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Interactions and feedbacks between abundant surface waters and permafrost fundamentally shapelowland Arctic landscapes. Sublake permafrost is maintained when the maximum ice thickness (MIT) exceedslake depth and mean annual bed temperatures (MABTs) remain below freezing. However, decliningMIT since the1970s is likely causing talik development below shallow lakes. Here we show high-temperature sensitivity towinter ice growth at the water-sediment interface of shallow lakes based on year-round lake sensor data.Empirical model experiments suggest that shallow (1m depth) lakes have warmed substantially over the last30years (2.4°C), withMABT above freezing5 of the last 7years.This is incomparison to slower ratesofwarming...
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The Arctic Coastal Plain (ACP) of Alaska is an important region for millions of migrating and nesting shorebirds. However, this region is threatened by climate change and increased human development (e.g., oil and gas production) that have the potential to greatly impact shorebird populations and breeding habitat in the near future. Because historic data on shorebird distributions in the ACP are very coarse and incomplete, we sought to develop detailed, contemporary distribution maps so that the potential impacts of climate-mediated changes and development could be ascertained. To do this, we developed and mapped habitat suitability indices for eight species of shorebirds (Black-bellied Plover [Pluvialis squatarola],...
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The Arctic Coastal Plain (ACP) of northern Alaskaconsists of an extremely low gradient, lake-richlandscape that is characterized by a complex networkof aquatic habitats and surface features stronglyinfluenced by permafrost dynamics. Much is unknownabout the form, function, and ecological conditions inthis unique hydrologic setting. Amplified climatechange and landscape responses in the Arctic furthercomplicate the capacity to separate natural variabilityfrom land use effects that may occur with petroleumdevelopment. A comprehensive, multi-disciplinaryreview and analysis of recent studies and initialinventory and monitoring in the Fish Creek watershedon the ACP provided guidance to develop a frameworkfor future aquatic...
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ire-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....
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Lakes are prevalent in the Arctic and thus play a key role in regional hydrology. Since manyArctic lakes are shallow and ice grows thick (historically 2 m or greater), seasonal ice commonly freezes tothe lake bed (bedfast ice) by winter’s end. Bedfast ice fundamentally alters lake energy balance and meltoutprocesses compared to deeper lakes that exceed the maximum ice thickness (floating ice) and maintainperennial liquid water below floating ice. Our analysis of lakes in northern Alaska indicated that ice-out ofbedfast ice lakes occurred on average 17 days earlier (22 June) than ice-out on adjacent floating ice lakes (9July). Earlier ice-free conditions in bedfast ice lakes caused higher open-water evaporation,...


    map background search result map search result map Depth, ice thickness, and ice-out timing cause divergent hydrologic responses among Arctic lakes Threshold sensitivity of shallow Arctic lakes and sublake permafrost to changing winter climate Predicting breeding shorebird distributions on the Arctic Coastal Plain of Alaska Recent Arctic tundra fire initiates widespread thermokarst development Developing a Long-term Aquatic Monitoring Network Developing a Long-Term Aquatic Monitoring Network in a Complex Watershed of the Alaskan Arctic Coast Depth, ice thickness, and ice-out timing cause divergent hydrologic responses among Arctic lakes Threshold sensitivity of shallow Arctic lakes and sublake permafrost to changing winter climate Developing a Long-term Aquatic Monitoring Network Developing a Long-Term Aquatic Monitoring Network in a Complex Watershed of the Alaskan Arctic Coast Predicting breeding shorebird distributions on the Arctic Coastal Plain of Alaska Recent Arctic tundra fire initiates widespread thermokarst development