This study, synthesizes several recently published works that have used this retrospective approach to explore plot to landscape change in tundra ecosystem structure and function near Barrow, Alaska over the past half Century. This study is a contribution to the International Polar Year 'Back to the Future' project IPY-BTF, IPY # 512). At the landscape level, analysis of land cover change of time series high spatial resolution aerial and satellite imagery spanning 1948-2008 show an overall increase in the extent of dry and moist land cover and open water, and a decrease in the extent of wet and aquatic, land cover types. The 'drying' trend noted for the coastal landscape of Barrow is similar to that noted for four other Alaskan tundra landscapes but in the same study, the Barrow landscape also showed the most dramatic change in wet and aquatic land cover types. Plot level studies of sites, established in 1972 during the International Biological Program, that have been resampled three times show that species richness and diversity has increased and that wet plant communities have changed more than dry plant communities. An analysis of ecosystem function coupled to this plot level study suggests the greatest functional change has occurred in aquatic and wet plant communities where methane efflux and net ecosystem production (NEP) has increased and albedo and the normalized difference

  3. The 1977 tundra fire at Kokolik River, Alaska

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hall, D.; Brown, J.; Johnson, L.

    1981-01-01

    During the summer of 1977, fire totaled 44 sq km of tundra vegetation according to measurements using LANDSAT imagery. Based on the experience gained from analysis of this fire using ground observations, satellite imagery, and topographic maps, it appears that natural drainages form effective fire breaks on the subdued relief of the Arctic coastal plain and northern foothills. It is confirmed that the intensity of the fire is related to vegetation type and to the moisture content of the organic rich soils.

  4. Aerial monitoring of marine waterfowl in the Alaskan Beaufort Sea.

    PubMed

    Johnson, Stephen R; Noel, Lynn E; Gazey, William J; Hawkes, Virgil C

    2005-09-01

    The purpose of this study was to design and test a monitoring protocol for marine waterfowl in the central Alaskan Beaufort Sea. The study provides an important case-study of how a long-term monitoring program may be affected by unanticipated human disturbances. Because of its overwhelming and widespread abundance, relatively sedentary behavior, ease in counting, and the extensive historical database, the long-tailed duck (Clangula hyemalis) was selected as the focal species. Two null hypotheses were formulated concerning potential changes in the numbers and distribution of long-tailed ducks in relation to disturbance in an industrial study area, compared to a reference study area located about 50 km to the east. A 9-year historical database (1977-1984, 1989) of long-tailed duck densities and other important data recorded during systematic aerial surveys was analyzed retrospectively using multiple regression techniques. The retrospective analyses determined which of several predictor variables recorded were significantly related to long-tailed duck density. Separate analyses were conducted for two periods: (1) the overall period when long-tailed ducks were present in the lagoon study areas, and (2) the shorter adult male molt period. The results of the two analyses indicated that 57% and 68%, respectively, of the total variation in long-tailed duck density during the two periods could be explained by variables recorded during the surveys. Predictor variables representing habitat, day of the year, time of day, amount of ice, and wave height recorded on-transect during surveys were most closely associated with long-tailed duck density. Measurement error during the surveys, and influences outside the study area such as nesting success in tundra habitats and mortality during migration and in over-wintering areas likely also had strong influences on the results, but these factors were not measurable in our study. Based on results of the retrospective analyses, a long

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    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. Tundra ponds of the Yukon Delta, Alaska, and their macroinvertebrate communities.

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Maciolek, J.A.

    1989-01-01

    The Yukon Delta, a low alluvial tundra in western Alaska, has more than 105 thaw-basin ponds within its 70000 km2 area. In 1984 and 1985, 68 ponds in three interior areas of the Delta were surveyed to determine limnological features, macroinvertebrate fauna, and trophic character. Ponds ranged up to 90 ha in area, 2 m in depth, and 17 m in elevation, and occurred in various temporal stages of growth and senescence. Among the 18 major invertebrate taxa collected, in order of decreasing frequency of occurrence, Trichoptera, Hemiptera, Diptera, Pelecypoda, Isopoda, Coleoptera, Gastropoda, and Oligochaeta were found in over 50% of the ponds. Trichoptera, the only taxon occurring in all ponds, was represented by 22 species of 6 families. The average Delta pond had 6.6 of the nine more common taxa. This measure of faunal richness was similar among study areas but was higher in low-tundra (sea level) ponds and in older ponds on raised tundra. In comparison, lentic invertebrate communities in five other areas of Alaskan and Canadian tundra had fewer taxa and also lower average richness based on occurrence of the same nine taxa.

  7. Influence of BRDF on NDVI and biomass estimations of Alaska Arctic tundra

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Buchhorn, Marcel; Raynolds, Martha K.; Walker, Donald A.

    2016-12-01

    Satellites provide the only practical source of data for estimating biomass of large and remote areas such as the Alaskan Arctic. Researchers have found that the normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI) correlates well with biomass sampled on the ground. However, errors in NDVI and biomass estimates due to bidirectional reflectance distribution function (BRDF) effects are not well reported in the literature. Sun-sensor-object geometries and sensor band-width affect the BRDF, and formulas relating NDVI to ground-sampled biomass vary between projects. We examined the effects of these different variables on five studies that estimated above-ground tundra biomass of two common arctic vegetation types that dominate the Alaska tundra, moist acidic tussock tundra (MAT) and moist non-acidic tundra (MNT). We found that biomass estimates were up to 33% (excluding extremes) more sensitive than NDVI to BRDF effects. Variation between the sensors resulted in differences in NDVI of under 3% over all viewing geometries, and wider bands were more stable in their biomass estimates than narrow bands. MAT was more sensitive than MNT to BRDF effects due to irregularities in surface reflectance created by the tussocks. Finally, we found that studies that sampled only a narrow range of biomass and NDVI produced equations that were more difficult to correct for BRDF effects.

  8. Anurans in a Subarctic Tundra Landscape Near Cape Churchill, Manitoba

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Reiter, M.E.; Boal, C.W.; Andersen, D.E.

    2008-01-01

    Distribution, abundance, and habitat relationships of anurans inhabiting subarctic regions are poorly understood, and anuran monitoring protocols developed for temperate regions may not be applicable across large roadless areas of northern landscapes. In addition, arctic and subarctic regions of North America are predicted to experience changes in climate and, in some areas, are experiencing habitat alteration due to high rates of herbivory by breeding and migrating waterfowl. To better understand subarctic anuran abundance, distribution, and habitat associations, we conducted anuran calling surveys in the Cape Churchill region of Wapusk National Park, Manitoba, Canada, in 2004 and 2005. We conducted surveys along ~l-km transects distributed across three landscape types (coastal tundra, interior sedge meadow-tundra, and boreal forest-tundra interface) to estimate densities and probabilities of detection of Boreal Chorus Frogs (Pseudacris maculata) and Wood Frogs (Lithobates sylvaticus). We detected a Wood Frog or Boreal Chorus Frog on 22 (87%) of 26 transects surveyed, but probability of detection varied between years and species and among landscape types. Estimated densities of both species increased from the coastal zone inland toward the boreal forest edge. Our results suggest anurans occur across all three landscape types in our study area, but that species-specific spatial patterns exist in their abundances. Considerations for both spatial and temporal variation in abundance and detection probability need to be incorporated into surveys and monitoring programs for subarctic anurans.

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

    PubMed Central

    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

  10. Marine animals significantly increase tundra N2O and CH4 emissions in maritime Antarctica

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhu, Renbin; Liu, Yashu; Xu, Hua; Ma, Dawei; Jiang, Shan

    2013-12-01

    studies on greenhouse gas emissions from animals concentrated on domestic animals, with limited data available from wild animals. The number of marine animals is potentially large in coastal Antarctica. In this paper, N2O and CH4 emissions were investigated from a penguin colony, a seal colony, a skua colony, the adjacent animal-lacking tundra, and background tundra sites to test the effects of marine animals on their fluxes in maritime Antarctica. Extremely high N2O emissions occurred in the penguin puddles (mean 392 µg N2O m-2 h-1) and seal wallows (mean 579 µg N2O m-2 h-1). The N2O emissions from animal colony tundra (13-57 µg N2O m-2 h-1) are much higher than those from the animal-lacking tundra, whereas the background tundra showed negligible N2O fluxes. Penguin puddles and seal wallows were stronger CH4 emitters than animal colony tundra soils, while animal-lacking tundra soils were strong CH4 sinks. Overall high N2O and CH4 emissions were modulated by soil physical and chemical processes associated with marine animal activities: sufficient supply of the nutrients NH4+-N and NO3--N, total nitrogen, and total organic carbon from marine animal excreta, animal tramp, and high soil water-filled pore space. Laboratory incubation experiments further confirmed that penguin and seal colony soils produced much higher N2O and CH4 emissions than animal-lacking tundra soils. Our results indicate that marine animal colonies are the hot spots for N2O and CH4 emissions in maritime Antarctica, and even at the global scale, and current climate warming will further increase their emissions.

  11. Diffusive summer methane flux from lakes to the atmosphere in the Alaskan arctic zone

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sasaki, Masafumi; Kim, Yong-Won; Uchida, Masao; Utsumi, Motoo

    2016-09-01

    Dissolved methane concentrations (DM) in thirty lakes along Dalton Highway were measured in the open water season in 2008 and in 2012 to estimate diffusive flux from lake surfaces and to verify the enhancive effect of thawing permafrost on flux in the Alaskan arctic zone. An inverse relationship between lake size and DM was obtained in lakes in the regions as was found for European boreal lakes. There was no evidence indicating an effect of thawing permafrost on DM in these lakes. DM in lakes in the taiga region, however, were higher than those in the tundra region. All lake images on a map larger than 0.001 km2 were analyzed, and the area and number distributions were obtained in order to calculate regional mass fluxes of diffusive methane. The total area of all lakes (339,733) in the Alaskan Arctic zone (northern region from 64.00°N) is 25.5 × 103 km2. Regional summer diffusive flux of methane from lakes in the Alaskan arctic zone was estimated to be 22 Gg CH4 yr-1. Average diffusive flux density (per lake area) was 0.86 g CH4 m-2 yr-1, which is similar to that in European boreal lakes.

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

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    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.

  13. Alaska North Slope Tundra Travel Model and Validation Study

    SciTech Connect

    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 lack

  14. Deposition of ozone to tundra

    SciTech Connect

    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. NASA, Langley Research Center, Hampton, VA New York State Univ., Albany )

    1992-10-01

    Eddy correlation measurements of O3 deposition fluxes to tundra during the Arctic Boundary Layer Expedition (ABLE 3A) are reported. The mean O[sub 3] 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 O[sub 3] 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 O[sub 3] 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 O[sub 3] 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 O[sub 3] concentrations in the summertime Arctic troposphere. 34 refs.

  15. Deposition of ozone to tundra

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    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.

  16. Examining vertical patterns in Arctic tundra shrub canopies: Implications for carbon cycling in a changing environment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Heskel, M.; Atkin, O.; Turnbull, M.; Rastetter, E.; Griffin, K. L.

    2012-12-01

    Climate change is facilitating the northward encroachment and expansion of woody shrub species into the Arctic tundra, which in turn is altering a number of physical and biogeochemical processes that are likely to affect how carbon is cycled in this region. Greater shrub presence also increases leaf area index and canopy complexity in the tundra, introducing the potential for vertical variation in nitrogen, photosynthesis, and respiration through the canopy. For these reasons, Arctic tundra shrub communities represent an ecologically relevant case study for investigating carbon cycling-nitrogen relationships and testing optimization models. Here, we measured photosynthesis, respiration in the dark and light, the light inhibition of respiration, stomatal conductance, leaf nitrogen, and related leaf traits at different heights representing variation in light availability in multiple Arctic Alaskan shrub communities dominated by Salix pulchra and Betula nana to examine if the relatively low-stature canopies exhibit vertical patterns. Highest rates of photosynthesis and respiration (P < 0.0001) were observed at the top of the canopy, suggesting substrate-limitation of respiration at lower, more shaded canopy levels. Leaves at the top of the canopy also exhibited the lowest inhibition of respiration by light (NS), and the highest nitrogen concentrations. (P < 0.05) implying a relationship between photosynthesis, nitrogen, and a relaxation of light-inhibition to optimize metabolic efficiency. Data from this study was also used to test leaf-level and canopy nitrogen optimization models. These data emphasize the need to include canopy complexity in tundra carbon models, as neglecting physiological differences through a canopy may lead to an underestimation of stored carbon.

  17. Social indicators study of Alaskan Coastal Villages I. Key informant summaries. Volume 1. Schedule a regions (North Slope, Nana, Calista, Aleutian-Pribilof). Social and economic studies. Final report

    SciTech Connect

    Brelsford, T.; Fienup-Riordan, A.; Jorgensen, J.; McNabb, S.; Petrivelli, P.

    1992-08-01

    The focus of this report is on Alaska Natives--Inupiaq and Yupik Eskimos, Athabascans, and Aleuts--for two important reasons: (1) Alaska Natives are numerically dominant populations in rural areas closest to potential offshore oil development sites and (2) their economic adjustments are most vulnerable to potential impacts from such development. This report is divided into Schedules A, B, and C. Comprising Schedules A and B are the study areas originally identified by Minerals Management Service for this study (North Slope, NANA, Bering Straits, Calista, Bristol Bay, Aleutian-Pribilof Islands, and Kodiak regions). Schedule C is comprised of communities that were added subsequent to the Exxon Valdez oil spill of 1989 in the Prince William Sound and Cook Inlet regions. One aim of this study was to document the attitudes and belief systems or ideologies about quality of life and well-being in the coastal, rural portions of Alaska.

  18. MAIN CAR FERRY TERMINALS AT ALASKAN WAY AND MARION STREET. ...

    Library of Congress Historic Buildings Survey, Historic Engineering Record, Historic Landscapes Survey

    MAIN CAR FERRY TERMINALS AT ALASKAN WAY AND MARION STREET. NOTE PIONEER SQUARE PARK ADJACENT TO ONE OF SEATTLE'S EARLY SKYSCRAPERS. - Alaskan Way Viaduct and Battery Street Tunnel, Seattle, King County, WA

  19. Consumption of atmospheric methane by tundra soils

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Whalen, S. C.; Reeburgh, W. S.

    1990-01-01

    The results of field and laboratory experiments on methane consumption by tundra soils are reported. For methane concentrations ranging from below to well above ambient, moist soils are found to consume methane rapidly; in nonwaterlogged soils, equilibration with atmospheric methane is fast relative to microbial oxidation. It is concluded that lowering of the water table in tundra as a resulting from a warmer, drier climate will decrease methane fluxes and could cause these areas to provide negative feedback for atmospheric methane.

  20. Cumulative impacts of oil fields on northern Alaskan landscapes

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Walker, D.A.; Webber, P.J.; Binnian, Emily F.; Everett, K.R.; Lederer, N.D.; Nordstrand, E.A.; Walker, M.D.

    1987-01-01

    Proposed further developments on Alaska's Arctic Coastal Plain raise questions about cumulative effects on arctic tundra ecosystems of development of multiple large oil fields. Maps of historical changes to the Prudhoe Bay Oil Field show indirect impacts can lag behind planned developments by many years and the total area eventually disturbed can greatly exceed the planned area of construction. For example, in the wettest parts of the oil field (flat thaw-lake plains), flooding and thermokarst covered more than twice the area directly affected by roads and other construction activities. Protecting critical wildlife habitat is the central issue for cumulative impact analysis in northern Alaska. Comprehensive landscape planning with the use of geographic information system technology and detailed geobotanical maps can help identify and protect areas of high wildlife use.

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

    SciTech Connect

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

    1992-02-01

    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.

  2. 7 CFR 1780.49 - Rural or Native Alaskan villages.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 12 2010-01-01 2010-01-01 false Rural or Native Alaskan villages. 1780.49 Section... § 1780.49 Rural or Native Alaskan villages. (a) General. (1) This section contains regulations for providing grants to remedy the dire sanitation conditions in rural Alaskan villages using funds...

  3. Cardiovascular Deaths among Alaskan Natives, 1980-86.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Middaugh, John P.

    1990-01-01

    Analyzes death certificate data to discover the number of deaths of Alaskan natives caused by cardiovascular disease. Rates from cardiovascular diseases and atherosclerosis from 1980-86 among Alaskan natives were lower than rates among other Alaskans, while death rates from other causes were higher. Discusses the possible impact of diet. (JS)

  4. Polygonal tundra geomorphological change in response to warming alters future CO2 and CH4 flux on the Barrow Peninsula.

    PubMed

    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

  5. Tundra Rehabilitation in Alaska's Arctic

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    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

  6. Climate-Driven Effects of Fire on Winter Habitat for Caribou in the Alaskan-Yukon Arctic

    PubMed Central

    Gustine, David D.; Brinkman, Todd J.; Lindgren, Michael A.; Schmidt, Jennifer I.; Rupp, T. Scott; Adams, Layne G.

    2014-01-01

    Climatic warming has direct implications for fire-dominated disturbance patterns in northern ecosystems. A transforming wildfire regime is altering plant composition and successional patterns, thus affecting the distribution and potentially the abundance of large herbivores. Caribou (Rangifer tarandus) are an important subsistence resource for communities throughout the north and a species that depends on terrestrial lichen in late-successional forests and tundra systems. Projected increases in area burned and reductions in stand ages may reduce lichen availability within caribou winter ranges. Sufficient reductions in lichen abundance could alter the capacity of these areas to support caribou populations. To assess the potential role of a changing fire regime on winter habitat for caribou, we used a simulation modeling platform, two global circulation models (GCMs), and a moderate emissions scenario to project annual fire characteristics and the resulting abundance of lichen-producing vegetation types (i.e., spruce forests and tundra >60 years old) across a modeling domain that encompassed the winter ranges of the Central Arctic and Porcupine caribou herds in the Alaskan-Yukon Arctic. Fires were less numerous and smaller in tundra compared to spruce habitats throughout the 90-year projection for both GCMs. Given the more likely climate trajectory, we projected that the Porcupine caribou herd, which winters primarily in the boreal forest, could be expected to experience a greater reduction in lichen-producing winter habitats (−21%) than the Central Arctic herd that wintered primarily in the arctic tundra (−11%). Our results suggest that caribou herds wintering in boreal forest will undergo fire-driven reductions in lichen-producing habitats that will, at a minimum, alter their distribution. Range shifts of caribou resulting from fire-driven changes to winter habitat may diminish access to caribou for rural communities that reside in fire-prone areas. PMID

  7. Climate-driven effects of fire on winter habitat for caribou in the Alaskan-Yukon Arctic

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Gustine, David D.; Brinkman, Todd J.; Lindgren, Michael A.; Schmidt, Jennifer I.; Rupp, T. Scott; Adams, Layne G.

    2014-01-01

    Climatic warming has direct implications for fire-dominated disturbance patterns in northern ecosystems. A transforming wildfire regime is altering plant composition and successional patterns, thus affecting the distribution and potentially the abundance of large herbivores. Caribou (Rangifer tarandus) are an important subsistence resource for communities throughout the north and a species that depends on terrestrial lichen in late-successional forests and tundra systems. Projected increases in area burned and reductions in stand ages may reduce lichen availability within caribou winter ranges. Sufficient reductions in lichen abundance could alter the capacity of these areas to support caribou populations. To assess the potential role of a changing fire regime on winter habitat for caribou, we used a simulation modeling platform, two global circulation models (GCMs), and a moderate emissions scenario to project annual fire characteristics and the resulting abundance of lichen-producing vegetation types (i.e., spruce forests and tundra >60 years old) across a modeling domain that encompassed the winter ranges of the Central Arctic and Porcupine caribou herds in the Alaskan-Yukon Arctic. Fires were less numerous and smaller in tundra compared to spruce habitats throughout the 90-year projection for both GCMs. Given the more likely climate trajectory, we projected that the Porcupine caribou herd, which winters primarily in the boreal forest, could be expected to experience a greater reduction in lichen-producing winter habitats (−21%) than the Central Arctic herd that wintered primarily in the arctic tundra (−11%). Our results suggest that caribou herds wintering in boreal forest will undergo fire-driven reductions in lichen-producing habitats that will, at a minimum, alter their distribution. Range shifts of caribou resulting from fire-driven changes to winter habitat may diminish access to caribou for rural communities that reside in fire-prone areas.

  8. Climate-driven effects of fire on winter habitat for caribou in the Alaskan-Yukon Arctic.

    PubMed

    Gustine, David D; Brinkman, Todd J; Lindgren, Michael A; Schmidt, Jennifer I; Rupp, T Scott; Adams, Layne G

    2014-01-01

    Climatic warming has direct implications for fire-dominated disturbance patterns in northern ecosystems. A transforming wildfire regime is altering plant composition and successional patterns, thus affecting the distribution and potentially the abundance of large herbivores. Caribou (Rangifer tarandus) are an important subsistence resource for communities throughout the north and a species that depends on terrestrial lichen in late-successional forests and tundra systems. Projected increases in area burned and reductions in stand ages may reduce lichen availability within caribou winter ranges. Sufficient reductions in lichen abundance could alter the capacity of these areas to support caribou populations. To assess the potential role of a changing fire regime on winter habitat for caribou, we used a simulation modeling platform, two global circulation models (GCMs), and a moderate emissions scenario to project annual fire characteristics and the resulting abundance of lichen-producing vegetation types (i.e., spruce forests and tundra >60 years old) across a modeling domain that encompassed the winter ranges of the Central Arctic and Porcupine caribou herds in the Alaskan-Yukon Arctic. Fires were less numerous and smaller in tundra compared to spruce habitats throughout the 90-year projection for both GCMs. Given the more likely climate trajectory, we projected that the Porcupine caribou herd, which winters primarily in the boreal forest, could be expected to experience a greater reduction in lichen-producing winter habitats (-21%) than the Central Arctic herd that wintered primarily in the arctic tundra (-11%). Our results suggest that caribou herds wintering in boreal forest will undergo fire-driven reductions in lichen-producing habitats that will, at a minimum, alter their distribution. Range shifts of caribou resulting from fire-driven changes to winter habitat may diminish access to caribou for rural communities that reside in fire-prone areas.

  9. Mortality in tundra swans Cygnus columbianus

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Bartonek, J.C.; Serie, J.R.; Converse, K.A.

    1991-01-01

    Our paper identifies and examines the significance of hunting and non-hunting mortality affecting the Eastern Population (EP) and Western Population (WP) (see Serie & Bartonek 1991a) of Tundra Swans. Sport hunting (Serie & Bartonek 1991b), native subsistence hunting (Copp 1989, Stewart & Bernier 1989), malicious shooting (McKelvey & MacNeill 1981), avian cholera (Friend et al. 1981, Schroeder 1983), ecto- and endoparasites (Trauger & Bartonek 1977, Woebeser 1981), lead poisoning (Sherwood 1960, Friend et al. 1981), collision (Willard 1978), and drowning (Miller et al. 1986) have been documented as being direct or indirect causes of mortality in fledged Tundra Swans; but their relative importance remains unknown.

  10. [Regional and extra-local pollen in tundra pollen samples].

    PubMed

    Vasil'chuk, A K

    2005-01-01

    Patterns of pollen spectra formation in the tundra zone of Eurasia were considered. Changes in total pollen concentration were traced in subfossil pollen samples of the tundra zone. The data on subfossil pollen spectra were used to evaluate the proportion between local and regional plus extra-local components of tundra pollen samples as well as the changes in concentration of pollen of Scots and Siberian stone pines as well as of tree and shrub birches. The diameter of dwarf birch pollen was determined in different tundra subzones of Western Siberia. The role of extra-local and regional pollen was considered for all vegetation subzones of tundra.

  11. Alaskan North Slope petroleum systems

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Magoon, L.B.; Lillis, P.G.; Bird, K.J.; Lampe, C.; Peters, K.E.

    2003-01-01

    Six North Slope petroleum systems are identified, described, and mapped using oil-to-oil and oil-to-source rock correlations, pods of active source rock, and overburden rock packages. To map these systems, we assumed that: a) petroleum source rocks contain 3.2 wt. % organic carbon (TOC); b) immature oil-prone source rocks have hydrogen indices (HI) >300 (mg HC/gm TOC); c) the top and bottom of the petroleum (oil plus gas) window occur at vitrinite reflectance values of 0.6 and 1.0% Ro, respectively; and d) most hydrocarbons are expelled within the petroleum window. The six petroleum systems we have identified and mapped are: a) a southern system involving the Kuna-Lisburne source rock unit that was active during the Late Jurassic and Early Cretaceous; b) two western systems involving source rock in the Kingak-Blankenship, and GRZ-lower Torok source rock units that were active during the Albian; and c) three eastern systems involving the Shublik-Otuk, Hue Shale and Canning source rock units that were active during the Cenozoic. The GRZ-lower Torok in the west is correlative with the Hue Shale to the east. Four overburden rock packages controlled the time of expulsion and gross geometry of migration paths: a) a southern package of Early Cretaceous and older rocks structurally-thickened by early Brooks Range thrusting; b) a western package of Early Cretaceous rocks that filled the western part of the foreland basin; c) an eastern package of Late Cretaceous and Paleogene rocks that filled the eastern part of the foreland basin; and d) an offshore deltaic package of Neogene rocks deposited by the Colville, Canning, and Mackenzie rivers. This petroleum system poster is part of a series of Northern Alaska posters on modeling. The poster in this session by Saltus and Bird present gridded maps for the greater Northern Alaskan onshore and offshore that are used in the 3D modeling poster by Lampe and others. Posters on source rock units are by Keller and Bird as well as

  12. Infrasound Studies of Alaskan Volcanoes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    McNutt, S. R.; Arnoult, K.; Szuberla, C.; Olson, J. V.; Wilson, C. R.

    2010-12-01

    Infrasound has been used to study a number of Alaskan volcanic eruptions over the last 15 years. Arrays include the I53US array of 8 sensors in Fairbanks installed in 2002 under the CTBT umbrella; an array of 4 sensors installed at Okmok Volcano in summer 2010 by the Alaska Volcano Observatory (AVO); and a 6-sensor array installed in Dillingham in September 2010 by the UAF Infrasound Group. Individual sensors have been installed by AVO at Pavlof (1996), Shishaldin (1997), Augustine (2006), Fourpeaked (2006), and Redoubt (2009) volcanoes. These have been especially valuable because they provide precise source timing and signal strength that allow the correct identification of atmospheric paths. Small volcanic explosions have been recorded at local stations only for Pavlof, Shishaldin and Fourpeaked volcanoes. The more interesting large explosive eruptions have been recorded on both local stations and arrays from eruptions at Augustine in 2006 (13 events), Fourpeaked in 2006 (2 events), Cleveland in 2007 (1 event), Okmok in 2008 (1 sustained event), Kasatochi in 2008 (5 events), and Redoubt in 2009 (over 30 events). Pressures up to 6 Pa have been recorded for the largest Redoubt event at a distance of 547 km from the array, and 1.2 Pa for the largest Kasatochi event at a distance of 2104 km. We determined reduced pressures (equivalent pressure at 1 km assuming 1/r decay) and find that Kasatochi exceeds 2500 Pa and Redoubt 1600 Pa. The smaller explosive eruptions at Augustine yield reduced pressures of 40 to 300 Pa. There is reasonable correlation between measured pressures and signal durations and the ash cloud heights and tephra volumes, hence the infrasound data are useful for hazard assessment. However, the long travel times (3 sec per km) suggest that infrasound array data arrive too late for primary detection but are good for estimating other attributes such as size. Infrasound data may also be combined with seismic data to determine the partitioning of energy

  13. Methane flux time series for tundra environments

    SciTech Connect

    Whalen, S.C.; Reeburgh, W.E. )

    1988-12-01

    Seasonal measurements of net methane flux were made at permanent sites representing important components of arctic tundra. The sites include Eriophorum tussocks, intertussock depressions, moss-covered areas, and Carex stands. Methane fluxes showed high diel, seasonal, intra site, and between site variability. Eriophorum tussocks and Carex dominated methane release to the atmosphere, with mean annual net methane fluxes of 8.05 + or{minus}2.50 g CH{sub 4}/sq m and 4.88 + or{minus}0.73 g CH{sub 4}/sq m, respectively. Methane fluxes form the moss sites and intertussock depressions were much lower. Over 90% of the mean annual methane flux from the Eriophorum, intertussock depressions, and Carex sites occurred between thaw and freeze-up. Some 40% of the mean annual methane flux from the moss sites occurred during winter. Composite methane fluxes for tussock tundra and Carex-dominated wet meadow tundra environments were produced by weighting measured component fluxes according to areal coverage. Tussock and wet meadow tundra account for an estimated global methane emission of 19-33 Tg/yr. 39 refs., 7 figs., 2 tabs.

  14. Stochastic daily modeling of arctic tundra ecosystems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Erler, A.; Epstein, H. E.; Frazier, J.

    2011-12-01

    ArcVeg is a dynamic vegetation model that has simulated interannual variability of production and abundance of arctic tundra plant types in previous studies. In order to address the effects of changing seasonality on tundra plant community composition and productivity, we have uniquely adapted the model to operate on the daily timescale. Each section of the model-weather generation, nitrogen mineralization, and plant growth dynamics-are driven by daily fluctuations in simulated temperature conditions. These simulation dynamics are achieved by calibrating stochastic iterative loops and mathematical functions with raw field data. Air temperature is the fundamental driver in the model, parameterized by climate data collected in the field across numerous arctic tundra sites, and key daily statistics are extracted (mean and standard deviation of temperature for each day of the year). Nitrogen mineralization is calculated as an exponential function from the simulated temperature. The seasonality of plant growth is driven by the availability of nitrogen and constrained by historical patterns and dynamics of the remotely sensed normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI), as they pertain to the seasonal onset of growth. Here we describe the methods used for daily weather generation, nitrogen mineralization, and the daily competition among twelve plant functional types for nitrogen and subsequent growth. This still rather simple approach to vegetation dynamics has the capacity to generate complex relationships between seasonal patterns of temperature and arctic tundra vegetation community structure and function.

  15. Two mechanisms of aquatic and terrestrial habitat change along an Alaskan Arctic coastline

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Arp, Christopher D.; Jones, Benjamin M.; Schmutz, Joel A.; Urban, Frank E.; Jorgenson, M. Torre

    2010-01-01

    Arctic habitats at the interface between land and sea are particularly vulnerable to climate change. The northern Teshekpuk Lake Special Area (N-TLSA), a coastal plain ecosystem along the Beaufort Sea in northern Alaska, provides habitat for migratory waterbirds, caribou, and potentially, denning polar bears. The 60-km coastline of N-TLSA is experiencing increasing rates of coastline erosion and storm surge flooding far inland resulting in lake drainage and conversion of freshwater lakes to estuaries. These physical mechanisms are affecting upland tundra as well. To better understand how these processes are affecting habitat, we analyzed long-term observational records coupled with recent short-term monitoring. Nearly the entire coastline has accelerating rates of erosion ranging from 6 m/year from 1955 to 1979 and most recently peaking at 17 m/year from 2007 to 2009, yet an intensive monitoring site along a higher bluff (3–6 masl) suggested high interannual variability. The frequency and magnitude of storm events appears to be increasing along this coastline and these patterns correspond to a greater number of lake tapping and flooding events since 2000. For the entire N-TLSA, we estimate that 6% of the landscape consists of salt-burned tundra, while 41% is prone to storm surge flooding. This offset may indicate the relative frequency of low-magnitude flood events along the coastal fringe. Monitoring of coastline lakes confirms that moderate westerly storms create extensive flooding, while easterly storms have negligible effects on lakes and low-lying tundra. This study of two interacting physical mechanisms, coastal erosion and storm surge flooding, provides an important example of the complexities and data needs for predicting habitat change and biological responses along Arctic land–ocean interfaces.

  16. Offshore oil in the Alaskan Arctic

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Weeks, W. F.; Weller, G.

    1984-01-01

    Oil and gas deposits in the Alaskan Arctic are estimated to contain up to 40 percent of the remaining undiscovered crude oil and oil-equivalent natural gas within U.S. jurisdiction. Most (65 to 70 percent) of these estimated reserves are believed to occuur offshore beneath the shallow, ice-covered seas of the Alaskan continental shelf. Offshore recovery operations for such areas are far from routine, with the primary problems associated with the presence of ice. Some problems that must be resolved if efficient, cost-effective, environmentally safe, year-round offshore production is to be achieved include the accurate estimation of ice forces on offshore structures, the proper placement of pipelines beneath ice-produced gouges in the sea floor, and the cleanup of oil spills in pack ice areas.

  17. Offshore oil in the alaskan arctic.

    PubMed

    Weeks, W F; Weller, G

    1984-07-27

    Oil and gas deposits in the Alaskan Arctic are estimated to contain up to 40 percent of the remaining undiscovered crude oil and oil-equivalent nature gas within U.S. jurisdiction. Most (65 to 70 percent) of these estimated reserves are believed to occur offshore beneath the shallow, ice-covered seas, of the Alaskan continental shelf. Offshore recovery operations for such areas are far from routine, with the primary problems associated with the presence of ice. Some problems that must be resolved if efficient, cost-effective, environmentally safe, year-round offshore production is to be achieved include the accurate estimation of ice forces on offshore structures, the proper placement of pipelines beneath ice-produced gouges in the sea floor, and the cleanup of oil spills in pack ice areas.

  18. Flow velocities of Alaskan glaciers.

    PubMed

    Burgess, Evan W; Forster, Richard R; Larsen, Christopher F

    2013-01-01

    Our poor understanding of tidewater glacier dynamics remains the primary source of uncertainty in sea level rise projections. On the ice sheets, mass lost from tidewater calving exceeds the amount lost from surface melting. In Alaska, the magnitude of calving mass loss remains unconstrained, yet immense calving losses have been observed. With 20% of the global new-water sea level rise coming from Alaska, partitioning of mass loss sources in Alaska is needed to improve sea level rise projections. Here we present the first regionally comprehensive map of glacier flow velocities in Central Alaska. These data reveal that the majority of the regional downstream flux is constrained to only a few coastal glaciers. We find regional calving losses are 17.1 Gt a(-1), which is equivalent to 36% of the total annual mass change throughout Central Alaska.

  19. U. S. GEOLOGICAL SURVEY ALASKAN GOLD PROJECT.

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Antweiler, John C.; Cathrall, John; Tripp, Richard

    1984-01-01

    The United States Geological Survey has begun a state-wide study of Alaskan gold deposits. The immediate goals are to determine the relationship of gold in placer deposits to possible primary sources, to determine how nuggets form, to contribute to existing knowledge of principles for prospecting for placer deposits, and determine if minerals associated with placer deposits might suggest important deposits of other metals. The project started in 1982 with a study of placer mines in the Brooks Range.

  20. Constraining predictions of tundra permafrost and vegetation through model-data feedbacks and data-assimilation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Davidson, C. D.; Dietze, M.

    2011-12-01

    Arctic climate is warming at a rate disproportionate to the rest of the world, and recent interest has emerged in using terrestrial biosphere models to understand and predict the response of tundra ecosystems to such warming. Of particular interest are the potential feedbacks between permafrost melting, plant community dynamics, and biogeochemical cycles. Here, we report on efforts to calibrate and validate version 2 of the Ecosystem Demography model (ED2) for the Alaskan tundra and on the use of model analyses to motivate targeted field measurements. ED2 is a terrestrial biosphere model unique in its ability to scale physiological and plant community dynamics to regional levels. We began by assessing the ability of ED2's land surface model to capture permafrost thermodynamics and hydrology. Simulations at Barrow and Toolik Lake, Alaska bore several incongruities with observed data, with soil temperatures significantly higher and soil moisture lower than observed. Modifications were made to increase the soil column depth and to simulate the effect of wind compaction on snow density, and in turn, the insulation of winter soils. In addition to these changes, a new soil class was created to represent unique characteristics within the organic horizon of tundra soils. Together these changes significantly improved permafrost dynamics without substantially altering dynamics in the temperate region. To capture tundra vegetation dynamics, tundra species were classified into three plant functional types (graminoid, deciduous shrub, evergreen shrub). ED2 was then iteratively calibrated for the tundra using the Predictive Ecosystem Analyzer (PEcAn), a scientific workflow and ecoinformatics toolbox developed to aid model parameterization and analysis. Initial parameter estimates were derived from a formal Bayesian meta-analysis of compiled plant trait data. Sensitivity analyses and variance decomposition demonstrated that model uncertainties were driven by the minimum

  1. Long-term recovery patterns of arctic tundra after winter seismic exploration.

    PubMed

    Jorgenson, Janet C; Ver Hoef, Jay M; Jorgenson, M T

    2010-01-01

    In response to the increasing global demand for energy, oil exploration and development are expanding into frontier areas of the Arctic, where slow-growing tundra vegetation and the underlying permafrost soils are very sensitive to disturbance. The creation of vehicle trails on the tundra from seismic exploration for oil has accelerated in the past decade, and the cumulative impact represents a geographic footprint that covers a greater extent of Alaska's North Slope tundra than all other direct human impacts combined. Seismic exploration for oil and gas was conducted on the coastal plain of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, Alaska, USA, in the winters of 1984 and 1985. This study documents recovery of vegetation and permafrost soils over a two-decade period after vehicle traffic on snow-covered tundra. Paired permanent vegetation plots (disturbed vs. reference) were monitored six times from 1984 to 2002. Data were collected on percent vegetative cover by plant species and on soil and ground ice characteristics. We developed Bayesian hierarchical models, with temporally and spatially autocorrelated errors, to analyze the effects of vegetation type and initial disturbance levels on recovery patterns of the different plant growth forms as well as soil thaw depth. Plant community composition was altered on the trails by species-specific responses to initial disturbance and subsequent changes in substrate. Long-term changes included increased cover of graminoids and decreased cover of evergreen shrubs and mosses. Trails with low levels of initial disturbance usually improved well over time, whereas those with medium to high levels of initial disturbance recovered slowly. Trails on ice-poor, gravel substrates of riparian areas recovered better than those on ice-rich loamy soils of the uplands, even after severe initial damage. Recovery to pre-disturbance communities was not possible where trail subsidence occurred due to thawing of ground ice. Previous studies of

  2. Contexts for change in alpine tundra

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    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.

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

    PubMed

    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.

  4. Plant community responses to experimental warming across the tundra biome.

    PubMed

    Walker, Marilyn D; Wahren, C Henrik; Hollister, Robert D; Henry, Greg H R; Ahlquist, Lorraine E; Alatalo, Juha M; Bret-Harte, M Syndonia; Calef, Monika P; Callaghan, Terry V; Carroll, Amy B; Epstein, Howard E; Jónsdóttir, Ingibjörg S; Klein, Julia A; Magnússon, Borgthór; Molau, Ulf; Oberbauer, Steven F; Rewa, Steven P; Robinson, Clare H; Shaver, Gaius R; Suding, Katharine N; Thompson, Catharine C; Tolvanen, Anne; Totland, Ørjan; Turner, P Lee; Tweedie, Craig E; Webber, Patrick J; Wookey, Philip A

    2006-01-31

    Recent observations of changes in some tundra ecosystems appear to be responses to a warming climate. Several experimental studies have shown that tundra plants and ecosystems can respond strongly to environmental change, including warming; however, most studies were limited to a single location and were of short duration and based on a variety of experimental designs. In addition, comparisons among studies are difficult because a variety of techniques have been used to achieve experimental warming and different measurements have been used to assess responses. We used metaanalysis on plant community measurements from standardized warming experiments at 11 locations across the tundra biome involved in the International Tundra Experiment. The passive warming treatment increased plant-level air temperature by 1-3 degrees C, which is in the range of predicted and observed warming for tundra regions. Responses were rapid and detected in whole plant communities after only two growing seasons. Overall, warming increased height and cover of deciduous shrubs and graminoids, decreased cover of mosses and lichens, and decreased species diversity and evenness. These results predict that warming will cause a decline in biodiversity across a wide variety of tundra, at least in the short term. They also provide rigorous experimental evidence that recently observed increases in shrub cover in many tundra regions are in response to climate warming. These changes have important implications for processes and interactions within tundra ecosystems and between tundra and the atmosphere.

  5. Plant community responses to experimental warming across the tundra biome

    PubMed Central

    Walker, Marilyn D.; Wahren, C. Henrik; Hollister, Robert D.; Henry, Greg H. R.; Ahlquist, Lorraine E.; Alatalo, Juha M.; Bret-Harte, M. Syndonia; Calef, Monika P.; Callaghan, Terry V.; Carroll, Amy B.; Epstein, Howard E.; Jónsdóttir, Ingibjörg S.; Klein, Julia A.; Magnússon, Borgþór; Molau, Ulf; Oberbauer, Steven F.; Rewa, Steven P.; Robinson, Clare H.; Shaver, Gaius R.; Suding, Katharine N.; Thompson, Catharine C.; Tolvanen, Anne; Totland, Ørjan; Turner, P. Lee; Tweedie, Craig E.; Webber, Patrick J.; Wookey, Philip A.

    2006-01-01

    Recent observations of changes in some tundra ecosystems appear to be responses to a warming climate. Several experimental studies have shown that tundra plants and ecosystems can respond strongly to environmental change, including warming; however, most studies were limited to a single location and were of short duration and based on a variety of experimental designs. In addition, comparisons among studies are difficult because a variety of techniques have been used to achieve experimental warming and different measurements have been used to assess responses. We used metaanalysis on plant community measurements from standardized warming experiments at 11 locations across the tundra biome involved in the International Tundra Experiment. The passive warming treatment increased plant-level air temperature by 1-3°C, which is in the range of predicted and observed warming for tundra regions. Responses were rapid and detected in whole plant communities after only two growing seasons. Overall, warming increased height and cover of deciduous shrubs and graminoids, decreased cover of mosses and lichens, and decreased species diversity and evenness. These results predict that warming will cause a decline in biodiversity across a wide variety of tundra, at least in the short term. They also provide rigorous experimental evidence that recently observed increases in shrub cover in many tundra regions are in response to climate warming. These changes have important implications for processes and interactions within tundra ecosystems and between tundra and the atmosphere. PMID:16428292

  6. The unseen iceberg: Plant roots in arctic tundra

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Iverson, Colleen M.; Sloan, Victoria L.; Sullivan, Patrick F.; Euskirchen, E.S.; McGuire, Anthony; 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.

  7. Alaskan Native Early School Leavers: A Study with Recommendations.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Crumb, Jeanmarie

    In response to a request by the Anchorage Native Caucus and the Anchorage Native Education Coalition, this study by the Anchorage School District Community Relations Department focuses on the Alaskan Native dropout problem. The study indicates that between September 1976 and March 1981, Native Alaskans, who compose approximately 4% of the total…

  8. A Statistical Profile: Women in the Alaskan Community Colleges.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Seppanen, Loretta J.

    Women's status as students and employees in Alaska's community colleges is greatly influenced by the unique Alaskan environment, where women make up only 47.6% of the population and where the population is on the whole very young. Women comprised 58% of all enrolled students in Alaskan community colleges in fall 1982 and received 56% of the…

  9. AERIAL VIEW OF ALASKAN WAY VIADUCT, WHICH STARTS AT LEFT ...

    Library of Congress Historic Buildings Survey, Historic Engineering Record, Historic Landscapes Survey

    AERIAL VIEW OF ALASKAN WAY VIADUCT, WHICH STARTS AT LEFT OF RAIL YARDS, BECOMES DOUBLE-DECK VIADUCT CLOSE TO COAST GUARD YARD JUST ABOVE RAIL YARDS, AND PROCEEDS ALONG SHORELINE UP INTO MIDDLE OF PICTURE. - Alaskan Way Viaduct and Battery Street Tunnel, Seattle, King County, WA

  10. Educational Provisions for the Alaskan Natives Since 1867.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hopkins, Thomas Robert

    The study compiles and records the history of the administration of education for Alaskan natives since the United States purchased the territory from Russia in 1876. Chapter 1, An Overview of the Development of the Alaskan Native, covers the development of missionary and government schools, the growth and development of Native education from 1906…

  11. Prevalence of algal toxins in Alaskan marine mammals foraging in a changing arctic and subarctic environment.

    PubMed

    Lefebvre, Kathi A; Quakenbush, Lori; Frame, Elizabeth; Huntington, Kathy Burek; Sheffield, Gay; Stimmelmayr, Raphaela; Bryan, Anna; Kendrick, Preston; Ziel, Heather; Goldstein, Tracey; Snyder, Jonathan A; Gelatt, Tom; Gulland, Frances; Dickerson, Bobette; Gill, Verena

    2016-05-01

    Current climate trends resulting in rapid declines in sea ice and increasing water temperatures are likely to expand the northern geographic range and duration of favorable conditions for harmful algal blooms (HABs), making algal toxins a growing concern in Alaskan marine food webs. Two of the most common HAB toxins along the west coast of North America are the neurotoxins domoic acid (DA) and saxitoxin (STX). Over the last 20 years, DA toxicosis has caused significant illness and mortality in marine mammals along the west coast of the USA, but has not been reported to impact marine mammals foraging in Alaskan waters. Saxitoxin, the most potent of the paralytic shellfish poisoning toxins, has been well-documented in shellfish in the Aleutians and Gulf of Alaska for decades and associated with human illnesses and deaths due to consumption of toxic clams. There is little information regarding exposure of Alaskan marine mammals. Here, the spatial patterns and prevalence of DA and STX exposure in Alaskan marine mammals are documented in order to assess health risks to northern populations including those species that are important to the nutritional, cultural, and economic well-being of Alaskan coastal communities. In this study, 905 marine mammals from 13 species were sampled including; humpback whales, bowhead whales, beluga whales, harbor porpoises, northern fur seals, Steller sea lions, harbor seals, ringed seals, bearded seals, spotted seals, ribbon seals, Pacific walruses, and northern sea otters. Domoic acid was detected in all 13 species examined and had the greatest prevalence in bowhead whales (68%) and harbor seals (67%). Saxitoxin was detected in 10 of the 13 species, with the highest prevalence in humpback whales (50%) and bowhead whales (32%). Pacific walruses contained the highest concentrations of both STX and DA, with DA concentrations similar to those detected in California sea lions exhibiting clinical signs of DA toxicosis (seizures) off the coast

  12. Population trends of Alaskan seabirds

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Hatch, Scott A.

    1993-01-01

    Ornithology in Alaska formally began with the observations of Georg Wilhelm Steller during Vitus Bering's voyage of discovery in 1741. Steller's journal makes brief mention of various seabird species he encountered during his travels in the Gulf of Alaska and Aleutian Islands (Frost and Engel 1988). For more than 100 years following Steller, the Russian-American Company was active in commercial fur harvesting throughout southern coastal Alaska, but this period saw little contribution to a scientific understanding of the region's avifauna. With the purchase of Alaska by the United States in 1867, a period of American exploration began that included significant work by pioneering naturalists such as Dall (1873, 1874), Elliot (1881), Nelson (1883), and Turner (1885, 1886). While this activity established a comprehensive list and general knowledge of the distribution of seabird species occurring in Alaska, early observers provided no quantitative estimates of abundance for any colony or region.The observations of Heath (1915) and Willett (1912, 1915, 1917) at two locations in southeastern Alaska are notable for including the first numerical estimates of any seabird populations for comparison with recent data. Willett's (1912, 1915) estimates of 13 species are given in Table 1 with results from a 1976 Survey at Forrester Island (DeGange et al. 1977) and a 1981 survey at St. Lazaria Island (Nelson et al 1982). In the aggregate, seabird numbers appeared to increase dramatically at both sites, but the differences may be largely artificial. Because Willett (1915) did not employ rigorous sampling methods, DeGange et al. (1977) surmised that he grossly underestimated the populations of burrowing species such as storm-petrels, Cassin's Auklets. and Rhinoceros Aulkets. Nelson et al. (1982) offered a similar interpretation of total storm-petrel numbers at St. Lazaria, but felt that a shift in the species ratio of Leach's and Fork-tailed Storm-Petrels had likely occurred. It

  13. Engaging Alaskan Students in Cryospheric Research

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yoshikawa, K.; Sparrow, E. B.; Kopplin, M.

    2011-12-01

    The Permafrost/Active Layer Monitoring Program is an ongoing project, which builds on work begun in 2005 to establish long-term permafrost and active layer monitoring sites adjacent to schools in Alaskan communities and in the circumpolar permafrost region. Currently, there are about 200 schools in Alaska involved in the project including also Denali National Park and Preserve. The project has both scientific and outreach components. The monitoring sites collect temperature data on permafrost, and the length and depth of the active layer (the layer above the permafrost that thaws during summer and freezes again during winter). To ensure scientific integrity, the scientist installed all of the monitoring instruments and selected the sites representative of the surrounding biome and thermal conditions. This is a unique collaboration opportunity in that 1) uses scientifically accurate instruments, 2) is scientist led and supervised including instrumentation set-up and data quality check, 3)has teacher/student organized observation network, 4) increased spatial scale of monitoring sites that covers all of the Alaskan communities. Most of the monitoring sites are located in remote communities, where the majority of residents depend on a subsistence lifestyle. Changes in climate, length of seasons, and permafrost conditions directly impact natural resources and subsistence activities. Changes in permafrost conditions also affect local ecosystems and hydrological regimes, and can influence the severity of natural disasters. In addition to extending our knowledge of the arctic environment, the program involves school-age students. Several students have been using the data for their projects and have been inspired to continue their studies. The data gathered from these stations are shared with other schools and made available to the public through our web site (http://www.uaf.edu/permafrost). Also communities have increasingly become interested in this project not only as

  14. Carbon cycle uncertainty in the Alaskan Arctic

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fisher, J. B.; Sikka, M.; Oechel, W. C.; Huntzinger, D. N.; Melton, J. R.; Koven, C. D.; Ahlström, A.; Arain, M. A.; Baker, I.; Chen, J. M.; Ciais, P.; Davidson, C.; Dietze, M.; El-Masri, B.; Hayes, D.; Huntingford, C.; Jain, A. K.; Levy, P. E.; Lomas, M. R.; Poulter, B.; Price, D.; Sahoo, A. K.; Schaefer, K.; Tian, H.; Tomelleri, E.; Verbeeck, H.; Viovy, N.; Wania, R.; Zeng, N.; Miller, C. E.

    2014-08-01

    Climate change is leading to a disproportionately large warming in the high northern latitudes, but the magnitude and sign of the future carbon balance of the Arctic are highly uncertain. Using 40 terrestrial biosphere models for the Alaskan Arctic from four recent model intercomparison projects - NACP (North American Carbon Program) site and regional syntheses, TRENDY (Trends in net land atmosphere carbon exchanges), and WETCHIMP (Wetland and Wetland CH4 Inter-comparison of Models Project) - we provide a baseline of terrestrial carbon cycle uncertainty, defined as the multi-model standard deviation (σ) for each quantity that follows. Mean annual absolute uncertainty was largest for soil carbon (14.0 ± 9.2 kg C m-2), then gross primary production (GPP) (0.22 ± 0.50 kg C m-2 yr-1), ecosystem respiration (Re) (0.23 ± 0.38 kg C m-2 yr-1), net primary production (NPP) (0.14 ± 0.33 kg C m-2 yr-1), autotrophic respiration (Ra) (0.09 ± 0.20 kg C m-2 yr-1), heterotrophic respiration (Rh) (0.14 ± 0.20 kg C m-2 yr-1), net ecosystem exchange (NEE) (-0.01 ± 0.19 kg C m-2 yr-1), and CH4 flux (2.52 ± 4.02 g CH4 m-2 yr-1). There were no consistent spatial patterns in the larger Alaskan Arctic and boreal regional carbon stocks and fluxes, with some models showing NEE for Alaska as a strong carbon sink, others as a strong carbon source, while still others as carbon neutral. Finally, AmeriFlux data are used at two sites in the Alaskan Arctic to evaluate the regional patterns; observed seasonal NEE was captured within multi-model uncertainty. This assessment of carbon cycle uncertainties may be used as a baseline for the improvement of experimental and modeling activities, as well as a reference for future trajectories in carbon cycling with climate change in the Alaskan Arctic and larger boreal region.

  15. Acclimation of ecosystem CO2 exchange in the Alaskan Arctic in response to decadal climate warming

    PubMed

    Oechel; Vourlitis; Hastings; Zulueta; Hinzman; Kane

    2000-08-31

    Long-term sequestration of carbon in Alaskan Arctic tundra ecosystems was reversed by warming and drying of the climate in the early 1980s, resulting in substantial losses of terrestrial carbon. But recent measurements suggest that continued warming and drying has resulted in diminished CO2 efflux, and in some cases, summer CO2 sink activity. Here we compile summer CO2 flux data for two Arctic ecosystems from 1960 to the end of 1998. The results show that a return to summer sink activity has come during the warmest and driest period observed over the past four decades, and indicates a previously undemonstrated capacity for ecosystems to metabolically adjust to long-term (decadal or longer) changes in climate. The mechanisms involved are likely to include changes in nutrient cycling, physiological acclimation, and population and community reorganization. Nevertheless, despite the observed acclimation, the Arctic ecosystems studied are still annual net sources of CO2 to the atmosphere of at least 40 g C m(-2) yr(-1), due to winter release of CO2, implying that further climate change may still exacerbate CO2 emissions from Arctic ecosystems.

  16. Long-term warming restructures Arctic tundra without changing net soil carbon storage.

    PubMed

    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.

  17. Migration of Tundra Swans (Cygnus columbianus) Wintering in Japan Using Satellite Tracking: Identification of the Eastern Palearctic Flyway.

    PubMed

    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.

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

    EPA Science Inventory

    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...

  19. Comparative metagenome analysis of an Alaskan glacier.

    PubMed

    Choudhari, Sulbha; Lohia, Ruchi; Grigoriev, Andrey

    2014-04-01

    The temperature in the Arctic region has been increasing in the recent past accompanied by melting of its glaciers. We took a snapshot of the current microbial inhabitation of an Alaskan glacier (which can be considered as one of the simplest possible ecosystems) by using metagenomic sequencing of 16S rRNA recovered from ice/snow samples. Somewhat contrary to our expectations and earlier estimates, a rich and diverse microbial population of more than 2,500 species was revealed including several species of Archaea that has been identified for the first time in the glaciers of the Northern hemisphere. The most prominent bacterial groups found were Proteobacteria, Bacteroidetes, and Firmicutes. Firmicutes were not reported in large numbers in a previously studied Alpine glacier but were dominant in an Antarctic subglacial lake. Representatives of Cyanobacteria, Actinobacteria and Planctomycetes were among the most numerous, likely reflecting the dependence of the ecosystem on the energy obtained through photosynthesis and close links with the microbial community of the soil. Principal component analysis (PCA) of nucleotide word frequency revealed distinct sequence clusters for different taxonomic groups in the Alaskan glacier community and separate clusters for the glacial communities from other regions of the world. Comparative analysis of the community composition and bacterial diversity present in the Byron glacier in Alaska with other environments showed larger overlap with an Arctic soil than with a high Arctic lake, indicating patterns of community exchange and suggesting that these bacteria may play an important role in soil development during glacial retreat.

  20. Sufentanil citrate immobilization of Alaskan moose calves.

    PubMed

    Kreeger, Terry J; Kellie, Kalin A

    2012-10-01

    Free-ranging Alaskan moose calves (Alces alces gigas) were immobilized with 0.12 mg/kg sufentanil (S; n=16), 0.12 mg/kg sufentanil plus 0.27 mg/kg xylazine (SX; n=11), or 0.007 mg/kg carfentanil plus 0.36 mg/kg xylazine (CX; n=13). Immobilants were antagonized with 1.2 mg/kg naltrexone (S) or 1.2 mg/kg naltrexone plus 2.4 mg/kg tolazoline (SX, CX). There were no differences in induction (P ≥ 0.29) or processing (P ≥ 0.44) times between groups. Moose given either S or SX had significantly shorter recovery times than moose given CX (P=0.001) and recovery times from S were shorter than from SX (P=0.02). Oxygen saturation values for all groups averaged 85 ± 8%, but were significantly higher (P=0.048) for CX (89 ± 7%) than for S (82 ± 8%). Based on these data, sufentanil at 0.1 mg/kg or sufentanil at 0.1 mg/kg plus xylazine at 0.25 mg/kg could provide effective remote immobilization for Alaskan moose calves and could be substituted for carfentanil or thiafentanil should the need arise.

  1. Shrub line advance in Arctic and alpine tundra of the Yukon Territory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Myers-Smith, I. H.; Hik, D.

    2010-12-01

    Growing evidence indicates an expansion of canopy-forming woody shrubs up mountain slopes and northward into Arctic tundra. The correlation between warming and greening has been used to link climate change with shrub expansion; however, the exact mechanisms driving observed increases in canopy-forming shrubs are probably more complex. Shrub expansion that results in a change in canopy cover may modify the ecology of tundra ecosystems by changing understory plant composition, soil thermal dynamics, surface albedo, nutrient turnover times and carbon storage. We surveyed the abundance of all tundra willow species (Salix spp.) growing at three sites in the Yukon Territory: the mountains of the Kluane Region, the Richardson Mountains, and on Qikiqtaruk - Herschel Island in the Beaufort Sea. At the two mountainous sites, we collected sections from the largest stem of willow shrubs at shrub line (the maximum elevation at which canopy-forming shrubs grow) and below shrub line (at approximately 50% shrub cover) in a total of 16 valleys. At the coastal site we collected samples from each of the 4 vegetation types: the alluvial fan, ridges, tussock tundra and disturbed terrain. Shrub stems were thin-sectioned using a microtome, photographed with a microscope and ring widths were measured from the digital images. We compared age distributions of willow individuals at and below shrub line and found younger populations at higher elevations, particularly on warm, south-facing aspects. Younger willows at shrub line and a lack of significant mortality in the field surveys indicate that shrubs have advanced up slope at the mountainous sites. Photographic and long-term plot data indicate increases in cover and height of willow shrub patches at the coastal site. We compared growth rings to regional weather data, and found positive correlations between annual growth and summer temperatures. Our results indicate that willows grew most in years with a warm June and July. This evidence of

  2. Exporting Alaskan North Slope crude oil: Benefits and costs

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1994-06-01

    The Department of Energy study examines the effects of lifting the current prohibitions against the export of Alaskan North Slope (ANS) crude. The study concludes that permitting exports would benefit the US economy. First, lifting the ban would expand the markets in which ANS oil can be sold, thereby increasing its value. ANS oil producers, the States of California and Alaska, and some of their local governments all would benefit from increased revenues. Permitting exports also would generate new economic activity and employment in California and Alaska. The study concludes that these economic benefits would be achieved without increasing gasoline prices (either in California or in the nation as a whole). Lifting the export ban could have important implications for US maritime interests. The Merchant Marine Act of 1970 (known as the Jones Act) requires all inter-coastal shipments to be carried on vessels that are US-owned, US-crewed, and US-built. By limiting the shipment of ANS crude to US ports only, the export ban creates jobs for the seafarers and the builders of Jones Act vessels. Because the Jones Act does not apply to exports, however, lifting the ban without also changing US maritime law would jeopardize the jobs associated with the current fleet of Jones Act tankers. Therefore the report analyzes selected economic impacts of several maritime policy alternatives, including: Maintaining current law, which allows foreign tankers to carry oil where export is allowed; requiring exports of ANS crude to be carried on Jones Act vessels; and requiring exports of ANS crude to be carried on vessels that are US-owned and US-crewed, but not necessarily US-built. Under each of these options, lifting the export ban would generate economic benefits.

  3. Carbon cycle uncertainty in the Alaskan Arctic

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fisher, J. B.; Sikka, M.; Oechel, W. C.; Huntzinger, D. N.; Melton, J. R.; Koven, C. D.; Ahlström, A.; Arain, A. M.; Baker, I.; Chen, J. M.; Ciais, P.; Davidson, C.; Dietze, M.; El-Masri, B.; Hayes, D.; Huntingford, C.; Jain, A.; Levy, P. E.; Lomas, M. R.; Poulter, B.; Price, D.; Sahoo, A. K.; Schaefer, K.; Tian, H.; Tomelleri, E.; Verbeeck, H.; Viovy, N.; Wania, R.; Zeng, N.; Miller, C. E.

    2014-02-01

    Climate change is leading to a disproportionately large warming in the high northern latitudes, but the magnitude and sign of the future carbon balance of the Arctic are highly uncertain. Using 40 terrestrial biosphere models for Alaska, we provide a baseline of terrestrial carbon cycle structural and parametric uncertainty, defined as the multi-model standard deviation (σ) against the mean (x\\bar) for each quantity. Mean annual uncertainty (σ/x\\bar) was largest for net ecosystem exchange (NEE) (-0.01± 0.19 kg C m-2 yr-1), then net primary production (NPP) (0.14 ± 0.33 kg C m-2 yr-1), autotrophic respiration (Ra) (0.09 ± 0.20 kg C m-2 yr-1), gross primary production (GPP) (0.22 ± 0.50 kg C m-2 yr-1), ecosystem respiration (Re) (0.23 ± 0.38 kg C m-2 yr-1), CH4 flux (2.52 ± 4.02 g CH4 m-2 yr-1), heterotrophic respiration (Rh) (0.14 ± 0.20 kg C m-2 yr-1), and soil carbon (14.0± 9.2 kg C m-2). The spatial patterns in regional carbon stocks and fluxes varied widely with some models showing NEE for Alaska as a strong carbon sink, others as a strong carbon source, while still others as carbon neutral. Additionally, a feedback (i.e., sensitivity) analysis was conducted of 20th century NEE to CO2 fertilization (β) and climate (γ), which showed that uncertainty in γ was 2x larger than that of β, with neither indicating that the Alaskan Arctic is shifting towards a certain net carbon sink or source. Finally, AmeriFlux data are used at two sites in the Alaskan Arctic to evaluate the regional patterns; observed seasonal NEE was captured within multi-model uncertainty. This assessment of carbon cycle uncertainties may be used as a baseline for the improvement of experimental and modeling activities, as well as a reference for future trajectories in carbon cycling with climate change in the Alaskan Arctic.

  4. Alaskan Air Defense and Early Warning Systems Clear Air ...

    Library of Congress Historic Buildings Survey, Historic Engineering Record, Historic Landscapes Survey

    Alaskan Air Defense and Early Warning Systems - Clear Air Force Station, Ballistic Missile Early Warning System Site II, One mile west of mile marker 293.5 on Parks Highway, 5 miles southwest of Anderson, Anderson, Denali Borough, AK

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

    SciTech Connect

    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.

  6. Recent Arctic tundra fire initiates widespread thermokarst development

    DOE PAGES

    Jones, Benjamin M.; Grosse, Guido; Arp, Christopher D.; ...

    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 burnmore » 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.« less

  7. Recent Arctic tundra fire initiates widespread thermokarst development

    SciTech Connect

    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.

  8. Recent Arctic tundra fire initiates widespread thermokarst development

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2015-10-01

    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.

  9. The unseen iceberg: plant roots in arctic tundra

    DOE PAGES

    Iversen, Colleen M.; Sloan, Victoria L.; Sullivan, Patrick F.; ...

    2014-09-10

    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, root dynamics are one of the least understood aspects of plant growth in the Arctic. We synthesized available literature on tundra roots and discussed their representation in terrestrial biosphere models. Belowground biomass in tundra ecosystems can be an order of magnitude larger than aboveground biomass. Data on root production and turnover in tundra is sparse, limiting our understanding of the controls over root dynamics in these systems.more » Roots are shallowly distributed in the thin layer of soil that thaws each year, and are often found in the organic horizon at the soil surface. Species-specific differences in root distribution, mycorrhizal colonization, and resource partitioning may affect plant species competition under changing climatic conditions. Model representation of belowground processes has increased in complexity over recent years, but data are desperately needed to fill the gaps in model treatment of tundra roots. Future research should focus on estimates of root production and lifespan, and interactions between roots and the surrounding soil across the diversity of tundra ecosystems in the Arctic.« less

  10. Recent Arctic tundra fire initiates widespread thermokarst development.

    PubMed

    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.

  11. Recent Arctic tundra fire initiates widespread thermokarst development

    PubMed Central

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

    2015-01-01

    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. PMID:26511650

  12. The unseen iceberg: plant roots in arctic tundra

    SciTech Connect

    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.

    2014-09-10

    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, root dynamics are one of the least understood aspects of plant growth in the Arctic. We synthesized available literature on tundra roots and discussed their representation in terrestrial biosphere models. Belowground biomass in tundra ecosystems can be an order of magnitude larger than aboveground biomass. Data on root production and turnover in tundra is sparse, limiting our understanding of the controls over root dynamics in these systems. Roots are shallowly distributed in the thin layer of soil that thaws each year, and are often found in the organic horizon at the soil surface. Species-specific differences in root distribution, mycorrhizal colonization, and resource partitioning may affect plant species competition under changing climatic conditions. Model representation of belowground processes has increased in complexity over recent years, but data are desperately needed to fill the gaps in model treatment of tundra roots. Future research should focus on estimates of root production and lifespan, and interactions between roots and the surrounding soil across the diversity of tundra ecosystems in the Arctic.

  13. Recent Arctic tundra fire initiates widespread thermokarst development

    USGS Publications Warehouse

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

    2015-01-01

    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.

  14. Willow Shrub Expansion Following Tundra Fires in Arctic Alaska

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Racine, C.

    2010-12-01

    Climate warming in the Arctic is predicted to result in the expansion of woody shrubs and increased frequency and size of tundra fires. How will fire influence this shrub expansion? Over a period of 32 years, following a 1977 tundra fire in the central Seward Peninsula, we sampled seven times the post-fire vegetation at eight permanently marked sites on a long (2 Km) hillslope (Nimrod Hill). We had previously sampled vegetation here in 1973 prior to the fire. By 2001, 24 years post-fire conspicuous willow shrubs (mostly Salix pulchra) had increased in numbers, size and cover over the entire slope in moist tussock-shrub tundra, well-drained heath, and wet meadow. Prior to fire, willow on this slope was largely restricted to small drainages or watertracks. Willows here have originated from both seed and vegetative resprouting - the latter mostly in moist tussock-shrub tundra from willows resprouting within one to three years post-fire. With fire-induced removal of vascular plant competition and Spagnum moss cover and litter in tussock-shrub tundra, both seedling and resprouting willows have grown rapidly to overtop tussocks by 30-40 cm. Similar rapid post-fire resprouting of willows has been observed in tussock-shrub tundra after the 2007 Anaktuvuk River tundra fire and after the 1977 tundra fires in the Noatak River basin. On Nimrod Hill the most striking willow expansion has occurred on the severely burned and well-drained backslope where willow establishment from seed 5-10 years after fire has resulted in up to 40% cover of rapidly growing willows of both upright and spreading growth form. At several sites along the slope there is evidence of continuing willow expansion from seedlings 24 to 32 years post-fire, when we might expect the effects of fire on seedbeds would have ceased. We conclude that tundra fire may promote shrub expansion in the Arctic.

  15. Development of Alaskan gas hydrate resources

    SciTech Connect

    Kamath, V.A.; Sharma, G.D.; Patil, S.L.

    1991-06-01

    The research undertaken in this project pertains to study of various techniques for production of natural gas from Alaskan gas hydrates such as, depressurization, injection of hot water, steam, brine, methanol and ethylene glycol solutions through experimental investigation of decomposition characteristics of hydrate cores. An experimental study has been conducted to measure the effective gas permeability changes as hydrates form in the sandpack and the results have been used to determine the reduction in the effective gas permeability of the sandpack as a function of hydrate saturation. A user friendly, interactive, menu-driven, numerical difference simulator has been developed to model the dissociation of natural gas hydrates in porous media with variable thermal properties. A numerical, finite element simulator has been developed to model the dissociation of hydrates during hot water injection process.

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

    PubMed

    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

  17. 8. DETAIL OF QUONSET HUT SHOWING BOARDWALK ON TUNDRA CONNECTING ...

    Library of Congress Historic Buildings Survey, Historic Engineering Record, Historic Landscapes Survey

    8. DETAIL OF QUONSET HUT SHOWING BOARDWALK ON TUNDRA CONNECTING QUONSET HUTS THAT DID NOT HAVE INTERCONNNECTING WOOD FRAME CORRIDORS - Fort Randall, Neuro-Psychiatric Ward, Northeast of intersection of California Boulevard & Nurse Drive, Cold Bay, Aleutian Islands, AK

  18. Isoprene emissions from a tundra ecosystem

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Potosnak, M. J.; Baker, B. M.; LeStourgeon, L.; Disher, S. M.; Griffin, K. L.; Bret-Harte, M. S.

    2012-10-01

    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, but less so for light. Chamber measurements from a nearby moist acidic tundra ecosystem with less S. pulchra emitted significant amounts of isoprene, but at lower rates (0.45 mg C m-2 h-1). 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 the hydroxyl radical (OH). Our results support the prediction that isoprene emissions from Arctic ecosystems will increase with global climate change.

  19. Isoprene emissions from a tundra ecosystem

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Potosnak, M. J.; Baker, B. M.; LeStourgeon, L.; Disher, S. M.; Griffin, K. L.; Bret-Harte, M. S.; Starr, G.

    2013-02-01

    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.

  20. Sea ice, rain-on-snow and tundra reindeer nomadism in Arctic Russia.

    PubMed

    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.

  1. Russian Arctic warming and ‘greening’ are closely tracked by tundra shrub willows

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Forbes, B. C.; Macias Fauria, M.; Zetterberg, P.

    2009-12-01

    Growth in arctic vegetation is generally expected to increase under a warming climate, particularly among deciduous shrubs. We analyzed annual ring growth for an abundant and nearly circumpolar erect willow (Salix lanata L.) from the coastal zone of the northwest Russian Arctic (Nenets Autonomous Okrug). The resulting chronology is strongly related to summer temperature for the period 1942-2005. Remarkably high correlations occur at long distances (>1600 km) across the tundra and taiga zones of West Siberia and Eastern Europe. We also found a clear relationship with photosynthetic activity for upland vegetation at a regional scale for the period 1981-2005, confirming a parallel ‘greening’ trend reported for similarly warming North American portions of the tundra biome. The standardized growth curve suggests a significant increase in shrub willow growth over the last six decades. These findings are in line with field and remote sensing studies that have assigned a strong shrub component to the reported greening signal since the early 1980s. Furthermore, the growth trend agrees with qualitative observations by nomadic Nenets reindeer herders of recent increases in willow size in the region. The quality of the chronology as a climate proxy is exceptional. Given its wide geographic distribution and the ready preservation of wood in permafrost, S. lanata L. has great potential for extended temperature reconstructions in remote areas across the Arctic.

  2. Sea ice, rain-on-snow and tundra reindeer nomadism in Arctic Russia

    PubMed Central

    Kumpula, Timo; Meschtyb, Nina; Laptander, Roza; Macias-Fauria, Marc; Zetterberg, Pentti; Verdonen, Mariana; Kim, Kwang-Yul; Boisvert, Linette N.; Stroeve, Julienne C.; Bartsch, Annett

    2016-01-01

    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. PMID:27852939

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

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    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 (<1%), and 0 (0%) samples, respectively. Occupancy modeling was used to estimate prevalence of Leucocytozoon parasites and assess variation relative to species, age, sex, geographic area, year, and decade. Species, age, and decade were identified as important in explaining differences in prevalence of Leucocytozoonparasites. Leucocytozoon parasites were detected in goslings sampled along the Arctic Coastal Plain using both historic and contemporary samples, which provided support for transmission in the North American Arctic. In contrast, lack of detection of Haemoproteus and Plasmodiumparasites in goslings (n = 238) provided evidence to suggest that the transmission of parasites of these genera may not occur among waterfowl using 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.

  4. Carbon loss from an unprecedented Arctic tundra wildfire.

    PubMed

    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.

  5. Changing snow cover in tundra ecosystems tips the Arctic carbon balance

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    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

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

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    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.

  7. Phenological dynamics of arctic tundra vegetation and its implications on satellite imagery interpretation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Juutinen, Sari; Aurela, Mika; Mikola, Juha; Räsänen, Aleksi; Virtanen, Tarmo

    2016-04-01

    Remote sensing is a key methodology when monitoring the responses of arctic ecosystems to climatic warming. The short growing season and rapid vegetation development, however, set demands to the timing of image acquisition in the arctic. We used multispectral very high spatial resolution satellite images to study the effect of vegetation phenology on the spectral reflectance and image interpretation in the low arctic tundra in coastal Siberia (Tiksi, 71°35'39"N, 128°53'17"E). The study site mainly consists of peatlands, tussock, dwarf shrub, and grass tundra, and stony areas with some lichen and shrub patches. We tested the hypotheses that (1) plant phenology is responsive to the interannual weather variation and (2) the phenological state of vegetation has an impact on satellite image interpretation and the ability to distinguish between the plant communities. We used an empirical transfer function with temperature sums as drivers to reconstruct daily leaf area index (LAI) for the different plant communities for years 2005, and 2010-2014 based on measured LAI development in summer 2014. Satellite images, taken during growing seasons, were acquired for two years having late and early spring, and short and long growing season, respectively. LAI dynamics showed considerable interannual variation due to weather variation, and particularly the relative contribution of graminoid dominated communities was sensitive to these phenology shifts. We have also analyzed the differences in the reflectance values between the two satellite images taking account the LAI dynamics. These results will increase our understanding of the pitfalls that may arise from the timing of image acquisition when interpreting the vegetation structure in a heterogeneous tundra landscape. Very high spatial resolution multispectral images are available at reasonable cost, but not in high temporal resolution, which may lead to compromises when matching ground truth and the imagery. On the other hand

  8. American Indian Policy Review Commission Special Joint Task Force Report on Alaskan Native Issues.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Congress of the U.S. Washington, DC. American Indian Policy Review Commission.

    Impact of the Alaskan Native Claims Settlement Act (ANCSA) on Alaskan Natives, particularly at village levels, is the focus of a joint task force report on Alaskan Native issues. Prepared for the American Indian Policy Review Commission, the report is the work of representatives from task forces on tribal government, federal, state, and tribal…

  9. 40 CFR 408.170 - Applicability; description of the Alaskan mechanized salmon processing subcategory.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-07-01

    ... Alaskan mechanized salmon processing subcategory. 408.170 Section 408.170 Protection of Environment... PROCESSING POINT SOURCE CATEGORY Alaskan Mechanized Salmon Processing Subcategory § 408.170 Applicability; description of the Alaskan mechanized salmon processing subcategory. The provisions of this subpart...

  10. 40 CFR 408.170 - Applicability; description of the Alaskan mechanized salmon processing subcategory.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-07-01

    ... Alaskan mechanized salmon processing subcategory. 408.170 Section 408.170 Protection of Environment... PROCESSING POINT SOURCE CATEGORY Alaskan Mechanized Salmon Processing Subcategory § 408.170 Applicability; description of the Alaskan mechanized salmon processing subcategory. The provisions of this subpart...

  11. 40 CFR 408.170 - Applicability; description of the Alaskan mechanized salmon processing subcategory.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-07-01

    ... Alaskan mechanized salmon processing subcategory. 408.170 Section 408.170 Protection of Environment... PROCESSING POINT SOURCE CATEGORY Alaskan Mechanized Salmon Processing Subcategory § 408.170 Applicability; description of the Alaskan mechanized salmon processing subcategory. The provisions of this subpart...

  12. 40 CFR 408.170 - Applicability; description of the Alaskan mechanized salmon processing subcategory.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-07-01

    ... Alaskan mechanized salmon processing subcategory. 408.170 Section 408.170 Protection of Environment... PROCESSING POINT SOURCE CATEGORY Alaskan Mechanized Salmon Processing Subcategory § 408.170 Applicability; description of the Alaskan mechanized salmon processing subcategory. The provisions of this subpart...

  13. 40 CFR 408.170 - Applicability; description of the Alaskan mechanized salmon processing subcategory.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-07-01

    ... Alaskan mechanized salmon processing subcategory. 408.170 Section 408.170 Protection of Environment... PROCESSING POINT SOURCE CATEGORY Alaskan Mechanized Salmon Processing Subcategory § 408.170 Applicability; description of the Alaskan mechanized salmon processing subcategory. The provisions of this subpart...

  14. 40 CFR 408.50 - Applicability; description of the remote Alaskan crab meat processing subcategory.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-07-01

    ... remote Alaskan crab meat processing subcategory. 408.50 Section 408.50 Protection of Environment... PROCESSING POINT SOURCE CATEGORY Remote Alaskan Crab Meat Processing Subcategory § 408.50 Applicability; description of the remote Alaskan crab meat processing subcategory. The provisions of this subpart...

  15. 40 CFR 408.50 - Applicability; description of the remote Alaskan crab meat processing subcategory.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-07-01

    ... remote Alaskan crab meat processing subcategory. 408.50 Section 408.50 Protection of Environment... PROCESSING POINT SOURCE CATEGORY Remote Alaskan Crab Meat Processing Subcategory § 408.50 Applicability; description of the remote Alaskan crab meat processing subcategory. The provisions of this subpart...

  16. 40 CFR 408.50 - Applicability; description of the remote Alaskan crab meat processing subcategory.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-07-01

    ... remote Alaskan crab meat processing subcategory. 408.50 Section 408.50 Protection of Environment... PROCESSING POINT SOURCE CATEGORY Remote Alaskan Crab Meat Processing Subcategory § 408.50 Applicability; description of the remote Alaskan crab meat processing subcategory. The provisions of this subpart...

  17. 40 CFR 408.100 - Applicability; description of the remote Alaskan shrimp processing subcategory.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-07-01

    ... remote Alaskan shrimp processing subcategory. 408.100 Section 408.100 Protection of Environment... PROCESSING POINT SOURCE CATEGORY Remote Alaskan Shrimp Processing Subcategory § 408.100 Applicability; description of the remote Alaskan shrimp processing subcategory. The provisions of this subpart are...

  18. 40 CFR 408.100 - Applicability; description of the remote Alaskan shrimp processing subcategory.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-07-01

    ... remote Alaskan shrimp processing subcategory. 408.100 Section 408.100 Protection of Environment... PROCESSING POINT SOURCE CATEGORY Remote Alaskan Shrimp Processing Subcategory § 408.100 Applicability; description of the remote Alaskan shrimp processing subcategory. The provisions of this subpart are...

  19. 40 CFR 408.90 - Applicability; description of the non-remote Alaskan shrimp processing subcategory.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-07-01

    ...-remote Alaskan shrimp processing subcategory. 408.90 Section 408.90 Protection of Environment... PROCESSING POINT SOURCE CATEGORY Non-Remote Alaskan Shrimp Processing Subcategory § 408.90 Applicability; description of the non-remote Alaskan shrimp processing subcategory. The provisions of this subpart...

  20. 40 CFR 408.90 - Applicability; description of the non-remote Alaskan shrimp processing subcategory.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-07-01

    ...-remote Alaskan shrimp processing subcategory. 408.90 Section 408.90 Protection of Environment... PROCESSING POINT SOURCE CATEGORY Non-Remote Alaskan Shrimp Processing Subcategory § 408.90 Applicability; description of the non-remote Alaskan shrimp processing subcategory. The provisions of this subpart...

  1. 40 CFR 408.100 - Applicability; description of the remote Alaskan shrimp processing subcategory.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-07-01

    ... remote Alaskan shrimp processing subcategory. 408.100 Section 408.100 Protection of Environment... PROCESSING POINT SOURCE CATEGORY Remote Alaskan Shrimp Processing Subcategory § 408.100 Applicability; description of the remote Alaskan shrimp processing subcategory. The provisions of this subpart are...

  2. 40 CFR 408.100 - Applicability; description of the remote Alaskan shrimp processing subcategory.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-07-01

    ... remote Alaskan shrimp processing subcategory. 408.100 Section 408.100 Protection of Environment... PROCESSING POINT SOURCE CATEGORY Remote Alaskan Shrimp Processing Subcategory § 408.100 Applicability; description of the remote Alaskan shrimp processing subcategory. The provisions of this subpart are...

  3. 40 CFR 408.90 - Applicability; description of the non-remote Alaskan shrimp processing subcategory.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-07-01

    ...-remote Alaskan shrimp processing subcategory. 408.90 Section 408.90 Protection of Environment... PROCESSING POINT SOURCE CATEGORY Non-Remote Alaskan Shrimp Processing Subcategory § 408.90 Applicability; description of the non-remote Alaskan shrimp processing subcategory. The provisions of this subpart...

  4. 40 CFR 408.100 - Applicability; description of the remote Alaskan shrimp processing subcategory.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-07-01

    ... remote Alaskan shrimp processing subcategory. 408.100 Section 408.100 Protection of Environment... PROCESSING POINT SOURCE CATEGORY Remote Alaskan Shrimp Processing Subcategory § 408.100 Applicability; description of the remote Alaskan shrimp processing subcategory. The provisions of this subpart are...

  5. 40 CFR 408.90 - Applicability; description of the non-remote Alaskan shrimp processing subcategory.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-07-01

    ...-remote Alaskan shrimp processing subcategory. 408.90 Section 408.90 Protection of Environment... PROCESSING POINT SOURCE CATEGORY Non-Remote Alaskan Shrimp Processing Subcategory § 408.90 Applicability; description of the non-remote Alaskan shrimp processing subcategory. The provisions of this subpart...

  6. 40 CFR 408.90 - Applicability; description of the non-remote Alaskan shrimp processing subcategory.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-07-01

    ...-remote Alaskan shrimp processing subcategory. 408.90 Section 408.90 Protection of Environment... PROCESSING POINT SOURCE CATEGORY Non-Remote Alaskan Shrimp Processing Subcategory § 408.90 Applicability; description of the non-remote Alaskan shrimp processing subcategory. The provisions of this subpart...

  7. Alaska Is Our Home--Book 3: A Natural Science Handbook for Alaskan Students.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bury, John; Bury, Susan

    The third book in a series of natural science handbooks for Alaskan students focuses on Alaskan plantlife. The first chapter, on trees, gives general information about trees and explains how to identify and locate trees in the three main Alaskan tree families: pine, willow, and birch. The second chapter, on plants, describes 14 kinds of edible…

  8. 40 CFR 408.160 - Applicability; description of the Alaskan hand-butchered salmon processing subcategory.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-07-01

    ... Alaskan hand-butchered salmon processing subcategory. 408.160 Section 408.160 Protection of Environment... PROCESSING POINT SOURCE CATEGORY Alaskan Hand-Butchered Salmon Processing Subcategory § 408.160 Applicability; description of the Alaskan hand-butchered salmon processing subcategory. The provisions of this subpart...

  9. 40 CFR 408.160 - Applicability; description of the Alaskan hand-butchered salmon processing subcategory.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-07-01

    ... Alaskan hand-butchered salmon processing subcategory. 408.160 Section 408.160 Protection of Environment... PROCESSING POINT SOURCE CATEGORY Alaskan Hand-Butchered Salmon Processing Subcategory § 408.160 Applicability; description of the Alaskan hand-butchered salmon processing subcategory. The provisions of this subpart...

  10. 40 CFR 408.160 - Applicability; description of the Alaskan hand-butchered salmon processing subcategory.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-07-01

    ... Alaskan hand-butchered salmon processing subcategory. 408.160 Section 408.160 Protection of Environment... PROCESSING POINT SOURCE CATEGORY Alaskan Hand-Butchered Salmon Processing Subcategory § 408.160 Applicability; description of the Alaskan hand-butchered salmon processing subcategory. The provisions of this subpart...

  11. 40 CFR 408.160 - Applicability; description of the Alaskan hand-butchered salmon processing subcategory.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-07-01

    ... Alaskan hand-butchered salmon processing subcategory. 408.160 Section 408.160 Protection of Environment... PROCESSING POINT SOURCE CATEGORY Alaskan Hand-Butchered Salmon Processing Subcategory § 408.160 Applicability; description of the Alaskan hand-butchered salmon processing subcategory. The provisions of this subpart...

  12. 40 CFR 408.160 - Applicability; description of the Alaskan hand-butchered salmon processing subcategory.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-07-01

    ... Alaskan hand-butchered salmon processing subcategory. 408.160 Section 408.160 Protection of Environment... PROCESSING POINT SOURCE CATEGORY Alaskan Hand-Butchered Salmon Processing Subcategory § 408.160 Applicability; description of the Alaskan hand-butchered salmon processing subcategory. The provisions of this subpart...

  13. 40 CFR 408.200 - Applicability; description of the Alaskan bottom fish processing subcategory.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-07-01

    ... Alaskan bottom fish processing subcategory. 408.200 Section 408.200 Protection of Environment... PROCESSING POINT SOURCE CATEGORY Alaskan Bottom Fish Processing Subcategory § 408.200 Applicability; description of the Alaskan bottom fish processing subcategory. The provisions of this subpart are...

  14. 40 CFR 408.50 - Applicability; description of the remote Alaskan crab meat processing subcategory.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-07-01

    ... remote Alaskan crab meat processing subcategory. 408.50 Section 408.50 Protection of Environment... PROCESSING POINT SOURCE CATEGORY Remote Alaskan Crab Meat Processing Subcategory § 408.50 Applicability; description of the remote Alaskan crab meat processing subcategory. The provisions of this subpart...

  15. 40 CFR 408.50 - Applicability; description of the remote Alaskan crab meat processing subcategory.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-07-01

    ... remote Alaskan crab meat processing subcategory. 408.50 Section 408.50 Protection of Environment... PROCESSING POINT SOURCE CATEGORY Remote Alaskan Crab Meat Processing Subcategory § 408.50 Applicability; description of the remote Alaskan crab meat processing subcategory. The provisions of this subpart...

  16. 40 CFR 408.200 - Applicability; description of the Alaskan bottom fish processing subcategory.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-07-01

    ... Alaskan bottom fish processing subcategory. 408.200 Section 408.200 Protection of Environment... PROCESSING POINT SOURCE CATEGORY Alaskan Bottom Fish Processing Subcategory § 408.200 Applicability; description of the Alaskan bottom fish processing subcategory. The provisions of this subpart are...

  17. Development of Antarctic herb tundra vegetation near Arctowski station, King George Island

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kozeretska, I. A.; Parnikoza, I. Yu.; Mustafa, O.; Tyschenko, O. V.; Korsun, S. G.; Convey, P.

    2010-01-01

    We studied the development of the Antarctic herb tundra vegetation formation in relation to the history of deglaciation across a range of habitats near H. Arctowski Research Station (King George Island, South Shetland Islands). Across the three identified environmental zones (coastal, intermediate, periglacial), we quantified the total vegetation cover, cover of the two indigenous flowering plants and bryophytes, age structure and reproductive features of the two flowering plants, and species diversity of mosses and liverworts. Analysis of these data supported the recognition of the three environmental zones; however, there were few indications of systematic differences in biological features of the two higher plants across the three zones, generally supporting the view that these, and the grass Deschampsia antarctica in particular, are effective primary colonists of recently deglaciated ground in this region.

  18. Thematic mapper study of Alaskan ophiolites

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bird, John M.

    1988-01-01

    The two principle objectives of the project Thematic Mapper Study of Alaskan Ophiolites were to further develop techniques for producing geologic maps, and to study the tectonics of the ophiolite terrains of the Brooks Range and Ruby Geanticline of northern Alaska. Ophiolites, sections of oceanic lithosphere emplaced along island arcs and continental margins, are important to the understanding of mountain belt evolution. Ophiolites also provide an opportunity to study the structural, lithologic, and geochemical characteristics of ocean lithosphere, yielding a better understanding of the processes forming lithosphere. The first part of the report is a description of the methods and results of the TM mapping and gravity modeling. The second part includes papers being prepared for publication. These papers are the following: (1) an analysis of basalt spectral variations; (2) a study of basalt geochemical variations; (3) an examination of the cooling history of the ophiolites using radiometric data; (4) an analysis of shortening produced by thrusting during the Brooks Range orogeny; and (5) a study of an ophiolite using digital aeromagnetic and topographic data. Additional papers are in preparation.

  19. Recovery of arctic tundra from thermal erosion disturbance is constrained by nutrient accumulation: a modeling analysis.

    PubMed

    Pearce, A R; Rastetter, E B; Kwiatkowski, B L; Bowden, W B; Mack, M C; Jiang, Y

    2015-07-01

    Abstract. We calibrated the Multiple Element Limitation (MEL) model to Alaskan arctic tundra to simulate recovery of thermal erosion features (TEFs) caused by permafrost thaw and mass wasting. TEFs could significantly alter regional carbon (C) and nutrient budgets because permafrost soils contain large stocks of soil organic matter (SOM) and TEFs are expected to become more frequent as the climate warms. We simulated recovery following TEF stabilization and did not address initial, short-term losses of C and nutrients during TEF formation. To capture the variability among and within TEFs, we modeled a range of post-stabilization conditions by varying the initial size of SOM stocks and nutrient supply rates. Simulations indicate that nitrogen (N) losses after the TEF stabilizes are small, but phosphorus (P) losses continue. Vegetation biomass recovered 90% of its undisturbed C, N, and P stocks in 100 years using nutrients mineralized from SOM. Because of low litter inputs but continued decomposition, younger SOM continued to be lost for 10 years after the TEF began to recover, but recovered to about 84% of its undisturbed amount in 100 years. The older recalcitrant SOM in mineral soil continued to be lost throughout the 100-year simulation. Simulations suggest that biomass recovery depended on the amount of SOM remaining after disturbance. Recovery was initially limited by the photosynthetic capacity of vegetation but became co-limited by N and P once a plant canopy developed. Biomass and SOM recovery was enhanced by increasing nutrient supplies, but the magnitude, source, and controls on these supplies are poorly understood. Faster mineralization of nutrients from SOM (e.g., by warming) enhanced vegetation recovery but delayed recovery of SOM. Taken together, these results suggest that although vegetation and surface SOM on TEFs recovered quickly (25 and 100 years, respectively), the recovery of deep, mineral soil SOM took centuries and represented a major

  20. Interactions between spring temperatures and snow cover alter plant-soil nutrient feedbacks in moist acidic arctic tundra

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Weintraub, M. N.; Steltzer, H.; Sullivan, P.; Darrouzet-Nardi, A.; Schimel, J.; Wallenstein, M. D.; Livensperger, C.; Segal, A. D.

    2012-12-01

    A significant spring warming trend has been observed across the arctic, resulting in higher spring temperatures and earlier snowmelt. These climate changes have the potential to alter arctic soil carbon (C) and nitrogen (N) dynamics because they can significantly influence both plant growth and decomposition during the growing season. These changes are of particular concern because arctic tundra soils contain large stores of C and may act as a significant CO2 source with warming. To determine how changes in the timing of snowmelt and higher spring temperatures affect plant growth and soil nutrient dynamics, we conducted a factorial accelerated snowmelt and warming experiment in a moist acidic tundra plant community in the Alaskan arctic. We measured changes plant phenology and growth, and soil nutrient dynamics in response to these manipulations to determine the implications of earlier snowmelt and warming. We hypothesized that accelerated snowmelt would allow plants to start growing earlier, resulting in earlier root growth and plant N uptake from these nutrient poor soils, potentially exacerbating N limitation to decomposer microorganisms and reducing their activities. Contrary to our predictions, we observed delayed and reduced root growth in response to accelerated snowmelt, without similar reductions in aboveground productivity. We also found that warming in combination with accelerated snowmelt alleviated the inhibition of root growth, suggesting that low air temperatures following snowmelt may have inhibited plant growth, as plants were unprotected from swings in air temperature without the insulating snowpack. Furthermore, we found that greater root growth was associated with elevated, not reduced, soil N availability, which was also opposite to our predictions. These results suggest that C-rich root exudates stimulate microbial N acquisition and can actually increase N availability even as roots and microbes are taking up more N. This implies that as long

  1. Phenological response of tundra plants to background climate variation tested using the International Tundra Experiment.

    PubMed

    Oberbauer, S F; Elmendorf, S C; Troxler, T G; Hollister, R D; Rocha, A V; Bret-Harte, M S; Dawes, M A; Fosaa, A M; Henry, G H R; Høye, T T; Jarrad, F C; Jónsdóttir, I S; Klanderud, K; Klein, J A; Molau, U; Rixen, C; Schmidt, N M; Shaver, G R; Slider, R T; Totland, Ø; Wahren, C-H; Welker, J M

    2013-08-19

    The rapidly warming temperatures in high-latitude and alpine regions have the potential to alter the phenology of Arctic and alpine plants, affecting processes ranging from food webs to ecosystem trace gas fluxes. The International Tundra Experiment (ITEX) was initiated in 1990 to evaluate the effects of expected rapid changes in temperature on tundra plant phenology, growth and community changes using experimental warming. Here, we used the ITEX control data to test the phenological responses to background temperature variation across sites spanning latitudinal and moisture gradients. The dataset overall did not show an advance in phenology; instead, temperature variability during the years sampled and an absence of warming at some sites resulted in mixed responses. Phenological transitions of high Arctic plants clearly occurred at lower heat sum thresholds than those of low Arctic and alpine plants. However, sensitivity to temperature change was similar among plants from the different climate zones. Plants of different communities and growth forms differed for some phenological responses. Heat sums associated with flowering and greening appear to have increased over time. These results point to a complex suite of changes in plant communities and ecosystem function in high latitudes and elevations as the climate warms.

  2. Vertical electrical resistivity sounding (VERS) of tundra and forest tundra soils of Yamal region

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Alekseev, Ivan; Kostecki, Jakub; Abakumov, Evgeny

    2017-01-01

    The aim of the study was to determine electrical resistivity peculiarities of tundra and forest tundra soils and soil-permafrost layers of the Yamal region. Measurements of electrical resistivity of soil and permafrost strata were performed with a portable device LandMapper (to a depth of 300-500 cm). These measurements allow determination of the values of apparent electrical resistivity of soils and permafrost at different depths and determination of the depths of the permafrost table on each key plot. It was found that there are several trends in vertical distribution of apparent electrical resistivity values. The first trend is a monotonous increase in electrical resistivity values to the depth. It may be explained by the increasing electrical resistivity within the soil depth in relation to the increase in permafrost density. The second trend is a sharp decrease replaced by a gradual increase in electrical resistivity values caused by changing of non-frozen friable debris to frozen massive crystalline rock. These differences were related to the type of landscape: flat lowlands composed of friable grounds underlain by permafrost or friable grounds with permafrost underlain by a rock crystalline layer.

  3. Habitat selection by tundra swans on Northern Alaska breeding grounds

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Earnst, Susan L.; Rothe, T.

    2004-01-01

    Habitat selection by the Tundra Swan (Cygnus columbianus columbianus) was evaluated on the Colville River Delta prior to oil field development (1982-1989). Tundra Swan territories comprised a lake, used for refuge and foraging, and terrestrial habitats and ponds near the lakea??s perimeter used for foraging and nesting. Tundra swan sightings from early and late summer aerial surveys were used to investigate habitat selection at the territory and within-territory scale. At the territory or lake scale, swan sightings/lake increased with lake size, and increased from discrete to tapped (i.e., connected to a river channel) to drained lakes within size categories. Overall, 49% of the variation in swan sightings/lake was explained by lake size and type, a size-x-type interaction term, and the proportion of lake perimeter comprised of Halophytic Ponds and Halophytic Wet Meadows. At the within-territory or within-lake scale, foraging swans significantly selected Halophytic Ponds, Halophytic Wet Meadows, and Fresh Ponds relative to Uplands; nesting swans significantly selected Halophytic Ponds and significantly avoided Fresh Wet Meadows relative to Uplands. Vegetation sampling indicated that sites used by Tundra Swans on river channels and tapped lakes were significantly more likely to have Sheathed Pondweed (Potamogeton vaginatus) than control sites. The three major components of Tundra Swan diet were Carex sedges, Sheathed Pondweed, and algae, together comprising 85% of identifiable plant fragments in feces.

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

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    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.

  5. Long-term trends and sources of organochlorine contamination in Canadian tundra Peregrine Falcons, Falco peregrinus tundrius.

    PubMed

    Johnstone, R M; Court, G S; Fesser, A C; Bradley, D M; Oliphant, L W; MacNeil, J D

    1996-01-01

    Levels of eggshell thinning, and organochlorine residues in egg contents, blood plasma of adults and juveniles, tissue samples, and prey species were determined for a population of migratory Peregrine Falcons (Falco peregrinus tundrius) breeding in the Canadian Arctic. Temporal trends were assessed by comparing data collected during 1991-1994, with data from 1982-1986, for the same population. Shells (n=54) from 1991-1994 averaged 15% thinner than eggs produced prior to the introduction of DDT. No improvement in shell thickness was detected between decades. Mean DDE residue levels in eggs showed a decline from 7.6 mg kg (1982-1986) to 4.5 mg kg (1991-1994), but there was no significant change in SigmaPCB residues. Moreover, the proportion of clutches with eggs exceeding critical SigmaPCB, DDE, and dieldrin residue levels (10%) did not change between decades. Relative to Greenland and Alaskan populations, F. p. tundrius at Rankin Inlet show high levels of organochlorine contamination and little reduction in residues over the last decade. These Tundra Peregrines continue to be exposed to organochlorines in Latin America; however, results also link relatively high levels in the study population with waterfowl species that do not leave Canada in winter.

  6. Remotely sensed vicennial changes of green phytomass, Salix cover, and leaf turnover in a sedge-shrub tundra, Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, Alaska

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kushida, K.; Kim, Y.; Tsuyuzaki, S.; Watanabe, M.; Kadosaki, G.; Sawada, Y.; Ishikawa, M.; Fukuda, M.

    2007-12-01

    We obtained the relationship between spectral indices, green phytomass, Salix - non-Salix ratio, and leaf turnover in a sedge-shrub tundra, Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (ANWR), Alaska based on the field observations of spectral reflectance and phytomass, and we used Landsat TM images acquired in July of 1986, 1994, and 2006 and the time series of NOAA AVHRR (Advanced Very High Resolution Radiometer) for evaluating the vicennial changes. 51% of Beaufort coastal plain, Alaska was occupied by lowland moist sedge-shrub tundra, lowland wet sedge tundra, riverine moist sedge-shrub tundra, and riverine wet sedge tundra, where willow shrubs and sedges dominate. We set a 50-m × 50-m plot located on the floodplain of Jago River in ANWR. Shrub (Salix lanata L.) and sedge (Carex bigelowii Torr.) dominated in the plot. Ten 0.5-m × 0.5-m quadrates (Salix} quadrates) were set on the Salix cover and ten 0.5-m × 0.5-m quadrates (non-Salix quadrates) were set on the ground that was not covered with Salix lanata. Salix lanata in each of the Salix quadrates was harvested, and the leaf area index (LAI) and the oven-dried weights of the photosynthetic (leaf) and non-photosynthetic parts were measured. After harvesting Salix, other green plants were harvested and the oven-dried weights of the plants were measured. The Salix quadrates were spectrally measured with a spectroradiometer at a wavelength of 350 - 2500 nm before and after harvesting Salix and after harvesting other green plants. Non-Salix quadrates were also spectrally measured with the spectroradiometer. The coefficients of determination (R2) of the green phytomass, Salix - non-Salix ratio, and leaf turnover estimations from the spectral indices were 0.63, 0.57, and 0.79, respectively. These estimations were used for evaluating the vicennial changes using the satellite data.

  7. Future distribution of tundra refugia in northern Alaska

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    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.

  8. A Comparative Review of North American Tundra Delineations

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    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.

  9. Effects of the Oil Spill on Alaskan Education.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Oldaker, Lawrence Lee

    Oil-industry-produced revenues, help finance Alaskan state and local governmental services including education. Capital losses incurred by the Exxon Corporation and by commerical fisheries as a consequence of the Exxon Valdez oil spill caused an economic recession, the result being diminished financing for a number of governmental programs and…

  10. Cross-Cultural Issues in Alaskan Education. Vol. II.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Barnhardt, Ray, Ed.

    A collection of 15 articles on cross-cultural issues in Alaskan education addresses educational policy issues, educational development issues, community/school issues, and teaching/learning issues. The one theme that permeates all of the articles is the value of participation by community members in all levels of the education of their children.…

  11. Village Science: A Resource Handbook for Rural Alaskan Teachers.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Dick, Alan

    A resource handbook for rural Alaskan teachers covers village science, to make basic science concepts relevant to the physical environment in villages. Material is intended for use as filler for weeks that come up short on science materials, to provide stimulation for students who cannot see the relevance of science in their lives, and to help…

  12. Profiles in Change: Names, Notes and Quotes for Alaskan Women.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Brelsford, Ginna

    This publication tells the stories of contemporary Alaskan women who have contributed to the state's economic, social, and political development, and who may serve as role models for younger women in need of inspiration. It also attempts to illustrate the relationship between personal empowerment and societal change. The book contains 12 lengthy…

  13. STARS (Secondary Training for Alaskan Rural Students): Mathematics. Draft Copy.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Griffin, Ned; Ostrom, Robert

    STARS (Secondary Training for Alaskan Rural Students) materials resulted from extensive rewriting of the Vocational Adult Secondary Training (VAST) materials produced by the British Columbia Department of Education, after those materials had been used with the 9th and 10th graders on Kodiak Island. Revision was done by teachers who had been using…

  14. Standard Implications: Alaskans Reflect on a Movement To Change Teaching.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Calkins, Annie, Ed.; Christian, Scott, Ed.

    In this anthology, rural Alaskan English teachers in the Bread Loaf Rural Teacher Network describe their experiences implementing new state education standards while continuing their commitment to learner-centered and place-based practice. The book presents narratives about teaching grounded in knowledge and understanding of students and…

  15. Rural Alaskan Schools: Educational Specifications. Reprinted September, 1971.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Alaska State Dept. of Education, Juneau. Office of Public Information and Publications.

    The educational specifications of facilities for rural Alaskan schools are given in this 1964 report. Alaska's 6 recognized geographic regions are briefly described with consideration to topography, climate, permafrost conditions, latitude position, and transportation difficulties which present problems in planning schools. Since the school design…

  16. RESIDUAL MUTAGENICITY OF THE ALASKAN OIL SPILL ORGANICS

    EPA Science Inventory

    RESIDUAL MUTAGENICITY OF THE ALASKAN OIL SPILL ORGANICS. L.D.

    The Exxon Valdez, on March 24, 1989, spilled approximately eleven million gallons of Prudhoe Bay crude oil into the waters of Prince William Sound. Approximately 300 miles of
    contaminated beach are potential...

  17. Native Alaskan Engagement with Social Constructions of Rurality

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Sherval, Meg

    2009-01-01

    There is no doubt that defining and measuring "rurality" is problematic. In states such as Alaska on the western Pacific coast of the United States, more than two-thirds of the State is classified as "remote rural". In 2000, despite only 10 per cent of the general Alaskan population living in these regions, for more than 41 per…

  18. 7 CFR 1780.49 - Rural or Native Alaskan villages.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-01-01

    ... the latest decennial Census of the United States. (c) Eligibility. (1) The applicant must be a rural... to residents of rural or Native Alaskan villages. (f) Construction. (1) If the State of Alaska is..., DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE (CONTINUED) WATER AND WASTE LOANS AND GRANTS Loan and Grant Application...

  19. 7 CFR 1780.49 - Rural or Native Alaskan villages.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-01-01

    ... the latest decennial Census of the United States. (c) Eligibility. (1) The applicant must be a rural... to residents of rural or Native Alaskan villages. (f) Construction. (1) If the State of Alaska is..., DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE (CONTINUED) WATER AND WASTE LOANS AND GRANTS Loan and Grant Application...

  20. 7 CFR 1780.49 - Rural or Native Alaskan villages.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-01-01

    ... the latest decennial Census of the United States. (c) Eligibility. (1) The applicant must be a rural... to residents of rural or Native Alaskan villages. (f) Construction. (1) If the State of Alaska is..., DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE (CONTINUED) WATER AND WASTE LOANS AND GRANTS Loan and Grant Application...

  1. 7 CFR 1780.49 - Rural or Native Alaskan villages.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-01-01

    ... the latest decennial Census of the United States. (c) Eligibility. (1) The applicant must be a rural... to residents of rural or Native Alaskan villages. (f) Construction. (1) If the State of Alaska is..., DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE (CONTINUED) WATER AND WASTE LOANS AND GRANTS Loan and Grant Application...

  2. Policy Statements on Collection Development. A Compendium from Alaskan Libraries.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    McCabe, Carol, Ed.

    Developed as part of a statewide coordinated collection development effort, this document is a compendium of the narrative statements of collection development policies from 19 Alaskan university, public, school, and special libraries. Only the basic narrative plus any unique appendices are included for each policy, and some of the policies are…

  3. Expansion of forest stands into tundra in the Noatak National Preserve, northwest Alaska

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Suarez, F.; Binkley, D.; Kaye, M.W.; Stottlemyer, R.

    1999-01-01

    Temperatures across the northern regions of North America have been increasing for 150 years, and forests have responded to this increase. In the Noatak National Preserve in Alaska, white spruce (Picea glauca [Moench] Voss) forests reach their northern limit, occurring primarily on well-drained sites and as gallery forests along streams. Rolling plateaus of tundra separate the white spruce forests into disjunct stands. We examined patterns of tree age, tree growth, and tree encroachment into tundra ecosystems in six stands along the Agashashok River. Warming over the past 150 years appears to have increased tree growth and resulted in forest expansion into adjacent tundra ecosystems. The forest/tundra ecotone shifted by about 80 to 100 m into the tundra in the past 200 years, as evidenced by declining maximum tree age with distance towards the tundra. The decadal-scale pattern of tree establishment at the farthest extent of trees into the tundra (the tundra-forest ecotone) correlated with the detrended growth index for trees within the forests; climate conditions that led to higher tree growth appeared to foster tree establishment in the tundra. This recent forest expansion has occurred across topographic boundaries, from well-drained soils on slopes onto poorly drained, flatter areas of tundra. Further expansion of the forests may be limited by more severe wind exposure and poor drainage that make the majority of tundra less suitable for trees.

  4. METHANE HYDRATE PRODUCTION FROM ALASKAN PERMAFROST

    SciTech Connect

    Steve Runyon; Mike Globe; Kent Newsham; Robert Kleinberg; Doug Griffin

    2005-02-01

    Natural-gas hydrates have been encountered beneath the permafrost and considered a nuisance by the oil and gas industry for years. Engineers working in Russia, Canada and the USA have documented numerous drilling problems, including kicks and uncontrolled gas releases, in arctic regions. Information has been generated in laboratory studies pertaining to the extent, volume, chemistry and phase behavior of gas hydrates. Scientists studying hydrate potential agree that the potential is great--on the North Slope of Alaska alone, it has been estimated at 590 TCF. However, little information has been obtained on physical samples taken from actual rock containing hydrates. This gas-hydrate project was a cost-shared partnership between Maurer Technology, Noble Corporation, Anadarko Petroleum, and the U.S. Department of Energy's Methane Hydrate R&D program. The purpose of the project is to build on previous and ongoing R&D in the area of onshore hydrate deposition to identify, quantify and predict production potential for hydrates located on the North Slope of Alaska. The work scope included drilling and coring a well (Hot Ice No. 1) on Anadarko leases beginning in FY 2003 and completed in 2004. During the first drilling season, operations were conducted at the site between January 28, 2003 to April 30, 2003. The well was spudded and drilled to a depth of 1403 ft. Due to the onset of warmer weather, work was then suspended for the season. Operations at the site were continued after the tundra was re-opened the following season. Between January 12, 2004 and March 19, 2004, the well was drilled and cored to a final depth of 2300 ft. An on-site core analysis laboratory was built and utilized for determining the physical characteristics of the hydrates and surrounding rock. The well was drilled from a new Anadarko Arctic Platform that has a minimal footprint and environmental impact. The final efforts of the project are to correlate geology, geophysics, logs, and drilling and

  5. METHANE HYDRATE PRODUCTION FROM ALASKAN PERMAFROST

    SciTech Connect

    Ali Kadaster; Bill Liddell; Tommy Thompson; Thomas Williams; Michael Niedermayr

    2005-02-01

    Natural-gas hydrates have been encountered beneath the permafrost and considered a nuisance by the oil and gas industry for years. Engineers working in Russia, Canada and the USA have documented numerous drilling problems, including kicks and uncontrolled gas releases, in arctic regions. Information has been generated in laboratory studies pertaining to the extent, volume, chemistry and phase behavior of gas hydrates. Scientists studying hydrate potential agree that the potential is great--on the North Slope of Alaska alone, it has been estimated at 590 TCF. However, little information has been obtained on physical samples taken from actual rock containing hydrates. This gas-hydrate project was a cost-shared partnership between Maurer Technology, Noble Corporation, Anadarko Petroleum, and the U.S. Department of Energy's Methane Hydrate R&D program. The purpose of the project is to build on previous and ongoing R&D in the area of onshore hydrate deposition to identify, quantify and predict production potential for hydrates located on the North Slope of Alaska. The work scope included drilling and coring a well (Hot Ice No. 1) on Anadarko leases beginning in FY 2003 and completed in 2004. During the first drilling season, operations were conducted at the site between January 28, 2003 to April 30, 2003. The well was spudded and drilled to a depth of 1403 ft. Due to the onset of warmer weather, work was then suspended for the season. Operations at the site were continued after the tundra was re-opened the following season. Between January 12, 2004 and March 19, 2004, the well was drilled and cored to a final depth of 2300 ft. An on-site core analysis laboratory was built and implemented for determining physical characteristics of the hydrates and surrounding rock. The well was drilled from a new Anadarko Arctic Platform that has a minimal footprint and environmental impact. Final efforts of the project are to correlate geology, geophysics, logs, and drilling and

  6. 14. VIEW FROM TUNDRA CURVES (ON TRAIL RIDGE ROAD) SHOWING ...

    Library of Congress Historic Buildings Survey, Historic Engineering Record, Historic Landscapes Survey

    14. VIEW FROM TUNDRA CURVES (ON TRAIL RIDGE ROAD) SHOWING FALL RIVER ROAD RISING FROM BENEATH CHAPIN PASS (AT EXTREME RIGHT) TO FALL RIVER PASS (FAR LEFT). - Fall River Road, Between Estes Park & Fall River Pass, Estes Park, Larimer County, CO

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

    EPA Science Inventory

    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 ...

  8. [The gene pool of native inhabitants of the Samburg tundra].

    PubMed

    Osipova, L P; Posukh, O L; Ivakin, E A; Kriukov, Iu A; Karafet, T M

    1996-06-01

    This study continues a series of investigations of the gene pool of native Siberian ethnic groups. In a population of Tundra Nentsi (Northern Samoyeds) and a group of Komi-Zyryans (Finno-Ugrian) (Samburg settlement, Tyumenskaya oblast, Yamalo-Nenetskii Autonomous okrug), gene markers of the following genetic systems were studied: blood groups (ABO, MNSs, Rhesus, Kell, Duffy, and P), erythrocyte acid phosphatase (AcP), phosphoglucomutase 1 (PGM 1), haptoglobin (Hp), and transferrin (Tf). The population of Samburg Tundra Nentsi was shown to have a close genetic relationship with the "core" of the Forest Nentsi population. In Northern Samoyeds, three carriers of the rare allele K (blood group Kell) were found for the first time. It is suggested that this allele was transferred into the population of Tundra Nentsi from Komi. Samburg Tundra Nentsi are found to have the maximum frequency of the allele PGM 1 (Posphoglucomutase 1) among aboriginal populations of northern Asia. Analysis of original data and the literature revealed a significant genetic distance between the Komi and Northern Samoyed populations. It was shown that Samburg Komi occupy an intermediate position between the clusters of Nenets populations and Finno-Ugrians (Komi) living in Komi Republic.

  9. A Microwave Radiance Assimilation Study for a Tundra Snowpack

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    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?

  10. Long-term dynamical evolution of Tundra-type orbits

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, Ming-Jiang; Zhao, Chang-Yin; Hou, Yong-Gang; Zhu, Ting-Lei; Wang, Hong-Bo; Sun, Rong-Yu; Zhang, Wei

    2017-01-01

    Tundra-type orbits are elliptical geosynchronous orbits located at the critical inclination. The long-term dynamical evolution of this type of special orbit is investigated in this paper. First, the effect of Earth's gravitational potential is examined. A simplified Hamiltonian of Tundra-type orbits subjected to Earth's gravitational potential is presented through a strict magnitude comparison of the involved terms. Based on this simplified Hamiltonian with two degrees of freedom, the equilibrium points of the orbits subjected to Earth's gravitational potential and their stabilities are discussed. This simplified Hamiltonian is then reduced to a one-degree-of-freedom system dominating the intermediate-period motion of the orbits approximately. In particular, the main characteristic parameters of the intermediate-period motion for nominal Tundra-type orbits and the corresponding specific results for three Sirius satellites in such orbits are presented. Second, the effect of lunisolar perturbations is examined. A magnitude comparison elementarily illustrates that the effect of tesseral harmonics of the Earth's gravitational potential on the long timespan evolution of Tundra-type orbits is negligible compared to that of lunisolar perturbations. A simplified dynamical model including lunisolar perturbations is then presented. Based on this simplified dynamical model, the influences of lunar precession, the initial longitude of the ascending node, the initial argument of perigee, and the initial epoch on the long-term dynamical evolution of the orbits are comparatively analyzed. Finally, numerical calculations with exact perturbation models are conducted to verify the theoretical analysis and to provide more information about the dynamical evolution of Tundra-type orbits.

  11. Organochlorine residues in eggs of Alaskan seabirds

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Ohlendorf, H.M.; Bartonek, J.C.; Divoky, G.J.; Klass, E.

    1982-01-01

    One egg from each of 440 clutches of eggs of 19 species of Alaskan seabirds collected in 1973-76 was analyzed for organochlorine residues. All eggs contained DDE; 98.9% contained PCB's; 84.3%, oxychlordane; and 82.7%, HCB. Endrin was found in only one egg, but DDD, DDT, dieldrin, heptachlor epoxide, mirex, cis-chlordane (or trans-nonachlor), cis-nonachlor, and toxaphene each occurred in at least 22% of the samples.Concentrations of organochlorines in the samples were generally low. Mean concentrations of eight compounds were highest in eggs of glaucous-winged gulls (Larus glaucescens) from three sites: DDE (5.16 ppm, wet weight), dieldrin (0.214 ppm), oxychlordane (0.251 ppm), and PCB's (3.55 ppm) in eggs from Bogoslof Island; heptachlor epoxide (0.037 ppm), cis-chlordane (0.075 ppm), and HCB (0.188 ppm) in eggs from Buldir Island; and cis-nonachlor (0.026 ppm) in eggs from the Semidi Islands. Highest concentrations of DDD (0.157 ppm), DDT (0.140 ppm), and toxaphene (0.101 ppm) were in eggs of fork-tailed storm-petrel (Oceanodroma furcata) from Buldir Island, and the highest concentration of mirex (0.044 ppm) was in fork-tailed storm-petrel eggs from the Barren Islands.Both frequency of occurrence and concentration of residues in the eggs differed geographically and by species, apparently reflecting non-uniform distribution of organochlorines in the environment, dissimilar feeding habits and migration patterns of the species, or metabolic differences among the species.The overall frequency of residue occurrence was highest in eggs from the Pribilof Islands, but only three species were represented in the samples collected there. Detectable residues also were more frequent in eggs from the Gulf of Alaska colonies than elsewhere, and the lowest frequency was in eggs from nesting colonies on or near the Seward Peninsula. Regionally, concentrations of DDE and PCB's were usually higher than average in eggs from the Gulf of Alaska and lower than average in eggs from the

  12. Revegetation of Alaskan coal mine spoils. Progress report

    SciTech Connect

    Mitchell, W W; Mitchell, G A; McKendrick, J D

    1980-05-23

    Activities initiated after the start of the revegetation project on Alaskan coal mine spoils on September 1, 1979 have consisted mainly of some fall plantings (dormant seedings) and soil and coal spoil samplings and analyses. Because of the late summer start for the project, only a limited amount of field work could be initiated in plant material studies. This consisted of a fall planting at the Usibelli mine site at Healy in interior Alaska. The planting was intended to test the efficacy of seeding in the frost period following the growing season, requiring the seed to remain dormant over winter and to germinate when conditions become favorable in late spring. It also was intended as a comparison of a number of different grasses. Thirty entries were seeded in three replications. Fifteen species of grasses and a clover were included in the trial. The site provided for the trial was on overburden material along a streambed. Among the entries were eight cultivars of introduced grasses, five cultivars of native Alaskan germplasm, one introduced clover cultivar, and sixteen experimental grasses mainly of Alaskan origin.

  13. Empirically constrained estimates of Alaskan regional Net Ecosystem Exchange of CO2, 2012-2014

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Commane, R.; Lindaas, J.; Benmergui, J. S.; Luus, K. A.; Chang, R. Y. W.; Miller, S. M.; Henderson, J.; Karion, A.; Miller, J. B.; Sweeney, C.; Miller, C. E.; Lin, J. C.; Oechel, W. C.; Zona, D.; Euskirchen, E. S.; Iwata, H.; Ueyama, M.; Harazono, Y.; Veraverbeke, S.; Randerson, J. T.; Daube, B. C.; Pittman, J. V.; Wofsy, S. C.

    2015-12-01

    We present data-driven estimates of the regional net ecosystem exchange of CO2 across Alaska for three years (2012-2014) derived from CARVE (Carbon in the Arctic Reservoirs Vulnerability Experiment) aircraft measurements. Integrating optimized estimates of annual NEE, we find that the Alaskan region was a small sink of CO2 during 2012 and 2014, but a significant source of CO2 in 2013, even before including emissions from the large forest fire season during 2013. We investigate the drivers of this interannual variability, and the larger spring and fall emissions of CO2 in 2013. To determine the optimized fluxes, we couple the Polar Weather Research and Forecasting (PWRF) model with the Stochastic Time-Inverted Lagrangian Transport (STILT) model, to produce footprints of surface influence that we convolve with a remote-sensing driven model of NEE across Alaska, the Polar Vegetation Photosynthesis and Respiration Model (Polar-VPRM). For each month we calculate a spatially explicit additive flux (∆F) by minimizing the difference between the measured profiles of the aircraft CO2 data and the modeled profiles, using a framework that combines a uniform correction at regional scales and a Bayesian inversion of residuals at smaller scales. A rigorous estimate of total uncertainty (including atmospheric transport, measurement error, etc.) was made with a combination of maximum likelihood estimation and Monte Carlo error propagation. Our optimized fluxes are consistent with other measurements on multiple spatial scales, including CO2 mixing ratios from the CARVE Tower near Fairbanks and eddy covariance flux towers in both boreal and tundra ecosystems across Alaska. For times outside the aircraft observations (Dec-April) we use the un-optimized polar-VPRM, which has shown good agreement with both tall towers and eddy flux data outside the growing season. This approach allows us to robustly estimate the annual CO2 budget for Alaska and investigate the drivers of both the

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

    PubMed

    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.

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

    PubMed Central

    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. PMID:26376204

  16. 40 CFR 408.60 - Applicability; description of the non-remote Alaskan whole crab and crab section processing...

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-07-01

    ...-remote Alaskan whole crab and crab section processing subcategory. 408.60 Section 408.60 Protection of... SEAFOOD PROCESSING POINT SOURCE CATEGORY Non-Remote Alaskan Whole Crab and Crab Section Processing Subcategory § 408.60 Applicability; description of the non-remote Alaskan whole crab and crab...

  17. 40 CFR 408.70 - Applicability; description of the remote Alaskan whole crab and crab section processing subcategory.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-07-01

    ... remote Alaskan whole crab and crab section processing subcategory. 408.70 Section 408.70 Protection of... SEAFOOD PROCESSING POINT SOURCE CATEGORY Remote Alaskan Whole Crab and Crab Section Processing Subcategory § 408.70 Applicability; description of the remote Alaskan whole crab and crab section...

  18. 40 CFR 408.70 - Applicability; description of the remote Alaskan whole crab and crab section processing subcategory.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-07-01

    ... remote Alaskan whole crab and crab section processing subcategory. 408.70 Section 408.70 Protection of... SEAFOOD PROCESSING POINT SOURCE CATEGORY Remote Alaskan Whole Crab and Crab Section Processing Subcategory § 408.70 Applicability; description of the remote Alaskan whole crab and crab section...

  19. 40 CFR 408.70 - Applicability; description of the remote Alaskan whole crab and crab section processing subcategory.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-07-01

    ... remote Alaskan whole crab and crab section processing subcategory. 408.70 Section 408.70 Protection of... SEAFOOD PROCESSING POINT SOURCE CATEGORY Remote Alaskan Whole Crab and Crab Section Processing Subcategory § 408.70 Applicability; description of the remote Alaskan whole crab and crab section...

  20. 40 CFR 408.40 - Applicability; description of the non-remote Alaskan crab meat processing subcategory.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-07-01

    ...-remote Alaskan crab meat processing subcategory. 408.40 Section 408.40 Protection of Environment... PROCESSING POINT SOURCE CATEGORY Non-Remote Alaskan Crab Meat Processing Subcategory § 408.40 Applicability; description of the non-remote Alaskan crab meat processing subcategory. The provisions of this subpart...

  1. 40 CFR 408.60 - Applicability; description of the non-remote Alaskan whole crab and crab section processing...

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-07-01

    ...-remote Alaskan whole crab and crab section processing subcategory. 408.60 Section 408.60 Protection of... SEAFOOD PROCESSING POINT SOURCE CATEGORY Non-Remote Alaskan Whole Crab and Crab Section Processing Subcategory § 408.60 Applicability; description of the non-remote Alaskan whole crab and crab...

  2. 40 CFR 408.60 - Applicability; description of the non-remote Alaskan whole crab and crab section processing...

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-07-01

    ...-remote Alaskan whole crab and crab section processing subcategory. 408.60 Section 408.60 Protection of... SEAFOOD PROCESSING POINT SOURCE CATEGORY Non-Remote Alaskan Whole Crab and Crab Section Processing Subcategory § 408.60 Applicability; description of the non-remote Alaskan whole crab and crab...

  3. 40 CFR 408.70 - Applicability; description of the remote Alaskan whole crab and crab section processing subcategory.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-07-01

    ... remote Alaskan whole crab and crab section processing subcategory. 408.70 Section 408.70 Protection of... SEAFOOD PROCESSING POINT SOURCE CATEGORY Remote Alaskan Whole Crab and Crab Section Processing Subcategory § 408.70 Applicability; description of the remote Alaskan whole crab and crab section...

  4. 40 CFR 408.40 - Applicability; description of the non-remote Alaskan crab meat processing subcategory.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-07-01

    ...-remote Alaskan crab meat processing subcategory. 408.40 Section 408.40 Protection of Environment... PROCESSING POINT SOURCE CATEGORY Non-Remote Alaskan Crab Meat Processing Subcategory § 408.40 Applicability; description of the non-remote Alaskan crab meat processing subcategory. The provisions of this subpart...

  5. 40 CFR 408.60 - Applicability; description of the non-remote Alaskan whole crab and crab section processing...

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-07-01

    ...-remote Alaskan whole crab and crab section processing subcategory. 408.60 Section 408.60 Protection of... SEAFOOD PROCESSING POINT SOURCE CATEGORY Non-Remote Alaskan Whole Crab and Crab Section Processing Subcategory § 408.60 Applicability; description of the non-remote Alaskan whole crab and crab...

  6. 40 CFR 408.70 - Applicability; description of the remote Alaskan whole crab and crab section processing subcategory.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-07-01

    ... remote Alaskan whole crab and crab section processing subcategory. 408.70 Section 408.70 Protection of... SEAFOOD PROCESSING POINT SOURCE CATEGORY Remote Alaskan Whole Crab and Crab Section Processing Subcategory § 408.70 Applicability; description of the remote Alaskan whole crab and crab section...

  7. 40 CFR 408.60 - Applicability; description of the non-remote Alaskan whole crab and crab section processing...

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-07-01

    ...-remote Alaskan whole crab and crab section processing subcategory. 408.60 Section 408.60 Protection of... SEAFOOD PROCESSING POINT SOURCE CATEGORY Non-Remote Alaskan Whole Crab and Crab Section Processing Subcategory § 408.60 Applicability; description of the non-remote Alaskan whole crab and crab...

  8. 40 CFR 408.40 - Applicability; description of the non-remote Alaskan crab meat processing subcategory.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-07-01

    ...-remote Alaskan crab meat processing subcategory. 408.40 Section 408.40 Protection of Environment... PROCESSING POINT SOURCE CATEGORY Non-Remote Alaskan Crab Meat Processing Subcategory § 408.40 Applicability; description of the non-remote Alaskan crab meat processing subcategory. The provisions of this subpart...

  9. 40 CFR 408.220 - Applicability; description of the non-Alaskan mechanized bottom fish processing subcategory.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-07-01

    ...-Alaskan mechanized bottom fish processing subcategory. 408.220 Section 408.220 Protection of Environment... PROCESSING POINT SOURCE CATEGORY Non-Alaskan Mechanized Bottom Fish Processing Subcategory § 408.220 Applicability; description of the non-Alaskan mechanized bottom fish processing subcategory. The provisions...

  10. 40 CFR 408.210 - Applicability; description of the non-Alaskan conventional bottom fish processing subcategory.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-07-01

    ...-Alaskan conventional bottom fish processing subcategory. 408.210 Section 408.210 Protection of Environment... PROCESSING POINT SOURCE CATEGORY Non-Alaskan Conventional Bottom Fish Processing Subcategory § 408.210 Applicability; description of the non-Alaskan conventional bottom fish processing subcategory. The provisions...

  11. 40 CFR 408.40 - Applicability; description of the non-remote Alaskan crab meat processing subcategory.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-07-01

    ...-remote Alaskan crab meat processing subcategory. 408.40 Section 408.40 Protection of Environment... PROCESSING POINT SOURCE CATEGORY Non-Remote Alaskan Crab Meat Processing Subcategory § 408.40 Applicability; description of the non-remote Alaskan crab meat processing subcategory. The provisions of this subpart...

  12. 40 CFR 408.40 - Applicability; description of the non-remote Alaskan crab meat processing subcategory.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-07-01

    ...-remote Alaskan crab meat processing subcategory. 408.40 Section 408.40 Protection of Environment... PROCESSING POINT SOURCE CATEGORY Non-Remote Alaskan Crab Meat Processing Subcategory § 408.40 Applicability; description of the non-remote Alaskan crab meat processing subcategory. The provisions of this subpart...

  13. 40 CFR 408.220 - Applicability; description of the non-Alaskan mechanized bottom fish processing subcategory.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-07-01

    ...-Alaskan mechanized bottom fish processing subcategory. 408.220 Section 408.220 Protection of Environment... PROCESSING POINT SOURCE CATEGORY Non-Alaskan Mechanized Bottom Fish Processing Subcategory § 408.220 Applicability; description of the non-Alaskan mechanized bottom fish processing subcategory. The provisions...

  14. 40 CFR 408.210 - Applicability; description of the non-Alaskan conventional bottom fish processing subcategory.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-07-01

    ...-Alaskan conventional bottom fish processing subcategory. 408.210 Section 408.210 Protection of Environment... PROCESSING POINT SOURCE CATEGORY Non-Alaskan Conventional Bottom Fish Processing Subcategory § 408.210 Applicability; description of the non-Alaskan conventional bottom fish processing subcategory. The provisions...

  15. Analysis of state of vehicular scars on Arctic Tundra, Alaska

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lathram, E. H.

    1974-01-01

    Identification on ERTS images of severe vehicular scars in the northern Alaska tundra suggests that, if such scars are of an intensity or have spread to a dimension such that they can be resolved by ERTS sensors (20 meters), they can be identified and their state monitored by the use of ERTS images. Field review of the state of vehicular scars in the Umiat area indicates that all are revegetating at varying rates and are approaching a stable state.

  16. Biogeochemical modeling of tundra recovery following thermal erosion of permafrost

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pearce, A. R.; Rastetter, E. B.; Bowden, W. B.

    2011-12-01

    We simulate the biogeochemical recovery of tundra from a thermal erosion disturbance using the Multiple Element Limitation model (MEL) and compare model results with soil organic matter and nutrient chemistry measurements collected across a chronosequence of thermal erosion features. Thermal erosion of permafrost initially depletes the tundra of much of its vegetation and shallow soil organic matter. However, several decades later, there is often little distinguishing these scars from the surrounding undisturbed tundra. As thermal erosion features become more abundant on the arctic landscape, we desire to understand how the pools of carbon and nutrients rebuild after these disturbances. MEL is a plot-scale, process-based model that optimizes the acquisition of eight resources (light, water, CO2, PO4, NH4, NO3, DON and N-fixation) by vegetation based on how much of each is required and the effort needed to acquire it. Model output includes pool sizes of carbon, nitrogen and phosphorus in vegetation, litter, young soil organic matter and old soil organic matter and the fluxes among these pools over time. This calibration of MEL, operating on a daily timestep, was created with published data collected at or near the Toolik Field Station (Toolik Lake, AK, USA) from moist acidic tussock tundra sites. We corroborate our calibration with data from plot manipulations (N and P fertilization, greenhouse, and shade house) performed as part of the NSF Arctic LTER project. The initial conditions for the recovery simulations reflect post-failure observations of some of the variation in soil organic matter, and soil and water nutrient chemistry. With sufficient nutrients from residual soil or supplied in soil water from upslope, the model indicates that vegetation can recover within several decades, but recovery of C and nutrients lost from soils may take hundreds of years.

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

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    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.

  18. Common Ground 1989: Suggested Literature for Alaskan Schools, Grades K-8.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Alaska State Dept. of Education, Juneau.

    Intended to assist Alaskan school districts in their own selection and promotion of reading and literature, this guide to literature for use in grades K-8 has five purposes: (1) to encourage reading and the use of literature throughout Alaskan schools; (2) to promote the inclusion of Alaska native literature, and minority literature, in addition…

  19. Common Ground 1989: Suggested Literature for Alaskan Schools, Grades 7-12.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Alaska State Dept. of Education, Juneau.

    Intended to assist Alaskan school districts in their own selection and promotion of reading and literature, this guide to literature for use in grades 7-12 has five purposes: (1) to encourage reading and the use of literature throughout Alaskan schools; (2) to promote the inclusion of Alaska Native literature, and minority literature, in addition…

  20. Alaskan Native High School Dropouts: A Report Prepared for Project ANNA.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Jacobson, Desa

    Presented is a summary of the Alaskan Native high school dropouts. The data collected on 180 Native Alaskan high school dropouts was taken from the regional dormitories at Nome, Kodiak, Bethel and Boarding Home programs in Anchorage, Tok, Fairbanks, Dillingham, and Ketchikan. Students who terminated for academic reasons, failed to attend school,…

  1. Alaskan Native Education: An Historical Perspective. Research and Evaluation Report Series No. 18-A.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ray, Charles K.

    Designed to help Alaskan Native communities and organizations, State and Federal officials, citizens of Alaska, and professional educators in dealing with changing educational situations, the report provides a reliable and succinct history of Alaskan education from the time of the area's purchase from Russia in 1867. One of the major problems in…

  2. Sled Dogs, Musher Math, and More: Theme Teaching and the Alaskan Iditarod.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Park-Seldomridge, Anne

    1995-01-01

    A teacher of upper elementary deaf students describes a multidisciplinary study unit focused on the Alaskan dogsled race, the Iditarod. Activities included studying Alaskan geography and history, following specific racers (mushers) through daily updates faxed from Alaska, writing letters to mushers, calculating math facts related to the race,…

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    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.

  4. Effects of chronic warming and nutrient additions on ecosystem respiration and methane fluxes along a tundra moisture gradient

    SciTech Connect

    Nadelhoffer, K.; Murray, G.; Giblin, A.; Shaver, G.; Laundre, J.; Johnson, L.; Stanley, A. ); Schimel, J. )

    1994-06-01

    We measured ecosystem respiration (ER: or CO[sub 2] flux), methane (CH[sub 4]) fluxes and net ecosystem production (NEP) near Toolik Lake, Alaska to compare effects of temperature, moisture and nutrients on tundra C balances. We measured fluxes using closed chambers in control, warmed and fertilized plots in wet, moist and dry tundra. ER rankings of tundra types differed between years. In 1992 ER was [approximately]70 g C m[sup [minus]2]y[sup [minus]1] in wet and moist tundra and was 50% lower in dry tundra. In 1993 ER was >150 g C m[sup [minus]2]y[sup [minus]1] in moist tundra and [approximately]55 g C m[sup [minus]2]y[sup [minus]1] in wet and dry tundra. CH[sub 4] emissions ranged from 3.5 to 7 g C m[sup [minus]2]y[sup [minus]1] in wet and from 0.6 to 2.8 g C m[sup [minus]2]y[sup [minus]1] in moist tundra. Dry tundra consumed about 0.1 g CH[sub 4]-C m[sup [minus]2]y[sup [minus]1]. In wet tundra ER increased slightly with warming but dramatically with fertilization. Wet tundra NEP increased with fertilization but not with warming. CH[sub 4] emissions from wet tundra increased with warming but decreased with fertilization. Warming and fertilization increased ER but neither treatment affected NEP in moist tundra. CH[sub 4] emissions from moist tundra responded similarly but less dramatically to treatments than did wet tundra CH[sub 4] fluxes. Warming did not affect ER or NEP in dry tundra, fertilization increased both process. Consumption of CH[sub 4] in dry tundra increased with warming but decreased with fertilization.

  5. Reproductive ecology of tundra swans on the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, Alaska

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Monda, Matthew J.; Ratti, John T.; McCabe, Thomas R.

    1994-01-01

    Management of tundra swans (Cygnus columbianus) is hampered by a lack of information on their nesting and brood-rearing ecology. We studied tundra swan nesting and brood-rearing ecology on the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (ANWR), Alaska, 1988-90. Nest success was 58% (n = 31) in 1988, 83% (n = 36) in 1989, 84% (n = 43) in 1990, and 76% (n = 110) for the 3 years. Nests were located predominately in marshes dominated by sheathed pondweed (Potamogeton vaginatus), mare's tail (Hippuris vulgaris), and Hoppner sedge (Carex subspathacea), or by pendent grass (Arctophila fulva), water sedge (C. aquatilis), and tall cotton grass (Eriophorum angustifolium). Nests were seldom located in upland or partially vegetated habitats and were near coastal lagoons or large coastal lakes. Incubating swans were easily disturbed by ground observers and left their nests when we were 500-2,000 m from the nest. Swans did not cover eggs with nest material prior to departure; thus, eggs were vulnerable to avain predation and thermal stress. Brood-foraging sites on the Kongakut Delta (n = 41) were frequently in aquatic-marsh (59%) and saline graminoid-shrub (29%) habitats, occasionally in graminoid-marsh (7%) and partially vegetated (5%) habitats, and absent from upland, graminoid-shrub-water sedge, and graminoid-shrub-cotton grass habitats. Brood-foraging sites on the Canning Delta (n = 35) were frequently in graminoid-marsh (46%), graminoid-shrub-water sedge (26%), and aquatic-marsh (23%) habitats, occasionally in graminoid-shrub-cotton grass (3%) and upland habitats (3%), and absent from saline graminoid-shrub and partially vegetated habitats. Young cygnets grazed in terrestrial habitats more frequently than older broods on the Kongakut (P = 0.003) and Canning (P = 0.053) deltas. Wetlands with sheathed pondweed were uncommon but preferred by broods (P = 0.001). Using field experiments, we evaluated effects of swan grazing and fertilization from feces on aboveground biomass production and

  6. Coastal sedimentation

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Schubel, J. R.

    1980-01-01

    Several important coastal sedimentation problems are identified. Application of existing or anticipated remote sensing techniques to examine these problems is considered. Specifically, coastal fine particle sediment systems, floods and hy hurricanes and sedimentation f of coastal systems, routes and rates of sediment transport on continental shelves, and dredging and dredged material disposal are discussed.

  7. On the Frontline: Tracking Ocean Acidification in an Alaskan Shellfish Hatchery.

    PubMed

    Evans, Wiley; Mathis, Jeremy T; Ramsay, Jacqueline; Hetrick, Jeff

    2015-01-01

    The invasion of anthropogenic carbon dioxide (CO2) into the ocean is shifting the marine carbonate system such that saturation states of calcium carbonate (CaCO3) minerals are decreasing, and this is having a detrimental impact on early life stages of select shellfish species. The global, secular decrease in CaCO3 saturation states is occurring on top of a backdrop of large natural variability in coastal settings; progressively shifting the envelope of variability and leading to longer and more frequent exposure to adverse conditions. This is a great concern in the State of Alaska, a high-latitude setting vulnerable to rapid changes in the marine carbonate system, where an emerging shellfish industry plans major growth over the coming decades. Currently, the Alutiiq Pride Shellfish Hatchery (APSH) in Seward, Alaska is the only hatchery in the state, and produces many shellfish species with early life stages known to be sensitive to low CaCO3 saturation states. Here we present the first land-based OA measurements made in an Alaskan shellfish hatchery, and detail the trends in the saturation state of aragonite (Ωarag), the more soluble form of CaCO3, over a 10-month period in the APSH seawater supply. These data indicate the largest changes are on the seasonal time scale, with extended periods of sub-optimal Ωarag levels (Ωarag < 1.5) in winter and autumn associated with elevated water column respiration and short-lived runoff events, respectively. The data pinpoint a 5-month window of reprieve with favorable Ωarag conditions above the sub-optimal Ωarag threshold, which under predicted upper-bound CO2 emissions trajectories is estimated to close by 2040. To date, many species in production at APSH remain untested in their response to OA, and the data presented here establish the current conditions at APSH as well as provide a framework for hatchery-based measurements in Alaska. The current and expected conditions seen at APSH are essential to consider for this

  8. On the Frontline: Tracking Ocean Acidification in an Alaskan Shellfish Hatchery

    PubMed Central

    Evans, Wiley; Mathis, Jeremy T.; Ramsay, Jacqueline; Hetrick, Jeff

    2015-01-01

    The invasion of anthropogenic carbon dioxide (CO2) into the ocean is shifting the marine carbonate system such that saturation states of calcium carbonate (CaCO3) minerals are decreasing, and this is having a detrimental impact on early life stages of select shellfish species. The global, secular decrease in CaCO3 saturation states is occurring on top of a backdrop of large natural variability in coastal settings; progressively shifting the envelope of variability and leading to longer and more frequent exposure to adverse conditions. This is a great concern in the State of Alaska, a high-latitude setting vulnerable to rapid changes in the marine carbonate system, where an emerging shellfish industry plans major growth over the coming decades. Currently, the Alutiiq Pride Shellfish Hatchery (APSH) in Seward, Alaska is the only hatchery in the state, and produces many shellfish species with early life stages known to be sensitive to low CaCO3 saturation states. Here we present the first land-based OA measurements made in an Alaskan shellfish hatchery, and detail the trends in the saturation state of aragonite (Ωarag), the more soluble form of CaCO3, over a 10-month period in the APSH seawater supply. These data indicate the largest changes are on the seasonal time scale, with extended periods of sub-optimal Ωarag levels (Ωarag < 1.5) in winter and autumn associated with elevated water column respiration and short-lived runoff events, respectively. The data pinpoint a 5-month window of reprieve with favorable Ωarag conditions above the sub-optimal Ωarag threshold, which under predicted upper-bound CO2 emissions trajectories is estimated to close by 2040. To date, many species in production at APSH remain untested in their response to OA, and the data presented here establish the current conditions at APSH as well as provide a framework for hatchery-based measurements in Alaska. The current and expected conditions seen at APSH are essential to consider for this

  9. Distinct temperature sensitivity among taiga and tundra shrubs in Alaska

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Andreu-Hayles, L.; Anchukaitis, K. J.; D'Arrigo, R.

    2014-12-01

    Shrub expansion into Arctic and alpine tundra ecosystems is well documented, mostly over the last 50 years, based on remote sensing data, aerial photography, and in-situ observations. Warming temperatures are considered the main driver of the observed change in shrub vegetation patterns. Here, we assess the relationship between temperatures and shrub growth from five populations of Salix spp. (willow) and Alnus spp. (alder) in Alaska growing within the tundra and the boreal forest (~taiga) using dendrochronological techniques. The three tundra shrub sites are located on the Dalton Highway north from Toolik Lake (~69ºN 148ºW), whereas the two taiga shrub sites are located closer to Fairbanks at the Twelve Mile Summit site (~65ºN 146ºW). Because shrub ages vary among the studied populations lead to different time spans for the ring-width chronologies generated, a common period with available satellite data spanning from 1982 to 2010 was selected for this study. All tundra shrub chronologies shared a strong positive response to summer temperatures despite growing in heterogeneous site conditions and belonging to different species. In contrast, in the taiga, summer temperatures enhance willow growth, whereas alder growth appears almost insensitive to temperature over the interval studied. Extending the analyses back in time, a very strong positive relationship was found between alder ring-width and June temperatures prior to 1970. This phenomenon, a weakening of the previously existing relationship between growth and temperatures, was also detected in white spruce (Picea glauca) growing at the same site, and it is known in the literature as the 'divergence problem'. Thus, at this taiga location, alder shrubs and trees seem to have similar growth patterns. Summer temperatures no longer seem to enhance taiga alder growth. Shrubs of different species exposed to the same climatic conditions can exhibit varied growth responses. The distinct temperature sensitivities

  10. Changing Seasonality of Tundra Vegetation and Associated Climatic Variables

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2014-12-01

    This study documents changes in the seasonality of tundra vegetation productivity and its associated climate variables using long-term data sets. An overall increase of Pan-Arctic tundra greenness potential corresponds to increased land surface temperatures and declining sea ice concentrations. While sea ice has continued to decline, summer land surface temperature and vegetation productivity increases have stalled during the last decade in parts of the Arctic. To understand the processes behind these features we investigate additional climate parameters. This study employs remotely sensed weekly 25-km sea ice concentration, weekly surface temperature, and bi-weekly NDVI from 1982 to 2013. 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), ocean heat content (PIOMAS, model incorporating ocean data assimilation), and snow water equivalent (GlobSnow, assimilated snow data set) are explored. We analyzed the data for the full period (1982-2013) and for two sub-periods (1982-1998 and 1999-2013), which were chosen based on the declining Pan-Arctic SWI since 1998. MaxNDVI has increased from 1982-2013 over most of the Arctic but has declined from 1999 to 2013 over western Eurasia, northern Canada, and southwest Alaska. TI-NDVI has trends that are similar to those for MaxNDVI for the full period but displays widespread declines over the 1999-2013 period. Therefore, as the MaxNDVI has continued to increase overall for the Arctic, TI-NDVI has been declining since 1999. SWI has large relative increases over the 1982-2013 period in eastern Canada and Greenland and strong declines in western Eurasia and southern Canadian tundra. Weekly Pan-Arctic tundra land surface temperatures warmed throughout the summer during the 1982-1998 period but display midsummer declines from 1999-2013. Weekly snow water equivalent over Arctic tundra has declined over

  11. Backscatter from ice growing on shallow tundra lakes near Barrow, Alaska, winter 1991-1992

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Jeffries, M. O.; Wakabayashi, H.; Weeks, W. F.; Morris, K.

    1993-01-01

    The timing of freeze-up and break-up of Arctic lake ice is a potentially useful environmental indicator that could be monitored using SAR. In order to do this, it is important to understand how the properties and structure of the ice during its growth and decay affect radar backscatter and thus lake ice SAR signatures. The availability of radiometrically and geometrically calibrated digital SAR data time series from the Alaska SAR Facility has made it possible for the first time to quantify lake ice backscatter intensity (sigma(sup o)) variations. This has been done for ice growing on shallow tundra lakes near Barrow, NW Alaska, from initial growth in September 1991 until thawing and decay in June 1992. Field and laboratory observations and measurements of the lake ice were made in late April 1992. The field investigations of the coastal lakes near Barrow confirmed previous findings that, (1) ice frozen to the lake bottom had a dark signature in SAR images, indicating weak backscatter, while, (2) ice that was floating had a bright signature, indicating strong backscatter. At all sites, regardless of whether the ice was grounded or floating, there was a layer of clear, inclusion-free ice overlaying a layer of ice with dense concentrations of vertically oriented tubular bubbles. At some sites, there was a third layer of porous, snow-ice overlaying the clear ice.

  12. Changes in microbial communities along redox gradients in polygonized Arctic wet tundra soils

    SciTech Connect

    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,

  13. Changes in microbial communities along redox gradients in polygonized Arctic wet tundra soils

    SciTech Connect

    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).

  14. Changes in microbial communities along redox gradients in polygonized Arctic wet tundra soils.

    PubMed

    Lipson, David A; Raab, Theodore K; Parker, Melanie; Kelley, Scott T; Brislawn, Colin J; Jansson, Janet

    2015-08-01

    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).

  15. Coastal Prairie

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    ,

    2000-01-01

    The coastal prairie, located along the coastal plain of southwestern Louisiana and southcentral Texas, is the southernmost tip of the tallgrass prairie ecosystem so prevalent in the Midwest. The coastal prairie ecosystem once covered as much as 3.8 million ha (9 million acres); today, more than 99% of this land has been lost to agriculture, range improvement, and urbanization. The remainder is highly fragmented and severely threatened by invasions of exotic species and urban sprawl. In Louisiana, the former 1 million ha of coastal prairie have now been reduced to about 100 ha. In Texas, only about 100,000 ha of coastal prairie remain intact.

  16. Energy fluxes retrieval on an Alaskan Arctic and Sub-Arctic vegetation by means MODIS imagery and the DTD method

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cristobal, J.; Prakash, A.; Starkenburg, D. P.; Fochesatto, G. J.; Anderson, M. C.; Gens, R.; Kane, D. L.; Kustas, W.; Alfieri, J. G.

    2012-12-01

    Evapotranspiration (ET) plays a significant role in the hydrologic cycle of Arctic and Sub-Arctic basins. Surface-atmosphere exchanges due to ET are estimated from water balance computations to be about 74% of summer precipitation or 50% of annual precipitation. Even though ET is a significant component of the hydrologic cycle in this region, the bulk estimates don't accurately account for spatial and temporal variability due to vegetation type, topography, etc. (Kane and Yang, 2004). Nowadays, remote sensing is the only technology capable of providing the necessary radiometric measurements for the calculation of the ET at global scales and in a feasible economic way, especially in Arctic and Sub-Arctic Alaskan basins with a very sparse network of both meteorological and flux towers. In this work we present the implementation and validation of the Dual-Time-Difference model (Kustas et al., 2001) to retrieve energy fluxes (ET, sensible heat flux, net radiation and soil heat flux) in tundra vegetation in Arctic conditions and in a black spruce (Picea mariana) forest in Sub-Arctic conditions. In order to validate the model in tundra vegetation we used a flux tower from the Imnavait Creek sites of the Arctic Observatory Network (Euskirchen et al. 2012). In the case of the black spruce forest, on September 2011 we installed a flux tower in the University of Alaska Fairbanks north campus that includes an eddy-covariance system as well a net radiometer, air temperature probes, soil heat flux plates, soil moisture sensors and thermistors to fully estimate energy fluxes in the field (see http://www.et.alaska.edu/ for further details). Additionally, in order to upscale energy fluxes into MODIS spatial resolution, a scintillometer was also installed covering 1.2 km across the flux tower. DTD model mainly requires meteorological inputs as well as land surface temperature (LST) and leaf area index (LAI) data, both coming from satellite imagery, at two different times: after

  17. (Alaskan commodities irradiation project: An options analysis study)

    SciTech Connect

    Zarling, J.P.; Swanson, R.B.; Logan, R.R.; Das, D.K.; Lewis, C.E.; Workman, W.G.; Tumeo, M.A.; Hok, C.I.; Birklind, C.A.; Bennett, F.L. . Inst. of Northern Engineering)

    1989-09-01

    The ninety-ninth US Congress commissioned a six-state food irradiation research and development program to evaluate the commercial potential of this technology. Hawaii, Washington, Iowa, Oklahoma and Florida as well as Alaska have participated in the national program; various food products including fishery products, red meats, tropical and citrus fruits and vegetables have been studied. The purpose of the Alaskan study was to review and evaluate those factors related to the technical and economic feasibility of an irradiator in Alaska. This options analysis study will serve as a basis for determining the state's further involvement in the development of food irradiation technology.

  18. 50 CFR 20.107 - Seasons, limits, and shooting hours for tundra swans.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-10-01

    ... 50 Wildlife and Fisheries 9 2012-10-01 2012-10-01 false Seasons, limits, and shooting hours for 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....

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

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-10-01

    ... 50 Wildlife and Fisheries 9 2013-10-01 2013-10-01 false Seasons, limits, and shooting hours for 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....

  20. 50 CFR 20.107 - Seasons, limits, and shooting hours for tundra swans.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-10-01

    ... 50 Wildlife and Fisheries 9 2014-10-01 2014-10-01 false Seasons, limits, and shooting hours for 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....

  1. 50 CFR 20.107 - Seasons, limits, and shooting hours for tundra swans.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-10-01

    ... 50 Wildlife and Fisheries 8 2011-10-01 2011-10-01 false Seasons, limits, and shooting hours for 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....

  2. 50 CFR 20.107 - Seasons, limits, and shooting hours for tundra swans.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-10-01

    ... 50 Wildlife and Fisheries 6 2010-10-01 2010-10-01 false Seasons, limits, and shooting hours for 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....

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

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    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.

  4. Airborne Spectral Measurements of Surface-Atmosphere Anisotropy for Arctic Sea Ice and Tundra

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Arnold, G. Thomas; Tsay, Si-Chee; King, Michael D.; Li, Jason Y.; Soulen, Peter F.

    1999-01-01

    Angular distributions of spectral reflectance for four common arctic surfaces: snow-covered sea ice, melt-season sea ice, snow-covered tundra, and tundra shortly after snowmelt were measured using an aircraft based, high angular resolution (1-degree) multispectral radiometer. Results indicate bidirectional reflectance is higher for snow-covered sea ice than melt-season sea ice at all wavelengths between 0.47 and 2.3 pm, with the difference increasing with wavelength. Bidirectional reflectance of snow-covered tundra is higher than for snow-free tundra for measurements less than 1.64 pm, with the difference decreasing with wavelength. Bidirectional reflectance patterns of all measured surfaces show maximum reflectance in the forward scattering direction of the principal plane, with identifiable specular reflection for the melt-season sea ice and snow-free tundra cases. The snow-free tundra had the most significant backscatter, and the melt-season sea ice the least. For sea ice, bidirectional reflectance changes due to snowmelt were more significant than differences among the different types of melt-season sea ice. Also the spectral-hemispherical (plane) albedo of each measured arctic surface was computed. Comparing measured nadir reflectance to albedo for sea ice and snow-covered tundra shows albedo underestimated 5-40%, with the largest bias at wavelengths beyond 1 pm. For snow-free tundra, nadir reflectance underestimates plane albedo by about 30-50%.

  5. Sea Ice, Hydrocarbon Extraction, Rain-on-Snow and Tundra Reindeer Nomadism in Arctic Russia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Forbes, B. C.; Kumpula, T.; Meschtyb, N.; Laptander, R.; Macias-Fauria, M.; Zetterberg, P.; Verdonen, M.

    2015-12-01

    It is assumed that retreating sea ice in the Eurasian Arctic will accelerate hydrocarbon development and associated tanker traffic along Russia's Northern Sea Route. However, oil and gas extraction along the Kara and Barents Sea coasts will likely keep developing rapidly regardless of whether the Northwest Eurasian climate continues to warm. Less certain are the real and potential linkages to regional biota and social-ecological systems. Reindeer nomadism continues to be a vitally important livelihood for indigenous tundra Nenets and their large herds of semi-domestic reindeer. Warming summer air temperatures over the NW Russian Arctic have been linked to increases in tundra productivity, longer growing seasons, and accelerated growth of tall deciduous shrubs. These temperature increases have, in turn, been linked to more frequent and sustained summer high-pressure systems over West Siberia, but not to sea ice retreat. At the same time, winters have been warming and rain-on-snow (ROS) events have become more frequent and intense, leading to record-breaking winter and spring mortality of reindeer. What is driving this increase in ROS frequency and intensity is not clear. Recent modelling and simulation have found statistically significant near-surface atmospheric warming and precipitation increases during autumn and winter over Arctic coastal lands in proximity to regions of sea-ice loss. During the winter of 2013-14 an extensive and lasting ROS event led to the starvation of 61,000 reindeer out of a population of ca. 300,000 animals on Yamal Peninsula, West Siberia. Historically, this is the region's largest recorded mortality episode. More than a year later, participatory fieldwork with nomadic herders during spring-summer 2015 revealed that the ecological and socio-economic impacts from this extreme event will unfold for years to come. There is an urgent need to understand whether and how ongoing Barents and Kara Sea ice retreat may affect the region's ancient

  6. Summertime CO2 fluxes and ecosystem respiration from marine animal colony tundra in maritime Antarctica

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhu, Renbin; Bao, Tao; Wang, Qing; Xu, Hua; Liu, Yashu

    2014-12-01

    Net ecosystem CO2 exchange (NEE) and ecosystem respiration (ER) were investigated at penguin, seal and skua colony tundra and the adjacent animal-lacking tundra sites in maritime Antarctica. Net CO2 fluxes showed a large difference between marine animal colonies and animal-lacking tundra sites. The mean NEE from penguin, seal and skua colony tundra sites ranged from -37.2 to 5.2 mg CO2 m-2 h-1, whereas animal-lacking tundra sites experienced a larger net gain of CO2 with the mean flux range from -85.6 to -23.9 mg CO2 m-2 h-1. Ecosystem respiration rates at penguin colony tundra sites (mean 201.3 ± 31.4 mg CO2 m-2 h-1) were significantly higher (P < 0.01) than those at penguin-lacking tundra sites (64.0-87.1 mg CO2 m-2 h-1). The gross photosynthesis (Pg) showed a consistent trend to ER with the highest mean Pg (219.7 ± 34.5 mg CO2 m-2 h-1) at penguin colony tundra sites. When all the data were combined from different types of tundra ecosystems, summertime tundra NEE showed a weak or strong positive correlation with air temperature, 0-10 cm soil temperature or precipitation. The NEE from marine animal colony and animal-lacking tundra was significantly positively correlated (P < 0.001) with soil organic carbon (SOC), total nitrogen (TN) contents and C:N ratios. The ER showed a significant exponential correlation (P < 0.01) with mean 0-15 cm soil temperature, and much higher Q10 value (9.97) was obtained compared with other terrestrial ecosystems, indicating greater temperature sensitivity of tundra ecosystem respiration. Our results indicate that marine animals and the deposition of their excreta might have an important effect on tundra CO2 exchanges and ecosystem respiration, and current climate warming will further decrease tundra CO2 sink in maritime Antarctica.

  7. Identifying nitrogen limitations to organic sediments accumulation in various vegetation types of arctic tundra (Hornsund, Svalbard)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Skrzypek, G.; Wojtuń, B.; Hua, Q.; Richter, D.; Jakubas, D.; Wojczulanis-Jakubas, K.; Samecka-Cymerman, A.

    2015-12-01

    Arctic and subarctic regions play important roles in the global carbon balance. However, nitrogen (N) deficiency is a major constraint for organic carbon sequestration in the High Arctic. Hence, the identification of the relative contributions from different N-sources is critical for understanding the constraints that limit tundra growth. The stable nitrogen composition of the three main N-sources and numerous plants were analyzed in ten tundra types in the Fuglebekken catchment (Hornsund Fjord, Svalbard, 77°N 15°E). The percentage of the total tundra N-pool provided by seabirds' feces (colonially breeding, planktivorous Alle alle), 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 N2-fixation. The results clearly show that N-pool in the tundra is significantly supplemented by nesting seabirds. Thus, if they experienced substantial negative environmental pressure associated with climate change, it would adversely influence the tundra N-budget [1]. The growth rates and the sediment thickness (<15 cm) in different tundra types varied considerably but the tundra age was similar, <450 cal BP. The only exception was Ornithocoprophilous tundra with very diverse ages ranging from 235 to 2300 cal BP and thickness up to 110cm. The growth rates for this tundra (62 cm core, 18 AMS 14C dates) were high (1.5-3.0 mm/yr) between 1568 and 1804 AD and then substantially declined for the period between 1804 and 1929 AD (0.2 mm/yr). These findings deliver an additional argument, that the organic matter accumulation is driven not only directly by climatic conditions but also by birds' contribution to the tundra N-pool. [1] Skrzypek G, Wojtuń B, Richter D, Jakubas D, Wojczulanis-Jakubas K, Samecka-Cymerman A, 2015. Diversification of nitrogen sources in various tundra vegetation types in the high Arctic. PLoS ONE

  8. Tundra in the rain: differential vegetation responses to three years of experimentally doubled summer precipitation in Siberian shrub and Swedish bog tundra.

    PubMed

    Keuper, Frida; Parmentier, Frans-Jan W; Blok, Daan; van Bodegom, Peter M; Dorrepaal, Ellen; van Hal, Jurgen R; van Logtestijn, Richard S P; Aerts, Rien

    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 at the plant level, total tundra plant productivity is, at least at the short or medium term, largely irresponsive to experimentally increased summer precipitation.

  9. Analysis of Alaskan burn severity patterns using remotely sensed data

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Duffy, P.A.; Epting, J.; Graham, J.M.; Rupp, T.S.; McGuire, A.D.

    2007-01-01

    Wildland fire is the dominant large-scale disturbance mechanism in the Alaskan boreal forest, and it strongly influences forest structure and function. In this research, patterns of burn severity in the Alaskan boreal forest are characterised using 24 fires. First, the relationship between burn severity and area burned is quantified using a linear regression. Second, the spatial correlation of burn severity as a function of topography is modelled using a variogram analysis. Finally, the relationship between vegetation type and spatial patterns of burn severity is quantified using linear models where variograms account for spatial correlation. These results show that: 1) average burn severity increases with the natural logarithm of the area of the wildfire, 2) burn severity is more variable in topographically complex landscapes than in flat landscapes, and 3) there is a significant relationship between burn severity and vegetation type in flat landscapes but not in topographically complex landscapes. These results strengthen the argument that differential flammability of vegetation exists in some boreal landscapes of Alaska. Additionally, these results suggest that through feedbacks between vegetation and burn severity, the distribution of forest vegetation through time is likely more stable in flat terrain than it is in areas with more complex topography. ?? IAWF 2007.

  10. Reanalysis of the USGS Alaskan benchmark glacier dataset

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    van Beusekom, A. E.; O'Neel, S.; March, R. S.; Sass, L. C.

    2010-12-01

    Resolving the relationship between glacier surface-forcing (climate) and glacier geometry changes is accomplished through mass-balance estimates which can be made with remote sensing methods or field-based observations. The small scale of Alaskan glaciers has prevented remote sensing methods until recently, and field data are essential for validating new techniques. Field data provide the only long duration record that can be studied with respect to climate. The United States Geological Survey has maintained a 44-year mass-balance program at Alaska’s Gulkana Glacier and Wolverine Glacier. We have reanalyzed the Alaskan benchmark glaciers mass balance time series so that all data are treated similarly and systematically. Both glaciers are undergoing sustained mass loss with an increasing rate in recent years. However, the magnitude of the calculated loss depends on the number and location of the data collection sites. We explore the sensitivity of the glacier-wide balance estimates to the method of integration used on the necessarily point data. The robustness of the balance is strengthened with use of independent photogrammetric measurements.

  11. Recovering glycoside hydrolase genes from active tundra cellulolytic bacteria.

    PubMed

    Pinnell, Lee J; Dunford, Eric; Ronan, Patrick; Hausner, Martina; Neufeld, Josh D

    2014-07-01

    Bacteria responsible for cellulose hydrolysis in situ are poorly understood, largely because of the relatively recent development of cultivation-independent methods for their detection and characterization. This study combined DNA stable-isotope probing (DNA-SIP) and metagenomics for identifying active bacterial communities that assimilated carbon from glucose and cellulose in Arctic tundra microcosms. Following DNA-SIP, bacterial fingerprint analysis of gradient fractions confirmed isotopic enrichment. Sequenced fingerprint bands and clone library analysis of 16S rRNA genes identified active bacterial taxa associated with cellulose-associated labelled DNA, including Bacteroidetes (Sphingobacteriales), Betaproteobacteria (Burkholderiales), Alphaproteobacteria (Caulobacteraceae), and Chloroflexi (Anaerolineaceae). We also compared glycoside hydrolase metagenomic profiles from bulk soil and heavy DNA recovered from DNA-SIP incubations. Active populations consuming [(13)C]glucose and [(13)C]cellulose were distinct, based on ordinations of light and heavy DNA. Metagenomic analysis demonstrated a ∼3-fold increase in the relative abundance of glycoside hydrolases in DNA-SIP libraries over bulk-soil libraries. The data also indicate that multiple displacement amplification introduced bias into the resulting metagenomic analysis. This research identified DNA-SIP incubation conditions for glucose and cellulose that were suitable for Arctic tundra soil and confirmed that DNA-SIP enrichment can increase target gene frequencies in metagenomic libraries.

  12. Climate sensitivity of shrub growth across the tundra biome

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Myers-Smith, Isla H.; Elmendorf, Sarah C.; Beck, Pieter S. A.; Wilmking, Martin; Hallinger, Martin; Blok, Daan; Tape, Ken D.; Rayback, Shelly A.; Macias-Fauria, Marc; Forbes, Bruce C.; Speed, James D. M.; Boulanger-Lapointe, Noémie; Rixen, Christian; Lévesque, Esther; Schmidt, Niels Martin; Baittinger, Claudia; Trant, Andrew J.; Hermanutz, Luise; Collier, Laura Siegwart; Dawes, Melissa A.; Lantz, Trevor C.; Weijers, Stef; Jørgensen, Rasmus Halfdan; Buchwal, Agata; Buras, Allan; Naito, Adam T.; Ravolainen, Virve; Schaepman-Strub, Gabriela; Wheeler, Julia A.; Wipf, Sonja; Guay, Kevin C.; Hik, David S.; Vellend, Mark

    2015-09-01

    Rapid climate warming in the tundra biome has been linked to increasing shrub dominance. Shrub expansion can modify climate by altering surface albedo, energy and water balance, and permafrost, yet the drivers of shrub growth remain poorly understood. Dendroecological data consisting of multi-decadal time series of annual shrub growth provide an underused resource to explore climate-growth relationships. Here, we analyse circumpolar data from 37 Arctic and alpine sites in 9 countries, including 25 species, and ~42,000 annual growth records from 1,821 individuals. Our analyses demonstrate that the sensitivity of shrub growth to climate was: (1) heterogeneous, with European sites showing greater summer temperature sensitivity than North American sites, and (2) higher at sites with greater soil moisture and for taller shrubs (for example, alders and willows) growing at their northern or upper elevational range edges. Across latitude, climate sensitivity of growth was greatest at the boundary between the Low and High Arctic, where permafrost is thawing and most of the global permafrost soil carbon pool is stored. The observed variation in climate-shrub growth relationships should be incorporated into Earth system models to improve future projections of climate change impacts across the tundra biome.

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

    PubMed

    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.

  14. Alaskan transect links Holocene carbon shifts to peatland paleoecology and paleoclimate

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Peteet, D. M.; Nichols, J. E.; Andreev, A.; McGeachy, A.; Perez, M.

    2011-12-01

    Arctic and subarctic peatlands are highly sensitive to climate shifts, and greenhouse warming is greatest at high latitudes. As high latitudes warm and peatlands provide positive and negative feedbacks in carbon sequestration, the paleo-perspective becomes critical in assessing future peatland stocks. We target a north-south (temperature) and east-west (moisture) transect of Alaskan peatlands using pollen and spores, plant macrofossils, charcoal, stable isotopes, and C/N coupled with carbon to explore the relationship of climate and vegetation shifts to carbon storage through time. Since deglaciation, peatlands have developed in a variety of maritime and continental subarctic and arctic environments with vegetation ranging from fens to bogs. Factors affecting the net carbon storage (productivity and decomposition) include the vegetation type, precipitation, temperature, bryophyte component, seasonality, snow history, fire history, and permafrost. New paleoecological records from three Holocene peatlands, each spanning at least 9000 years, include a continental boreal forest site, Goldmine Bog, Fairbanks, (65°N, 147°W), and maritime sites including Phalarope Bog, Kodiak (57°N, 154°W), and Bear Bog, Cordova (60°N, 145°W). Major shifts in moisture and temperature are evident throughout the Holocene from our multiproxy investigations of each site. Our data address several questions about subarctic/arctic carbon storage and climate, such as whether bogs or fens sequester more carbon, as this topic is intensely debated in the current literature. We also compare shifts in inferred moisture and temperature with carbon storage at each site, and with other coastal and interior sites for a fuller understanding of changes in the climate of this important region.

  15. Stable isotope natural abundance of nitrous oxide emitted from Antarctic tundra soils: effects of sea animal excrement depositions.

    PubMed

    Zhu, Renbin; Liu, Yashu; Li, Xianglan; Sun, Jianjun; Xu, Hua; Sun, Liguang

    2008-11-01

    Nitrous oxide (N2O), a greenhouse gas, is mainly emitted from soils during the nitrification and denitrification processes. N2O stable isotope investigations can help to characterize the N2O sources and N2O production mechanisms. N2O isotope measurements have been conducted for different types of global terrestrial ecosystems. However, no isotopic data of N2O emitted from Antarctic tundra ecosystems have been reported although the coastal ice-free tundra around Antarctic continent is the largest sea animal colony on the global scale. Here, we report for the first time stable isotope composition of N2O emitted from Antarctic sea animal colonies (including penguin, seal and skua colonies) and normal tundra soils using in situ field observations and laboratory incubations, and we have analyzed the effects of sea animal excrement depositions on stable isotope natural abundance of N2O. For all the field sites, the soil-emitted N2O was 15N- and 18O-depleted compared with N2O in local ambient air. The mean delta values of the soil-emitted N2O were delta15N = -13.5 +/- 3.2 per thousand and delta18O = 26.2 +/- 1.4 per thousand for the penguin colony, delta15N = -11.5 +/- 5.1 per thousand and delta18O = 26.4 +/- 3.5 per thousand for the skua colony and delta15N = -18.9 +/- 0.7 per thousand and delta18O = 28.8 +/- 1.3 per thousand for the seal colony. In the soil incubations, the isotopic composition of N2O was measured under N2 and under ambient air conditions. The soils incubated under the ambient air emitted very little N2O (2.93 microg N2O--N kg(-1)). Under N2 conditions, much more N2O was formed (9.74 microg N2O--N kg(-1)), and the mean delta15N and delta18O values of N2O were -19.1 +/- 8.0 per thousand and 21.3 +/- 4.3 per thousand, respectively, from penguin colony soils, and -17.0 +/- 4.2 per thousand and 20.6 +/- 3.5 per thousand, respectively, from seal colony soils. The data from in situ field observations and laboratory experiments point to denitrification as the

  16. Cultural Resilience of Nenets Social-Ecological Systems in Arctic Russia: A Focus on Reindeer Nomads of the Tundra

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Forbes, B. C.

    2013-12-01

    Empirical data on resilience in social-ecological systems (SESs) are reviewed from local and regional scale case studies among full-time nomads in the neighbouring Nenets and Yamal-Nenets Autonomous Okrugs, Russia. The focus is on critical cultural factors contributing to SES resilience. In particular, this work presents an integrated view of people situated in specific tundra landscapes that face significantly different prospects for adaptation depending on existing or planned infrastructure associated with oil and gas development. Factors contributing to general resilience are compared to those that are adapted to certain spatial and temporal contexts. Environmental factors include ample space and an abundance of resources, such as fish and game (e.g. geese), to augment the diet of not only the migratory herders, but also residents from coastal settlements. In contrast to other regions, such as the Nenets Okrug, Yamal Nenets households consist of intact nuclear families with high retention among youth in the nomadic tundra population. Accepting attitudes toward exogenous drivers such as climate change and industrial development appear to play a significant role in how people react to both extreme weather events and piecemeal confiscation or degradation of territory. Consciousness of their role as responsible stewards of the territories they occupy has likely been a factor in maintaining viable wildlife populations over centuries. Institutions administering reindeer herding have remained flexible, especially on Yamal, and so accommodate decision-making that is sensitive to herders' needs and timetables. This affects factors such as herd demography, mobility and energetics. Resilience is further facilitated within the existing governance regimes by herders' own agency, most recently in the post-Soviet shift to smaller, privately managed herds that can better utilize available pastures in a highly dynamic environment experiencing rapid socio-economic, climate and

  17. Frequent fires in ancient shrub tundra: implications of paleorecords for arctic environmental change.

    PubMed

    Higuera, Philip E; Brubaker, Linda B; Anderson, Patricia M; Brown, Thomas A; Kennedy, Alison T; Hu, Feng Sheng

    2008-03-05

    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 birch-dominated 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 paleofires 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 21(st) century and beyond. Increased tundra burning will have broad impacts on physical and biological systems as well as on land-atmosphere interactions in the Arctic, including the potential to release stored organic carbon to the atmosphere.

  18. Nitrous oxide emissions from tundra soil and snowpack in the maritime Antarctic.

    PubMed

    Zhu, Renbin; Sun, Liguang; Ding, Weixin

    2005-06-01

    The nitrous oxide emissions were measured at three tundra sites and one snowpack on the Fildes Peninsula in the maritime Antarctic in the summertime of 2002. The average fluxes at two normal tundra sites were 1.1+/-2.2 and 0.6+/-1.7 microg N2O m(-2)h(-1), respectively. The average flux from tundra soil site with penguin dropping addition was 3.7+/-2.0 microg N2O m(-2)h(-1), 3-6 times those from the normal tundra soils, suggesting that the deposition of fresh droppings enhanced N2O emissions during penguin breeding period. The summer precipitation had an important effect on N2O emissions; the flux decreased when heavy precipitation occurred. The diurnal cycle of the N2O fluxes from Antarctic tundra soils was not obtained due to local fluky weather conditions. The N2O fluxes through four snowpack sites were obtained by the vertical N2O concentration gradient and their average fluxes were 0.94, 1.36, 0.81 and 0.85 microg N2O m(-2)h(-1), respectively. The tundra soils under snowpack emitted N2O in the maritime Antarctic and increased local atmospheric N2O concentrations; therefore these fluxes could constitute an important part of the annual N2O budget for Antarctic tundra ecosystem.

  19. Methane fluxes from tundra soils and snowpack in the maritime Antarctic.

    PubMed

    Zhu, Renbin; Sun, Liguang

    2005-06-01

    Methane fluxes were measured from three exposed tundra sites and four snowpack sites on the Fildes Peninsula in the maritime Antarctic in the summertime of 2002. The average fluxes at two normal tundra sites were -15.3 microgm(-2)h(-1) and -14.3 microgm(-2)h(-1), respectively. The fluxes from tundra site with fresh penguin dropping addition showed positive values with the average of 36.1 microgm(-2)h(-1), suggesting that the deposition of fresh droppings greatly enhanced CH4 emissions from the poor Antarctic tundra during penguin breeding periods. The summertime variation in CH4 flux was correlated with surface ground temperature and the precipitation. The correlation between the flux and PT0, which is the product of the precipitation and surface ground temperature, was quite strong. The diurnal cycle of CH4 flux from the tundra soils was not obtained due to local fluky weather conditions. The fluxes through four snowpack sites were also obtained by the vertical CH4 concentration gradient and their average fluxes were -46.5 microgm(-2)h(-1), -28.2 microgm(-2)h(-1), -46.4 microgm(-2)h(-1) and -17.9 microgm(-2)h(-1), respectively, indicating that tundra soils under snowpack also consume atmospheric CH4 in the maritime Antarctic; therefore these fluxes could constitute an important part of the annual CH4 budget for Antarctic tundra ecosystem.

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

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    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.

  1. Frequent Fires in Ancient Shrub Tundra: Implications of Paleorecords for Arctic Environmental Change

    PubMed Central

    Higuera, Philip E.; Brubaker, Linda B.; Anderson, Patricia M.; Brown, Thomas A.; Kennedy, Alison T.; Hu, Feng Sheng

    2008-01-01

    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 birch-dominated 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 paleofires 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 on land-atmosphere interactions in the Arctic, including the potential to release stored organic carbon to the atmosphere. PMID:18320025

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    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

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    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

  4. Polychlorinated Biphenyls, Organochlorines & PD Risk: A Case Control Study in Alaskan Natives

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2011-05-01

    1-0490 TITLE: Polychlorinated Biphenyls, Organochlorines & PD Risk: A Case Control Study in Alaskan Natives PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR...Polychlorinated Biphenyls, Organochlorines & PD Risk: A Case 5a. CONTRACT NUMBER W81XWH-04-1-0490 Control Study in Alaskan Natives 5b. GRANT NUMBER...to pol ychlorinated biphenyl (PCBs) residues, organochlorine pesticides and methylmercury with PD. The hy pothesis is that increased exposure to t

  5. Air-cushion tankers for Alaskan North Slope oil

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Anderson, J. L.

    1973-01-01

    A concept is described for transporting oil from the Arctic to southern markets in 10,000-ton, chemically fueled air-cushion vehicles (ACV's) configured as tankers. Based on preliminary cost estimates the conceptual ACV tanker system as tailored to the transportation of Alaskan North Slope oil could deliver the oil for about the same price per barrel as the proposed trans-Alaska pipeline with only one-third of the capital investment. The report includes the description of the conceptual system and its operation; preliminary cost estimates; an appraisal of ACV tanker development; and a comparison of system costs, versatility, vulnerability, and ecological effect with those of the trans-Alaska pipeline.

  6. Airborne measurements of gases and particles from an Alaskan wildfire

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nance, J. D.; Hobbs, Peter V.; Radke, Lawrence F.; Ward, Darold E.

    1993-08-01

    Airborne measurements of several gaseous and particulate chemical species were obtained in the emissions from a wildfire that burned in an old black spruce forest in Alaska during the summer of 1990. The relative proportions of most of the measured plume constituents are consistent with ground-based and airborne measurements in the plumes of several other biomass fires, and with laboratory measurements. Possible exceptions include the mean fine-particle emission factor, which was about 3 times larger than predicted from a regression relation based on measurements of the smoke from several prescribed biomass fires, and the mean CH4/CO molar emission ratio which was at the low end of a range of values measured for other biomass fires. Measurements of water-soluble particulate ions in the smoke plume from the Alaskan wildfire indicate that acids formed from the oxides of sulphur and nitrogen were partially neutralized inside cloud droplets by NH3 absorbed from the plume.

  7. Applications of remote sensing data to the Alaskan environment

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Belon, A. E.; Iller, J. M.

    1973-01-01

    The ERTS program provides a means to overcome the formidable logistic and economic costs of preparing environmental surveys of the vast and relatively unexplored regions of Alaska. There is an excellent potential in satellite remote sensing to benefit Federal, state, local, and private agencies, by providing a new synoptic data base which is necessary for the preparation of the needed surveys and the search for solutions to environmental management problems. One approach in coupling satellite data to Alaskan problems is a major program initiated by the University of Alaska and funded by NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center. This included 12 projects whose aims were to study the feasibility of applying ERTS data to the disciplines of ecology, agriculture, hydrology, wildlife management, oceanography, geology, glaciology, volcanology, and archaeology.

  8. Biocorrosive Thermophilic Microbial Communities in Alaskan North Slope Oil Facilities

    SciTech Connect

    Duncan, Kathleen E.; Gieg, Lisa M.; Parisi, Victoria A.; Tanner, Ralph S.; Green Tringe, Susannah; Bristow, Jim; Suflita, Joseph M.

    2009-09-16

    Corrosion of metallic oilfield pipelines by microorganisms is a costly but poorly understood phenomenon, with standard treatment methods targeting mesophilic sulfatereducing bacteria. In assessing biocorrosion potential at an Alaskan North Slope oil field, we identified thermophilic hydrogen-using methanogens, syntrophic bacteria, peptideand amino acid-fermenting bacteria, iron reducers, sulfur/thiosulfate-reducing bacteria and sulfate-reducing archaea. These microbes can stimulate metal corrosion through production of organic acids, CO2, sulfur species, and via hydrogen oxidation and iron reduction, implicating many more types of organisms than are currently targeted. Micromolar quantities of putative anaerobic metabolites of C1-C4 n-alkanes in pipeline fluids were detected, implying that these low molecular weight hydrocarbons, routinely injected into reservoirs for oil recovery purposes, are biodegraded and provide biocorrosive microbial communities with an important source of nutrients.

  9. Development of Alaskan gas hydrate resources. Final report

    SciTech Connect

    Kamath, V.A.; Sharma, G.D.; Patil, S.L.

    1991-06-01

    The research undertaken in this project pertains to study of various techniques for production of natural gas from Alaskan gas hydrates such as, depressurization, injection of hot water, steam, brine, methanol and ethylene glycol solutions through experimental investigation of decomposition characteristics of hydrate cores. An experimental study has been conducted to measure the effective gas permeability changes as hydrates form in the sandpack and the results have been used to determine the reduction in the effective gas permeability of the sandpack as a function of hydrate saturation. A user friendly, interactive, menu-driven, numerical difference simulator has been developed to model the dissociation of natural gas hydrates in porous media with variable thermal properties. A numerical, finite element simulator has been developed to model the dissociation of hydrates during hot water injection process.

  10. Biocorrosive thermophilic microbial communities in Alaskan North Slope oil facilities.

    PubMed

    Duncan, Kathleen E; Gieg, Lisa M; Parisi, Victoria A; Tanner, Ralph S; Tringe, Susannah Green; Bristow, Jim; Suflita, Joseph M

    2009-10-15

    Corrosion of metallic oilfield pipelines by microorganisms is a costly but poorly understood phenomenon, with standard treatment methods targeting mesophilic sulfate-reducing bacteria. In assessing biocorrosion potential at an Alaskan North Slope oil field, we identified thermophilic hydrogen-using methanogens, syntrophic bacteria, peptide- and amino acid-fermenting bacteria, iron reducers, sulfur/thiosulfate-reducing bacteria, and sulfate-reducing archaea. These microbes can stimulate metal corrosion through production of organic acids, CO2, sulfur species, and via hydrogen oxidation and iron reduction, implicating many more types of organisms than are currently targeted. Micromolar quantities of putative anaerobic metabolites of C1-C4 n-alkanes in pipeline fluids were detected, implying that these low molecular weight hydrocarbons, routinely reinjected into reservoirs for oil recovery purposes, are biodegraded and can provide biocorrosive microbial communities with an important source of nutrients.

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-12-01

    Many environmental factors affecting methane (CH4) and nitrous oxide (N2O) fluxes have been investigated during the processes of carbon and nitrogen transformation in the boreal tundra. However, effects of sunlight on CH4 and N2O fluxes and their budgets were neglected in the boreal tundra. Here, summertime CH4 and N2O 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 CH4 fluxes at the tundra sites ranged from -4.7 to -158.6μg CH4 m(-2)h(-1) in the presence of light, indicating that a large CH4 sink occurred in the tundra soils. However, enhanced CH4 emission in total absence of light occurred at all the tundra sites. The mean N2O fluxes ranged from 7.4 to 14.6μg N2O m(-2)h(-1) in the presence of light, whereas in the absence of light all the tundra sites generally released less N2O, and even significant N2O uptake occurred there. Soil temperature, chamber temperature and soil moisture showed no significant correlations with tundra CH4 and N2O flux. The presence of sunlight increased tundra CH4 uptake by 114.2μg CH4 m(-2)h(-1) and N2O emission by 10.9μg N2O m(-2)h(-1) compared with total absence of light. Overall our results showed that tundra ecosystem switched from CH4 sink and N2O emission source in the presence of light to CH4 emission source and N2O sink in the absence of light. Therefore sunlight had an important effect on CH4 and N2O budgets in the High Arctic tundra. The exclusion of sunlight might overestimate CH4 budgets, but underestimate N2O budgets in the Arctic tundra ecosystem.

  12. The interaction of mental illness, criminal behavior and culture: native Alaskan mentally ill criminal offenders.

    PubMed

    Phillips, M R; Inui, T S

    1986-06-01

    The rapid changes experienced by non-Western ethnic groups as they become "acculturated" to Western life-styles are frequently associated with disintegration of the traditional cultures and psychosocial dysfunction of the groups' members. How culture changes lead to maladaptation remains a mystery. As a first step in clarifying this relationship, this paper proposes a method for analyzing the interaction of cultural change and psychosocial maladjustment. It uses Native Alaskans as a paradigmatic example of a group that is undergoing rapid changes and describes in detail a maladjusted subgroup of Native Alaskans--mentally ill criminal offenders. It compares 567 Native Alaskan criminal offenders who were referred to mental health professionals (from 1977 thru 1981) to 939 White Alaskan offenders. We find that alcohol abuse, the dominant social problem for Native Alaskans, is not clearly associated with the degree of sociocultural change. Residence in larger communities and higher educational achievement are associated with greater psychosocial maladjustment. The region of residence (i.e., Native Corporation) has a stronger influence on the rate and type of maladjustment than the ethnic group (i.e., Eskimo, Indian, or Aleut) or the "ethnic density" of the community of residence (i.e., the proportion of Native Alaskans in the population). We emphasize the importance of using such quantitative findings to focus the questions that should be addressed by ethnographic research.

  13. Recent and Holocene climate change controls on vegetation and carbon accumulation in Alaskan coastal muskegs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Peteet, Dorothy M.; Nichols, Jonathan E.; Moy, Christopher M.; McGeachy, Alicia; Perez, Max

    2016-01-01

    Pollen, spore, macrofossil and carbon data from a peatland near Cordova, Alaska, reveal insights into the climate-vegetation-carbon interactions from the initiation of the Holocene, c. the last 11.5 ka, to the present (1 ka = 1000 calibrated years before present where 0 = 1950 CE). The Holocene period is characterized by early deposition of gyttja in a pond environment with aquatics such as Nuphar polysepalum and Potamogeton, and a significant regional presence of Alnus crispa subsp. sinuata. Carbon accumulation (50 g/m2/a) was high for a short interval in the early Holocene when Sphagnum peat accumulated, but was followed by a major decline to 13 g/m2/a from 7 to 3.7 ka when Cyperaceae and ericads such as Rhododendron (formerly Ledum) groenlandicum expanded. This shift to sedge growth is representative of many peatlands throughout the south-central region of Alaska, and indicates a drier, more evaporative environment with a large decline in carbon storage. The subsequent return to Sphagnum peat after 4 ka in the Neoglacial represents a widespread shift to moister, cooler conditions, which favored a resurgence of ericads, such as Andromeda polifolia, and increased carbon accumulation rate. The sustained Alnus expansion visible in the top 10 cm of the peat profile is correlative with glacial retreat and warming of the region in the last century, and suggests this colonization will continue as temperature increases and ice melts.

  14. Wetting increases respiration loss from the Arctic tundra

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zona, Donatella; Lipson, David; Barott, Katie; Tha Paw U, Kyaw; Oberbauer, Steven; Olivas, Paulo; Hastings, Steven; Hinzman, Larry; Oechel, Walter

    2010-05-01

    Numerous studies (Billings et al. 1982; Peterson et al. 1984; Oberbauer et al. 1991; Funk et al., 1994; Oechel et al., 1998) have demonstrated that decreasing soil moisture and increasing soil oxygen increase respiration loss in the Arctic tundra. Warming and drying of tundra soils due to climate change are assumed to increase greenhouse gas emissions and the potential for strong positive feedbacks on the climate of the Arctic. However, here we show that an increase in the water table can lead to the same result, increasing respiration. In the largest scale water table manipulation experiment ever performed in the Arctic tundra, we showed that increasing the water table to 7.5 cm above the surface caused the ecosystem to more than half its net C uptake (9 gCm-2season-1) compared to the 23 gCm-2season-1 of a control site where water table was about 2 cm below the surface. Standing water saturated the moss layer, increased the heat conduction into the soil, and lead to higher soil temperature, deeper thaw and, surprisingly, to higher respiration rates in the most anaerobic area of the manipulation experiment. Probably, the increase in thaw depth increased substrate availability and freed sufficient Fe(III) to act as an electron acceptor in place of oxygen for respiration and CO2 production in these anaerobic soils (Zehnder and Stumm 1988, Kappler et al. 2004, Lipson et al. in review). In contrast to the general assumption that aerobic peat soils release more CO2 than soils under anaerobic conditions (Billing et al., 1982; Funk et al., 1994; Bridgham et al., 1998), here we show that this is not always the case. That the increase in the water table can result in increased respiration, even under nearly fully anaerobic conditions, through previously underestimated pathways, highlights yet another unexpected positive feedback on climate change of carbon exchange in the Arctic. That anaerobic conditions do not necessarily prevent CO2 loss in permafrost areas has major

  15. BRDF characteristics of tundra vegetation communities in Yamal, Western Siberia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Buchhorn, Marcel; Heim, Birgit; Walker, Donald A. Skip; Epstein, Howard; Leibman, Marina

    2013-04-01

    Satellite data from platforms with pointing capabilities (CHRIS/Proba, RapidEye) or from sensors with wide swath (AVHRR, MODIS, MERIS) is influenced by the bidirectional reflectance distribution function (BRDF). This effect can cause significant changes in the measured spectral surface reflectance depending on the solar illumination geometry and sensor viewing conditions. The Environmental Mapping and Analysis Program (EnMAP), a German hyperspectral mission with expected launch in 2016, will provide high spectral resolution observations with a ground sampling distance of 30 meters. Since the EnMAP sensor has pointing capabilities, both spectral and directional reflection characteristics need to be taken into account for the algorithms development for vegetation parameters. The 'hyperspectral method development for Arctic VEGetation biomes' (hy-Arc-VEG) project is part of the national preparation program for the EnMAP mission. Within the EnMAP projcect hy-Arc-VEG we developed a portable field spectro-goniometer, named ManTIS (Manual Transportable Instrument for Spherical BRDF observations), for the in-situ measurements of anisotropic effects of tundra surfaces (national and international patent pending - DE 102011117713.6). The goniometer was designed for field use in difficult as well as challenging terrain and climate. It is therefore of low weight, without electrical devices and weatherproof. It can be disassembled and packed into small boxes for transport. The current off-nadir viewing capacity is matched to the EnMAP sensor configuration (up to 30°). We carried out spectral field and goniometer measurements on the joint YAMAL 2011 expedition (RU-US-DE) organized by the Earth-Cryosphere Institute (ECI) in August 2011 on the Yamal Peninsula, northwestern Siberia, Russia. The field goniometer measurements (conducted under varying sun zenith angles) as well as field spectro-radiometrical measurements were carried out at the NASA Yamal Land Cover/Land Use Change

  16. From tropics to tundra: global convergence in plant functioning.

    PubMed

    Reich, P B; Walters, M B; Ellsworth, D S

    1997-12-09

    Despite striking differences in climate, soils, and evolutionary history among diverse biomes ranging from tropical and temperate forests to alpine tundra and desert, we found similar interspecific relationships among leaf structure and function and plant growth in all biomes. Our results thus demonstrate convergent evolution and global generality in plant functioning, despite the enormous diversity of plant species and biomes. For 280 plant species from two global data sets, we found that potential carbon gain (photosynthesis) and carbon loss (respiration) increase in similar proportion with decreasing leaf life-span, increasing leaf nitrogen concentration, and increasing leaf surface area-to-mass ratio. Productivity of individual plants and of leaves in vegetation canopies also changes in constant proportion to leaf life-span and surface area-to-mass ratio. These global plant functional relationships have significant implications for global scale modeling of vegetation-atmosphere CO2 exchange.

  17. From tropics to tundra: Global convergence in plant functioning

    PubMed Central

    Reich, Peter B.; Walters, Michael B.; Ellsworth, David S.

    1997-01-01

    Despite striking differences in climate, soils, and evolutionary history among diverse biomes ranging from tropical and temperate forests to alpine tundra and desert, we found similar interspecific relationships among leaf structure and function and plant growth in all biomes. Our results thus demonstrate convergent evolution and global generality in plant functioning, despite the enormous diversity of plant species and biomes. For 280 plant species from two global data sets, we found that potential carbon gain (photosynthesis) and carbon loss (respiration) increase in similar proportion with decreasing leaf life-span, increasing leaf nitrogen concentration, and increasing leaf surface area-to-mass ratio. Productivity of individual plants and of leaves in vegetation canopies also changes in constant proportion to leaf life-span and surface area-to-mass ratio. These global plant functional relationships have significant implications for global scale modeling of vegetation–atmosphere CO2 exchange. PMID:9391094

  18. Characterization of tundra lake margins with SAR-data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bartsch, Annett; Widhalm, Barbara; Trofaier, Anna Maria; Högström, Elin; Heim, Birgit; Leibman, Marina; Dvorniko, Yury

    2014-05-01

    Synthetic aperture radar data have been proven to be suitable for monitoring hydrological properties including thaw lakes typical for tundra environments and are therefore a useful method to monitor changes in this region. However, the determination of accuracy of lake margin detection remains to be addressed. The quantification of uncertainties is crucial since such data are used to quantify (in many cases subtle) changes of land surface hydrology associated with permafrost conditions. The advantages and disadvantages of different frequencies with respect to spatial resolutions are discussed for TerraSAR-X, ALOS PALSAR (L-band) and ENVISAT ASAR (C-Band) data for several subarctic sites over Northern Eurasia. This study contributes to the PAGE21 (www.page21.eu, FP7) and COLD (Joint Russian-Austrian project, FWF/RFBR) projects as well as HGF EDA.

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

    PubMed

    Lund, Magnus; Stiegler, Christian; Abermann, Jakob; Citterio, Michele; Hansen, Birger U; van As, Dirk

    2017-02-01

    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 with modelling efforts are essential for assessing the impact of warming in the Arctic.

  20. Arctic tundra vegetation functional types based on photosynthetic physiology and optical properties

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Huemmrich, K. F.; Gamon, J. A.; Tweedie, C. E.

    2011-12-01

    Climate change in tundra regions may alter vegetation species composition and ecosystem carbon balance, and remote sensing provides critical tools for monitoring these changes. Measurements of pure patches of key plant functional types (lichens, mosses, and vascular plants) in sedge tundra at Barrow AK, show three different values of light use efficiency (LUE). Also, discriminant analysis of patch reflectance identifies seven spectral bands that can separate each functional type and nongreen material (bare soil and dead leaves). These results were tested along a 100 m transect across the tundra. At every meter, midsummer spectral reflectance and vegetation coverage were measured. LUE estimated from coverage fractions varies widely, even over short distances. The patch-level discriminant functions successfully unmixed cover fractions of the functional types, with standard errors well within the expected measurement error of the coverage. These results demonstrate the use of hyperspectral remote sensing to provide direct estimates of tundra ecosystem LUE variability.

  1. Controls over nutrient flow through plants and microbes in Arctic tundra. Final report

    SciTech Connect

    Schimel, J.

    1994-02-01

    Ecosystem productivity in the Arctic is strongly controlled by N availability to plants. Thus, disturbances to the Arctic system are likely to have their greatest impacts by altering the supply of nutrients to plants. Thus, to understand the dynamics of Arctic tundra, a complete understanding of the controls on N cycling in tundra soils is necessary. This project focused on understanding nutrient dynamics in arctic tussock tundra, specifically evaluating the role of microbial uptake and competition for nutrients as a control on plant N-uptake. The project consisted of several major components: Short- and long-term partitioning of NH{sub 4}{sup +} in tussock tundra (1990--1991); Measurement of NH{sub 4}{sup +} uptake rates by Eriophorum vaginatum and by soil microbes; Determination of microbial NH{sub 4}{sup +} and NO{sub 3}{minus} uptake kinetics; and Determination of the partitioning of NH{sub 4}{sup +} and amino acids between E. vaginatum and soil microbes.

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    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. Fourfold higher tundra volatile emissions due to arctic summer warming

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lindwall, Frida; Schollert, Michelle; Michelsen, Anders; Blok, Daan; Rinnan, Riikka

    2016-03-01

    Biogenic volatile organic compounds (BVOCs), which are mainly emitted by vegetation, may create either positive or negative climate forcing feedbacks. In the Subarctic, BVOC emissions are highly responsive to temperature, but the effects of climatic warming on BVOC emissions have not been assessed in more extreme arctic ecosystems. The Arctic undergoes rapid climate change, with air temperatures increasing at twice the rate of the global mean. Also, the amount of winter precipitation is projected to increase in large areas of the Arctic, and it is unknown how winter snow depth affects BVOC emissions during summer. Here we examine the responses of BVOC emissions to experimental summer warming and winter snow addition—each treatment alone and in combination—in an arctic heath during two growing seasons. We observed a 280% increase relative to ambient in BVOC emissions in response to a 4°C summer warming. Snow addition had minor effects on growing season BVOC emissions after one winter but decreased BVOC emissions after the second winter. We also examined differences between canopy and air temperatures and found that the tundra canopy surface was on average 7.7°C and maximum 21.6°C warmer than air. This large difference suggests that the tundra surface temperature is an important driver for emissions of BVOCs, which are temperature dependent. Our results demonstrate a strong response of BVOC emissions to increasing temperatures in the Arctic, suggesting that emission rates will increase with climate warming and thereby feed back to regional climate change.

  4. Asynchronous population dynamics of Siberian lemmings across the Palaearctic tundra.

    PubMed

    Erlinge, Sam; Danell, Kjell; Frodin, Peter; Hasselquist, Dennis; Nilsson, Patric; Olofsson, Eva-Britt; Svensson, Mikael

    1999-06-01

    The synchrony of Siberian lemming (Lemmus sibiricus L.) population dynamics was investigated during a ship-borne expedition along the Palaearctic tundra coast in the summer of 1994. On 12 sites along the coast from the Kola Peninsula to Wrangel Island, relative densities of lemmings were recorded using a standardised snap-trapping programme. The phase position of the lemming cycle in each of the studied populations was determined based on current density estimates, signs of previous density and the age profile of each population (ageing based on eye lens mass). In addition, dendrochronological methods were used to determine when the last peak in the density of microtine populations occurred at each site. The examined lemming populations were in different phases of the lemming cycle. Some populations were in the peak phase, as indicated by high current densities, an age profile in which older individuals were well represented, and signs of high previous density (abundant old lemming faeces). Other populations were in the decline phase, as reflected in a moderate current density, a predominance of older individuals and signs of high previous density. Populations in the low phase had an extremely low current density and showed signs of high previous density, while populations in the increase phase had a moderate current density, a predominance of younger individuals and showed signs of low previous density. The results of phase determinations based on dendrochronological methods support the findings based on lemming demography. Recent Russian studies carried out on some of the sites also agreed with our phase determination results. Thus, on a regional scale (across the whole Palaearctic tundra), the population dynamics of Siberian lemmings can be considered asynchronous. However, sites situated adjacent to each other were often phase synchronous, suggesting a more fine-grained pattern of dynamics with synchrony over distances as long as 1000 km or so, e.g. the Yamal

  5. Geochemical drivers of organic matter decomposition in Arctic tundra soils

    SciTech Connect

    Herndon, Elizabeth M.; Yang, Ziming; Graham, David E.; Wullschleger, Stan D.; Gu, Baohua; Liang, Liyuan; Bargar, John; Janot, Noemie; Regier, Tom Z.

    2015-12-07

    Climate change is warming tundra ecosystems in the Arctic, resulting in the decomposition of previously-frozen soil organic matter (SOM) and release of carbon (C) to the atmosphere; however, the processes that control SOM decomposition and C emissions remain highly uncertain. In this study, we evaluate geochemical factors that influence anaerobic production of carbon dioxide (CO2) and methane (CH4) in the active layers of four ice-wedge polygons. Surface and soil pore waters were collected during the annual thaw season over a two-year period in an area containing waterlogged, low-centered polygons and well-drained, high-centered polygons. We report spatial and seasonal patterns of dissolved gases in relation to the geochemical properties of Fe and organic C as determined using spectroscopic and chromatographic techniques. Iron was present as Fe(II) in soil solution near the permafrost boundary but enriched as Fe(III) in the middle of the active layer, similar to dissolved aromatic-C and organic acids. Dissolved CH4 increased relative to dissolved CO2 with depth and varied with soil moisture in the middle of the active layer in patterns that were positively correlated with the proportion of dissolved Fe(III) in transitional and low-centered polygon soils but negatively correlated in the drier flat- and high-centered polygons. These results suggest that microbial-mediated Fe oxidation and reduction influence respiration/fermentation of SOM and production of substrates (e.g., low-molecular-weight organic acids) for methanogenesis. As a result, we infer that geochemical differences induced by water saturation dictate microbial products of SOM decomposition, and Fe geochemistry is an important factor regulating methanogenesis in anoxic tundra soils.

  6. Geochemical drivers of organic matter decomposition in Arctic tundra soils

    DOE PAGES

    Herndon, Elizabeth M.; Yang, Ziming; Graham, David E.; ...

    2015-12-07

    Climate change is warming tundra ecosystems in the Arctic, resulting in the decomposition of previously-frozen soil organic matter (SOM) and release of carbon (C) to the atmosphere; however, the processes that control SOM decomposition and C emissions remain highly uncertain. In this study, we evaluate geochemical factors that influence anaerobic production of carbon dioxide (CO2) and methane (CH4) in the active layers of four ice-wedge polygons. Surface and soil pore waters were collected during the annual thaw season over a two-year period in an area containing waterlogged, low-centered polygons and well-drained, high-centered polygons. We report spatial and seasonal patterns ofmore » dissolved gases in relation to the geochemical properties of Fe and organic C as determined using spectroscopic and chromatographic techniques. Iron was present as Fe(II) in soil solution near the permafrost boundary but enriched as Fe(III) in the middle of the active layer, similar to dissolved aromatic-C and organic acids. Dissolved CH4 increased relative to dissolved CO2 with depth and varied with soil moisture in the middle of the active layer in patterns that were positively correlated with the proportion of dissolved Fe(III) in transitional and low-centered polygon soils but negatively correlated in the drier flat- and high-centered polygons. These results suggest that microbial-mediated Fe oxidation and reduction influence respiration/fermentation of SOM and production of substrates (e.g., low-molecular-weight organic acids) for methanogenesis. As a result, we infer that geochemical differences induced by water saturation dictate microbial products of SOM decomposition, and Fe geochemistry is an important factor regulating methanogenesis in anoxic tundra soils.« less

  7. Climate feedbacks at the tundra-taiga interface.

    PubMed

    Harding, Richard; Kuhry, Peter; Christensen, Torben R; Sykes, Martin T; Dankers, Rutger; van der Linden, Sandra

    2002-08-01

    Feedbacks, or internal interactions, play a crucial role in the climate system. Negative feedback will reduce the impact of an external perturbation, a positive feedback will amplify the effect and could lead to an unstable system. Many of the feedbacks found in the climate system are positive; thus, for example, increasing CO2 levels will increase temperature, reduce the snow cover, increase the absorption of radiation and hence increase temperature further. The most obvious feedbacks, such as the snow example quoted above, are already included within our models of the climate and earth system. Others, such as the impact of increasing forest cover due to global warming, are only just being included. Others, such as, the impact of global warming on the northern peatlands and the impact of freshwater flows on the Arctic Ocean are not yet considered. The contrast in surface characteristics between low tundra vegetation to high taiga forest is considerable. The contrast is greatest in the winter, when the tundra is snow covered but the trees of the taiga protrude through the snow pack, and is probably the greatest contrast found on the land surface anywhere. This variation causes massive changes in the energy fluxes at the surface and hence the temperature conditions on the ground and within the atmosphere. There will be large resultant changes in the vegetation development, the carbon fluxes, the permafrost and the hydrology. The Arctic is already experiencing change and it is essential for us to understand the basic processes, and how these interact, to be confident of our predictions of environmental change in the future.

  8. Changes in tundra vascular plant biomass over thirty years at Imnavait Creek, Alaska.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bret-Harte, M. S.; Euskirchen, E. S.; Edgar, C.; Huebner, D. C.; Okano, K.; Tucker, C.; Genet, H.; Ray, P. M.; Shaver, G. R.

    2014-12-01

    Understanding the magnitude of, and controls over, CO2 and water fluxes in arctic ecosystems is essential for accurate assessment and prediction of their responses to climate change. In 2013, we harvested vegetation and soils in the most common plant community types located in the source areas for fluxes measured by eddy covariance towers located in three representative Alaska tundra ecosystems along a toposequence (a ridge site composed of heath tundra and moist non-acidic tundra, a mid-slope site composed of moist acidic tussock tundra, and a valley bottom fen site composed of wet sedge tundra and moist acidic tundra) at Imnavait Creek, Alaska. While the purpose of this harvest was to relate biomass and production to estimates of overall net ecosystem CO2 exchange (NEE), gross primary productivity (GPP) and ecosystem respiration (ER) obtained by micrometeorological methods, it also afforded an opportunity to compare with biomass harvests done in the 1980s in moist acidic tundra at Imnavait Creek; there have been no other harvests than ours at Imnavait since then. Our data showed that plant biomass and production were greatest in the tussock tundra at the mid-slope tower, and least in the wet sedge community at the fen tower, while plant diversity was greatest in the communities at the ridge site. Aboveground biomass of vascular plants in our 2013 harvest in moist acidic tundra was nearly three times higher than that measured approximately thirty years earlier in three harvests of nearby areas at Imnavait Creek, due to an increase in the biomass of shrubs and graminoids. Comparison with other biomass harvests from the vicinity of Toolik Field Station indicate that vascular plant biomass in moist acidic tundra has increased over this time period, with the greatest increase evident by the mid-1990s, and a more gradual increase through to the present time, despite no obvious increase in air temperature as seen in data from nearby climate stations. These data will be

  9. Initial Conceptualization and Simulation of Arctic Tundra Landscape Evolution Using the Alaska Thermokarst Model

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bolton, W. R.; Romanovsky, V. E.; McGuire, A. D.; Grosse, G.; Lara, M. J.

    2014-12-01

    Thermokarst topography forms whenever ice-rich permafrost thaws and the ground subsides due to the volume loss when excess ground ice transitions to water. The Alaska Thermokarst Model (ATM) is a large-scale, state-and-transition model designed to simulate transitions between [non-]thermokarst landscape units, or cohorts. The ATM uses a frame-based methodology to track transitions and proportion of cohorts within a 1-km2 grid cell. In the arctic tundra environment, the ATM tracks thermokarst-related transitions between wetland tundra, graminoid tundra, shrub tundra, and thermokarst lakes. The transition from one cohort to another due to thermokarst processes can take place if thaw reaches ice-rich ground layers either due to pulse disturbance events such as a large precipitation event or fires or due to gradual active layer deepening that eventually results in penetration of the protective layer. The protective layer buffers the ice-rich soils from the land surface and is critical to determine how susceptible an area is to thermokarst degradation. The rate of terrain transition in our model is determined by the ice-content of the soil, the drainage efficiency (or ability of the landscape to store or transport water), and a cumulative probability of thermokarst initiation. Tundra types are allowed to transition from one type to another (ie wetland tundra to a graminoid tundra) under favorable climatic conditions. In this study, we present our conceptualization and initial simulation results from the ATM model for an 1792 km2 area on the Barrow Peninsula, Alaska. The area selected for simulation is located in a polygonal tundra landscape under varying degrees of thermokarst degradation. The goal of this modeling study is to simulate landscape evolution in response to thermokarst disturbance as a result of climate change. The ATM will eventually be incorporated into the Integrated Ecosystem Model (IEM) for Alaska and Northwest Canada for use in management decisions

  10. The Bering Land Bridge: a moisture barrier to the dispersal of steppe-tundra biota?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Elias, Scott A.; Crocker, Barnaby

    2008-12-01

    The Bering Land Bridge (BLB) connected the two principal arctic biological refugia, Western and Eastern Beringia, during intervals of lowered sea level in the Pleistocene. Fossil evidence from lowland BLB organic deposits dating to the Last Glaciation indicates that this broad region was dominated by shrub tundra vegetation, and had a mesic climate. The dominant ecosystem in Western Beringia and the interior regions of Eastern Beringia was steppe-tundra, with herbaceous plant communities and arid climate. Although Western and Eastern Beringia shared many species in common during the Late Pleistocene, there were a number of species that were restricted to only one side of the BLB. Among the vertebrate fauna, the woolly rhinoceros was found only to the west of the BLB, North American camels, bonnet-horned musk-oxen and some horse species were found only to the east of the land bridge. These were all steppe-tundra inhabitants, adapted to grazing. The same phenomenon can be seen in the insect faunas of the Western and Eastern Beringia. The steppe-tundra beetle fauna of Western Beringia was dominated by weevils of the genus Stephanocleonus, a group that was virtually absent from Eastern Beringia. The dry-adapted weevils, Lepidophorus lineaticollis and Vitavitus thulius were important members of steppe-tundra communities in Eastern Beringia, but were either absent or rare in Western Beringia. The leaf beetles Chrysolina arctica, C. brunnicornis bermani, and Galeruca interrupta circumdata were typical members of the Pleistocene steppe-tundra communities of Western Beringia, but absent from Eastern Beringia. On the other hand, some steppe tundra-adapted leaf beetles managed to occupy both sides of the BLB, such as Phaedon armoraciae. Much of the BLB remains unstudied, but on biogeographic grounds, it appears that there was some kind of biological filter that blocked the movements of some steppe-tundra plants and animals across the BLB.

  11. Comparison of snow melt properties across multiple spatial scales and landscape units in interior sub-Arctic boreal Alaskan watersheds

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bennett, K. E.; Cherry, J. E.; Hiemstra, C. A.; Bolton, W. R.

    2013-12-01

    Interior sub-Arctic Alaskan snow cover is rapidly changing and requires further study for correct parameterization in physically based models. This project undertook field studies during the 2013 snow melt season to capture snow depth, snow temperature profiles, and snow cover extent to compare with observations from the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) sensor at four different sites underlain by discontinuous permafrost. The 2013 melt season, which turned out to be the latest snow melt period on record, was monitored using manual field measurements (SWE, snow depth data collection), iButtons to record temperature of the snow pack, GoPro cameras to capture time lapse of the snow melt, and low level orthoimagery collected at ~1500 m using a Navion L17a plane mounted with a Nikon D3s camera. Sites were selected across a range of landscape conditions, including a north facing black spruce hill slope, a south facing birch forest, an open tundra site, and a high alpine meadow. Initial results from the adjacent north and south facing sites indicate a highly sensitive system where snow cover melts over just a few days, illustrating the importance of high resolution temporal data capture at these locations. Field observations, iButtons and GoPro cameras show that the MODIS data captures the melt conditions at the south and the north site with accuracy (2.5% and 6.5% snow cover fraction present on date of melt, respectively), but MODIS data for the north site is less variable around the melt period, owing to open conditions and sparse tree cover. However, due to the rapid melt rate trajectory, shifting the melt date estimate by a day results in a doubling of the snow cover fraction estimate observed by MODIS. This information can assist in approximating uncertainty associated with remote sensing data that is being used to populate hydrologic and snow models (the Sacramento Soil Moisture Accounting model, coupled with SNOW-17, and the Variable

  12. Belowground plant biomass allocation in tundra ecosystems and its relationship with temperature

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Peng; Heijmans, Monique M. P. D.; Mommer, Liesje; van Ruijven, Jasper; Maximov, Trofim C.; Berendse, Frank

    2016-05-01

    Climate warming is known to increase the aboveground productivity of tundra ecosystems. Recently, belowground biomass is receiving more attention, but the effects of climate warming on belowground productivity remain unclear. Enhanced understanding of the belowground component of the tundra is important in the context of climate warming, since most carbon is sequestered belowground in these ecosystems. In this study we synthesized published tundra belowground biomass data from 36 field studies spanning a mean annual temperature (MAT) gradient from -20 °C to 0 °C across the tundra biome, and determined the relationships between different plant biomass pools and MAT. Our results show that the plant community biomass-temperature relationships are significantly different between above and belowground. Aboveground biomass clearly increased with MAT, whereas total belowground biomass and fine root biomass did not show a significant increase over the broad MAT gradient. Our results suggest that biomass allocation of tundra vegetation shifts towards aboveground in warmer conditions, which could impact on the carbon cycling in tundra ecosystems through altered litter input and distribution in the soil, as well as possible changes in root turnover.

  13. Fire behavior, weather, and burn severity of the 2007 anaktuvuk river tundra fire, North Slope, Alaska

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Jones, B.; Kolden, C.; Jandt, R.; Abatzoglou, J.; Urban, F.; Arp, C.

    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 summer temperature and record low summer precipitation, a late-season high-pressure system located over the Beaufort Sea, extremely dry soil conditions throughout the summer, and sustained southerly winds during the period of vegetation senescence. Burn severity mapping revealed that more than 80% of the ARF burned at moderate to extreme severity, while the nearby Kuparuk River Fire remained small and burned at predominantly (80%) low severity. While this study provides information that may aid in the prediction of future large tundra fires in northern Alaska, the fact that three other tundra fires that occurred in 2007 combined to burn less than 1000 ha suggests site specific complexities associated with tundra fires on the North Slope, which may hamper the development of tundra fire forecasting models.

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

    PubMed

    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.

  15. Microclimate of Arctic Tree Line 2. Soil Microclimate of Tundra and Forest

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rouse, Wayne R.

    1984-01-01

    Forest and tundra soils display distinctive microclimates for a climatically normal year at Churchill. Forest soils are substantially warmer in the active layer than those of the tundra but the tundra active layer is deeper. Forest soils are much wetter than those of the tundra. This results from the deep winter snow pack, which provides abundant meltwater to already thawed soils. The soils remain wet throughout the year, and the large latent heat release delays the freezing of forest soils until a snow pack is established. As a result, soils stay relatively warm throughout winter and thaw rapidly and deeply before snow pack melting in the spring. The thaw period in the tree rooting zone is about 6 months, compared to 4 months at the same depth in tundra. The magnitude of soil heat storage is large, comprising 18% and 16% of net radiation in tundra and forest, respectively, during the thaw season. During freeze back it is the dominant heat exchange process. Between 80% and 90% of the total soil heat storage is involved in the latent heat exchange accompanying thawing and freezing. Soil heat flux plates strongly underestimate the ground heat exchange and are unreliable in permafrost terrain.

  16. Multi-Sensor Approach for Assessing the Taiga-Tundra Boundary

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ranson, K. J.; Sun, G.; Kharuk, V. I.; Kovacs, K.

    2003-01-01

    Monitoring the dynamics of the tundra-taiga boundary is critical for our understanding of the causes and consequences of the changes in this area. Because of its inaccessibility, remote sensing data will play an important role. In this study we examined the use of several remote sensing techniques for identifying the existing tundra-taiga ecotone. These include Landsat, MISR and RADARSAT data. High-resolution IKONOS images were used for local ground truth. It was found that on Landsat ETM+ summer images, reflectance from tundra and taiga at band 4 (NIR) is similar, but different at other bands such as red, and MIR bands. When the incidence angle is small, C-band HH-pol backscattering coefficients from both tundra and taiga are relatively high. The backscattering from tundra targets decreases faster than taiga targets when the incidence angle increases, because the tundra targets look smoother than taiga. Because of the shading effect of the vegetation, the MISR data, both multi-spectral data at nadir looking and multi-angle data at red and NIR bands, clearly show the transition zone.

  17. A look at Alaskan resources with Landsat data

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Miller, J. M.; Belon, A. E.; Gedney, L. D.; Shapiro, L. H.

    1975-01-01

    Landsat data remains a vital tool for the management of resources in Alaska. Utilization of these data by many agencies in Alaska trends toward the solution to operational problems in a wide spectrum of disciplinary applications. Four examples of current applications are reviewed briefly: mapping of coastal sediment plumes, mapping of coastal zone ecosystems, mapping of landform and ground cover for proposed national parks and forests, and evaluation of seismic risks for a proposed hydroelectric project.

  18. Aerial surveys of endangered whales in the Alaskan Chukchi and western Beaufort Seas, 1990. Final report, Oct-Nov 90

    SciTech Connect

    Moore, S.E.; Clarke, J.T.

    1991-06-01

    In keeping with the National Environmental Policy Act (1969), the Marine Mammal Protection Act (1972) and the Endangered Species Act (1973), the OCS Lands Act Amendments (1978) established a management policy that included studies in OCS lease sale areas to ascertain potential environmental impacts of oil and gas development on OCS marine coastal environments. The Minerals Management Service (MMS) is the agency responsible for these studies and for the leasing of submerged Federal lands. The report summarizes the 1990 investigations of the distribution, abundance, migration, behavior and habitat relationships of endangered whales in the Alaskan Chukchi and western Beaufort Seas (hereafter, study area); 1990 was the second of a three year (1989-91) study. The Bering Sea stock of bowhead whales (Balaena mysticetus) was the principal species studied, with incidental sightings of all other marine mammals routinely recorded. The 1990 season was compromised by circumstances that restricted the availability of the survey aircraft (Grumman Goose, model G21G) to the period 26 October - 7 November; opportunistic surveys were flown in the study area from 3-25 October. In 1990, there were 14 sightings of 19 bowheads from 9-29 October; 5 whales, including 2 calves, were seen north of the study area. One gray whale, 110 belukhas and 53 polar bears were also seen. Over nine survey seasons (1982-90), there were 240 sightings of 520 bowhead whales and 148 sightings of 398 gray whales.

  19. Densities of breeding birds and changes in vegetation in an alaskan boreal forest following a massive disturbance by spruce beetles

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Matsuoka, S.M.; Handel, C.M.; Ruthrauff, D.R.

    2001-01-01

    We examined bird and plant communities among forest stands with different levels of spruce mortality following a large outbreak of spruce beetles (Dendroctonus rufipennis (Kirby)) in the Copper River Basin, Alaska. Spruce beetles avoided stands with black spruce (Picea mariana) and selectively killed larger diameter white spruce (Picea glauca), thereby altering forest structure and increasing the dominance of black spruce in the region. Alders (Alnus sp.) and crowberry (Empetrum nigrum) were more abundant in areas with heavy spruce mortality, possibly a response to the death of overstory spruce. Grasses and herbaceous plants did not proliferate as has been recorded following outbreaks in more coastal Alaskan forests. Two species closely tied to coniferous habitats, the tree-nesting Ruby-crowned Kinglet (Regulus calendula) and the red squirrel (Tamiasciurus hudsonicus), a major nest predator, were less abundant in forest stands with high spruce mortality than in low-mortality stands. Understory-nesting birds as a group were more abundant in forest stands with high levels of spruce mortality, although the response of individual bird species to tree mortality was variable. Birds breeding in stands with high spruce mortality likely benefited reproductively from lower squirrel densities and a greater abundance of shrubs to conceal nests from predators.

  20. Transport of Alaskan Dust into the Gulf of Alaska and Comparison with Similar High-Latitude Dust Environments

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Crusium, John; Levy, Rob; Wang, Jun; Campbell, Rob; Schroth, Andrew W.

    2012-01-01

    Transport of Alaskan dust into the Gulf of Alaska and comparison with similar high-latitude dust environments. An airborne flux of the micronutrient iron, derived from dust originating from coastal regions may be an important contributor of iron to the Gulf of Alaska's (GoA) oligotrophic waters. Dust blowing off glacier termini and dry riverbeds is a recurring phenomenon in Alaska, usually occurring in the autumn. Since previous studies assumed that dust originating in the deserts of Asia was the largest source of . airborne iron to the GoA, the budget of aeolian deposition of iron needs to be reassessed. Since late 20 I 0, our group has been monitoring dust activity using satellites over the Copper River Delta (CRD) where the most vigorous dust plumes have been observed. Since 2011, sample aerosol concentration and their composition are being collected at Middleton Island (100km off shore of CRD). This presentation will show a summary of the ongoing dust observations and compare with other similar environments (Patagonia, Iceland) by showing case studies. Common features will be highlighted

  1. Modelling guided waves in the Alaskan-Aleutian subduction zone

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Coulson, Sophie; Garth, Thomas; Reitbrock, Andreas

    2016-04-01

    Subduction zone guided wave arrivals from intermediate depth earthquakes (70-300 km depth) have a huge potential to tell us about the velocity structure of the subducting oceanic crust as it dehydrates at these depths. We see guided waves as the oceanic crust has a slower seismic velocity than the surrounding material, and so high frequency energy is retained and delayed in the crustal material. Lower frequency energy is not retained in this crustal waveguide and so travels at faster velocities of the surrounding material. This gives a unique observation at the surface with low frequency energy arriving before the higher frequencies. We constrain this guided wave dispersion by comparing the waveforms recorded in real subduction zones with simulated waveforms, produced using finite difference full waveform modelling techniques. This method has been used to show that hydrated minerals in the oceanic crust persist to much greater depths than accepted thermal petrological subduction zone models would suggest in Northern Japan (Garth & Rietbrock, 2014a), and South America (Garth & Rietbrock, in prep). These observations also suggest that the subducting oceanic mantle may be highly hydrated at intermediate depth by dipping normal faults (Garth & Rietbrock 2014b). We use this guided wave analysis technique to constrain the velocity structure of the down going ~45 Ma Pacific plate beneath Alaska. Dispersion analysis is primarily carried out on guided wave arrivals recorded on the Alaskan regional seismic network. Earthquake locations from global earthquake catalogues (ISC and PDE) and regional earthquake locations from the AEIC (Alaskan Earthquake Information Centre) catalogue are used to constrain the slab geometry and to identify potentially dispersive events. Dispersed arrivals are seen at stations close to the trench, with high frequency (>2 Hz) arrivals delayed by 2 - 4 seconds. This dispersion is analysed to constrain the velocity and width of the proposed waveguide

  2. Shrub expansion and climate feedbacks in Arctic tundra

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Loranty, Michael M.; Goetz, Scott J.

    2012-03-01

    Arctic tundra ecosystems stand to play a substantial role in both the magnitude and rate of global climate warming over the coming decades and centuries. The exact nature of this role will be determined by the combined effects of currently amplified rates of climate warming in the Arctic (Serreze et al 2000) and a series of related positive climate feedbacks that include mobilization of permafrost carbon (Schuur et al 2008), decreases in surface albedo (Chapin et al 2005) and evapotranspiration (ET) mediated increases in atmospheric water vapor (Swann et al 2010). Conceptually, these feedback mechanisms are intuitive and readily comprehensible: warming-induced permafrost thaw will make new soil carbon pools accessible for microbial respiration, and increased vegetation productivity, expansion of shrubs in particular, will lower surface reflectance and increase ET. However, our current understanding of these feedback mechanisms relies largely on limited and local field studies and, as such, the quantitative estimates of feedback effects on regional and global climate require spatial upscaling and uncertainty estimates derived from models. Moreover, the feedback mechanisms interact and their combined net effect on climate is highly variable and not well characterized. A recent study by Bonfils et al (2012) is among the first to explicitly examine how shrub expansion in tundra ecosystems will impact regional climate. Using an Earth system model, Bonfils et al find that an idealized 20% increase in shrub cover north of 60°N latitude will lead to annual temperature increases of 0.66 °C and 1.84 °C, respectively, when the shrubs are 0.5 m and 2 m tall. The modeled temperature increases arise from atmospheric heating as a combined consequence of decreased albedo and increased ET. The primary difference between the two cases is associated with the fact that tall shrubs protrude above the snow, thus reducing albedo year round, whereas short shrubs are completely

  3. Bioaccumulation of petroleum hydrocarbons in arctic amphipods in the oil development area of the Alaskan Beaufort Sea.

    PubMed

    Neff, Jerry M; Durell, Gregory S

    2012-04-01

    An objective of a multiyear monitoring program, sponsored by the US Department of the Interior, Bureau of Ocean Energy Management was to examine temporal and spatial changes in chemical and biological characteristics of the Arctic marine environment resulting from offshore oil exploration and development activities in the development area of the Alaskan Beaufort Sea. To determine if petroleum hydrocarbons from offshore oil operations are entering the Beaufort Sea food web, we measured concentrations of hydrocarbons in tissues of amphipods, Anonyx nugax, sediments, Northstar crude oil, and coastal peat, collected between 1999 and 2006 throughout the development area. Mean concentrations of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAH), saturated hydrocarbons (SHC), and sterane and triterpane petroleum biomarkers (StTr) were not significantly different in amphipods near the Northstar oil production facility, before and after it came on line in 2001, and in amphipods from elsewhere in the study area. Forensic analysis of the profiles (relative composition and concentrations) of the 3 hydrocarbon classes revealed that hydrocarbon compositions were different in amphipods, surface sediments where the amphipods were collected, Northstar crude oil, and peat from the deltas of 4 North Slope rivers. Amphipods and sediments contained a mixture of petrogenic, pyrogenic, and biogenic PAH. The SHC in amphipods were dominated by pristane derived from zooplankton, indicating that the SHC were primarily from the amphipod diet of zooplankton detritus. The petroleum biomarker StTr profiles did not resemble those in Northstar crude oil. The forensic analysis revealed that hydrocarbons in amphipod tissues were not from oil production at Northstar. Hydrocarbons in amphipod tissues were primarily from their diet and from river runoff and coastal erosion of natural diagenic and fossil terrestrial materials, including seep oils, kerogens, and peat. Offshore oil and gas exploration and development

  4. 33 CFR 334.1290 - In Bering Sea, Shemya Island Area, Alaska; meteorological rocket launching facility, Alaskan Air...

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-07-01

    ..., Alaska; meteorological rocket launching facility, Alaskan Air Command, U.S. Air Force. 334.1290 Section...; meteorological rocket launching facility, Alaskan Air Command, U.S. Air Force. (a) The danger zone. An arc of a... Force, Headquarters 6th Weather Wing (MAC), Andrews Air Force Base, Washington, D.C. 20331. (40...

  5. 33 CFR 334.1290 - In Bering Sea, Shemya Island Area, Alaska; meteorological rocket launching facility, Alaskan Air...

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-07-01

    ..., Alaska; meteorological rocket launching facility, Alaskan Air Command, U.S. Air Force. 334.1290 Section...; meteorological rocket launching facility, Alaskan Air Command, U.S. Air Force. (a) The danger zone. An arc of a... Force, Headquarters 6th Weather Wing (MAC), Andrews Air Force Base, Washington, D.C. 20331. (40...

  6. 33 CFR 334.1290 - In Bering Sea, Shemya Island Area, Alaska; meteorological rocket launching facility, Alaskan Air...

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-07-01

    ..., Alaska; meteorological rocket launching facility, Alaskan Air Command, U.S. Air Force. 334.1290 Section...; meteorological rocket launching facility, Alaskan Air Command, U.S. Air Force. (a) The danger zone. An arc of a... Force, Headquarters 6th Weather Wing (MAC), Andrews Air Force Base, Washington, D.C. 20331. (40...

  7. 33 CFR 334.1290 - In Bering Sea, Shemya Island Area, Alaska; meteorological rocket launching facility, Alaskan Air...

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-07-01

    ..., Alaska; meteorological rocket launching facility, Alaskan Air Command, U.S. Air Force. 334.1290 Section...; meteorological rocket launching facility, Alaskan Air Command, U.S. Air Force. (a) The danger zone. An arc of a... Force, Headquarters 6th Weather Wing (MAC), Andrews Air Force Base, Washington, D.C. 20331. (40...

  8. 33 CFR 334.1290 - In Bering Sea, Shemya Island Area, Alaska; meteorological rocket launching facility, Alaskan Air...

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-07-01

    ..., Alaska; meteorological rocket launching facility, Alaskan Air Command, U.S. Air Force. 334.1290 Section...; meteorological rocket launching facility, Alaskan Air Command, U.S. Air Force. (a) The danger zone. An arc of a... Force, Headquarters 6th Weather Wing (MAC), Andrews Air Force Base, Washington, D.C. 20331. (40...

  9. Response of Tundra Ecosystems to Elevated Atmospheric CO{sub 2}

    SciTech Connect

    Oechel, Walter C.

    1990-09-05

    OAK B188 Response of Tundra Ecosystems to Elevated Atmospheric CO{sub 2}. Atmospheric CO{sub 2} is expected to double by the end of the next century. Global mean increases in surface air temperature of 1.5-4.5 C are anticipated with larger increases towards the poles predicted. Changes in CO{sub 2} levels and temperature could have major impacts on ecosystem functioning, including primary productivity, species composition, plant-animal interactions, and carbon storage. Until recently, there has been little direct information on the impact of changes in CO{sub 2} and temperature on native ecosystems. The study described here was undertaken to evaluate the effects of a 50 and 100% increase in atmospheric CO{sub 2}, and a 100% increase in atmospheric CO{sub 2} coupled with a 4 C summer air temperature rise on the structure and function of an arctic tussock tundra ecosystem. The arctic contains large stores of carbon as soil organic matter, much frozen in permafrost and currently not reactive or available for oxidation and release into the atmosphere. About 10-27% of the world's terrestrial carbon occurs in arctic and boreal regions, and carbon is accumulating in these regions at the rate of 0.19 GT y{sup -1}. Mean temperature increases of 11 C and summer temperature increases of 4 C have been suggested. Mean July temperatures on the arctic coastal plain and arctic foothills regions are 4-12 C, and mean annual temperatures are -7 to -13 C (Haugen, 1982). The projected temperature increases represent a substantial elevation above current temperatures which will have major impacts on physical processes such as permafrost development and development of the active layer, and on biological and ecosystem processes such as primary productivity, carbon storage, and species composition. Extreme nutrient and temperature limitation of this ecosystem raised questions of the responsiveness of arctic systems to elevated CO{sub 2}. Complex ecosystem interactions with the effects of

  10. Revegetation of Alaskan coal mine spoils. Progress report for research

    SciTech Connect

    Mitchell, W.W.; Mitchell, G.A.; McKendrick, J.D.

    1981-10-28

    Research on revegetation of Alaskan coal mine spoils and related topics was conducted at three mine locations in 1980 and 1981. One of the locations was at an active commercial mine, another at an abandoned mine, and the third at a test pit in a coal field that appears on the verge of development. The research included a number of plantings to test the adaptability of plant materials at various sites, time-of-planting and planting method trials, tests to determine fertilizer needs and plant responses to specific elements, numerous soil samplings to characterize minesoil materials and relate soil conditions to apparent performance of reclamation plantings that have been conducted at one mine over a period of nine years, base studies assessing faunal populations and their representation on replanted mine spoils, and studies of nutrient quality of native vegetation and reclamation plantings. This report will be presented in three sections. The first section will deal with the fertility and minesoil characterization studies, the second with the plant material studies, and the third with the faunal and plant quality studies.

  11. Soluble trace elements and total mercury in Arctic Alaskan snow

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Snyder-Conn, E.; Garbarino, J.R.; Hoffman, G.L.; Oelkers, A.

    1997-01-01

    Ultraclean field and laboratory procedures were used to examine trace element concentrations in northern Alaskan snow. Sixteen soluble trace elements and total mercury were determined in snow core samples representing the annual snowfall deposited during the 1993-94 season at two sites in the Prudhoe Bay oil field and nine sites in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (Arctic NWR). Results indicate there were two distinct point sources for trace elements in the Prudhoe Bay oil field - a source associated with oil and gas production and a source associated with municipal solid-waste incineration. Soluble trace element concentrations measured in snow from the Arctic NWR resembled concentrations of trace elements measured elsewhere in the Arctic using clean sample-collection and processing techniques and were consistent with deposition resulting from widespread arctic atmospheric contamination. With the exception of elements associated with sea salts, there were no orographic or east-west trends observed in the Arctic NWR data, nor were there any detectable influences from the Prudhoe Bay oil field, probably because of the predominant easterly and northeasterly winds on the North Slope of Alaska. However, regression analysis on latitude suggested significant south-to-north increases in selected trace element concentrations, many of which appear unrelated to the sea salt contribution.

  12. A Formal Messaging Notation for Alaskan Aviation Data

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Rios, Joseph L.

    2015-01-01

    Data exchange is an increasingly important aspect of the National Airspace System. While many data communication channels have become more capable of sending and receiving data at higher throughput rates, there is still a need to use communication channels efficiently with limited throughput. The limitation can be based on technological issues, financial considerations, or both. This paper provides a complete description of several important aviation weather data in Abstract Syntax Notation format. By doing so, data providers can take advantage of Abstract Syntax Notation's ability to encode data in a highly compressed format. When data such as pilot weather reports, surface weather observations, and various weather predictions are compressed in such a manner, it allows for the efficient use of throughput-limited communication channels. This paper provides details on the Abstract Syntax Notation One (ASN.1) implementation for Alaskan aviation data, and demonstrates its use on real-world aviation weather data samples as Alaska has sparse terrestrial data infrastructure and data are often sent via relatively costly satellite channels.

  13. Ecology of invasive Melilotus albus on Alaskan glacial river floodplains

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Conn, Jeff S.; Werdin-Pfisterer, Nancy R.; Beattie, Katherine L.; Densmore, Roseann V.

    2011-01-01

    Melilotus albus (white sweetclover) has invaded Alaskan glacial river floodplains. We measured cover and density of plant species and environmental variables along transects perpendicular to the Nenana, Matanuska, and Stikine Rivers to study interactions between M. albus and other plant species and to characterize the environment where it establishes. Melilotus albus was a pioneer species on recently disturbed sites and did not persist into closed canopy forests. The relationships between M. albus cover and density and other species were site-specific.Melilotus albus was negatively correlated with native species Elaeagnus commutata at the Nenana River, but not at the Matanuska River. Melilotus albus was positively correlated with the exotic species Crepis tectorumand Taraxacum officinale at the Matanuska River and T. officinale on the upper Stikine River. However, the high density of M. albus at a lower Stikine River site was negatively correlated with T. officinale and several native species including Lathyrus japonicus var. maritimus and Salix alaxensis. Glacial river floodplains in Alaska are highly disturbed and are corridors for exotic plant species movement. Melilotus albus at moderate to low densities may facilitate establishment of exotic species, but at high densities can reduce the cover and density of both exotic and native species.

  14. Rapid body size decline in Alaskan Pleistocene horses before extinction.

    PubMed

    Guthrie, R Dale

    2003-11-13

    About 70% of North American large mammal species were lost at the end of the Pleistocene epoch. The causes of this extinction--the role of humans versus that of climate--have been the focus of much controversy. Horses have figured centrally in that debate, because equid species dominated North American late Pleistocene faunas in terms of abundance, geographical distribution, and species variety, yet none survived into the Holocene epoch. The timing of these equid regional extinctions and accompanying evolutionary changes are poorly known. In an attempt to document better the decline and demise of two Alaskan Pleistocene equids, I selected a large number of fossils from the latest Pleistocene for radiocarbon dating. Here I show that horses underwent a rapid decline in body size before extinction, and I propose that the size decline and subsequent regional extinction at 12,500 radiocarbon years before present are best attributed to a coincident climatic/vegetational shift. The present data do not support human overkill and several other proposed extinction causes, and also show that large mammal species responded somewhat individualistically to climate changes at the end of the Pleistocene.

  15. Ice loss and sea level rise contribution from Alaskan glaciers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Berthier, E.; Schiefer, E.; Clarke, G. K.; Menounos, B.; Rémy, F.; Cazenave, A. A.

    2009-12-01

    Over the last 50 years, retreating glaciers and ice caps (GIC) contributed 0.5 mm/yr to SLR, and one third is believed to originate from ice masses bordering the Gulf of Alaska. However, these estimates of ice wastage in Alaska are based on methods that directly measure mass changes from a limited number of glaciers and extrapolate the results to estimate ice loss for the many thousands of others. Here, using a new glacier inventory with elevation changes derived from sequential digital elevation models (DEMs), we found that, between 1962 and 2006, Alaskan glaciers lost 41.9 ± 8.6 km**3/yr water equivalent (w.e.) and contributed 0.12 ± 0.02 mm/yr to SLR. Our ice loss is 34% lower than previous estimates. Reasons for our lower values include the higher spatial resolution of the glacier inventory used in our study and the complex pattern of ice elevation changes at the scale of individual glaciers and mountain ranges which was not resolved in earlier work. Our ice elevation changes reveal that glacier dynamics (surges, phase of the tidewater cycle, etc...) have a profound effect on the wastage of Alaska glaciers. 3D satellite view of Columbia glacier, Chugach Mountains, Alaska. (Copyright CNES 2007, Distribution Spot Image, processing E. Berthier CNRS)

  16. Stable lead isotope ratios in Alaskan arctic aerosols

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sturges, W. T.; Hopper, J. F.; Barrie, L. A.; Schnell, R. C.

    Aerosol samples collected at Barrow, Alaska, during February and March 1990 were found to have uniform stable lead isotope compositions. The mean 208Pb/ 207Pb ratio was 2.423±0.009 and the mean 206Pb/ 207Pb ratio was 1.161±0.014. The latter ratio is essentially the same as that obtained from an earlier study of aerosols at two Canadian stations in the High Arctic and is typical of, but not unique to, Eurasian sources of atmospheric lead. Further discriminating power was available in this study through the inclusion of 208Pb/ 207Pb ratios, which provided additional evidence that the former Soviet Union and eastern Europe are major contributors to atmospheric particulate lead in the Alaskan Arctic, accounting for around two-thirds of the particulate lead measured at Barrow. The remaining third of the lead is attributed to west European sources. There was no evidence for a substantial North American component, other than local contamination.

  17. Methane dynamics in warming tundra of Northeast European Russia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Marushchak, M. E.; Friborg, T.; Biasi, C.; Herbst, M.; Johansson, T.; Kiepe, I.; Liimatainen, M.; Lind, S. E.; Martikainen, P. J.; Virtanen, T.; Soegaard, H.; Shurpali, N. J.

    2015-08-01

    Methane (CH4) fluxes were investigated in a subarctic Russian tundra site in a multi-approach study combining plot scale data, ecosystem scale eddy covariance (EC) measurements and fine resolution land cover classification scheme for regional upscaling. The flux data as measured by the two independent techniques resulted in a seasonal (May-October 2008) cumulative CH4 emission of 2.4 (EC) and 3.7 g CH4 m-2 (manual chambers) for the source area representative of the footprint of the EC instruments. Upon upscaling for the entire study region of 98.6 km2, the chamber measured flux data yielded a regional flux estimate of 6.7 g CH4 m-2 yr-1. Our upscaling efforts accounted for the large spatial variability in the distribution of the various land cover types (LCTs) predominant at our study site. In particular, wetlands with emissions ranging from 34 to 53 g CH4 m-2 yr-1 were the most dominant CH4 emitting surfaces. Emissions from thermokarst lakes were an order of magnitude lower, while the rest of the landscape (mineral tundra) was a weak sink for atmospheric methane. Vascular plant cover was a key factor in explaining the spatial variability of CH4 emissions among wetland types, as indicated by the positive correlation of emissions with the leaf area index (LAI). As elucidated through a stable isotope analysis, the plant transport was the dominant CH4 release pathway that discriminates against heavier δ13C-CH4. The methane released from wetlands was lighter than that in the surface porewater and δ13C in the emitted CH4 correlated with the vascular plant cover (LAI) implying that the plant-mediated CH4 release dominates. A mean value of δ13C obtained here for the emitted CH4, -68.2 ± 2.0 ‰, is within the range of values from other wetlands, thus reinforcing the use of inverse modeling tools to better constrain the CH4 budget. Based on the IPCC A1B emission scenario, a temperature increase of 7 °C has been predicted for the tundra region of European Russia by the

  18. Satellite based permafrost modeling in low land tundra landscapes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Langer, M.; Westermann, S.; Heikenfeld, M.; Boike, J.

    2012-12-01

    For most of the cryosphere components such as glaciers, ice sheets, sea ice, and snow satellite monitoring and change detection is well established since several decades. For permafrost, however, which represents the largest component of the Arctic cryosphere operational satellite monitoring schemes do not exist so far. Most of the processes which control the Arctic terrestrial ecosystems are related to the thermal state of permafrost and the freeze/thaw dynamics of the active layer. Hence, satellite based permafrost monitoring would be highly beneficial for the impact assessment of climate change in the Arctic. Permafrost monitoring could also be highly beneficial for the risk assessment of infrastructure in the Arctic such as roads, pipelines, and buildings which are directly affected by the thermal stability of permafrost. Increasing thaw depths and prolonged thaw periods can damage pipelines and interrupt the access to vast regions due to road damages. Sustained warming of permafrost can result in thermal erosion and landslides which threaten buildings and other infrastructural facilities. In this study we present a possible permafrost monitoring scheme based on a numerical heat flow model which is forced by multiple satellite products and initialized by weather reanalysis data. The used forcing and initialization dataset includes the land surface temperature (LST), the snow cover fraction (SCF), and the snow water equivalent (SWE). Previous studies demonstrated that MODIS LST products can deliver reasonable surface temperature measurements in tundra landscapes (Langer et al. 2010, Westermann et al. 2011). This study is based on the ten year record of the daily MOD11A1v5 and MYD11A1v5 land surface temperature products with a spatial resolution of 1km. The snow cover evolution is obtained from the daily GlobSnow SWE product with a spatial resolution of about 25km. In addition, the MODIS snow cover products MOD10A1v5 and MYD10v5 with a resolution of 1km are used

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    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

  20. Topographic Variation and Methane Production in Siberian Arctic Tundra

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Eason, J.; Kuhn, M. A.; Dunn, S.; Spawn, S.; Schade, J. D.

    2014-12-01

    Understanding the fate of soil carbon when permafrost soils begin to thaw is critical for predicting the impact of permafrost thaw on global climate change. Microbial metabolism of soil carbon can produce carbon dioxide or methane, depending on soil conditions, and which pathway dominates has great significance for the strength of climate feedbacks since methane is a much more powerful greenhouse gas than carbon dioxide. In Arctic ecosystems, methane production from upland environments is not well understood and generally assumed to be low because conditions there are generally not favorable for methanogenesis. Small changes in topography, however, can lead to great heterogeneity in soil conditions at small scales that may lead to higher methane flux than generally recognized. In this study, we investigated patterns in methane, carbon dioxide, and oxygen concentrations in in surface waters of 15 small ponds in the Kolyma River watershed in Northeast Siberia. The ponds were distributed across a topographic gradient from upland tundra high in the landscape to low-lying ponds in the floodplain of the Kolyma River. In addition, we used chambers to measured methane fluxes from a variety of topographic depressions that ranged from pools to moss-dominated saturated soils lacking surface water, to dry soils dominated by sedges. Dissolved carbon dioxide concentrations in ponds showed no trend down the topographic gradient while methane concentrations decreased downslope. The decrease in methane production may be the result of a switch from green moss to brown moss, which may act as a host for methanotrophic bacteria. Ponds with green moss had significantly higher concentrations of methane than the ponds with brown moss. In addition, we found significantly higher methane fluxes from pools and saturated soils then from drier soils, which showed very low fluxes. These results suggest that upland tundra may be a significant source of methane, and that methane fluxes are driven

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2016-04-01

    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 CO2 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 km2 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 CO2. 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.

  2. Ventilation of North Pacific Intermediate Waters - The role of the Alaskan Gyre

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Van Scoy, Kim A.; Olson, Donald B.; Fine, Rana A.

    1991-01-01

    Hydrographic data, tritium data, and potential vorticity calculations suggest that although North Pacific Intermediate Water is formed in the northwest, the Alaskan Gyre might be an additional ventilation site. The proposed ventilation is quantified by a vertical column tritium inventory, which indicates an excess of 0.08 kg of tritium in the Alaskan Gyre. An evaluation of the energy stored in the water column and of wind and buoyancy forcing shows that during winter conditions enough energy can be pumped into the system to force 26.80 sigma(theta) to outcrop in the Alaskan Gyre. Model results suggest that relatively limited outcrops in time and space (tens of days and several hundred kilometers in diameter) can account for the excess tritium.

  3. Large tundra methane burst during onset of freezing.

    PubMed

    Mastepanov, Mikhail; Sigsgaard, Charlotte; Dlugokencky, Edward J; Houweling, Sander; Ström, Lena; Tamstorf, Mikkel P; Christensen, Torben R

    2008-12-04

    Terrestrial wetland emissions are the largest single source of the greenhouse gas methane. Northern high-latitude wetlands contribute significantly to the overall methane emissions from wetlands, but the relative source distribution between tropical and high-latitude wetlands remains uncertain. As a result, not all the observed spatial and seasonal patterns of atmospheric methane concentrations can be satisfactorily explained, particularly for high northern latitudes. For example, a late-autumn shoulder is consistently observed in the seasonal cycles of atmospheric methane at high-latitude sites, but the sources responsible for these increased methane concentrations remain uncertain. Here we report a data set that extends hourly methane flux measurements from a high Arctic setting into the late autumn and early winter, during the onset of soil freezing. We find that emissions fall to a low steady level after the growing season but then increase significantly during the freeze-in period. The integral of emissions during the freeze-in period is approximately equal to the amount of methane emitted during the entire summer season. Three-dimensional atmospheric chemistry and transport model simulations 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 60 degrees N. Our findings suggest that permafrost-associated freeze-in bursts of methane emissions from tundra regions could be an important and so far unrecognized component of the seasonal distribution of methane emissions from high latitudes.

  4. Paleoecological implications of Alaskan terrestrial vertebrate fauna in latest Cretaceous time at high paleolatitudes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Clemens, William A.; Gayle Nelms, L.

    1993-06-01

    The latest Cretaceous cool temperate environment of the Alaskan North Slope included dinosaurs (some species represented by both juveniles and adults) and mammals, all probably endothermic, and freshwater fish among its terrestrial vertebrate fauna. No traces have been found of amphibians or nondinosaurian reptiles, ectothermic vertebrates that are abundantly represented in approximately contemporaneous faunas of North American middle paleolatitudes. A geologically brief period of intense cold and darkness has been hypothesized as the primary cause of terminal Cretaceous extinctions. However, the extinction of the lineages of Alaskan dinosaurs and mammals, in contrast to the survival of most lineages of amphibians and nondinosaurian reptiles into the Tertiary, contradicts this hypothesis.

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

    PubMed

    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.

  6. Below-ground carbon transfer among Betula nana may increase with warming in Arctic tundra.

    PubMed

    Deslippe, Julie R; Simard, Suzanne W

    2011-11-01

    • Shrubs are expanding in Arctic tundra, but the role of mycorrhizal fungi in this process is unknown. We tested the hypothesis that mycorrhizal networks are involved in interplant carbon (C) transfer within a tundra plant community. • Here, we installed below-ground treatments to control for C transfer pathways and conducted a (13)CO(2)-pulse-chase labelling experiment to examine C transfer among and within plant species. • We showed that mycorrhizal networks exist in tundra, and facilitate below-ground transfer of C among Betula nana individuals, but not between or within the other tundra species examined. Total C transfer among conspecific B. nana pairs was 10.7 ± 2.4% of photosynthesis, with the majority of C transferred through rhizomes or root grafts (5.2 ± 5.3%) and mycorrhizal network pathways (4.1 ± 3.3%) and very little through soil pathways (1.4 ± 0.35%). • Below-ground C transfer was of sufficient magnitude to potentially alter plant interactions in Arctic tundra, increasing the competitive ability and mono-dominance of B. nana. C transfer was significantly positively related to ambient temperatures, suggesting that it may act as a positive feedback to ecosystem change as climate warms.

  7. Herbivory and nutrient limitation protect warming tundra from lowland species' invasion and diversity loss.

    PubMed

    Eskelinen, Anu; Kaarlejärvi, Elina; Olofsson, Johan

    2017-01-01

    Herbivory and nutrient limitation can increase the resistance of temperature-limited systems to invasions under climate warming. We imported seeds of lowland species to tundra under factorial treatments of warming, fertilization, herbivore exclusion and biomass removal. We show that warming alone had little impact on lowland species, while exclusion of native herbivores and relaxation of nutrient limitation greatly benefitted them. In contrast, warming alone benefitted resident tundra species and increased species richness; however, these were canceled by negative effects of herbivore exclusion and fertilization. Dominance of lowland species was associated with low cover of tundra species and resulted in decreased species richness. Our results highlight the critical role of biotic and abiotic filters unrelated to temperature in protecting tundra under warmer climate. While scarcity of soil nutrients and native herbivores act as important agents of resistance to invasions by lowland species, they concurrently promote overall species coexistence. However, when these biotic and abiotic resistances are relaxed, invasion of lowland species can lead to decreased abundance of resident tundra species and diminished diversity.

  8. Methane emissions from tundra environments in the Yukon-Kuskokwin Delta, Alaska

    SciTech Connect

    Bartlett, K.B.; Crill, P.M.; Sass, R.L.; Harriss, R.C.; Dise, N.B. New Hampshire Univ., Durham Rice Univ., Houston, TX Minnesota Univ., Minneapolis )

    1992-10-01

    This paper reports CH[sub 4] flux to the atmosphere from a variety of tundra environments near Bethel, Alaska during the summer months of 1988. Emissions from wet meadow tundra averaged 144 +/- 31 mg/sq m/d and ranged from 15.6 to 426 mg/sq m/d varying with soil moisture and temperature. Flux from the drier upland tundra was about two orders of magnitude lower and averaged 2.3 +/- 1.1 mg/sq m/d. Tundra lakes emit CH4 from the open water surface as well as from fringing aquatic vegetation; the presence of vegetation significantly enhanced flux over open water rates. Calculated diffusive fluxes from open water varied with lake size, the large lakes emitting 3.8 mg/sq m/d and small lakes emitting an average of 77 mg/sq m/d. An updated estimate of global emissions from tundra indicates an annual fluxes of approximately 11 +/- 3 Tg CH[sub 4]. 41 refs.

  9. Development of an Energy-based Runoff Generation Model in Arctic Tundra Regions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Thorne, R.; Quinton, W. L.

    2009-05-01

    Recently, the demand for improved predictive models of runoff in arctic tundra regions has increased, given uncertainties regarding the future availability of northern freshwater resources related to climate change and expanding resource development. Hydrological characteristics of the arctic tundra are substantially different from those of temperate regions in which traditional runoff generation theories were based. Therefore, theories that apply specifically to the arctic tundra need to be incorporated into a robust runoff model to improve predictions for this region. In addition, the topographically based contributing areas described by source area concepts in the model can be combined with or superseded by an energy-based contributing area. The goal of this project is to design an energy-based runoff generation model to simulate characteristics influencing the aerodynamic and radiation regimes at the surface, including surface roughness, slope aspect and angle in tundra landscapes. Through the model, the frost table topography can be derived, which is a critical step toward predicting the rate and direction of flow. As most arctic tundra catchments in Canada are ungauged, understanding the impact of observed climate warming and unprecedented resource extraction activities can only be achieved through improved conceptualization of hydrological processes. Thus, an energy-based runoff generation model may lead to improved predictions of streamflow in both the present and future.

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nauta, Ake L.; Heijmans, Monique M. P. D.; Blok, Daan; Limpens, Juul; Elberling, Bo; Gallagher, Angela; Li, Bingxi; Petrov, Roman E.; Maximov, Trofim C.; van Huissteden, Jacobus; Berendse, Frank

    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, including expansion of woody vegetation, 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 the shrub part of the vegetation initiated thawing of ice-rich permafrost, resulting in collapse of the originally elevated shrub patches into waterlogged depressions within five years. This thaw pond development shifted the plots from a methane sink into a methane source. The results of our field 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-emitting wet depressions could become more abundant in the lowland tundra landscape, at the cost of permafrost-stabilizing low shrub vegetation.

  11. Changing trends in carbon dioxide exchange components in three Arctic tundra sites

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mbufong, Herbert; Lund, Magnus; Christensen, Torben; Jackowicz-Korczynski, Marcin; Parmentier, Frans-Jan; Dolman, Han; van der Molen, Michiel; Tamstorf, Mikkel

    2014-05-01

    This paper aims to investigate the interannual variability in carbon flux components in a High, Low and Sub Arctic tundra site. By identifying trends in different tundra types, we can better understand the possible future response of Arctic tundra under climatic change. The timing and length of seasons, alongside environmental controls, have been examined to assess their effect on the seasonal carbon budgets of these sites. Data was collected using the micrometeorological eddy covariance technique from three Arctic tundra sites in Greenland (74.47 °N), Siberia (70.82 °N) and Sweden (68.33 °N). We have hypothesized that the interannual trends in net ecosystem exchange (NEE) components will vary between the different tundra types in this study and will most likely be driven by temperature, vegetation characteristics (NDVI) and season phenology (start and length of seasons). Our results will present the evolution of the seasonal budgets (Thaw, pre-green, green, post-green seasons) of NEE components; and the drivers of these trends over 6 years (2003 - 2008) in these three sites. These and more will be presented at the conference.

  12. How will the tundra-taiga interface respond to climate change?

    PubMed

    Skre, Oddvar; Baxter, Robert; Crawford, Robert M M; Callaghan, Terry V; Fedorkov, Alexey

    2002-08-01

    The intuitive and logical answer to the question of how the tundra-taiga interface will react to global warming is that it should move north and this is mirrored by many models of potential treeline migration. Northward movement may be the eventual outcome if climatic warming persists over centuries or millennia. However, closer examination of the tundra-taiga interface across its circumpolar extent reveals a more complex situation. The regional climatic history of the tundra-taiga interface is highly varied, and consequently it is to be expected that the forest tundra boundary zone will respond differently to climate change depending on local variations in climate, evolutionary history, soil development, and hydrology. Investigations reveal considerable stability at present in the position of the treeline and while there may be a long-term advance northwards there are oceanic regions where climatic warming may result in a retreat southwards due to increased bog development. Reinforcing this trend is an increasing human impact, particularly in the forest tundra of Russia, which forces the limit of the forested areas southwards. Local variations will therefore require continued observation and research, as they will be of considerable importance economically as well as for ecology and conservation.

  13. Methane emissions from tundra environments in the Yukon-Kuskokwin Delta, Alaska

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bartlett, Karen B.; Crill, Patrick M.; Sass, Ronald L.; Harriss, Robert C.; Dise, Nancy B.

    1992-01-01

    This paper reports CH4 flux to the atmosphere from a variety of tundra environments near Bethel, Alaska during the summer months of 1988. Emissions from wet meadow tundra averaged 144 +/- 31 mg/sq m/d and ranged from 15.6 to 426 mg/sq m/d varying with soil moisture and temperature. Flux from the drier upland tundra was about two orders of magnitude lower and averaged 2.3 +/- 1.1 mg/sq m/d. Tundra lakes emit CH4 from the open water surface as well as from fringing aquatic vegetation; the presence of vegetation significantly enhanced flux over open water rates. Calculated diffusive fluxes from open water varied with lake size, the large lakes emitting 3.8 mg/sq m/d and small lakes emitting an average of 77 mg/sq m/d. An updated estimate of global emissions from tundra indicates an annual fluxes of approximately 11 +/- 3 Tg CH4.

  14. Inorganic and organic contaminants in Alaskan shorebird eggs.

    PubMed

    Saalfeld, David T; Matz, Angela C; McCaffery, Brian J; Johnson, Oscar W; Bruner, Phil; Lanctot, Richard B

    2016-05-01

    Many shorebird populations throughout North America are thought to be declining, with potential causes attributed to habitat loss and fragmentation, reduced prey availability, increased predation, human disturbance, and increased exposure to environmental pollutants. Shorebirds may be particularly vulnerable to contaminant exposure throughout their life cycle, as they forage primarily on invertebrates in wetlands, where many contaminants accumulate disproportionately in the sediments. Therefore, it is important to document and monitor shorebird populations thought to be at risk and assess the role that environmental contaminants may have on population declines. To investigate potential threats and provide baseline data on shorebird contaminant levels in Alaskan shorebirds, contaminant concentrations were evaluated in shorebird eggs from 16 species residing in seven geographic distinct regions of Alaska. Similar to previous studies, low levels of most inorganic and organic contaminants were found, although concentrations of several inorganic and organic contaminants were higher than those of previous studies. For example, elevated strontium levels were observed in several species, especially black oystercatcher (Haematopus bachmani) sampled in Prince William Sound, Alaska. Additionally, contaminant concentrations varied among species, with significantly higher concentrations of inorganic contaminants found in eggs of pectoral sandpiper (Calidris melanotos), semipalmated sandpiper (Calidris pusilla), black oystercatcher, and bar-tailed godwit (Limosa lapponica). Similarly, significantly higher concentrations of some organic contaminants were found in the eggs of American golden plover (Pluvialis dominica), black-bellied plover (Pluvialis squatarola), pacific golden plover (Pluvialis fulva), bar-tailed godwit, and semipalmated sandpiper. Despite these elevated levels, current concentrations of contaminants in shorebird eggs suggest that breeding environments are

  15. Rock-forming metals and Pb in modern Alaskan snow

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Hinkley, Todd K.

    1993-01-01

    Metal concentrations in annual and subannual increments of snowpack from the accumulation zone of a south central Alaska glacier indicate that the deposition of Pb with and upon snow is decoupled from that of rock dusts. Rock dusts accumulate, apparently as dry deposition, on the topmost, exposed surfaces of snowpacks in spring and summer, whereas Pb does not. Pb concentration is elevated throughout the latest one third of an annual snowpack, whereas that of rock dusts is not. For whole-year snowpacks, there is a generally sympathetic relationship among concentration of Pb, concentration of rock dust, degree of dominance of rock dusts over ocean solutes, and ferromagnesian character of the rock dusts; however, the fractional abundance of Pb in whole year samples may decrease when rock dust masses become large and/or when rock dusts dominate most strongly over salts. The metal suite chosen to characterize rock dusts and to distinguish them from ocean solutes gives detailed information about rock type of dust source areas and about the nature of the degraded rock products that are taken up, transported, and deposited by the atmosphere. Rock dusts are present at concentrations of only about 300 nanograms (ng) of dust per gram of snow in the Alaskan snowpacks. Concentrations of Pb in the Alaska snow samples are moderate, ranging from 0.1 to 0.3 ng Pb/g snow. This contrasts with larger Pb concentrations of 0.4 to 0.9 ng Pb/g snow in whole-year snowpack samples from the Sierra Nevada, California; with similar to smaller concentrations from north and south Greenland of about 0.04 ng Pb/g snow or less, and about 0.2 ng Pb/g snow or less, respectively, and with much smaller concentrations from Antarctica, now believed to range from a minimum of about 0.001 to a maximum of 0.005 (or 0.01) ng Pb/g snow.

  16. Contaminants in arctic snow collected over northwest Alaskan sea ice

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Garbarino, J.R.; Snyder-Conn, E.; Leiker, T.J.; Hoffman, G.L.

    2002-01-01

    Snow cores were collected over sea ice from four northwest Alaskan Arctic estuaries that represented the annual snowfall from the 1995-1996 season. Dissolved trace metals, major cations and anions, total mercury, and organochlorine compounds were determined and compared to concentrations in previous arctic studies. Traces (<4 nanograms per liter, ng L-1) of cis- and trans-chlordane, dimethyl 2,3,5,6-tetrachloroterephthalate, dieldrin, endosulfan II, and PCBs were detected in some samples, with endosulfan I consistently present. High chlorpyrifos concentrations (70-80 ng L-1) also were estimated at three sites. The snow was highly enriched in sulfates (69- 394 mg L-1), with high proportions of nonsea salt sulfates at three of five sites (9 of 15 samples), thus indicating possible contamination through long-distance transport and deposition of sulfate-rich atmospheric aerosols. Mercury, cadmium, chromium, molybdenum, and uranium were typically higher in the marine snow (n = 15) in relation to snow from arctic terrestrial studies, whereas cations associated with terrigenous sources, such as aluminum, frequently were lower over the sea ice. One Kasegaluk Lagoon site (Chukchi Sea) had especially high concentrations of total mercury (mean = 214 ng L-1, standard deviation = 5 ng L-1), but no methyl mercury was detected above the method detection limit (0.036 ng L-1) at any of the sites. Elevated concentrations of sulfate, mercury, and certain heavy metals might indicate mechanisms of contaminant loss from the arctic atmosphere over marine water not previously reported over land areas. Scavenging by snow, fog, or riming processes and the high content of deposited halides might facilitate the loss of such contaminants from the atmosphere. Both the mercury and chlorpyrifos concentrations merit further investigation in view of their toxicity to aquatic organisms at low concentrations.

  17. Mechanisms influencing changes in lake area in Alaskan boreal forest

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Roach, Jennifer K.; Griffith, Brad; Verbyla, David; Jones, Jeremy B.

    2011-01-01

    During the past ∼50 years, the number and area of lakes have declined in several regions in boreal forests. However, there has been substantial finer-scale heterogeneity; some lakes decreased in area, some showed no trend, and others increased. The objective of this study was to identify the primary mechanisms underlying heterogeneous trends in closed-basin lake area. Eight lake characteristics (δ18O, electrical conductivity, surface : volume index, bank slope, floating mat width, peat depth, thaw depth at shoreline, and thaw depth at the forest boundary) were compared for 15 lake pairs in Alaskan boreal forest where one lake had decreased in area since ∼1950, and the other had not. Mean differences in characteristics between paired lakes were used to identify the most likely of nine mechanistic scenarios that combined three potential mechanisms for decreasing lake area (talik drainage, surface water evaporation, and terrestrialization) with three potential mechanisms for nondecreasing lake area (subpermafrost groundwater recharge through an open talik, stable permafrost, and thermokarst). A priori expectations of the direction of mean differences between decreasing and nondecreasing paired lakes were generated for each scenario. Decreasing lakes had significantly greater electrical conductivity, greater surface : volume indices, shallower bank slopes, wider floating mats, greater peat depths, and shallower thaw depths at the forest boundary. These results indicated that the most likely scenario was terrestrialization as the mechanism for lake area reduction combined with thermokarst as the mechanism for nondecreasing lake area. Terrestrialization and thermokarst may have been enhanced by recent warming which has both accelerated permafrost thawing and lengthened the growing season, thereby increasing plant growth, floating mat encroachment, transpiration rates, and the accumulation of organic matter in lake basins. The transition to peatlands associated

  18. Variation in bird's originating nitrogen availability limits High Arctic tundra development over last 2000 year (Hornsund, Svalbard)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2016-04-01

    Arctic and subarctic regions play important roles in the global carbon balance. However, nitrogen (N) deficiency is a major constraint for organic carbon sequestration in the High Arctic. Hence, the identification of the relative contributions from different N-sources is critical for understanding the constraints that limit tundra growth. The stable nitrogen composition of the three main N-sources and numerous plants were analyzed in ten tundra types (including those influenced by seabirds) in the Fuglebekken catchment (Hornsund, Svalbard, 77°N 15°E). The percentage of the total tundra N-pool provided by seabirds' feces (from planktivorous colonially breeding little auks Alle alle), 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 originated from birds (36%), atmospheric deposition (38%), and N2-fixation (26%). The results clearly show that N-pool in the tundra is significantly supplemented by nesting seabirds. Thus, if they experienced climate change induced substantial negative environmental pressure, it would adversely influence the tundra N-budget (Skrzypek et al. 2015). The growth rates and the sediment thickness (<15cm) in different tundra types varied considerably but the tundra age was similar in the whole area, <450 cal BP. The only exception was Ornithocoprophilous bird-N rich tundra with very diverse ages ranging from 235 to 2300 cal BP and thickness up to 110 cm. The growth rates for this tundra (62 cm core, 18 AMS 14C dates) were high (1.5-3.0 mm/yr) between 1568 and 1804 AD and then substantially declined for the period between 1804 and 1929 AD (0.2 mm/yr). These findings deliver an additional argument, that the organic matter accumulation is driven not only directly by climatic conditions but also by birds' contribution to the tundra N-pool. Skrzypek G, Wojtuń B, Richter D, Jakubas D, Wojczulanis-Jakubas K, Samecka-Cymerman A, 2015

  19. Arctic lakes and streams as gas conduits to the atmosphere: Implications for tundra carbon budgets

    SciTech Connect

    Kling, G.W. ); Kipphut, G.W. ); Miller, M.C. )

    1991-01-01

    Arctic tundra has large amounts of stored carbon and is thought to be a sink for atmospheric carbon dioxide (CO{sub 2}) (0.1 to 0.3 petagram of carbon per year) (1 petagram = 10{sup 15} grams). But this estimate of carbon balance is only for terrestrial ecosystems. Measurements of the partial pressure of CO{sub 2} in 29 aquatic ecosystems across arctic Alaska showed that in most cases (27 of 29) CO{sub 2} was released to the atmosphere. This CO{sub 2} probably originates in terrestrial environments; erosion of particulate carbon plus ground-water transport of dissolved carbon from tundra contribute to the CO{sub 2} flux from surface waters to the atmosphere. If this mechanism is typical of that of other tundra areas, then current estimates of the arctic terrestrial sink for atmospheric CO{sub 2} may be 20 percent too high. 1 table, 2 figs., 21 refs.

  20. Controls over nutrient flow through plants and microbes in Arctic tundra. Final technical report

    SciTech Connect

    Chapin, F.S. III

    1995-01-01

    We successfully developed a series of models to explore the importance of species differences in phenologies of growth and nitrogen uptake to competitive interactions in upland tussock tundra. We developed growth models for 4 major tussock tundra species, based on observed growth rates and phenologies. We found that differences in phenology and nutrient use strategy could permit coexistence of some, but not all of the tundra plants modeled. The plant that was the best competitor, because of its rapid growth rate and superior ability to retranslocate nitrogen, may be naturally limited in its competitive ability by its tussock growth form. The mechanisms behind this limitation, and the contributions of patterns of mortality to observed production, will be explored in future modeling and experimental studies. In addition, our models point out that our understanding of the dynamics of nitrogen supply is still inadequate.

  1. Potential Arctic tundra vegetation shifts in response to changing temperature, precipitation and permafrost thaw

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    van der Kolk, Henk-Jan; Heijmans, Monique M. P. D.; van Huissteden, Jacobus; Pullens, Jeroen W. M.; Berendse, Frank

    2016-11-01

    Over the past decades, vegetation and climate have changed significantly in the Arctic. Deciduous shrub cover is often assumed to expand in tundra landscapes, but more frequent abrupt permafrost thaw resulting in formation of thaw ponds could lead to vegetation shifts towards graminoid-dominated wetland. Which factors drive vegetation changes in the tundra ecosystem are still not sufficiently clear. In this study, the dynamic tundra vegetation model, NUCOM-tundra (NUtrient and COMpetition), was used to evaluate the consequences of climate change scenarios of warming and increasing precipitation for future tundra vegetation change. The model includes three plant functional types (moss, graminoids and shrubs), carbon and nitrogen cycling, water and permafrost dynamics and a simple thaw pond module. Climate scenario simulations were performed for 16 combinations of temperature and precipitation increases in five vegetation types representing a gradient from dry shrub-dominated to moist mixed and wet graminoid-dominated sites. Vegetation composition dynamics in currently mixed vegetation sites were dependent on both temperature and precipitation changes, with warming favouring shrub dominance and increased precipitation favouring graminoid abundance. Climate change simulations based on greenhouse gas emission scenarios in which temperature and precipitation increases were combined showed increases in biomass of both graminoids and shrubs, with graminoids increasing in abundance. The simulations suggest that shrub growth can be limited by very wet soil conditions and low nutrient supply, whereas graminoids have the advantage of being able to grow in a wide range of soil moisture conditions and have access to nutrients in deeper soil layers. Abrupt permafrost thaw initiating thaw pond formation led to complete domination of graminoids. However, due to increased drainage, shrubs could profit from such changes in adjacent areas. Both climate and thaw pond formation

  2. Reduced postfire tree regeneration along a boreal forest-forest-tundra transect in northern Quebec

    SciTech Connect

    Sirois, L.; Payette, S. )

    1991-04-01

    The large 1950s fires that burned > 5,500 km{sup 2} of land across a south-to-north climatic gradient in northern Quebec provide an opportunity to evaluate the role of fire in forest-tundra development on a demographic basis. The tree population density before and {approx} 30 yr after fire was estimated by censusing trees in plots of 400 m{sup 2} located in upland and lowland within four representative ecoregions of northern Quebec. The analysis of tree recruitment before and after fire, in 410 randomly selected sites along a transect crossing the upper boreal forest and forest-tundra zones, indicated that wildfires induced substantial depletion of tree populations. Taken as a whole, fires have significantly reduced the density of black spruce populations in forest-tundra uplands, but not in the lowlands. Sustained reduction of tree population density after several destructive fires appears as one of the main deforestation processed in the subarctic zone. This leads to the patchy distribution of forest stands and scattered tree populations typical of the forest-tundra biome. Comparisons with paleoecological data suggest that the impact of the 1950s fires contributed to the expansion of the forest tundra into the upper boreal forest. The ecological impact of these fires was probably similar to those fires responsible for development of the forest tundra during the Holocene. It is suggested that the fire-climate interaction should be considered in order to predict the ecological impact of warming climate on high-latitude forest ecosystems.

  3. Effects of temperature seasonality on tundra vegetation productivity using a daily vegetation dynamics model

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Epstein, H. E.; Erler, A.; Frazier, J.; Bhatt, U. S.

    2011-12-01

    Changes in the seasonality of air temperature will elicit interacting effects on the dynamics of snow cover, nutrient availability, vegetation growth, and other ecosystem properties and processes in arctic tundra. Simulation models often do not have the fine temporal resolution necessary to develop theory and propose hypotheses for the effects of daily and weekly timescale changes on ecosystem dynamics. We therefore developed a daily version of an arctic tundra vegetation dynamics model (ArcVeg) to simulate how changes in the seasonality of air temperatures influences the dynamics of vegetation growth and carbon sequestration across regions of arctic tundra. High temporal-resolution air and soil temperature data collected from field sites across the five arctic tundra bioclimate subzones were used to develop a daily weather generator operable for sites throughout the arctic tundra. Empirical relationships between temperature and soil nitrogen were used to generate daily dynamics of soil nitrogen availability, which drive the daily uptake of nitrogen and growth among twelve tundra plant functional types. Seasonal dynamics of the remotely sensed normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI) and remotely sensed land surface temperature from the Advanced Very High Resolution Radiometer (AVHRR) GIMMS 3g dataset were used to investigate constraints on the start of the growing season, although there was no indication of any spatially consistent temperature or day-length controls on greening onset. Because of the exponential nature of the relationship between soil temperature and nitrogen mineralization, temperature changes during the peak of the growing season had greater effects on vegetation productivity than changes earlier in the growing season. However, early season changes in temperature had a greater effect on the relative productivities of different plant functional types, with potential influences on species composition.

  4. Modeling the spatiotemporal variability in subsurface thermal regimes across a low-relief polygonal tundra landscape

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kumar, Jitendra; Collier, Nathan; Bisht, Gautam; Mills, Richard T.; Thornton, Peter E.; Iversen, Colleen M.; Romanovsky, Vladimir

    2016-09-01

    Vast carbon stocks stored in permafrost soils of Arctic tundra are under risk of release to the atmosphere under warming climate scenarios. Ice-wedge polygons in the low-gradient polygonal tundra create a complex mosaic of microtopographic features. This microtopography plays a critical role in regulating the fine-scale variability in thermal and hydrological regimes in the polygonal tundra landscape underlain by continuous permafrost. Modeling of thermal regimes of this sensitive ecosystem is essential for understanding the landscape behavior under the current as well as changing climate. We present here an end-to-end effort for high-resolution numerical modeling of thermal hydrology at real-world field sites, utilizing the best available data to characterize and parameterize the models. We develop approaches to model the thermal hydrology of polygonal tundra and apply them at four study sites near Barrow, Alaska, spanning across low to transitional to high-centered polygons, representing a broad polygonal tundra landscape. A multiphase subsurface thermal hydrology model (PFLOTRAN) was developed and applied to study the thermal regimes at four sites. Using a high-resolution lidar digital elevation model (DEM), microtopographic features of the landscape were characterized and represented in the high-resolution model mesh. The best available soil data from field observations and literature were utilized to represent the complex heterogeneous subsurface in the numerical model. Simulation results demonstrate the ability of the developed modeling approach to capture - without recourse to model calibration - several aspects of the complex thermal regimes across the sites, and provide insights into the critical role of polygonal tundra microtopography in regulating the thermal dynamics of the carbon-rich permafrost soils. Areas of significant disagreement between model results and observations highlight the importance of field-based observations of soil thermal and

  5. Shrub Abundance Mapping in Arctic Tundra with Misr

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    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

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

    PubMed

    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)).

  7. Mucilaginibacter soli sp. nov., isolated from Arctic tundra soil.

    PubMed

    Jiang, Fan; Dai, Jun; Wang, Yang; Xue, Xiuqing; Xu, Mengbo; Guo, Youhao; Li, Wenxin; Fang, Chengxiang; Peng, Fang

    2012-07-01

    A novel pale-pink-coloured strain, designated R9-65(T), was isolated from a tundra soil near Ny-Ålesund, Svalbard Archipelago, Norway (78° N). The cells were facultatively anaerobic, Gram-staining-negative, non-motile and rod-shaped. Growth occurred at 4-32 °C (optimum, 25-28 °C), at pH 5.0-9.0 (optimum, pH 6.0-7.0) and with 0-1.0% (w/v) NaCl (optimum, no NaCl). Flexirubin-type pigments were absent. Phylogenetic analysis based on 16S rRNA gene sequences indicated that strain R9-65(T) belonged to the genus Mucilaginibacter in the family Sphingobacteriaceae. The 16S rRNA gene sequence similarity between strain R9-65(T) and type strains of related species ranged from 93.4 to 96.6%. Strain R9-65(T) contained summed feature 3 (C(16:1)ω7c and/or C(16:1)ω6c, 34.3%) and iso-C(15:0) (20.3%) as major cellular fatty acids, MK-7 as the major respiratory quinone, and phosphatidylethanolamine as the main polar lipid. The DNA G+C content of strain R9-65(T) was 47.2 mol%. On the basis of phylogenetic, physiological and chemotaxonomic data, strain R9-65(T) is considered to represent a novel species of the genus Mucilaginibacter, for which the name Mucilaginibacter soli sp. nov. is proposed. The type strain is R9-65(T) (=CCTCC AB 2010331(T)=NRRL B-59458(T)).

  8. Coastal Navigation Portfolio Management

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2015-02-19

    CIRP.aspx Coastal Inlets Research Program Coastal Navigation Portfolio Management The Coastal Navigatoin Portfolio Management work unit...across the vast coastal navigation portfolio of projects. The USACE maintains a vast infrastructure portfolio of deep-draft coastal entrance...the Corps needs to be able to direct resources at the navigation projects that are most critical to overall marine transportation system performance

  9. CYCLING OF DISSOLVED ELEMENTAL MERCURY IN ARCTIC ALASKAN LAKES. (R829796)

    EPA Science Inventory

    Aqueous production and water-air exchange of elemental mercury (Hg0) are important features of the environmental cycling of Hg. We investigated Hg0 cycling in ten Arctic Alaskan lakes that spanned a wide range in physicochemical characteristics. Dissolved...

  10. 20 CFR 416.1228 - Exclusion of Alaskan natives' stock in regional or village corporations.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-04-01

    ... regional or village corporations. 416.1228 Section 416.1228 Employees' Benefits SOCIAL SECURITY... Exclusion of Alaskan natives' stock in regional or village corporations. (a) In determining the resources of... in a regional or village corporation during the period of 20 years in which such stock is...

  11. 20 CFR 416.1228 - Exclusion of Alaskan natives' stock in regional or village corporations.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-04-01

    ... regional or village corporations. 416.1228 Section 416.1228 Employees' Benefits SOCIAL SECURITY... Exclusion of Alaskan natives' stock in regional or village corporations. (a) In determining the resources of... in a regional or village corporation during the period of 20 years in which such stock is...

  12. 20 CFR 416.1228 - Exclusion of Alaskan natives' stock in regional or village corporations.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-04-01

    ... regional or village corporations. 416.1228 Section 416.1228 Employees' Benefits SOCIAL SECURITY... Exclusion of Alaskan natives' stock in regional or village corporations. (a) In determining the resources of... in a regional or village corporation during the period of 20 years in which such stock is...

  13. 20 CFR 416.1228 - Exclusion of Alaskan natives' stock in regional or village corporations.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-04-01

    ... regional or village corporations. 416.1228 Section 416.1228 Employees' Benefits SOCIAL SECURITY... Exclusion of Alaskan natives' stock in regional or village corporations. (a) In determining the resources of... in a regional or village corporation during the period of 20 years in which such stock is...

  14. 20 CFR 416.1228 - Exclusion of Alaskan natives' stock in regional or village corporations.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-04-01

    ... regional or village corporations. 416.1228 Section 416.1228 Employees' Benefits SOCIAL SECURITY... Exclusion of Alaskan natives' stock in regional or village corporations. (a) In determining the resources of... in a regional or village corporation during the period of 20 years in which such stock is...

  15. Phonological Issues in North Alaskan Inupiaq. Alaska Native Language Center Research Papers No. 6.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kaplan, Lawrence D.

    The monograph on the North Alaskan dialect of Inupiaq, an Eskimo language, makes a phonological comparison of the two sub-dialects, Barrow and Kobuk. An introductory section outlines basic word structure and standard orthography, and gives an overview of the dialects' phonology. Subsequent sections give an extensive phonological analysis of these…

  16. Shaping the Landscape: A Journal of Writing by Alaskan Teachers 1992.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Longenbaugh, Betsy, Ed.

    Intended to encourage Alaska teachers to write, to provide an honest sounding board for those submitting work, and to be a pleasure to read, this booklet presents a collection of 20 pieces of writing (short stories, poems, and life experiences) by Alaskan teachers. The pieces and their authors are as follows: "The First Haiku" (Dan…

  17. Radiocarbon evidence of mid-Holocene mammoths stranded on an Alaskan Bering Sea island.

    PubMed

    Guthrie, R Dale

    2004-06-17

    Island colonization and subsequent dwarfing of Pleistocene proboscideans is one of the more dramatic evolutionary and ecological occurrences, especially in situations where island populations survived end-Pleistocene extinctions whereas those on the nearby mainland did not. For example, Holocene mammoths have been dated from Wrangel Island in northern Russia. In most of these cases, few details are available about the dynamics of how island colonization and extinction occurred. As part of a large radiocarbon dating project of Alaskan mammoth fossils, I addressed this question by including mammoth specimens from Bering Sea islands known to have formed during the end-Pleistocene sea transgression. One date of 7,908 +/- 100 yr bp (radiocarbon years before present) established the presence of Holocene mammoths on St Paul Island, a first Holocene island record for the Americas. Four lines of evidence--265 accelerator mass spectrometer (AMS) radiocarbon dates from Alaskan mainland mammoths, 13 new dates from Alaskan island mammoths, recent reconstructions of bathymetric plots and sea transgression rates from the Bering Sea--made it possible to reconstruct how mammoths became stranded in the Pribilofs and why this apparently did not happen on other Alaskan Bering Sea islands.

  18. Implications of lifting the ban on the export of Alaskan crude oil

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1990-03-26

    Present legislation effectively bans the export of crude oil produced in the United States. The ban has been in effect for years and is particularly stringent with respect to crude oil produced in Alaska, particularly on the North Slope. The Alaska crude export ban is specifically provided for in the Trans-Alaska Pipeline Authorization Act of 1973 and in other legislation. It was imposed for two reasons. The first was to reduce US dependence on imported crude oil. The Arab oil embargo had been imposed shortly before the Act was passed and a greater measure of energy independence was considered imperative at that time. The second reason was to assure that funds expended in building an Alaskan pipeline would benefit domestic users rather than simply employed to facilitate shipments to other countries. The main objective of this report is to estimate the potential impacts on crude oil prices that would result from lifting the export ban Alaskan crude oil. The report focuses on the Japanese market and the US West Coast market. Japan is the principal potential export market for Alaskan crude oil. Exports to that market would also affect the price of Alaskan crude oil as well as crude oil and product prices on the West Coast and the volume of petroleum imported in that area. 3 figs., 8 tabs.

  19. Alaska Is Our Home--Book 2: A Natural Science Handbook for Alaskan Students.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bury, John; Bury, Susan

    A natural science resource booklet for teachers and students contains detailed materials for teaching and learning about Alaskan wildlife. Each of nine chapters provides background subject information, suggested learning activities, tear-out pages of review questions for students to answer, and supplementary notes for teachers which include…

  20. Program Demand Cost Model for Alaskan Schools. 6th Edition. Revised.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Alaska State Dept. of Education, Juneau.

    The Program Demand Cost Model for Alaskan Schools (Cost Model) is a tool for use by school districts and their consultants in estimating school construction costs in the planning phase of a project. This document sets out the sixth edition of the demand-cost model, a rewrite of the whole system. The model can be used to establish a complete budget…

  1. Intensive Evaluation of Satellite TV Impact on Four Alaskan Villages. Supplement to Basic ESCD Evaluation Design.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Practical Concepts, Inc., Washington, DC.

    A supplement to the final report, "Design for an Analysis and Assessment of the Education Satellite Communications Demonstration (ESCD)," this document is both: (1) a separable, sociologically oriented evaluation of the ESCD impact on Alaskan native villages; and (2) a direct extension of the work described in sections 4 and 5 in the…

  2. EXAMINATION OF THE FEASIBILITY FOR DEMONSTRATION AND USE OF RADIOLUMINESCENT LIGHTS FOR ALASKAN REMOTE RUNWAY LIGHTING

    SciTech Connect

    Jensen, G.; Perrigo, L.; Leonard, L.; Hegdal, L

    1984-01-01

    This report examines the feasibility of radioluminescent light applications for rural Alaskan airports. The work presented in this report covers four tasks: State of the Art Evaluation of Radioluminescent Lights, Environmental, Radiological, and Regulatory Evaluations, Engineering Evaluations, and Demonstration Plan Development.

  3. Elderly Alaskan Natives in Anchorage: A Needs-Assessment for Social Services Program Planning.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hines, Charles; And Others

    Eighty-five elderly Alaskan Natives living in Anchorage were interviewed to determine if their needs were being met by programs designed for the elderly on a national level. Agencies serving the elderly were also questioned. Age, sex, and ethnic background of the respondents were compared with the variables of degree of education, marital status,…

  4. Using Technology To Educate Deaf and Hard of Hearing Children in Rural Alaskan General Education Settings.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Pillai, Patrick

    1999-01-01

    A survey of 79 teachers of Alaskan students with deafness found those who use instructional technology tended to be older, hold an advanced degree and secondary education certification, benefit from in-service training onsite, are connected to the Internet, and actively use the technology available at their schools. (Contains references.)…

  5. Petroleum systems of the Alaskan North Slope: a numerical journey from source to trap

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Lampe, C.; Peters, K.E.; Magoon, L.B.; Bird, K.J.; Lillis, P.G.

    2003-01-01

    The complex petroleum province of the Alaskan North Slope contains six petroleum systems (Magoon and others, this session). Source rocks for four of these systems include the Hue-gamma ray zone (Hue-GRZ), pebble shale unit, Kingak Shale, and Shublik Formation. Geochemical data for these source rocks are investigated in greater detail and provide the basis for numerical petroleum migration models.

  6. It Happens When We Get There. Conversations With Teachers in Alaskan Villages.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Beers, C. David

    Developed through in-depth interviews with experienced "bush" teachers from interior Alaska, this booklet is the product of a five-day workshop in the design of vocational education curriculum materials for rural Alaskan secondary schools. The statements in this booklet represent the edited responses of experienced teachers to the…

  7. Understanding the Complex Dimensions of the Digital Divide: Lessons Learned in the Alaskan Arctic

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Subramony, Deepak Prem

    2007-01-01

    An ethnographic case study of Inupiat Eskimo in the Alaskan Arctic has provided insights into the complex nature of the sociological issues surrounding equitable access to technology tools and skills, which are referred to as the digital divide. These people can overcome the digital divide if they get the basic ready access to hardware and…

  8. Dry deposition of ammonia, nitric acid, ammonium, and nitrate to alpine tundra at Niwot Ridge, Colorado

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Rattray, G.; Sievering, H.

    2001-01-01

    Micrometeorological measurements and ambient air samples, analyzed for concentrations of NH3, HNO3, NH4+, and NO3-, were collected at an alpine tundra site on Niwot Ridge, Colorado. The measured concentrations were extremely low and ranged between 5 and 70ngNm-3. Dry deposition fluxes of these atmospheric species were calculated using the micrometeorological gradient method. The calculated mean flux for NH3 indicates a net deposition to the surface and indicates that NH3 contributed significantly to the total N deposition to the tundra during the August-September measurement period. Our pre-measurement estimate of the compensation point for NH3 in air above the tundra was 100-200ngNm-3; thus, a net emission of NH3 was expected given the low ambient concentrations of NH3 observed. Based on our results, however, the NH3 compensation point at this alpine tundra site appears to have been at or below about 20ngNm-3. Large deposition velocities (>2cms-1) were determined for nitrate and ammonium and may result from reactions with surface-derived aerosols. Copyright (C) 2001 Elsevier Science B.V.Micrometeorological measurements and ambient air samples, analyzed for concentrations of NH3, HNO3, NH4+, and NO3-, were collected at an alpine tundra site on Niwot Ridge, Colorado. The measured concentrations were extremely low and ranged between 5 and 70 ng N m-3. Dry deposition fluxes of these atmospheric species were calculated using the micrometeorological gradient method. The calculated mean flux for NH3 indicates a net deposition to the surface and indicates that NH3 contributed significantly to the total N deposition to the tundra during the August-September measurement period. Our pre-measurement estimate of the compensation point for NH3 in air above the tundra was 100-200 ng N m-3; thus, a net emission of NH3 was expected given the low ambient concentrations of NH3 observed. Based on our results, however, the NH3 compensation point at this alpine tundra site appears to

  9. Response of tundra ecosystems to elevated atmospheric carbon dioxide: Final report

    SciTech Connect

    Oechel, W.C.

    1986-01-01

    This report includes: a detailed description of the system which we have developed for providing control of CO/sub 2/ and temperature; the effects of this treatment on ecosystem fluxes of CO/sub 2/ at ecosystem; the effects of three years CO/sub 2/ enrichment on the photosynthetic response of important tundra species; effects of mineral nutrition and CO/sub 2/ enrichment on growth, photosynthesis, and biomass partitioning of tundra species; and the effects of CO/sub 2/ on soil respiration.

  10. Seasonal Variations of Biomass Burning Tracers in Alaskan Aerosols

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Haque, M. M.; Kawamura, K.; Kim, Y.

    2015-12-01

    Biomass burning (BB) is a large source of atmospheric trace gases and aerosols. During the burning, several organic and inorganic gases and particles are emitted into the atmosphere. Here, we present seasonal variations of specific BB tracers such as levoglucosan, mannosan and galactosan, which are produced by pyrolysis of cellulose and hemicelluloses. We collected TSP aerosol samples (n= 32) from Fairbanks, Alaska in June 2008 to June 2009. Levoglucosan was detected as the dominant anhydrosugar followed by its isomers, mannosan and galactosan. The result of levoglucosan showed clear seasonal trends with winter maximum (ave.145 ng m-3) and spring minimum (12.3 ng m-3). The analyses of air mass back trajectories and fire spots demonstrated that anhydrosugars may be associated from residential heating and cooking in local region and Siberia in winter time. Levoglucosan showed significant positive correlation with EC (r= 0.67, p= 0.001) and OC (r= 0.51, p= 0.002) but there was no correlation with nss-K+ (r= -0.16, p= 0.37). The emission of K+ from biomass burning depends on burning condition and types of material burned. There are two possible reasons, which can be explained for the lack of correlation between levoglucosan and K+. First, specific burning materials may be used for residential heating, which can't produce K+. Secondly, K+ could be deposit on the surface of chimney breast and it can't emit into the atmosphere. Anhydrosugars contributed 4.4% to water-soluble organic carbon (WSOC) and 2.4% to organic carbon (OC). Their highest values of WSOC (8.1%) and OC (4.9%) in wintertime indicate that contribution of BB to Alaskan aerosols is important in winter period. The current study presents for the first time one-year observation on BB tracers in the subarctic region, which provide useful information to better understand the effect of biomass burning on subarctic atmosphere. It will also be helpful for further long-term climate studies in this region.

  11. Quantitative Interpretation of Arctic Tundra Attributes Using Remote Sensing: Leveraging Field Data, Modern- and Legacy Landsat Data, and Commercial Imagery in Northern Alaska

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Frost, G. V., Jr.; Macander, M. J.; Nelson, P. R.

    2014-12-01

    Integrated analysis of ground-based vegetation data and remote sensing supports vegetation mapping, landscape-change detection, wildlife habitat assessment, and tracking of phenological events such as green-up and senescence. The life-cycles of tundra plants occur within a highly compressed seasonal window, making the quantitative assessment of vegetation and landscape attributes from ≤30m resolution remotely-sensed imagery, such as above-ground biomass, % shrub cover, and % surface water, a difficult task when applied across large study domains. To support mapping of vegetation and landscape attributes across ~100,000 km2 of Alaska's North Slope, we obtained ground data for tundra vegetation using a point-intercept sampling approach across a network of 107 field plots spanning gradients of bioclimate, landscape position (upland, lowland, riverine), and geomorphic setting (foothills, coastal plain). At each plot, vegetation data were collected along three 50-m linear transects, compatible with 30-m Landsat imagery. We summarized live vegetation, litter, and non-vegetated surfaces using three terms: top cover (uppermost "hit"), percent cover (total areal cover along transect), and hit density (all "hits" at a point). We then evaluated a suite of data models (e.g., General Additive Models, classification tree, clustering) and data-mining approaches (e.g., neural networks, random forest) using midsummer Landsat TM/ETM+ acquisitions since 1985, and OLI acquisitions for 2013-2014. The large size, frequent cloudiness, and interannual variability of the study area necessitated the compositing of a multitude of Landsat scenes. A median NDVI compositing technique was used to select Landsat observations from cloud- and shadow-free pixels that met day-of-year and year constraints. This technique produced seamless, phenologically consistent composites that are largely free of artifacts and suitable for regional-scale analysis. Ground-based training data and an archive of

  12. Estimating carbon and energy fluxes in arctic tundra

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gokkaya, K.; Jiang, Y.; Rastetter, E.; Shaver, G. R.; Rocha, A. V.

    2013-12-01

    Arctic ecosystems are undergoing a very rapid change due to climate change and their response to climate change has important implications for the global energy budget and carbon (C) cycling. Therefore, it is important to understand how (C) and energy fluxes in the Arctic will respond to climate change. However, attribution of these responses to climate is challenging because measured fluxes are the sum of multiple processes that respond differently to environmental factors. For example, net ecosystem exchange of CO2 (NEE) is the net result of gross (C) uptake by plant photosynthesis (GPP) and (C) loss by ecosystem respiration (ER) and similarly, evapotranspiration (i.e. latent energy, LE) is the sum of transpiration and evaporation. Partitioning of NEE into GPP and ER requires nighttime measurements of NEE, when photosynthesis does not take place, to be extrapolated to daytime. This is challenging in the Arctic because of the long photoperiod during the growing season and the errors involved during the extrapolation. Transpiration (energy), photosynthesis (carbon), and vegetation phenology are inherently coupled because leaf stomata are the primary regulators of gas exchange. Our objectives in this study are to i) estimate canopy resistance (Rc) based on a light use efficiency model, ii) utilize the estimated Rc to predict GPP and transpiration using a coupled C and energy model and thus improve the partitioning of NEE and LE, and iii) to test ensemble Kalman filter (EnKF) to estimate model parameters and improve model predictions. Results from one growing season showed that the model predictions can explain 75 and 71% of the variance in GPP and LE in the Arctic tundra ecosystem, respectively. When the model was embedded within the EnKF for estimating Rc, the amount of variance explained for GPP increased to 81% but there was no improvement for the prediction of LE. This suggests that the factors controlling LE are not fully integrated in the model such as the

  13. Methane production in sediments of small tundra ponds during winter

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Macrae, M. L.; Fishback, L.; Bourbonniere, R. A.; Duguay, C. R.; Soliman, A. S.

    2011-12-01

    Shallow tundra ponds in the Churchill region of the Hudson Bay Lowlands (HBL) store large quantities of organic material in the form of sediments. Organic sediments in ponds and wetlands have been identified as a source of atmospheric methane (CH4) during the summer season in many landscapes. However, less is known about CH4 production and emission during the winter months, following the formation of an ice layer on the water surface. Unfrozen sediments may continue to produce methane (CH4) during this time, which may become trapped in the ponds beneath the ice layer. This occurrence has been identified in some regions through the sampling and analysis of CH4 bubbles frozen in lake ice. The goal of this project is to examine the potential for the production and trapping of CH4 in ponds beneath the pond ice (water/ice and sediment profiles) in the Churchill region of the HBL. Thermistor and gas sampling arrays were installed in the water and sediments of two ponds. Gas samples were collected at 1-4 week intervals at the sediment-water interface and at 0-15cm and 20-35 cm depth. Results show that sediments are indeed thawed for 3-4 months of the winter season, and deeper sediments remain within the range of 0 to -5 C whereas shallow sediment temperatures ranged between 10 and -10 C over an annual cycle. Laboratory experiments showed that little difference in CH4 production was observed at sediment temperatures between -2 and 5 C, whereas production was very low at -10 C. No significant differences in CH4 production rates were observed for different sediment depths in the laboratory. Field data collected between August 2010 and June 2011 showed consistent accumulation of CH4 in sediments following the formation of an ice layer on pond surfaces. However, CH4 concentrations in gas samplers decreased in February through April after sediments were frozen, but began to increase again (May-June) as sediments thawed and began to warm. Future work will include the examination

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

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    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.

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

    PubMed Central

    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. PMID:27149113

  16. Carbon storage in frozen loess and soils of the mammoth tundra-steppe biome

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2008-12-01

    During the Last Glacial Maximum (LGM), atmospheric CO2 concentration was 80-100 ppmv lower than in pre- industrial times. At the time of LGM steppe-tundra was the most extensive biome on Earth. Some estimates of the C storage in that biome assume that it was similar to cold desert and that the terrestrial carbon (C) reservoir increased at the Pleistocene-Holocene transition by 400-1300 Gt, requiring that the world oceans be a large C source. 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 soil profiles and in permafrost. The model shows a slow but consistent C increase in soil when permafrost appears. At the Pleistocene-Holocene boundary tundra-steppe soils became a C source of greater than 1000 Gt to the atmosphere. The implications of these model results are that the ocean was not a source of carbon but absorbed several hundreds of gigatons of C at that time. The model results also show that restoring the tundra-steppe ecosystem in northern Siberia would enhance soil C storage.

  17. Alpine forest-tundra ecotone response to temperature change,Sayan Mountains, Siberia

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ranson, K Jon; Kharuk, Vyetcheslav I.

    2007-01-01

    Models of climate change predict shifts of vegetation zones. Tree response to climate trends is most likely observable in the forest-tundra ecotone, where temperature mainly limits tree growth. There is evidence of vegetation change on the northern treeline However, observations on alpine tree line response are controversial. In this NEESPI related study we show that during the past three decades in the forest-tundra ecotone of the Sayan Mountains, Siberia, there was an increase in forest stand crown closure, regeneration propagation into the alpine tundra, and transformation of prostrate Siberian pine and fir into arboreal forms. We found that these changes occurred since the mid 1980s, and strongly correlates with positive temperature (and to a lesser extent, precipitation) trends. Improving climate for forest growth( i.e., warmer temperatures and increased precipitation) provides competitive advantages to Siberian pine in the alpine forest-tundra ecotone, as well as in areas typically dominated by larch, where it has been found to be forming a secondary canopy layer. Substitution of deciduous conifer, larch, for evergreen conifers, decreases albedo and provides positive feedback for temperature increase.

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

    EPA Science Inventory

    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...

  19. Determining Regional Arctic Tundra Carbon Exchange: A Bottom-Up Approach

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Huemmrich, Fred

    2006-01-01

    This viewgraph presentation reviews the carbon atmospheric exchange with Arctic tundra. In the Arctic the ecosystem has been a net carbon sink. The project investigates the question of how might climate warming effect high latitude ecosystems and the Earth ecosystems and how to measure the changes.

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

    EPA Science Inventory

    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...

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

    PubMed

    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.

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

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    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.

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

    PubMed

    Elmendorf, Sarah C; Henry, Gregory H R; Hollister, Robert D; Björk, Robert G; Bjorkman, Anne D; Callaghan, Terry V; Collier, Laura Siegwart; Cooper, Elisabeth J; Cornelissen, Johannes H C; Day, Thomas A; Fosaa, Anna Maria; Gould, William A; Grétarsdóttir, Járngerður; Harte, John; Hermanutz, Luise; Hik, David S; Hofgaard, Annika; Jarrad, Frith; Jónsdóttir, Ingibjörg Svala; Keuper, Frida; Klanderud, Kari; Klein, Julia A; Koh, Saewan; Kudo, Gaku; Lang, Simone I; Loewen, Val; May, Jeremy L; Mercado, Joel; Michelsen, Anders; Molau, Ulf; Myers-Smith, Isla H; Oberbauer, Steven F; Pieper, Sara; Post, Eric; Rixen, Christian; Robinson, Clare H; Schmidt, Niels Martin; Shaver, Gaius R; Stenström, Anna; Tolvanen, Anne; Totland, Orjan; Troxler, Tiffany; Wahren, Carl-Henrik; Webber, Patrick J; Welker, Jeffery M; Wookey, Philip A

    2012-02-01

    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. There was little indication of saturating or accelerating effects, as would be predicted if negative or positive vegetation feedbacks were common. These results indicate that tundra vegetation exhibits strong regional variation in response to warming, and that in vulnerable regions, cumulative effects of long-term warming on tundra vegetation - and associated ecosystem consequences - have the potential to be much greater than we have observed to date.

  4. Spatial characteristics of ecosystem respiration in three tundra ecosystems of Alaska

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kim, Yongwon; Lee, Bang-Yong; Suzuki, Rikie; Kushida, Keiji

    2016-09-01

    Ecosystem respiration (ER) is a significant source in estimating terrestrial carbon budget under climate change. Here, we report on the assessment of spatial characteristics of ER, using manual chamber over three tundra ecosystems of Alaska. Annual simulated ER was 254-307 g CO2 m-2 based on in-situ air temperature and 212-305 g CO2 m-2 based on soil temperature, at Council, North Slope, and Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (ANWR) sites of Alaska. Growing-season ERs correspond to 79-92% (air temperature) and 81-86% (soil temperature) of simulated annual ER. Hence, soil temperature is a significant driver in modulating ER over tundra, suggesting soil temperature elucidates more than 80% of air temperature. At Council, between 31 and 84 sampling points during the growing season were required to attain spatial representativeness for ER, falling within ±10% of the full sample mean, with a 95% confidence level. At North Slope and ANWR sites, the number of sampling points was chosen to yield results within at least ±20%, with a 90% confidence level. These findings suggest that larger-size chamber and its measurement frequency can overcome logistical constraints and determine mean ER at tundra sites for the quantitative assessment of the tundra carbon budget in response to drastically changing Arctic environment and climate.

  5. Assessing the Tundra-taiga Boundary with Multi-Sensor Satellite Data

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ranson, K. J.; Sun, G.; Kharuk, V. I.; Kovacs, K.

    2004-01-01

    Monitoring the dynamics of the circumpolar boreal forest (taiga) and Arctic tundra boundary is important for understanding the causes and consequences of changes observed in these areas. This ecotone, the world's largest, stretches for over 13,400 km and marks the transition between the northern limits of forests and the southern margin of the tundra. Because of the inaccessibility and large extent of this zone, remote sensing data can play an important role for mapping the characteristics and monitoring the dynamics. Basic understanding of the capabilities of existing space borne instruments for these purposes is required. In this study we examined the use of several remote sensing techniques for identifying the existing tundra- taiga ecotone. These include Landsat-7, MISR, MODIS and RADARSAT data. Historical cover maps, recent forest stand measurements and high-resolution IKONOS images were used for local ground truth. It was found that a tundra-taiga transitional area can be characterized using multi- spectral Landsat ETM+ summer images, multi-angle MISR red band reflectance images, RADARSAT images with larger incidence angle, or multi-temporal and multi-spectral MODIS data. Because of different resolutions and spectral regions covered, the transition zone maps derived from different data types were not identical, but the general patterns were consistent.

  6. Environmental Impact Analysis Process. Draft Environmental Impact Statement Proposed Alaskan Radar System Over-the-Horizon Backscatter Radar Program

    DTIC Science & Technology

    1986-08-01

    distibution is = im ited. _ Environmental Impact Analysis Process Draft Environmental Impact Statement Proposed Alaskan Radar System Over-the-Horizon...Backscatter Radar Program August 1986 DEPARTMENT OF THE AIR FORCE AIR FORCE SYSTEMS COMMAND ELECTRONIC SYSTEMS DIVISION YU-~v930:2FROMI HO LIS~iFCER...Fish and Wildlife Service. (b) Proposed Action: Construction and operation of the Alaskan Radar System , an Over-the-Horizon Backscatter (OTH-B

  7. Distribution, Abundance, Behavior, and Bioacoustics of Endangered Whales in the Alaskan Beaufort and Eastern Chukchi Seas, 1979-86.

    DTIC Science & Technology

    1987-07-01

    hauled out on the ice (Appendix A, N780: Flight 43). Three walruses , all swimming, were seen in the western Alaskan Beaufort Sea in mid- September...develop relatively nearshore in the Chukchi Sea , but offshore and well north of oil exploration activities in the Alaskan Beaufort Sea (Braham et al., 1984...band of open water between the shorefast and heavy ice (>9596) west of Barrow in the northeastern Chukchi Sea . Ice

  8. Will Arctic ground squirrels impede or accelerate climate-induced vegetation changes to the Arctic tundra?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dalton, J.; Flower, C. E.; Brown, J.; Gonzalez-Meler, M. A.; Whelan, C.

    2014-12-01

    Considerable attention has been given to the climate feedbacks associated with predicted vegetation shifts in the Arctic tundra in response to global environmental change. However, little is known regarding the extent to which consumers can facilitate or respond to shrub expansion. Arctic ground squirrels, the largest and most northern ground squirrel, are abundant and widespread throughout the North American tundra. Their broad diet of seeds, flowers, herbage, bird's eggs and meat speaks to the need to breed, feed, and fatten in a span of some 12-16 weeks that separate their 8-9 month bouts of hibernation with the potential consequence to impact ecosystem dynamics. Therefore Arctic ground squirrels are a good candidate to evaluate whether consumers are mere responders (bottom-up effects) or drivers (top-down) of the observed and predicted vegetation changes. As a start towards this question, we measured the foraging intensity (giving-up densities) of Arctic ground squirrels in experimental food patches within which the squirrels experience diminishing returns as they seek the raisins and peanuts that we provided at the Toolik Lake field station in northern Alaska. If the squirrels show their highest feeding intensity in the shrubs, they may impede vegetation shifts by slowing the establishment and expansion of shrubs in the tundra. Conversely, if they show their lowest feeding intensity within shrub dominated areas, they may accelerate vegetation shifts. We found neither. Feeding intensity varied most among transects and times of day, and least along a tundra-to-shrub vegetation gradient. This suggests that the impacts of squirrels will be heterogeneous - in places responders and in others drivers. We should not be surprised then to see patches of accelerated and impeded vegetation changes in the tundra ecosystem. Some of these patterns may be predictable from the foraging behavior of Arctic ground squirrels.

  9. Atmospheric loading of nitrogen to alpine tundra in the Colorado front range

    SciTech Connect

    Sievering, H.; Burton, D. ); Caine, N. )

    1992-12-01

    Dry deposition of atmospheric nitrogen gas and aerosol species was estimated for the alpine tundra of Niwot Ridge, 3525 m elevation in the Colorado Rockies. Comparisons, for the 4 month long growing season and the remaining 8 months of the year, were made with wet deposition and throughfall incident measurements taken during 1987-1989. Dry deposition of N to the tundra is estimated to be equal to or slightly greater than its wet deposition. During the mid-May to mid-September growing season, atmospheric N deposition is > 1.0 mg N m[sup -2] d[sup -1] directly from the atmosphere with a similar amount contributed indirectly as NO[sub 3]-N in snowmelt water as a result of dry and wet deposition to the winter snowpack. The total N deposition to Niwot Ridge tundra during the growing season of about 2 mg N m[sup -2] d[sup -1] may be compared to an earlier measurement of dry plus fog deposition (1-2 mg N m[sup -2] d[sup -1]) to a subalpine coniferous canopy at Niwot Ridge. Nitrate yields from two small drainage basins at Niwot Ridge match these fluxes. Seven years of record from an unvegetated glacial cirque suggest an average yield from the alpine of 0.7 mg N m[sup -2] d[sup -1]. The equivalent estimate for a basin with 50% tundra vegetation cover is 0.4 mg N m[sup -2] d[sup -1]. The contrast in these two estimates of daily averaged N yields for the entire year suggests the retention of nearly 1 mg N m[sup -2] d[sup -1] during the growing season in the more vegetated basin. The sink for this N could be the tundra soil and vegetation where biological activity is often limited by the availability of N. 26 refs., 3 tabs.

  10. Surface energy exchanges along a tundra-forest transition and feedbacks to climate

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Beringer, J.; Chapin, F. S.; Thompson, Catharine Copass; McGuire, A.D.

    2005-01-01

    Surface energy exchanges were measured in a sequence of five sites representing the major vegetation types in the transition from arctic tundra to forest. This is the major transition in vegetation structure in northern high latitudes. We examined the influence of vegetation structure on the rates of sensible heating and evapotranspiration to assess the potential feedbacks to climate if high-latitude warming were to change the distribution of these vegetation types. Measurements were made at Council on the Seward Peninsula, Alaska, at representative tundra, low shrub, tall shrub, woodland (treeline), and boreal forest sites. Structural differences across the transition from tundra to forest included an increase in the leaf area index (LAI) from 0.52 to 2.76, an increase in canopy height from 0.1 to 6.1 m, and a general increase in canopy complexity. These changes in vegetation structure resulted in a decrease in albedo from 0.19 to 0.10 as well as changes to the partitioning of energy at the surface. Bulk surface resistance to water vapor flux remained virtually constant across sites, apparently because the combined soil and moss evaporation decreased while transpiration increased along the transect from tundra to forest. In general, sites became relatively warmer and drier along the transect with the convective fluxes being increasingly dominated by sensible heating, as evident by an increasing Bowen ratio from 0.94 to 1.22. The difference in growing season average daily sensible heating between tundra and forest was 21 W m-2. Fluxes changed non-linearly along the transition, with both shrubs and trees substantially enhancing heat transfer to the atmosphere. These changes in vegetation structure that increase sensible heating could feed back to enhance warming at local to regional scales. The magnitude of these vegetation effects on potential high-latitude warming is two to three times greater than suggested by previous modeling studies. ?? 2005 Elsevier B.V. All

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

    PubMed

    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.

  12. Human impacts on the tundra-taiga zone dynamics: the case of the Russian lesotundra.

    PubMed

    Vlassova, T K

    2002-08-01

    The tundra-taiga zone is considered not only as a natural ecotone, but as a unique fringe zone with socioeconomic peculiarities. This holistic approach enables us to analyze several significant types of human impacts (industrial impacts and those associated with renewable resources development, including traditional reindeer herding and human settlements) and their role in the displacement of the lesotundra zone. In Russia, there is much evidence of deforestation and ecosystem degradation in different regions of the lesotundra zone and the northern taiga which borders the lesotundra zone. One indicator of this is that in the Archangelsk region and the Komi Republic, the observed current southern border of the lesotundra zone lies 40-100 km to the south of the southern boundary of the Protection Belt of Pretundra Forests, established in 1959. Human impacts also displace the northern boundary of the lesotundra zone (the boundary with the tundra zone) to the south. As a result, according to published estimations, the total area of human-made tundra and lesotundra stretching from the Kola Peninsula to Chukotka, is c. 470-500,000 km2. The increases in man-made tundra lead to negative consequences for the sociocultural sustainability of the lesotundra zone, a decrease in the quality of life (notably for permanent residents and native people and increases in mortality and depopulation. It cannot be predicted with any certainty that climate warming in the tundra-taiga zone will lead to a northward movement of the boreal forest treeline. We need also to consider the human impacts discussed in this article, which may actually lead to a southward movement of the lesotundra zone.

  13. Repertoire and classification of non-song calls in Southeast Alaskan humpback whales (Megaptera novaeangliae).

    PubMed

    Fournet, Michelle E; Szabo, Andy; Mellinger, David K

    2015-01-01

    On low-latitude breeding grounds, humpback whales produce complex and highly stereotyped songs as well as a range of non-song sounds associated with breeding behaviors. While on their Southeast Alaskan foraging grounds, humpback whales produce a range of previously unclassified non-song vocalizations. This study investigates the vocal repertoire of Southeast Alaskan humpback whales from a sample of 299 non-song vocalizations collected over a 3-month period on foraging grounds in Frederick Sound, Southeast Alaska. Three classification systems were used, including aural spectrogram analysis, statistical cluster analysis, and discriminant function analysis, to describe and classify vocalizations. A hierarchical acoustic structure was identified; vocalizations were classified into 16 individual call types nested within four vocal classes. The combined classification method shows promise for identifying variability in call stereotypy between vocal groupings and is recommended for future classification of broad vocal repertoires.

  14. Preliminary evidence for the involvement of budding bacteria in the origin of Alaskan placer gold

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Watterson, J.R.

    1992-01-01

    Lacelike networks of micrometre-size filiform gold associated wtih Alaskan placer gold particles are interpreted as low-temperature pseudomorphs of a Pedomicrobium-like budding bacterium. Submicron reproductive structures (hyphae) and other morphological features similar to those of Pedomicrobium manganicum occur as detailed three-dimensional facsimiles in high purity gold in and on placer gold particles from Lillian Creek, Alaska. In a scanning electron microscope survey, the majority of gold particles at nine Alaskan placer deposits appear to include gold that has accumulated chemically at low temperatures in and on the cells of P. manganicum. Similar bacterioform gold from a Paleozoic deposit in China and from the Precambrian Witwatersrand deposit in South Africa may indicate that bacterioform gold is widespread. -Author

  15. Protein oxidation of a hair sample kept in Alaskan ice for 800-1000 years.

    PubMed

    Lubec, G; Zimmerman, M R; Teschler-Nicola, M; Stocchi, V; Aufderheide, A C

    1997-05-01

    Ancient finds of organic matter are not only of the highest value for palaeochemists and palaeobiologists but can be used to determine basic chemical reactions, such as protein oxidation, over long time periods. We studied oxidation of human hair protein about one thousand years old of an Alaskan child buried in ice, ten hair samples of copts of comparable age buried in graves of hot dry sand and compared the results to ten recent hair samples. Protein oxidation parameters o-tyrosine and cysteic acid of the Alaskan child were comparable to recent samples whereas they were higher in the coptic specimen. N-epsilon-carboxymethyllysine, a parameter for glycoxidation, however, was as high in coptic specimen. We conclude that ice in contrast to soil prevented protein oxidation but failed to inhibit glycoxidation, a reaction initiated by autooxidation of glucose. This study therefore has implications for the interpretation of oxidation and glycoxidation as well as preservation mechanisms of proteins.

  16. REPETITIVE DIGITAL NOAA-AVHRR DATA FOR ALASKAN ENGINEERING AND SCIENTIFIC APPLICATIONS.

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Christie, William M.; Pawlowski, Robert J.; Fleming, Michael D.

    1986-01-01

    Selected digitally enhanced NOAA - Advanced Very High Resolution Radiometer (AVHRR) images taken by the NOAA 6, 7, 8 and 9 Polar Orbiting Satellites demonstrate the capability and application of repetitive low-resolution satellite data to Alaska's engineering and science community. Selected cloud-free visible and thermal infrared images are enhanced to depict distinct oceanographic and geologic processes along Alaska's west coast and adjacent seas. Included are the advance of the Bering Sea ice field, transport of Yukon River sediment into Norton Sound, and monitoring of plume trajectories from the Mount Augustine volcanic eruptions. Presented illustrations are representative of the 94 scenes in a cooperative USGS EROS/NOAA Alaskan AVHRR Digital Archive. This paper will discuss the cooperative efforts in establishing the first year data set and identifying Alaskan applications.

  17. Biosphere/atmosphere CO2 exchange in tundra ecosystems - Community characteristics and relationships with multispectral surface reflectance

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Whiting, Gary J.; Bartlett, David S.; Fan, Song-Miao; Bakwin, Peter S.; Wofsy, Steven C.

    1992-01-01

    CO2 exchange rates were measured at selected tundra sites near Bethel, Alaska using portable, climate-controlled, instrumented enclosures. The empirically modeled exchange rate for a representative area of vegetated tundra was 1.2 +/- 1.2 g/sq m/d, compared to a tower-measured exchange over the same time period of 1.1 +.0- 1.2 g/sq m/d. Net exchange in response to varying light levels was compared to wet meadow and dry upland tundra, and to the net exchange measured by the micrometeoroidal tower technique. The multispectral reflectance properties of the sites were measured and related to exchange rates in order to provide a quantitative foundation for the use of satellite remote sensing to monitor biosphere/atmosphere CO2 exchange in the tundra biome.

  18. Biosphere/atmosphere CO[sub 2] exchange in tundra ecosystems - community characteristics and relationships with multispectral surface reflectance

    SciTech Connect

    Whiting, G.J.; Bartlett, D.S.; Fan, Songmiao; Bakwin, P.S.; Wofsy, S.C. New Hampshire Univ., Durham Harvard Univ., Cambridge, MA )

    1992-10-01

    CO2 exchange rates were measured at selected tundra sites near Bethel, Alaska using portable, climate-controlled, instrumented enclosures. The empirically modeled exchange rate for a representative area of vegetated tundra was 1.2 +/- 1.2 g/sq m/d, compared to a tower-measured exchange over the same time period of 1.1 +.0- 1.2 g/sq m/d. Net exchange in response to varying light levels was compared to wet meadow and dry upland tundra, and to the net exchange measured by the micrometeoroidal tower technique. The multispectral reflectance properties of the sites were measured and related to exchange rates in order to provide a quantitative foundation for the use of satellite remote sensing to monitor biosphere/atmosphere CO[sub 2] exchange in the tundra biome. 28 refs.

  19. Clinical pathology and assessment of pathogen exposure in southern and Alaskan sea otters

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Hanni, K.D.; Mazet, J.A.K.; Gulland, F.M.D.; Estes, James; Staedler, M.; Murray, M.J.; Miller, M.; Jessup, David A.

    2003-01-01

    The southern sea otter (Enhydra lutris nereis) population in California (USA) and the Alaskan sea otter (E. lutris kenyoni) population in the Aleutian Islands (USA) chain have recently declined. In order to evaluate disease as a contributing factor to the declines, health assessments of these two sea otter populations were conducted by evaluating hematologic and/or serum biochemical values and exposure to six marine and terrestrial pathogens using blood collected during ongoing studies from 1995 through 2000. Samples from 72 free-ranging Alaskan, 78 free-ranging southern, and (for pathogen exposure only) 41 debilitated southern sea otters in rehabilitation facilities were evaluated and compared to investigate regional differences. Serum chemistry and hematology values did not indicate a specific disease process as a cause for the declines. Statistically significant differences were found between free-ranging adult southern and Alaskan population mean serum levels of creatinine kinase, alkaline phosphatase, alanine aminotransferase, aspartate aminotransferase, calcium, cholesterol, creatinine, glucose, phosphorous, total bilirubin, blood urea nitrogen, and sodium. These were likely due to varying parasite loads, contaminant exposures, and physiologic or nutrition statuses. No free-ranging sea otters had signs of disease at capture, and prevalences of exposure to calicivirus, Brucella spp., and Leptospira spp. were low. The high prevalence (35%) of antibodies to Toxoplasma gondii in free-ranging southern sea otters, lack of antibodies to this parasite in Alaskan sea otters, and the pathogen's propensity to cause mortality in southern sea otters suggests that this parasite may be important to sea otter population dynamics in California but not in Alaska. The evidence for exposure to pathogens of public health importance (e.g., Leptospira spp., T. gondii) in the southern sea otter population, and the nai??vete?? of both populations to other pathogens (e

  20. Clinical pathology and assessment of pathogen exposure in southern and Alaskan sea otters.

    PubMed

    Hanni, Krista D; Mazet, Jonna A K; Gulland, Frances M D; Estes, James; Staedler, Michelle; Murray, Michael J; Miller, Melissa; Jessup, David A

    2003-10-01

    The southern sea otter (Enhydra lutris nereis) population in California (USA) and the Alaskan sea otter (E. lutris kenyoni) population in the Aleutian Islands (USA) chain have recently declined. In order to evaluate disease as a contributing factor to the declines, health assessments of these two sea otter populations were conducted by evaluating hematologic and/or serum biochemical values and exposure to six marine and terrestrial pathogens using blood collected during ongoing studies from 1995 through 2000. Samples from 72 free-ranging Alaskan, 78 free-ranging southern, and (for pathogen exposure only) 41 debilitated southern sea otters in rehabilitation facilities were evaluated and compared to investigate regional differences. Serum chemistry and hematology values did not indicate a specific disease process as a cause for the declines. Statistically significant differences were found between free-ranging adult southern and Alaskan population mean serum levels of creatinine kinase, alkaline phosphatase, alanine aminotransferase, aspartate aminotransferase, calcium, cholesterol, creatinine, glucose, phosphorous, total bilirubin, blood urea nitrogen, and sodium. These were likely due to varying parasite loads, contaminant exposures, and physiologic or nutrition statuses. No free-ranging sea otters had signs of disease at capture, and prevalences of exposure to calicivirus, Brucella spp., and Leptospira spp. were low. The high prevalence (35%) of antibodies to Toxoplasma gondii in free-ranging southern sea otters, lack of antibodies to this parasite in Alaskan sea otters, and the pathogen's propensity to cause mortality in southern sea otters suggests that this parasite may be important to sea otter population dynamics in California but not in Alaska. The evidence for exposure to pathogens of public health importance (e.g., Leptospira spp., T. gondii) in the southern sea otter population, and the naïveté of both populations to other pathogens (e.g., morbillivirus

  1. Characteristics and petrogenesis of Alaskan-type ultramafic-gabbro intrusions, southeastern Alaska

    SciTech Connect

    Loney, R.A. ); Himmelberg, G.R. Univ. of Missouri, Columbia, MO )

    1993-04-01

    Alaskan-type ultramafic-gabbro intrusions occur along a belt that extends from Duke Island to Klukwan in southeastern Alaska and fall into two age groups, 400 to 440 Ma and 100 to 110 Ma. Most of the smaller bodies are magnetite-bearing hornblende clinopyroxenite; the larger ones consist of dunite, wehrlite, olivine clinopyroxenite, with some gabbro, in addition to hornblende clinopyroxenite and hornblendite. Textural, mineralogical, and chemical characteristics of the Alaskan-type ultramafic bodies indicate that they originated by fractional crystallization of a basaltic magma and accumulation in a crustal magma chamber. The Al[sub 2]O[sub 3] content of clinopyroxene shows a marked enrichment with differentiation, suggesting crystallization from progressively more hydrous melts like those characteristics of arc magmas. REE abundance levels and patterns are markedly similar for given rock units in all the bodies studied suggesting that all the bodies were derived by differentiation of closely similar parent magmas under near identical conditions. The exact composition of the primary melt is uncertain but the authors' preferred interpretation is that the parental magma of most Alaskan-type bodies was a subalkaline hydrous basalt. The striking similarity between the REE abundance levels and patterns of the Alaskan-type clinopyroxenites and gabbros, and the clinopyroxenite xenoliths and plutonic gabbros associated with Aleutian Island Arc volcanism, further suggests that the primary magma was probably a hydrous olivine basalt similar to the primary magma proposed for the Aleutian arc lavas. The mineral chemistry and phase equilibria of the ultramafic bodies suggest that they crystallized in magma chambers at depths greater than about 9 km. Except for the Duke Island body, which has sedimentary structures and shows evidence of ubiquitous current activity, most of the other bodies appear to have accumulated under static conditions.

  2. The effect of a permafrost disturbance on growing-season carbon-dioxide fluxes in a high Arctic tundra ecosystem

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cassidy, Alison E.; Christen, Andreas; Henry, Gregory H. R.

    2016-04-01

    Soil carbon stored in high-latitude permafrost landscapes is threatened by warming and could contribute significant amounts of carbon to the atmosphere and hydrosphere as permafrost thaws. Thermokarst and permafrost disturbances, especially active layer detachments and retrogressive thaw slumps, are present across the Fosheim Peninsula, Ellesmere Island, Canada. To determine the effects of retrogressive thaw slumps on net ecosystem exchange (NEE) of CO2 in high Arctic tundra, we used two eddy covariance (EC) tower systems to simultaneously and continuously measure CO2 fluxes from a disturbed site and the surrounding undisturbed tundra. During the 32-day measurement period in the 2014 growing season, the undisturbed tundra was a small net sink (NEE = -0.1 g C m-2 d-1); however, the disturbed terrain of the retrogressive thaw slump was a net source (NEE = +0.4 g C m-2 d-1). Over the measurement period, the undisturbed tundra sequestered 3.8 g C m-2, while the disturbed tundra released 12.5 g C m-2. Before full leaf-out in early July, the undisturbed tundra was a small source of CO2 but shifted to a sink for the remainder of the sampling season (July), whereas the disturbed tundra remained a source of CO2 throughout the season. A static chamber system was also used to measure daytime fluxes in the footprints of the two towers, in both disturbed and undisturbed tundra, and fluxes were partitioned into ecosystem respiration (Re) and gross primary production (GPP). Average GPP and Re found in disturbed tundra were smaller (+0.40 µmol m-2 s-1 and +0.55 µmol m-2 s-1, respectively) than those found in undisturbed tundra (+1.19 µmol m-2 s-1 and +1.04 µmol m-2 s-1, respectively). Our measurements indicated clearly that the permafrost disturbance changed the high Arctic tundra system from a sink to a source for CO2 during the majority of the growing season (late June and July).

  3. The effect of a permafrost disturbance on growing-season carbon-dioxide fluxes in a high Arctic tundra ecosystem

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cassidy, A. E.; Christen, A.; Henry, G. H. R.

    2015-12-01

    Soil carbon stored in high-latitude permafrost landscapes is threatened by warming, and could contribute significant amounts of carbon to the atmosphere and hydrosphere as permafrost thaws. Permafrost disturbances, especially active layer detachments and retrogressive thaw slumps, have increased in frequency and magnitude across the Fosheim Peninsula, Ellesmere Island, Canada. To determine the effects of retrogressive thaw slumps on net ecosystem exchange (NEE) of CO2 in high Arctic tundra, we used two eddy covariance (EC) tower systems to simultaneously and continuously measure CO2 fluxes from a disturbed site and the surrounding undisturbed tundra. During the 32-day measurement period in the 2014 growing season the undisturbed tundra was a small net sink (NEE = -0.12 g C m-2 d-1); however, the disturbed terrain of the retrogressive thaw slump was a net source (NEE = +0.39 g C m-2 d-1). Over the measurement period, the undisturbed tundra sequestered 3.84 g C m-2, while the disturbed tundra released 12.48 g C m-2. Before full leaf out in early July, the undisturbed tundra was a small source of CO2, but shifted to a sink for the remainder of the sampling season (July), whereas the disturbed tundra remained a source of CO2 throughout the season. A static chamber system was also used to measure fluxes in the footprints of the two towers, in both disturbed and undisturbed tundra, and fluxes were partitioned into ecosystem respiration (Re) and gross primary production (GPP). Average GPP and Re found in disturbed tundra were smaller (+0.41 μmol m-2 s-1 and +0.50 μmol m-2 s-1, respectively) than those found in undisturbed tundra (+1.21 μmol m-2 s-1 and +1.00 μmol m-2 s-1, respectively). Our measurements indicated clearly that the permafrost disturbance changed the high Arctic tundra system from a sink to a source for CO2 during the growing season.

  4. Changes in tundra vascular plant biomass over thirty years at Imnavait Creek, Alaska, and current ecosystem C and N dynamics.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bret-Harte, M. S.; Shaver, G. R.; Euskirchen, E. S.; Huebner, D. C.; Drew, J. W.; Cherry, J. E.; Edgar, C.

    2015-12-01

    Understanding the magnitude of, and controls over, carbon fluxes in arctic ecosystems is essential for accurate assessment and prediction of their responses to climate change. In 2013, we harvested vegetation and soils in the most common plant community types in source areas for fluxes measured by eddy covariance towers located in three representative Alaska tundra ecosystems along a toposequence (a ridge site of heath tundra and moist non-acidic tundra, a mid-slope site of moist acidic tussock tundra, and a valley bottom site of wet sedge tundra and moist acidic tussock tundra) at Imnavait Creek, Alaska. This harvest sought to relate biomass, production, composition, and C and N stocks in soil and vegetation, to estimates of net ecosystem CO2 exchange obtained by micrometeorological methods. Soil C and N stocks in the seasonally unfrozen soil layer were greatest in the wet sedge community, and least in the heath community. In contrast, moist acidic tussock tundra at the valley bottom site had the highest C and N stocks in vascular plant biomass, while nearby wet sedge tundra had the lowest. Overall, soil C:N ratio was highest in moist acidic tussock tundra at the mid-slope site. Aboveground biomass of vascular plants in moist acidic tundra at the mid-slope site was nearly three times higher than that measured thirty years earlier in vegetation harvests of nearby areas at Imnavait Creek. Other harvests from sites near Toolik Field Station suggest that vascular plant biomass in moist acidic tundra has increased in multiple sites over this time period. Increased biomass in the mid-1990s corresponds with a switch from mostly negative to mostly positive spatially-averaged air temperature anomalies in the climate record. All our sites have been annual net sources of CO2 to the atmosphere over nine years of measurement, but in the last two years, the valley bottom site has been a particularly strong source, due to CO2 losses in fall and winter that correspond with a

  5. Response of a tundra ecosystem to elevated atmospheric carbon dioxide and CO sub 2 -induced climate change

    SciTech Connect

    Oechel, W.C.

    1992-04-01

    This report presents the progress on the DOE funded project: Response of a Tundra Ecosystem to Elevated Atmospheric Carbon Dioxide and CO{sub 2}-Induced Climate Change.'' The current funding cycle was initiated on September 1, 1989, to run through August 31, 1992. There was an initial reduction in scope dictated by budget availabilities, primarily manipulations of CO{sub 2}, temperature and nutrients at a wet tundra located at Barrow Alaska. These experiments still need to be done over the mid- to longer term in order to accurately predict, apriori, the effects of climate change on the arctic tundra as well as possible feedbacks. Coordination and cooperation with other agencies was initiated in 1990 and formally proposed in our 1991 renewal at the national and international level and has become an important aspect of the research. To accurately and precisely scale plot and transect measurements to the circumpolar tundra is beyond the scope of the current DOE project. It is possible, however to determine the patterns and controls of CO{sub 2} flux from the current circumpolar arctic tundra with the involvement of additional agencies and governments. Results from the past two years of this project confirm that the arctic has become a source of CO{sub 2} to the atmosphere. This change coincides with recent climatic variation in the arctic, and suggest a positive feedback of arctic ecosystems on atmospheric CO{sub 2} and global change. Measurements along a latitudinal gradient across the north slope of Alaska indicate a loss of carbon from tussock tundra and wet tundra, decreasing in magnitude along a decreasing gradient of temperature but an increasing gradient in soil moisture. These data are in agreement with work done on tussock tundra in 1983{endash}85 and 1987.

  6. Response of a tundra ecosystem to elevated atmospheric carbon dioxide and CO{sub 2}-induced climate change. Progress report

    SciTech Connect

    Oechel, W.C.

    1992-04-01

    This report presents the progress on the DOE funded project: ``Response of a Tundra Ecosystem to Elevated Atmospheric Carbon Dioxide and CO{sub 2}-Induced Climate Change.`` The current funding cycle was initiated on September 1, 1989, to run through August 31, 1992. There was an initial reduction in scope dictated by budget availabilities, primarily manipulations of CO{sub 2}, temperature and nutrients at a wet tundra located at Barrow Alaska. These experiments still need to be done over the mid- to longer term in order to accurately predict, apriori, the effects of climate change on the arctic tundra as well as possible feedbacks. Coordination and cooperation with other agencies was initiated in 1990 and formally proposed in our 1991 renewal at the national and international level and has become an important aspect of the research. To accurately and precisely scale plot and transect measurements to the circumpolar tundra is beyond the scope of the current DOE project. It is possible, however to determine the patterns and controls of CO{sub 2} flux from the current circumpolar arctic tundra with the involvement of additional agencies and governments. Results from the past two years of this project confirm that the arctic has become a source of CO{sub 2} to the atmosphere. This change coincides with recent climatic variation in the arctic, and suggest a positive feedback of arctic ecosystems on atmospheric CO{sub 2} and global change. Measurements along a latitudinal gradient across the north slope of Alaska indicate a loss of carbon from tussock tundra and wet tundra, decreasing in magnitude along a decreasing gradient of temperature but an increasing gradient in soil moisture. These data are in agreement with work done on tussock tundra in 1983{endash}85 and 1987.

  7. Task 27 -- Alaskan low-rank coal-water fuel demonstration project

    SciTech Connect

    1995-10-01

    Development of coal-water-fuel (CWF) technology has to-date been predicated on the use of high-rank bituminous coal only, and until now the high inherent moisture content of low-rank coal has precluded its use for CWF production. The unique feature of the Alaskan project is the integration of hot-water-drying (HWD) into CWF technology as a beneficiation process. Hot-water-drying is an EERC developed technology unavailable to the competition that allows the range of CWF feedstock to be extended to low-rank coals. The primary objective of the Alaskan Project, is to promote interest in the CWF marketplace by demonstrating the commercial viability of low-rank coal-water-fuel (LRCWF). While commercialization plans cannot be finalized until the implementation and results of the Alaskan LRCWF Project are known and evaluated, this report has been prepared to specifically address issues concerning business objectives for the project, and outline a market development plan for meeting those objectives.

  8. Viability of the Alaskan breeding population of Steller’s eiders

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Dunham, Kylee; Grand, James B.

    2016-10-11

    The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is tasked with setting objective and measurable criteria for delisting species or populations listed under the Endangered Species Act. Determining the acceptable threshold for extinction risk for any species or population is a challenging task, particularly when facing marked uncertainty. The Alaskan breeding population of Steller’s eiders (Polysticta stelleri) was listed as threatened under the Endangered Species Act in 1997 because of a perceived decline in abundance throughout their nesting range and geographic isolation from the Russian breeding population. Previous genetic studies and modeling efforts, however, suggest that there may be dispersal from the Russian breeding population. Additionally, evidence exists of population level nonbreeding events. Research was conducted to estimate population viability of the Alaskan breeding population of Steller’s eiders, using both an open and closed model of population process for this threatened population. Projections under a closed population model suggest this population has a 100 percent probability of extinction within 42 years. Projections under an open population model suggest that with immigration there is no probability of permanent extinction. Because of random immigration process and nonbreeding behavior, however, it is likely that this population will continue to be present in low and highly variable numbers on the breeding grounds in Alaska. Monitoring the winter population, which includes both Russian and Alaskan breeding birds, may offer a more comprehensive indication of population viability.

  9. Trophic dynamics in marine nearshore systems of the Alaskan high arctic

    SciTech Connect

    Dunton, K.H.

    1985-01-01

    This dissertation describes two ecological studies in the arctic Alaskan nearshore zone: the productivity and growth strategies of arctic kelp and the use of natural carbon isotope abundances to examine food web structure and energy flow in the marine ecosystem. Linear growth of the kelp, Laminaria solidungula is greatest in winter and early spring when nutrients are available for new tissue growth. Since over 90% of this growth occurs in complete darkness beneath a turbid ice canopy, the plant draws on stored food reserves and is in a carbon deficit during the ice covered period. Annual productivity of L. solidungula under these conditions is about 6 g C m/sup -2/ compared to about 10 g c m/sup -2/ if light penetrates the ice canopy. Carbon isotope abundances were used to assess food web structure and energy flow in the Boulder Patch, an isolated kelp bed community, and in the Alaskan Beaufort Sea fauna. Isotopic analyses of the resident fauna of the Boulder Patch revealed that kelp carbon contributes significantly to the diet of many benthic animals, including suspension feeders. Across the shelf of the Alaskan Beaufort Sea, a distinct gradient in the isotopic composition of marine zooplankton and benthic fauna was related to the intrusion of the Bering Sea water and upwelling in the eastern Beaufort Sea near Barter Island. The /sup 13/C depletion in fauna of the eastern Beaufort Sea is presumed due to the cycling of /sup 13/C depleted inorganic carbon into the euphotic zone.

  10. The Pleistocene ``Tundra-Steppe'' and the productivity paradox: the landscape approach

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yurtsev, Boris A.

    2001-01-01

    "Tundra-steppe" means either a certain type of plant community with codominance of both steppe and tundra species (including prostrate shrubs), or a type of landscape, codominated by both steppe and tundra (Yurtsev, Relic Steppe Complexes of Northeastern Asia. Nauka Press, Novosibirsk (in Russian) 1981; In: Hopkins, Matthews Jr., Schweger, Young, (Eds.), Paleoecology of Beringia. Academic Press, New York, 1982, pp. 157-177). A discrepancy between Pleistocene glacial climates that were much colder and drier than present in Beringia and the highly diverse herbivorous fossil fauna (the "productivity paradox") is explained in terms of much greater diversity of herbaceous vegetation (grasses, sedges and forbs) in the mosaic of Beringian 'tundra-steppe' landscapes. Analysis of the relic distribution of some predominantly herbaceous plant communities throughout Beringia (Yurtsev, 1981, 1982, Komarovskiye chteniya (Vladivostok) 33 (1986) 3-53 (in Russian); Protection of Gene- and Coenotic Pool of the Herbaceous Biogeocoenoses, Sverdlovsk, 1988, pp. 128-129 (in Russian); Bridges of Science Between North America and the Russian Far East, 45th Arctic Science Conference, Abstracts, Vol. 1. Dalnauka Press, Vladivostok, 1994, p. 268; Paleontological Journal, 6 (1996)) provides the phytogeographic and landscape — ecological grounds for the reconstruction of plant cover of these landscapes. Dry watersheds and slopes had cryophytic (cold-adapted) steppes, cryoxerophytic (cold and dry-adapted) herbaceous and prostrate shrub-herbaceous communities, dry herb-prostrate shrub tundras, and tundra-steppe communities proper. All sorts of depressions on interfluves and in valleys along with concave pediments were occupied by dry steppe-meadows and brackish-water moist meadows. In some specific habitats sparse groupings of continental halophytes (plants growing in saline soils) of "arctic takkyrs", zoochoric (plants with seeds dispersed by animals) groupings of annual-biennial "ruderals

  11. Modeling the spatiotemporal variability in subsurface thermal regimes across a low-relief polygonal tundra landscape

    SciTech Connect

    Kumar, Jitendra; Collier, Nathan; Bisht, Gautam; Mills, Richard T.; Thornton, Peter E.; Iversen, Colleen M.; Romanovsky, Vladimir

    2016-09-27

    Vast carbon stocks stored in permafrost soils of Arctic tundra are under risk of release to the atmosphere under warming climate scenarios. Ice-wedge polygons in the low-gradient polygonal tundra create a complex mosaic of microtopographic features. This microtopography plays a critical role in regulating the fine-scale variability in thermal and hydrological regimes in the polygonal tundra landscape underlain by continuous permafrost. Modeling of thermal regimes of this sensitive ecosystem is essential for understanding the landscape behavior under the current as well as changing climate. Here, we present an end-to-end effort for high-resolution numerical modeling of thermal hydrology at real-world field sites, utilizing the best available data to characterize and parameterize the models. We also develop approaches to model the thermal hydrology of polygonal tundra and apply them at four study sites near Barrow, Alaska, spanning across low to transitional to high-centered polygons, representing a broad polygonal tundra landscape. A multiphase subsurface thermal hydrology model (PFLOTRAN) was developed and applied to study the thermal regimes at four sites. Using a high-resolution lidar digital elevation model (DEM), microtopographic features of the landscape were characterized and represented in the high-resolution model mesh. The best available soil data from field observations and literature were utilized to represent the complex heterogeneous subsurface in the numerical model. Simulation results demonstrate the ability of the developed modeling approach to capture – without recourse to model calibration – several aspects of the complex thermal regimes across the sites, and provide insights into the critical role of polygonal tundra microtopography in regulating the thermal dynamics of the carbon-rich permafrost soils. Moreover, areas of significant disagreement between model results and observations highlight the importance of field

  12. Modeling the spatiotemporal variability in subsurface thermal regimes across a low-relief polygonal tundra landscape

    DOE PAGES

    Kumar, Jitendra; Collier, Nathan; Bisht, Gautam; ...

    2016-09-27

    Vast carbon stocks stored in permafrost soils of Arctic tundra are under risk of release to the atmosphere under warming climate scenarios. Ice-wedge polygons in the low-gradient polygonal tundra create a complex mosaic of microtopographic features. This microtopography plays a critical role in regulating the fine-scale variability in thermal and hydrological regimes in the polygonal tundra landscape underlain by continuous permafrost. Modeling of thermal regimes of this sensitive ecosystem is essential for understanding the landscape behavior under the current as well as changing climate. Here, we present an end-to-end effort for high-resolution numerical modeling of thermal hydrology at real-world fieldmore » sites, utilizing the best available data to characterize and parameterize the models. We also develop approaches to model the thermal hydrology of polygonal tundra and apply them at four study sites near Barrow, Alaska, spanning across low to transitional to high-centered polygons, representing a broad polygonal tundra landscape. A multiphase subsurface thermal hydrology model (PFLOTRAN) was developed and applied to study the thermal regimes at four sites. Using a high-resolution lidar digital elevation model (DEM), microtopographic features of the landscape were characterized and represented in the high-resolution model mesh. The best available soil data from field observations and literature were utilized to represent the complex heterogeneous subsurface in the numerical model. Simulation results demonstrate the ability of the developed modeling approach to capture – without recourse to model calibration – several aspects of the complex thermal regimes across the sites, and provide insights into the critical role of polygonal tundra microtopography in regulating the thermal dynamics of the carbon-rich permafrost soils. Moreover, areas of significant disagreement between model results and observations highlight the importance of field

  13. Efficacy of different treatment regimes against setariosis (Setaria tundra, Nematoda: Filarioidea) and associated peritonitis in reindeer

    PubMed Central

    Laaksonen, Sauli; Oksanen, Antti; Orro, Toomas; Norberg, Harri; Nieminen, Mauri; Sukura, Antti

    2008-01-01

    Background When a severe peritonitis outbreak in semi-domesticated reindeer was noticed in 2003 in Finland, the concerned industry urged immediate preventive actions in order to avoid detrimental effects of S. tundra and further economical losses. A research programme was swiftly initiated to study S. tundra and its impact on the health and wellbeing of reindeer. Methods The ultimate aim of this study was to test the efficacy of different treatment regimes against S. tundra and associated peritonitis in reindeer. The timing of the trials was planned to be compatible with the annual rhythm of the reindeer management; (1) the treatment of calves in midsummer, during routine calf ear marking, with ivermectin injection prophylaxis and deltamethrin pour-on solution as a repellent against insect vectors, (2) the treatment of infected calves in early autumn with ivermectin injection, and (3) ivermectin treatment of breeding reindeer in winter. The results were assessed using the post mortem inspection data and S. tundra detection. Finally, to evaluate on the population level the influence of the annual (late autumn-winter) ivermectin treatment of breeding reindeer on the transmission dynamics of S. tundra, a questionnaire survey was conducted. Results In autumn, ivermectin treatment was efficient against peritonitis and in midsummer had a slight negative impact on the degree of peritonitis and positive on the fat layer, but deltamethrin had none. Ivermectin was efficient against adult S. tundra and its smf. All the reindeer herding cooperatives answered the questionnaire and it appeared that antiparasitic treatment of reindeer population was intense during the study period, when 64–90% of the animals were treated. In the southern part of the Finnish reindeer husbandry area, oral administration of ivermectin was commonly used. Conclusion Autumn, and to a lesser degree summer, treatment of reindeer calves with injectable ivermectin resulted in decreased severity of

  14. Tundra fire alters stream water chemistry and benthic invertebrate communities, North Slope, Alaska

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Allen, A. R.; Bowden, W. B.; Kling, G. W.; Schuett, E.; Kostrzewski, J. M.; Kolden Abatzoglou, C.; Findlay, R. H.

    2010-12-01

    Increased fire frequency and severity are potentially important consequences of climate change in high latitude ecosystems. The 2007 Anaktuvuk River fire, which burned from July until October, is the largest recorded tundra fire from Alaska's north slope (≈1,000 km2). The immediate effects of wildfire on water chemistry and biotic assemblages in tundra streams are heretofore unknown. We hypothesized that a tundra fire would increase inorganic nutrient inputs to P-limited tundra streams, increasing primary production and altering benthic macroinvertebrate community structure. We examined linkages among: 1) percentage of riparian zone and overall watershed vegetation burned, 2) physical, chemical and biological stream characteristics, and 3) macroinvertebrate communities in streams draining burned and unburned watersheds during the summers of 2008 and 2009. Streams in burned watersheds contained higher mean concentrations of soluble reactive phosphorus (SRP), ammonium (NH4+), and dissolved organic carbon (DOC). In contrast, stream nitrate (NO3-) concentrations were lower in burned watersheds. The net result was that the tundra fire did not affect concentrations of dissolved inorganic nitrogen (NH4+ + NO3-). In spite of increased SRP, benthic chlorophyll-a biomass was not elevated. Macroinvertebrate abundances were 1.5 times higher in streams draining burned watersheds; Chironomidae midges, Nematodes, and Nemoura stoneflies showed the greatest increases in abundance. Multivariate multiple regression identified environmental parameters associated with the observed changes in the macroinvertebrate communities. Since we identified stream latitude as a significant predictor variable, latitude was included in the model as a covariate. After removing the variation associated with latitude, 67.3 % of the variance in macroinvertebrate community structure was explained by a subset of 7 predictor variables; DOC, conductivity, mean temperature, NO3-, mean discharge, SRP and NH

  15. [Characteristics of erythrocyte lipids in blood of tundra voles (Microtus oeconomus Pall.) inhabiting areas with increased natural radioactivity].

    PubMed

    Shevchenko, O G; Shuktomova, I I; Shishkina, L N

    2011-01-01

    Interrelations between the lipid characteristics of the blood erythrocytes and 226Ra accumulation in the body of tundra voles (Microtus oeconomus Pall.) inhabiting areas with different levels of the radiation background were investigated. It is shown that the ratio of the phospholipid (PL) fractions which cause the blood erythrocyte structure depends on the phase of the population cycle, as well as on the sex and age of tundra voles. The statistically significant interrelation between lysoforms and the sphingomielin content has been revealed in the blood erythrocyte PL of tundra voles; its scale somewhat differs for the animals from the reference and Ra areas. The peroxide concentration in the blood erythrocyte lipids of tundra voles from the Ra area exceeded the control values in all mature groups of the animals trapped at the depression phase of the population density. The 226Ra content in the bodies of the tundra voles which were trapped in the Ra area at the increased phase of the population cycle is for certain higher than that for the animals from the reference area. Interrelations between the lipid peroxidation parameters in the blood erythrocytes and the body 226Ra content for separate sex-age groups of tundra voles have been revealed.

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

    PubMed

    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.

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2017-02-01

    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.

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2017-01-01

    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. PMID:28220873

  19. The impact of climate change on ecosystem carbon dynamics at the Scandinavian mountain birch forest-tundra heath ecotone.

    PubMed

    Sjögersten, Sofie; Wookey, Philip A

    2009-02-01

    Changes in temperature and moisture resulting from climate change are likely to strongly modify the ecosystem carbon sequestration capacity in high-latitude areas, both through vegetation shifts and via direct warming effects on photosynthesis and decomposition. This paper offers a synthesis of research addressing the potential impacts of climate warming on soil processes and carbon fluxes at the forest-tundra ecotone in Scandinavia. Our results demonstrated higher rates of organic matter decomposition in mountain birch forest than in tundra heath soils, with markedly shallower organic matter horizons in the forest. Field and laboratory experiments suggest that increased temperatures are likely to increase CO2 efflux from both tundra and forest soil providing moisture availability does not become limiting for the decomposition process. Furthermore, colonization of tundra heath by mountain birch forest would increase rates of decomposition, and thus CO2 emissions, from the tundra heath soils, which currently store substantial amounts of potentially labile carbon. Mesic soils underlying both forest and tundra heath are currently weak sinks of atmospheric methane, but the strength of this sink could be increased with climate warming and/or drying.

  20. The dynamics of the tundra-taiga boundary: an overview and suggested coordinated and integrated approach to research.

    PubMed

    Callaghan, Terry V; Crawford, Robert M M; Eronen, Matti; Hofgaard, Annika; Payette, Serge; Rees, W Gareth; Skre, Oddvar; Sveinbjörnsson, Bjartmar; Vlassova, Tatiana K; Werkman, Ben R

    2002-08-01

    The tundra-taiga boundary stretches for more than 13,400 km around the Northern Hemisphere and is probably the Earth's greatest vegetation transition. The trees that define the boundary have been sensitive to climate changes in the past and models of future vegetation distribution suggest a rapid and dramatic invasion of the tundra by the taiga. Such changes would generate both positive and negative feedbacks to the climate system and the balance could result in a net warming effect. However, the boundary is becoming increasingly affected by human activities that remove trees and degrade forest-tundra into tundra-like areas. Because of the vastness and remoteness of the tundra-taiga boundary, and of methodological problems such as problematic definitions and lack of standardized methods to record the location and characteristics of the ecotone, a project group has been established under the auspices of the International Arctic Science Committee (IASC). This paper summarizes the initial output of the group and focuses on our uncertainties in understanding the current processes at the tundra-taiga boundary and the conflicts between model predictions of changes in the location of the boundary and contrasting recently observed changes due to human activities. Finally, we present recommendations for a coordinated international approach to the problem and invite the international community to join us in reducing the uncertainties about the dynamics of the ecotone and their consequences.

  1. Patterns of shrub expansion in Alaskan arctic river corridors suggest phase transition.

    PubMed

    Naito, Adam T; Cairns, David M

    2015-01-01

    Recent increases in deciduous shrub cover are a primary focus of terrestrial Arctic research. This study examined the historic spatial patterns of shrub expansion on the North Slope of Alaska to determine the potential for a phase transition from tundra to shrubland. We examined the historic variability of landscape-scale tall shrub expansion patterns on nine sites within river valleys in the Brooks Range and North Slope uplands (BRNS) between the 1950s and circa 2010 by calculating percent cover (PCTCOV), patch density (PADENS), patch size variability (CVSIZE), mean nearest neighbor distance (MEDIST) and the multi-scale information fractal dimension (d I ) to assess spatial homogeneity for shrub cover. We also devised conceptual models for trends in these metrics before, during, and after a phase transition, and compared these to our results. By developing a regression equation between PCTCOV and d I and using universal critical d I values, we derived the PCTCOV required for a phase transition to occur. All nine sites exhibited increases in PCTCOV. Five of the nine sites exhibited an increase in PADENS, seven exhibited an increase in CVSIZE, and five exhibited a decrease in MEDIST. The d I values for each site exceeded the requirements necessary for a phase transition. Although fine-scale heterogeneity is still present, landscape-scale patterns suggest our study areas are either currently in a state of phase transition from tundra to shrubland or are progressing towards spatial homogeneity for shrubland. Our results indicate that the shrub tundra in the river valleys of the north slope of Alaska has reached a tipping point. If climate trends observed in recent decades continue, the shrub tundra will continue towards homogeneity with regard to the cover of tall shrubs.

  2. Patterns of shrub expansion in Alaskan arctic river corridors suggest phase transition

    PubMed Central

    Naito, Adam T; Cairns, David M

    2015-01-01

    Recent increases in deciduous shrub cover are a primary focus of terrestrial Arctic research. This study examined the historic spatial patterns of shrub expansion on the North Slope of Alaska to determine the potential for a phase transition from tundra to shrubland. We examined the historic variability of landscape-scale tall shrub expansion patterns on nine sites within river valleys in the Brooks Range and North Slope uplands (BRNS) between the 1950s and circa 2010 by calculating percent cover (PCTCOV), patch density (PADENS), patch size variability (CVSIZE), mean nearest neighbor distance (MEDIST) and the multi-scale information fractal dimension (dI) to assess spatial homogeneity for shrub cover. We also devised conceptual models for trends in these metrics before, during, and after a phase transition, and compared these to our results. By developing a regression equation between PCTCOV and dI and using universal critical dI values, we derived the PCTCOV required for a phase transition to occur. All nine sites exhibited increases in PCTCOV. Five of the nine sites exhibited an increase in PADENS, seven exhibited an increase in CVSIZE, and five exhibited a decrease in MEDIST. The dI values for each site exceeded the requirements necessary for a phase transition. Although fine-scale heterogeneity is still present, landscape-scale patterns suggest our study areas are either currently in a state of phase transition from tundra to shrubland or are progressing towards spatial homogeneity for shrubland. Our results indicate that the shrub tundra in the river valleys of the north slope of Alaska has reached a tipping point. If climate trends observed in recent decades continue, the shrub tundra will continue towards homogeneity with regard to the cover of tall shrubs. PMID:25628866

  3. Characterizing Variation of Isotopic Markers in Northern Alaskan Caribou Forages

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    VanSomeren, L.; Barboza, P. S.; Gustine, D. D.; Parrett, L. S.; Stricker, C. A.

    2013-12-01

    Isotopic markers in feces and tissues are a potential tool for monitoring the importance of feeding areas for migratory herbivores such as caribou (Rangifer tarandus). Many of these techniques are currently limited by gaps in our knowledge of how these isotopic signatures vary over the landscape. We collected seven species of preferred caribou forages along a latitudinal gradient in the summer ranges of the Central Arctic (9 sites) and Teshekpuk Lake (4 sites) caribou herds during 2011 and 2012. We analyzed forages at peak protein content and at the end of the season to characterize temporal, species-specific, and spatial variation in isotopic markers. The availability of C and N was measured by digestion in vitro. Isotopic signatures of digested samples were used to calculate fractionation that would bias the isotopic signature of feces. The range of values for isotopes (all values ‰) of nitrogen (δ15N -9.5 - +4.3), and sulfur (δ34S -3.6 - +15.5) were greater than those for carbon (δ13C -30.5 - -24.9). Small declines in forage δ13C with latitude (Carex aquatilis, Eriophorum vaginatum, Salix pulchra, and S. richardsonii [all P < 0.01]), season (all species except C. bigelowii [all P ≤ 0.01]), and season x year (S. richardsonii; P = 0.01) were probably associated with changes in water availability. Fractionation of δ13C in early season forages was 0.1 × 1.0 and positively related to C availability (58% × 15%; P < 0.01) with the greatest fractionation for the highly digestible forb Pedicularis langsdorfii (1.43 × 0.44; P < 0.01). Sedges (Carex and Eriophorum) were significantly higher in δ15N than Salix spp. and other dicots (2.0 × 1.1 vs. -2.9 × 2.2; P < 0.01). For Salix spp., δ15N was consistent over the season and between years. Fractionation of δ15N in early season forages was 0.2 × 1.8 and not related to N availability (60% × 17%). For S. pulchra, δ34S may indicate usage of coastal habitats over foothills because δ34S was higher on the

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

    PubMed

    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.

  5. AmeriFlux US-ICh Imnavait Creek Watershed Heath Tundra

    DOE Data Explorer

    Bret-Harte, Syndonia [University of Alaska Fairbanks; Euskirchen, Eugenie [University of Alaska Fairbanks; Shaver, Gaius [Marine Biological Laboratory

    2016-01-01

    This is the AmeriFlux version of the carbon flux data for the site US-ICh Imnavait Creek Watershed Heath Tundra. Site Description - The Imnavait Creek Watershed Heath Tundra (Ridge Station) is located near Imnavait Creek in Alaska, north of the Brooks Range in the Kuparuk basin near Lake Toolik and the Toolik Field Station. The Kuparuk River has its headwaters in the Brooks Range and drains through northern Alaska into the Arctic Ocean. Within these headwaters lies the Imnavait basin at an average elevation of 930 m. Water tracks run down the hill in parallel zones with a spacing of approximately 10 m. The Ridge Station was deployed at the end of Summer 2007.

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    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. Sequencing and analysis of the complete mitochondrial genome of tundra shrew (Sorex tundrensis) from China.

    PubMed

    Xu, Chunzhu; Zhao, Shuai; Wu, Hualin; Wu, Shengyang; Zhang, Zhongwen; Wang, Bo; Dou, Huashan

    2016-07-01

    The complete mitogenome sequence of tundra shrew (Sorex tundrensis) was determined using long PCR. The genome was 17,444 bp in length and contained 13 protein-coding genes, 2 ribosomal RNA genes, 23 transfer RNA genes, 1 origin of L strand replication and 1 control region. The overall base composition of the heavy strand is A (32.9%), C (24.8%), T (29.0%), and G (13.3%). The base compositions present clearly the A-T skew, which is most obviously in the control region and protein-coding genes. The extended termination-associated sequence domain, the central conserved domain and the conserved sequence block domain are defined in the mitochondrial genome control region of tundra shrew. Mitochondrial genome analyses based on MP, ML, NJ and Bayesian analyses yielded identical phylogenetic trees. The three Sorex species formed a monophyletic group with the high bootstrap value (100 %) in all examinations.

  8. Controls over nutrient flow through plants and microbes in Arctic tundra

    SciTech Connect

    Chapin, F.S. III.

    1991-01-01

    During 1990, we worked primarily on two major projects. The first was a field study of {sup 15}N partitioning between plants and microbes at Imnavait Creek. {sup 15}N was absorbed faster on the tundra than in temperate climates, and release of labeled nitrogen occurs much more slowly, indicating a slow turnover. The second major project was a model of nutrient uptake by {und Eriophorum vaginatum}. The major effort for 1991 will be on continued model development to match model predictions with results of current field work. Also scheduled for 1991 is completion of field work with {und E. vaginatum} and related soils. This should provide validation of the applicability of R4D concepts to anthropogenic disturbances in tundra. 5 figs. (MHB)

  9. The 1977 tundra fire in the Kokolik River area of Alaska

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1981-01-01

    Presumably caused by lightning, a large fire occurred due east of Point Lay several kilometers southwest of the Kokolik River, the farthest north a fire was ever fought by Bureau of Land Management personnel in Alaska. The progress and area extent of the fire were determined by analysis of LANDSAT MSS band 5 and 7 imagery. Low altitude observations from helicopter showed the fire burned a range of vegetation and relief types which included low polygonized and upland tussock tundras. The burned area appeared wetter on the surface than the unburned area, due to a lack of moisture absorbing organic matter and the possible release of moisture from the deeper thawed zone. Suggestions for future investigations of the effects of fire on tundra and permafrost terrains are discussed.

  10. Intense, natural pollution affects Arctic tundra vegetation at the Smoking Hills, Canada

    SciTech Connect

    Freedman, B. ); Zobens, V.; Hutchinson, T.C.; Gizyn, W.I. )

    1990-04-01

    Long-term, natural emissions of sulfur dioxide and acidic aerosols have had an impact on remote tundra at the Smoking Hills. The emissions have caused plant damage by SO{sub 2} toxicity, and have severely acidified soil and freshwater. At the most intensively fumigated locations closest to the sources of emission, pollution stresses have devegetated the terrestrial ecosystem. The first plants that are encountered along a spatial gradient of decreasing pollution stress are Artemisia tilesii and Arctagrostis latifolia, which dominate a characteristic, pollution-tolerant community. Farther away at moderately polluted sites there are mixed communities with floristic elements of both fumigated and reference, unfumigated tundra. This pattern of ecosystem response to a concatenation of stresses caused by natural air and soil pollution is qualitatively similar to the damage that occurs in the vicinity of anthropogenic point sources of air pollution, such as smelters.

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

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    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.

  12. AmeriFlux US-ICs Imnavait Creek Watershed Wet Sedge Tundra

    DOE Data Explorer

    Bret-Harte, Syndonia [University of Alaska Fairbanks; Euskirchen, Eugenie [University of Alaska Fairbanks; Shaver, Gaius [Marine Biological Laboratory

    2016-01-01

    This is the AmeriFlux version of the carbon flux data for the site US-ICs Imnavait Creek Watershed Wet Sedge Tundra. Site Description - The Imnavait Creek Watershed Wet Sedge Tundra (Fen Station) is located near Imnavait Creek in Alaska, north of the Brooks Range in the Kuparuk basin near Lake Toolik and the Toolik Field Station. The Kuparuk River has its headwaters in the Brooks Range and drains through northern Alaska into the Arctic Ocean. Within these headwaters lies the Imnavait basin at an average elevation of 930 m. Water tracks run down the hill in parallel zones with a spacing of approximately 10 m. The Fen Station was deployed at the end of Summer 2007.

  13. AmeriFlux US-ICt Imnavait Creek Watershed Tussock Tundra

    DOE Data Explorer

    Bret-Harte, Syndonia [University of Alaska Fairbanks; Euskirchen, Eugenie [University of Alaska Fairbanks; Shaver, Gaius [Marine Biological Laboratory

    2016-01-01

    This is the AmeriFlux version of the carbon flux data for the site US-ICt Imnavait Creek Watershed Tussock Tundra. Site Description - The Imnavait Creek Watershed Tussock Tundra (Biocomplexity Station) is located near Imnavait Creek in Alaska, north of the Brooks Range in the Kuparuk basin near Lake Toolik and the Toolik Field Station. The Kuparuk River has its headwaters in the Brooks Range and drains through northern Alaska into the Arctic Ocean. Within these headwaters lies the Imnavait basin at an average elevation of 930 m. Water tracks run down the hill in parallel zones with a spacing of approximately 10 m. The Biocomplexity Station was deployed in 2004, and it has been in operation during the melt seasons ever since.

  14. Large CO2 and CH4 emissions from polygonal tundra during spring thaw in northern Alaska

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Raz-Yaseef, Naama; Torn, Margaret S.; Wu, Yuxin; Billesbach, Dave P.; Liljedahl, Anna K.; Kneafsey, Timothy J.; Romanovsky, Vladimir E.; Cook, David R.; Wullschleger, Stan D.

    2017-01-01

    The few prethaw observations of tundra carbon fluxes suggest that there may be large spring releases, but little is known about the scale and underlying mechanisms of this phenomenon. To address these questions, we combined ecosystem eddy flux measurements from two towers near Barrow, Alaska, with mechanistic soil-core thawing experiment. During a 2 week period prior to snowmelt in 2014, large fluxes were measured, reducing net summer uptake of CO2 by 46% and adding 6% to cumulative CH4 emissions. Emission pulses were linked to unique rain-on-snow events enhancing soil cracking. Controlled laboratory experiment revealed that as surface ice thaws, an immediate, large pulse of trapped gases is emitted. These results suggest that the Arctic CO2 and CH4 spring pulse is a delayed release of biogenic gas production from the previous fall and that the pulse can be large enough to offset a significant fraction of the moderate Arctic tundra carbon sink.

  15. Stable lead isotopes evidence anthropogenic contamination in Alaskan sea otters

    SciTech Connect

    Smith, D.R.; Estes, J.A.; Flegal, A.R. ); Niemeyer, S. )

    1990-10-01

    Lead concentrations and stable isotopic compositions were measured in teeth of preindustrial and contemporary sea otters (Enhydra lutris) from Amchitka Island, AK, to determine if changes had occurred in the magnitude and source of assimilated lead. Although there was no significant difference in lead concentrations between the two groups of otters ({bar x} {plus minus} {sigma}Pb/Ca atomic = 3.6 {plus minus} 2.9 {times} 10{sup {minus}8}), differences in stable lead isotopic compositions revealed a pronounced change in the source of accumulated lead. Lead {bar x} {plus minus} 2{sigma}{sub {bar x}} in the preindustrial otters ({sup 207}Pb/{sup 206}Pb = 0.828 {plus minus} 0.006) was derived from natural deposits in the Aleutian arc, while lead in the contemporary animals ({sup 207}Pb/{sup 206}Pb = 0.856 {plus minus} 0.003) was primarily industrial lead from Asia and western Canada. The isotopic ratios demonstrate anthropogenic perturbations of the lead cycle in present-day coastal food webs and indicate that lead concentration measurements alone are inadequate in assessing the introduction and transport of contaminant lead in the environment.

  16. Distribution and activity of ice wedges across the forest-tundra transition, western Arctic Canada

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kokelj, S. V.; Lantz, T. C.; Wolfe, S. A.; Kanigan, J. C.; Morse, P. D.; Coutts, R.; Molina-Giraldo, N.; Burn, C. R.

    2014-09-01

    Remote sensing, regional ground temperature and ground ice observations, and numerical simulation were used to investigate the size, distribution, and activity of ice wedges in fine-grained mineral and organic soils across the forest-tundra transition in uplands east of the Mackenzie Delta. In the northernmost dwarf-shrub tundra, ice wedge polygons cover up to 40% of the ground surface, with the wedges commonly exceeding 3 m in width. The largest ice wedges are in peatlands where thermal contraction cracking occurs more frequently than in nearby hummocky terrain with fine-grained soils. There are fewer ice wedges, rarely exceeding 2 m in width, in uplands to the south and none have been found in mineral soils of the tall-shrub tundra, although active ice wedges are found there throughout peatlands. In the spruce forest zone, small, relict ice wedges are restricted to peatlands. At tundra sites, winter temperatures at the top of permafrost are lower in organic than mineral soils because of the shallow permafrost table, occurrence of phase change at 0°C, and the relatively high thermal conductivity of icy peat. Due to these factors and the high coefficient of thermal contraction of frozen saturated peat, ice wedge cracking and growth is more common in peatlands than in mineral soil. However, the high latent heat content of saturated organic active layer soils may inhibit freezeback, particularly where thick snow accumulates, making the permafrost and the ice wedges in spruce forest polygonal peatlands susceptible to degradation following alteration of drainage or climate warming.

  17. Potential enzyme activities altered by increased nutrient availability in Arctic tundra soils

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Koyama, A.; Wallenstein, M. D.; Moore, J. C.; Simpson, R. T.

    2012-12-01

    The Arctic tundra is a biome affected most by global warming predicted in the future. Such warming is expected to increase nutrient availability to soil microbes which, in turn, may accelerate soil organic matter decomposition. We investigated how extra-cellular enzyme activities in soils were affected by increasing nutrient availability in an Arctic tundra ecosystem. Specifically, we measured potential activities of seven enzymes at three profiles (organic, organic/mineral interface, and mineral) of soils which had been fertilized in long- (23 years) and short-terms (six years), assayed at four temperatures. The long-term site had a high fertilization treatment (10g N m-2 year-1 and 5g P m-2 year-1) and control, and the short-term site had a low fertilization treatment (5g N m-2 year-1 and 2.5g P m-2 year-1) in addition to the high fertilization treatment and control. The fertilization treatments significantly altered most of the enzyme activities in both sites. The fertilization treatments increased activities of enzymes hydrolyzing products for C and nitrogen N sources, but decreased phosphatase activities. Such alterations were most pronounced in the organic soils. The fertilization treatments also increased ratios of total enzyme activities involved in hydrolysis for C products to those for N products. This result is consistent with an observation that long-term N and P fertilization decreased soil organic C in the same tundra ecosystem. Altered enzymatic stoichiometry with increased nutrient availability should be considered when modeling biogeochemical cycles in Arctic tundra ecosystems in response to warming predicted in the future.

  18. Estimated storage of amorphous silica in soils of the circum-Arctic tundra region

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Alfredsson, H.; Clymans, W.; Hugelius, G.; Kuhry, P.; Conley, D. J.

    2016-03-01

    We investigated the vertical distribution, storage, landscape partitioning, and spatial variability of soil amorphous silica (ASi) at four different sites underlain by continuous permafrost and representative of mountainous and lowland tundra, in the circum-Arctic region. Based on a larger set of data, we present the first estimate of the ASi soil reservoir (0-1 m depth) in circum-Arctic tundra terrain. At all sites, the vertical distribution of ASi concentrations followed the pattern of either (1) declining concentrations with depth (most common) or (2) increasing/maximum concentrations with depth. Our results suggest that a set of processes, including biological control, solifluction and other slope processes, cryoturbation, and formation of inorganic precipitates influence vertical distributions of ASi in permafrost terrain, with the capacity to retain stored ASi on millennial timescales. At the four study sites, areal ASi storage (0-1 m) is generally higher in graminoid tundra compared to wetlands. Our circum-Arctic upscaling estimates, based on both vegetation and soil classification separately, suggest a storage amounting to 219 ± 28 and 274 ± 33 Tmol Si, respectively, of which at least 30% is stored in permafrost. This estimate would account for about 3% of the global soil ASi storage while occupying an equal portion of the global land area. This result does not support the hypothesis that the circum-Arctic tundra soil ASi reservoir contains relatively higher amounts of ASi than other biomes globally as demonstrated for carbon. Nevertheless, climate warming has the potential to significantly alter ASi storage and terrestrial Si cycling in the Arctic.

  19. Pathways of anaerobic organic matter decomposition in tundra soils from Barrow, Alaska

    SciTech Connect

    Herndon, Elizabeth M.; Mann, Benjamin F.; Chowdhury, Taniya Roy; Wullschleger, Stan D.; Graham, David E.; Liang, Liyuan; Gu, Baohua; Yang, Ziming

    2015-11-23

    Arctic tundra soils store a large quantity of organic carbon that is susceptible to decomposition and release to the atmosphere as methane (CH4) and carbon dioxide (CO2) under a warming climate. Anaerobic processes that generate CH4 and CO2 remain unclear because previous studies have focused on aerobic decomposition pathways. To predict releases of CO2 and CH4 from tundra soils, it is necessary to identify pathways of soil organic matter decomposition under the anoxic conditions that are prevalent in Arctic ecosystems. Here molecular and spectroscopic techniques were used to monitor biological degradation of water-extractable organic carbon (WEOC) during anoxic incubation of tundra soils from a region of continuous permafrost in northern Alaska. Organic and mineral soils from the tundra active layer were incubated at –2, +4, or +8°C for up to 60 days to mimic the short-term thaw season. Results suggest that, under anoxic conditions, fermentation converted complex organic molecules into simple organic acids that were used in concomitant Fe-reduction and acetoclastic methanogenesis reactions. Nonaromatic compounds increased over time as WEOC increased. Organic acid metabolites initially accumulated in soils but were mostly depleted by day 60 because organic acids were consumed to produce Fe(II), CO2, and CH4. We conclude that fermentation of nonprotected organic matter facilitates methanogenesis and Fe reduction reactions, and that the proportion of organic acids consumed by methanogenesis increases relative to Fe reduction with increasing temperature. As a result, the decomposition pathways observed in this study are important to consider in numerical modeling of greenhouse gas production in the Arctic.

  20. Pathways of anaerobic organic matter decomposition in tundra soils from Barrow, Alaska

    DOE PAGES

    Herndon, Elizabeth M.; Mann, Benjamin F.; Chowdhury, Taniya Roy; ...

    2015-11-23

    Arctic tundra soils store a large quantity of organic carbon that is susceptible to decomposition and release to the atmosphere as methane (CH4) and carbon dioxide (CO2) under a warming climate. Anaerobic processes that generate CH4 and CO2 remain unclear because previous studies have focused on aerobic decomposition pathways. To predict releases of CO2 and CH4 from tundra soils, it is necessary to identify pathways of soil organic matter decomposition under the anoxic conditions that are prevalent in Arctic ecosystems. Here molecular and spectroscopic techniques were used to monitor biological degradation of water-extractable organic carbon (WEOC) during anoxic incubation ofmore » tundra soils from a region of continuous permafrost in northern Alaska. Organic and mineral soils from the tundra active layer were incubated at –2, +4, or +8°C for up to 60 days to mimic the short-term thaw season. Results suggest that, under anoxic conditions, fermentation converted complex organic molecules into simple organic acids that were used in concomitant Fe-reduction and acetoclastic methanogenesis reactions. Nonaromatic compounds increased over time as WEOC increased. Organic acid metabolites initially accumulated in soils but were mostly depleted by day 60 because organic acids were consumed to produce Fe(II), CO2, and CH4. We conclude that fermentation of nonprotected organic matter facilitates methanogenesis and Fe reduction reactions, and that the proportion of organic acids consumed by methanogenesis increases relative to Fe reduction with increasing temperature. As a result, the decomposition pathways observed in this study are important to consider in numerical modeling of greenhouse gas production in the Arctic.« less

  1. Controls over nutrient flow through plants and microbes in arctic tundra

    SciTech Connect

    Schimel, J.P.

    1990-01-01

    Plant growth in arctic tundra is generally strongly limited by nutrient availability, particularly by nitrogen. The purpose of this sub-project of the R4D program was to examine plant N-uptake and the competition for N between plants and microbes in tundra. This competition can be an important control on N-flow and plant uptake but its significance in tundra has not been studied intensively. How the factors controlling the outcome of competition are altered by disturbance has also received very limited study, yet this is important facet of the R4D program. The primary goal for this project in 1990 was to initiate studies on N-partitioning and turnover in tussock tundra and how this is affected by dust deposition. Secondary goals were to examine the effect of differential dust deposition on microbial activity and nutrient cycling processes (mineralization and nitrification), and begin studies on the control of microbial N-uptake. The N-partitioning studies used {sup 15}N injected into Eriophorum tussocks to examine both the short-term (1 day) partitioning of N and the long-term (1 month and 1 year) redistribution of N through the plant-soil system. These experiments were done in both the early season (June) and peak season (July). To examine the effect of dust on N-partitioning tussocks in the heavy dust zone and in a control site were labeled with {sup 15}N and harvested at the end of the growing season. 4 refs., 1 tab.

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

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    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.

  3. Herbivore Impact on Tundra Plant Community Dynamics Using Long-term Remote Sensing Observation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yu, Q.; Engstrom, R.; Shiklomanov, N. I.

    2014-12-01

    Arctic tundra biome is now experiencing dramatic environmental changes accentuated by summer sea-ice decline, permafrost thaw, and shrub expansion. Multi-decadal time-series of the Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI, a spectral metric of vegetation productivity) shows an overall "greening" trend across the Arctic tundra biome. Regional trends in climate plausibly explain large-scale patterns of increasing plant productivity, as diminished summer sea-ice extent warms the adjacent land causing tundra vegetation to respond positively (increased photosynthetic aboveground biomass). However, at more local scales, there is a great deal of spatial variability in NDVI trends that likely reflects differences in hydrology and soil conditions, disturbance history, and use by wildlife and humans. Particularly, habitat use by large herbivores, such as reindeer and caribou, has large impacts on vegetation dynamics at local and regional scales, but the role of herbivores in modulating the response of vegetation to warming climate has received little attention. This study investigates regional tundra plant community dynamics within inhabits of different sizes of wild caribou/reindeer herds across the Arctic using GIMMS NDVI (Normalized Difference Vegetation Index) 3g data product. The Taimyr herd in Russia is one of the largest herds in the world with a population increase from 450,000 in 1975 to about 1 million animals in 2000. The population of the porcupine caribou herd has fluctuated in the past three decades between 100,000 and 180,000. Time-series of the maximum NDVI within the inhabit area of the Taimyr herd has increased about 2% per decade over the past three decades, while within the inhabit area of the Porcupine herd the maximum NDVI has increased about 5% per decade. Our results indicate that the impact of large herbivores can be detected from space and further analyses on seasonal dynamics of vegetation indices and herbivore behavior may provide more

  4. Analysis of the landscape structure in the tundra zone for western Siberia based on satellite data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Golubyatnikov, L. L.; Zarov, E. A.; Kazantsev, V. S.; Filippov, I. V.; Gavrilov, G. O.

    2015-12-01

    The landscape structure are investigated for typical and southern tundra subzones of western Siberia based on satellite images from Landsat and WorldView. The microlandscape types for the considered regions are selected and areas of microlandscapes are defined on the basis of satellite information and accounting data of field studies. The areas of the main wetland landscapes in the different types of bogs in northwestern Siberia are defined.

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

    PubMed Central

    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

  6. Winter and early spring CO2 efflux from tundra communities of northern Alaska

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Fahnestock, J.T.; Jones, M.H.; Brooks, P.D.; Walker, D.A.; Welker, J.M.

    1998-01-01

    Carbon dioxide concentrations through snow were measured in different arctic tundra communities on the North Slope of Alaska during winter and early spring of 1996. Subnivean CO2 concentrations were always higher than atmospheric CO2. A steady state diffusion model was used to generate conservative estimates of CO2 flux to the atmosphere. The magnitude of CO2 efflux differed with tundra community type, and rates of carbon release increased from March to May. Winter CO2 efflux was highest in riparian and snow bed communities and lowest in dry heath, upland tussock, and wet sedge communities. Snow generally accrues earlier in winter and is deeper in riparian and snow bed communities compared with other tundra communities, which are typically windswept and do not accumulate much snow during the winter. These results support the hypothesis that early and deep snow accumulation may insulate microbial populations from very cold temperatures, allowing sites with earlier snow cover to sustain higher levels of activity throughout winter compared to communities that have later developing snow cover. Extrapolating our estimates of CO2 efflux to the entire snow-covered season indicates that total carbon flux during winter in the Arctic is 13-109 kg CO2-C ha-1, depending on the vegetation community type. Wintertime CO2 flux is a potentially important, yet largely overlooked, part of the annual carbon cycle of tundra, and carbon release during winter should be accounted for in estimates of annual carbon balance in arctic ecosystems. Copyright 1998 by the American Geophysical Union.

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

    PubMed

    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, p<0.001) at all the observation sites, indicating that ammonia nitrogen (NH₄(+)-N) content acted as a strong predictor for N₂O emissions from tundra 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.

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    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.

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

    PubMed Central

    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

  11. Advancing the long view of ecological change in tundra systems. Introduction.

    PubMed

    Post, Eric; Høye, Toke T

    2013-08-19

    Despite uncertainties related to sustained funding, ideological rivalries and the turnover of research personnel, long-term studies and studies espousing a long-term perspective in ecology have a history of contributing landmark insights into fundamental topics, such as population- and community dynamics, species interactions and ecosystem function. They also have the potential to reveal surprises related to unforeseen events and non-stationary dynamics that unfold over the course of ongoing observation and experimentation. The unprecedented rate and magnitude of current and expected abiotic changes in tundra environments calls for a synthetic overview of the scope of ecological responses these changes have elicited. In this special issue, we present a series of contributions that advance the long view of ecological change in tundra systems, either through sustained long-term research, or through retrospective or prospective modelling. Beyond highlighting the value of long-term research in tundra systems, the insights derived herein should also find application to the study of ecological responses to environmental change in other biomes as well.

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

    PubMed

    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.

  13. Sensitivity analysis of a model of CO2 exchange in tundra ecosystems by the adjoint method

    SciTech Connect

    Waelbroek, C.; Louis, J.F. |

    1995-02-01

    A model of net primary production (NPP), decomposition, and nitrogen cycling in tundra ecosystems has been developed. The adjoint technique is used to study the sensitivity of the computed annual net CO2 flux to perturbation in initial conditions, climatic inputs, and model`s main parameters describing current seasonal CO2 exchange in wet sedge tundra at Barrow, Alaska. The results show that net CO2 flux is most sensitive to parameters characterizing litter chemical composition and more sensitive to decomposition parameters than to NPP parameters. This underlines the fact that in nutrient-limited ecosystems, decomposition drives net CO2 exchange by controlling mineralization of main nutrients. The results also indicate that the short-term (1 year) response of wet sedge tundra to CO2-induced warming is a significant increase in CO2 emission, creating a positive feedback to atmosphreic CO2 accumulation. However, a cloudiness increase during the same year can severely alter this response and lead to either a slight decrease or a strong increase in emitted CO2, depending on its exact timing. These results demonstrate that the adjoint method is well suited to study systems encountering regime changes, as a single run of the adjoint model provides sensitivities of the net CO2 flux to perturbations in all parameters and variables at any time of the year. Moreover, it is shown that large errors due to the presence of thresholds can be avoided by first delimiting the range of applicability of the adjoint results.

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

    PubMed

    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.

  15. Sensitivity analysis of a model of CO2 exchange in tundra ecosystems by the adjoint method

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Waelbroek, C.; Louis, J.-F.

    1995-01-01

    A model of net primary production (NPP), decomposition, and nitrogen cycling in tundra ecosystems has been developed. The adjoint technique is used to study the sensitivity of the computed annual net CO2 flux to perturbation in initial conditions, climatic inputs, and model's main parameters describing current seasonal CO2 exchange in wet sedge tundra at Barrow, Alaska. The results show that net CO2 flux is most sensitive to parameters characterizing litter chemical composition and more sensitive to decomposition parameters than to NPP parameters. This underlines the fact that in nutrient-limited ecosystems, decomposition drives net CO2 exchange by controlling mineralization of main nutrients. The results also indicate that the short-term (1 year) response of wet sedge tundra to CO2-induced warming is a significant increase in CO2 emission, creating a positive feedback to atmosphreic CO2 accumulation. However, a cloudiness increase during the same year can severely alter this response and lead to either a slight decrease or a strong increase in emitted CO2, depending on its exact timing. These results demonstrate that the adjoint method is well suited to study systems encountering regime changes, as a single run of the adjoint model provides sensitivities of the net CO2 flux to perturbations in all parameters and variables at any time of the year. Moreover, it is shown that large errors due to the presence of thresholds can be avoided by first delimiting the range of applicability of the adjoint results.

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

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    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.

  17. Analysis of nitrogen saturation potential in Rocky Mountain tundra and forest: implications for aquatic systems

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Baron, Jill S.; Ojima, Dennis S.; Holland, Elisabeth A.; Parton, William J.

    1994-01-01

    We employed grass and forest versions of the CENTURY model under a range of N deposition values (0.02–1.60 g N m−2 y−1) to explore the possibility that high observed lake and stream N was due to terrestrial N saturation of alpine tundra and subalpine forest in Loch Vale Watershed, Rocky Mountain National Park, Colorado. Model results suggest that N is limiting to subalpine forest productivity, but that excess leachate from alpine tundra is sufficient to account for the current observed stream N. Tundra leachate, combined with N leached from exposed rock surfaces, produce high N loads in aquatic ecosystems above treeline in the Colorado Front Range. A combination of terrestrial leaching, large N inputs from snowmelt, high watershed gradients, rapid hydrologic flushing and lake turnover times, and possibly other nutrient limitations of aquatic organisms constrain high elevation lakes and streams from assimilating even small increases in atmospheric N. CENTURY model simulations further suggest that, while increased N deposition will worsen the situation, nitrogen saturation is an ongoing phenomenon.

  18. Tundra soil carbon is vulnerable to rapid microbial decomposition under climate warming

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Xue, Kai; M. Yuan, Mengting; J. Shi, Zhou; Qin, Yujia; Deng, Ye; Cheng, Lei; Wu, Liyou; He, Zhili; van Nostrand, Joy D.; Bracho, Rosvel; Natali, Susan; Schuur, Edward. A. G.; Luo, Chengwei; Konstantinidis, Konstantinos T.; Wang, Qiong; Cole, James R.; Tiedje, James M.; Luo, Yiqi; Zhou, Jizhong

    2016-06-01

    Microbial decomposition of soil carbon in high-latitude tundra underlain with permafrost is one of the most important, but poorly understood, potential positive feedbacks of greenhouse gas emissions from terrestrial ecosystems into the atmosphere in a warmer world. Using integrated metagenomic technologies, we showed that the microbial functional community structure in the active layer of tundra soil was significantly altered after only 1.5 years of warming, a rapid response demonstrating the high sensitivity of this ecosystem to warming. The abundances of microbial functional genes involved in both aerobic and anaerobic carbon decomposition were also markedly increased by this short-term warming. Consistent with this, ecosystem respiration (Reco) increased up to 38%. In addition, warming enhanced genes involved in nutrient cycling, which very likely contributed to an observed increase (30%) in gross primary productivity (GPP). However, the GPP increase did not offset the extra Reco, resulting in significantly more net carbon loss in warmed plots compared with control plots. Altogether, our results demonstrate the vulnerability of active-layer soil carbon in this permafrost-based tundra ecosystem to climate warming and the importance of microbial communities in mediating such vulnerability.

  19. Arctic shrubification mediates the impacts of warming climate on changes to tundra vegetation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mod, Heidi K.; Luoto, Miska

    2016-12-01

    Climate change has been observed to expand distributions of woody plants in many areas of arctic and alpine environments—a phenomenon called shrubification. New spatial arrangements of shrubs cause further changes in vegetation via changing dynamics of biotic interactions. However, the mediating influence of shrubification is rarely acknowledged in predictions of tundra vegetation change. Here, we examine possible warming-induced landscape-level vegetation changes in a high-latitude environment using species distribution modelling (SDM), specifically concentrating on the impacts of shrubification on ambient vegetation. First, we produced estimates of current shrub and tree cover and forecasts of their expansion under climate change scenarios to be incorporated to SDMs of 116 vascular plants. Second, the predictions of vegetation change based on the models including only abiotic predictors and the models including abiotic, shrub and tree predictors were compared in a representative test area. Based on our model predictions, abundance of woody plants will expand, thus decreasing predicted species richness, amplifying species turnover and increasing the local extinction risk for ambient vegetation. However, the spatial variation demonstrated in our predictions highlights that tundra vegetation can be expected to show a wide variety of different responses to the combined effects of warming and shrubification, depending on the original plant species pool and environmental conditions. We conclude that realistic forecasts of the future require acknowledging the role of shrubification in warming-induced tundra vegetation change.

  20. Remote sensing of vegetation and land-cover change in Arctic tundra ecosystems

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Checkstow, D.A.; Hope, A.; McGuire, D.; Verbyla, D.; Gamon, J.; Huemmrich, F.; Houston, S.; Racine, C.; Sturm, M.; Tape, K.; Hinzman, L.; Yoshikawa, K.; Tweedie, C.

    2004-01-01

    The objective of this paper is to review research conducted over the past decade on the application of multi-temporal remote sensing for monitoring changes of Arctic tundra lands. Emphasis is placed on results from the National Science Foundation Land-Air-Ice Interactions (LAII) program and on optical remote sensing techniques. Case studies demonstrate that ground-level sensors on stationary or moving track platforms and wide-swath imaging sensors on polar orbiting satellites are particularly useful for capturing optical remote sensing data at sufficient frequency to study tundra vegetation dynamics and changes for the cloud prone Arctic. Less frequent imaging with high spatial resolution instruments on aircraft and lower orbiting satellites enable more detailed analyses of land cover change and calibration/validation of coarser resolution observations. The strongest signals of ecosystem change detected thus far appear to correspond to expansion of tundra shrubs and changes in the amount and extent of thaw lakes and ponds. Changes in shrub cover and extent have been documented by modern repeat imaging that matches archived historical aerial photography. NOAA Advanced Very High Resolution Radiometer (AVHRR) time series provide a 20-year record for determining changes in greenness that relates to photosynthetic activity, net primary production, and growing season length. The strong contrast between land materials and surface waters enables changes in lake and pond extent to be readily measured and monitored.