Arctic wildlife breeding season ruined by last year’s record snowfall

Extreme snowfall also ruined propagation by Arctic plants.

Scientists at the Zackenberg Research Station, who have been studying plants and animals in Northeast Greenland National Park for more than 20 years, compared this year’s breeding season patterns to earlier years.

Their research suggests that last year’s record snowfall across much of the Arctic thwarted the reproductive success of plants and animals in northeast Greenland, where snow totals were especially dramatic.

“This resulted in the most complete reproductive failure encountered in the terrestrial ecosystem during more than two decades of monitoring,” researchers wrote in a paper published last week in the journal PLOS Biology.

They noted that breeding failures have previously been observed across one or two species, but never across an entire ecosystem, as were these latest failures in northeast Greenland.

The affected region is home to dozens of vulnerable species, including musk oxen, polar bears, walrus, Arctic fox, stoat, collared lemming and Arctic hare, as well as a variety of coastal birds.

Climate change is more than ‘just’ warming

Unfortunately, the article then switches gears, moaning about greenhouse gas emissions putting the Arctic and Antarctica at a greater risk of accelerated warming and extreme weather.

“Our study shows that climate change is more than ‘just’ warming, and that ecosystems may be hard hit by currently still rare but extreme events,” said lead study author Niels Martin Schmidt, biologist at Aarhus University in Denmark.

In other words, climate change is whatever they want it to be.

Thanks to Laurel for this link

“This is interesting because in Australia we get migratory birds, Muttonbirds in particular,” says Laurel. “So far just 100 have been reported, and late. I gather normally we have thousands arrive. Wonder if the lack of food there has killed em or they’ve gone  somewhere closer due to inability to travel as far.”

The post Arctic wildlife breeding season ruined by last year’s record snowfall appeared first on Ice Age Now.

via Ice Age Now

October 27, 2019 at 01:07PM

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