Posts Tagged "glacier national park"

Roundup: Raging Fires, Racing Bikes, Rushing Water

Posted by on Jul 27, 2015 in All Posts, Communities, Featured Posts | 0 comments

Roundup: Raging Fires, Racing Bikes, Rushing Water

Spread the News:Share Elite Team Battling Growing Wildfire in Glacier National Park As Tourists Flee “A wildfire in Montana’s Glacier National Park chased hundreds of people from their campgrounds and cabins in the middle of peak tourist season. A management team that responds only to the nation’s highest-priority fire took command Thursday night. More than 200 firefighters backed by helicopters and fire engines planned to attack the blaze’s northeast flank, which was the biggest threat to a hotel and campground that was evacuated Wednesday, and to find a safe place to begin constructing a fire line, fire information officer Jennifer Costich said. The 4,000 acre fire started Tuesday, and officials moved quickly to evacuate hotels, campgrounds and homes, including people in the small community of St. Mary.” Read more about Glacier National Park’s fire here.   Have You Seen This? Insane glacial bike race “Welcome to Megavalance… a four-day event with over 1,400 participants from around the world who attempt to ride 18 miles down a glacier in France on mountain bikes. Riders go from Le Pic Blanc (10,827 feet) to Allemont (2,362 feet), slipping and sliding the whole way.” Read more about the race here.   Central Asia Floods Reawaken Glacier Anxieties “Floods across Central Asia over this past week are highlighting the perils of failing to adopt robust water-management measures and put adequate early-warning systems in place. Tajikistan has been the worst hit, with abnormally high temperatures causing rapid snow and glacier melts. The country is 93 percent covered by high mountains, making it particularly vulnerable to landslides and flash floods. Dozens of homes have been destroyed and at least a dozen people killed.” Read more here. Spread the...

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Glacier Retreat Threatens Insect with Extinction

Posted by on May 5, 2015 in All Posts, Featured Posts, News, Science | 0 comments

Glacier Retreat Threatens Insect with Extinction

Spread the News:ShareAs glaciers retreat, a species of glacier-dependent stonefly faces extinction. In 2010, the Center for Biological Diversity petitioned for Zapada glacier, a western glacier stonefly only found in alpine streams of Glacier National Park, Montana, to be listed as endangered species under the U.S. Endangered Species Act. This species – one of more than 3500 species of stonefly –  is highly restricted to cold, glacial meltwater with limited dispersal ability. Now, in an effort to save this endangered stonefly, the Center for Biological Diversity filed a lawsuit against the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to address the urgency of protecting this stonefly. The insect could potentially be taken to other clean cold streams outside its established range, perhaps further north or at higher elevation where it might survive – but time is running out. Species evolve to survive in specific temperature ranges; however, when the environmental conditions have exceeded the range, species are unable to adapt to new conditions immediately. Climate change has put many species in danger, but this is the first time that an insect species has been threatened with extinction by glacier retreat. “Protection can’t come soon enough for this stonefly,” said Tierra Curry, a senior scientist at the Center for Biological Diversity. “Glacier National Park will have no glaciers in 15 years if we don’t take action to curb climate change.” Stoneflies are a particularly ancient order of insects that spend most of their lives in water. They are considered the most sensitive indicators of water quality in streams as they require fresh, clean water and don’t tolerate pollution. The insects have a one to two-year life cycle starting in the nymph stage in fresh meltwater. They usually emerge from the water in late spring when the stream is uncovered by melting snow. Z. glacier has a narrow temperature preference around 3.3 degrees Celsius. It is this narrow temperature preference that makes this insect especially susceptible to climate change. Between 1960 to 2012, the average summer temperature in Glacier National Park has risen by approximately 1 degree Celsius. Additionally, since 1850, 125 of the 150 glaciers in Glacier National Park have melted away while the remaining 25 are predicted to disappear by 2030. The loss of glaciers as well as restricted suitable environmental conditions and limited dispersal ability of the stonefly threaten the species’ ability to survive. Few studies have investigated the impacts of climate change on alpine species distributions. To compensate for this knowledge gap, J. Joseph Giersch from US Geological Survey and other researchers looked at the current status and distribution of Z. glacier. Their results were published in Freshwater Science. Giersch et al. sampled 6 alpine streams, where Z. glacier was historically known to live, to examine the relationship between species occurrence and environmental variations of temperature and glacial extent. In order to identify the current geographic distribution and distinguish Z. glacier from the other 6 Zapada species in Glacier National Park, the researchers used morphological characteristics, the outward appearance of adults and the DNA of nymphs. Giersch et al. identified 28 suitable alpine locations in Glacier National Park as potential habitats for Z. glacier. From this study, Z. glacier was only found in 1 of the 6 historically occupied streams – the outlet of Upper Grinnell Lake. The results suggest increased temperature and glacier retreat have already caused local extinction of Z. glacier from several historical locations. The stonefly was also detected in 2 new high-elevation locations in Glacier National Park. Therefore, only 3 out of the 28 potential habitats have Z. glacier. The results indicate that the historical distribution of...

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Roundup: Rare Insect, Conference, New Fragrance

Posted by on Dec 29, 2014 in All Posts, Featured Posts, News | 0 comments

Roundup: Rare Insect, Conference, New Fragrance

Spread the News:ShareRare Insect Imperiled by Melting Glaciers “The persistence of an already rare aquatic insect, the western glacier stonefly, is being imperiled by the loss of glaciers and increased stream temperatures due to climate warming in mountain ecosystems, according to a new study released in Freshwater Science. In the study, scientists with the U.S. Geological Survey, Bucknell University, and the University of Montana illustrate the shrinking habitat of the western glacier stonefly (Zapada glacier) associated with glacial recession using data spanning from 1960 – 2012. ” Read more at USGS newsroom.   Conference “Arctic, Subarctic: Mosaic, Contrast, Variability of the Cryosphere” “The international conference ‘Arctic, Subarctic: Mosaic, Contrast, Variability of the Cryosphere’ will be held on 2-5 July 2015 in Tyumen, Russia. The conference is organized by Tyumen State Oil and Gas University and Tyumen Scientific Center of the Russian Academy of Sciences. ” Read more at UArctic.   Vat­na­jökull glac­ier: a new men’s fragrance “Hafþór Júlíus Björns­son, oth­er­wise known as The Moun­tain, has be­come the face of men’s fra­grance Vat­na­jökull. Björns­son, who rose to fame in the Game of Thrones se­ries, showed his model side in a se­ries of shots taken on Vat­na­jökull glac­ier. ” Read more at mbl.is. Spread the...

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Roundup: Glacier Ed, New Glacier Group, Measuring Xinjiang Ice

Posted by on Dec 15, 2014 in All Posts, Communities, Experiences, Featured Posts, News, Science, Tourism | 0 comments

Roundup: Glacier Ed, New Glacier Group, Measuring Xinjiang Ice

Spread the News:ShareEducating the Public about Glaciers at a Park in Peru “Peru, the host country for this year’s United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change has one of the lowest carbon dioxide emissions in the Americas. But scientists said it is among countries which will be most impacted by climate hazards. To educate the public, one park has created a climate change route for tourists. CCTV America’s Dan Collyns reported this story from Lima, Peru.” Read more at CCTV America.   New Glacier Climate Group Gathers in Montana “Glacier Climate Action is a loose confederation of concerned citizens in the communities near Glacier National Park. We plan to make our voices heard, celebrate local solutions, and let elected officials know that we expect them to act now to avert a climate crisis that threatens to devastate the future of our grandchildren and theirs.” Read more at Conserve Montana.   Changes in Glacier Mass and Water Resources in Xinjiang, China “It is important to understand and quantify glacier changes and their impact on water resources in Hami Prefecture, an extremely arid region in the eastern Xinjiang of northwestern China. Yushugou Glacier No. 6 and Miaoergou Ice Cap in Hami Prefecture were selected in this study. Results showed that the thickness of Yushugou Glacier No. 6 decreased by 20 m with a rate of 0.51 m/y from 1972 to 2011 and the terminus retreated by 254 m, or 6.5 m/y for the same period.” Read more of the article written by Wang et al., 2014. Spread the...

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Roundup: Measuring Ice, Alpine Lakes’s Biota, Risky Glacier Trek, IceBridge

Posted by on Nov 17, 2014 in All Posts, Featured Posts, Images, News, Science | 0 comments

Roundup: Measuring Ice, Alpine Lakes’s Biota, Risky Glacier Trek, IceBridge

Spread the News:ShareHow much ice is left underneath Alaska’s glaciers “Scientists are trekking across Ruth Glacier in Denali National Park in Alaska, dragging a sled with ground-penetrating radar equipment over the ice. Their mission: reconstruct this glacier’s history and find out how much time these icy giants have left. “So what we’re interested in doing is looking at the relationship between temperature and precipitation rate and the response of glaciers in these areas to those changes,” says Karl Kreutz, a paleoclimatologist at the University of Maine.” Read more at PBSNewshour.   Impact of glacier retreat on biota of Alpine lakes “The rapid current retreat of glaciers constitutes one of the most prominent signs of climate change. Glacier retreat enlarges existing lakes and at the same time is creating new ones at the glacier terminus. A remarkable characteristic of glacier-fed lakes is their high content of suspended minerogenic particles, so-called ‘glacial flour’. The overarching objective of this proposal is to understand the consequences of glacier retreat for the structure and function of the biota of alpine lakes and to understand the governing ecological conditions in glacier-fed lakes, particularly of those recently created.” Read more at Lake & Glacier Research Group.   Trek in Glacier National Park “A near-fatal winter solo travel in Glacier National Park from Bowman Lake to Kintla Lake is one of several excursions Richard Layne will discuss at a meeting of the Bitterroot Cross Country Ski Club” Read more at Missoulian.   IceBridge Surveys More of West Antarctica “On Nov. 5, the IceBridge team carried out a survey of the Ferrigno and Alison ice streams and the Abbot Ice Shelf and ice along the Eights Coast. Weather forecasts showed clear conditions in West Antarctica, which typically only last for a few days. Less certain was how cloud cover would look in the Bellingshausen Sea, home of one of the mission’s highest priority flights. That uncertainty is what led mission planners to the decision they made.” Read more at NASA.   Spread the...

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