AINA at 60 : leaping towards a bright future hand in hand with a new generation   /   Beauchamp, B.
Arctic, v. 58, no. 4, Dec. 2005, p. iii-iv
ASTIS record 58143

The Arctic Institute of North America (AINA) officially saw the light 60 years ago, when it was chartered by an Act of Parliament in December 1945. ... Canadian and American governments worried that the potentially resource-rich Arctic regions of North America remained a vast and poorly monitored territory of enormous strategic importance. AINA was created as a binational organization to start filling up a gaping hole in our respective knowledge bases. ... While the Cold War, sovereignty concerns, and the quest for energy were the main drivers for northern research in North America during AINA's first 45 years, the decade that followed, from 1990 to 2000, saw the collapse of Arctic research, especially in Canada, through government cutbacks. ... Only a few of the many university-based northern outfits that had sprung to life in the heyday of Arctic research managed to survive. AINA was one of them, and it did it through some very imaginative fund-raising, but more importantly, through a faithful membership that believed in the Institute's mandate and remained highly supportive of its many initiatives. Survivorship, indeed one of AINA's most enduring qualities, had been tested by more than one episode of its history, including the heart-wrenching move of its headquarters from McGill University in Montréal to the University of Calgary almost 30 years ago to this day .... I have been in the saddle [Executive Director of AINA] for half a year already, which is more than enough to realize what the challenges are, but also to appreciate the richness of the cast of AINA supporters worldwide, the strengths of some of its initiatives, and the remarkable dedication of some of its key players. You can discover more about AINA's breadth of activities in our newly redesigned website at, to be launched in the new year. ... Change is the name of the game, change happening at a ferocious pace that has probably never been experienced by any population in human history. Of course, the world needs Arctic research and a venerable organization like AINA has a major role to play. Bringing a whole new generation of young researchers to the front, while maintaining a rich following of experienced researchers is a big part of the challenge. ... I strongly believe that this is an exciting time to be involved in the North. Things will be happening fast, funding will be available, and opportunities will exist to renew AINA's membership in general and a northern research capacity in particular. The International Polar Year will bring focus to the Arctic and Antarctic and will become the springboard for sustained funding and research effort in the 21st century. It is my utmost goal to make sure that AINA will be part of this exciting development every step of the way. ... the Institute has some genuine strengths to build from, including a vibrant group of research associates, and more importantly, you, the faithful readers of the journal Arctic and subscribing members to AINA. Together we will grow and leap forward, hand in hand with a new generation, at a time of unprecedented change and opportunity in the Arctic regions of the world. Please join us in leading the way.

Movements and area use of belugas, Delphinapterus leucas, in a Subarctic Alaskan estuary   /   Hobbs, R.C.   Laidre, K.L.   Vos, D.J.   Mahoney, B.A.   Eagleton, M.
Arctic, v. 58, no. 4, Dec. 2005, p. 331-340, maps
ASTIS record 58144

Seasonal movements of 14 belugas in Cook Inlet, Alaska, were monitored by satellite telemetry between July and March in 2000-03. Whales used waters in the upper Cook Inlet intensively between summer and late autumn and dispersed to mid-inlet offshore waters during winter months. All whales remained in Cook Inlet the entire time they were tracked, and several whales were tracked through March. During summer and early fall, movements were clearly concentrated in specific areas, generally river mouths or bays, where whales were likely feeding on fish runs. Average daily travel distances ranged from 11 to 30 km per day. Monthly home ranges, estimated using the 95% kernel probability distribution of average daily positions, were smallest in August (982 km²), increased throughout autumn, and peaked in winter (reaching approximately 5000 km²). The seasonal variation in distribution and movement patterns displayed by belugas in Cook Inlet affect the sighting rates and seasonal abundance estimates obtained for this depleted population.

Les déplacements saisonniers de 14 bélugas du détroit de Cook, en Alaska, ont fait l'objet d'une surveillance au moyen d'un émetteur par satellite entre les mois de juillet et mars 2000 à 2003. Cela a permis de remarquer que les baleines se tenaient beaucoup dans les eaux de la partie supérieure du détroit de Cook de l'été jusqu'à la fin de l'automne, mais qu'elles se dispersaient dans les eaux du large du milieu du détroit pendant les mois d'hiver. Toutes les baleines sont restées dans le détroit de Cook pendant toute la durée de surveillance, et plusieurs baleines ont été suivies jusqu'au mois de mars. L'été et au début de l'automne, les déplacements étaient nettement concentrés dans des endroits spécifiques, généralement dans les embouchures ou les baies, où les baleines se nourrissaient probablement de poissons. En moyenne, les baleines se déplaçaient sur des distances variant de 11 à 30 km par jour. C'est en août que le domaine vital mensuel, estimé par la méthode du noyau en fonction d'une densité de probabilité de 95 % des positions quotidiennes moyennes, était le plus petit (982 km²), après quoi il augmentait à l'automne et culminait l'hiver (où il atteignait environ 5 000 km²). La variation saisonnière caractérisant la répartition et les déplacements des bélugas dans le détroit de Cook exerce une influence sur le taux d'observations et sur les estimations d'abondance saisonnière obtenues pour cette population en déclin.

Re-evaluating the relevance of vegetation trimlines in the Canadian Arctic as an indicator of Little Ice Age paleoenvironments   /   Wolken, G.J.   England, J.H.   Dyke, A.S.
Arctic, v. 58, no. 4, Dec. 2005, p. 341-353, ill., maps
ASTIS record 58146

The origin of trimlines associated with the so-called "lichen-free" areas in the Canadian Arctic has been attributed both to perennial snowfield expansion during the Little Ice Age (LIA) and to seasonally persistent snow cover in more recent times. Because of the disparate hypotheses (ecological versus paleoclimatic) regarding the formation of these trimlines, their use as a paleoclimatic indicator has been abandoned for more than two decades. We re-examine this debate and the validity of the opposing hypotheses in the light of new regional mapping of trimlines across the Queen Elizabeth Islands (QEI). The ecological hypothesis - insufficient duration of the growing season resulting from seasonally persistent snow cover - fails to account for the poikilohydric nature of lichens and their ability to endure short growing seasons. It cannot adequately explain the existence of sharp trimlines or account for the occurrence of those trimlines on sparsely vegetated carbonate terrain. Furthermore, trimlines outlining the former extent of thin plateau ice caps are accordant with trimlines associated with former perennial snowfields, indicating that these trimlines record snow and ice expansion during the LIA rather than the seasonal persistence of more recent snow cover. We suggest that these features represent an important LIA climate indicator and should therefore be used for paleoclimatic reconstruction.

L'origine des épaulements propres aux zones dites sans lichen de l'Arctique canadien a été attribuée tant à l'expansion des champs de neige pérenne pendant le petit âge glaciaire qu'à la couverture de neige longévive d'époques plus récentes. Puisqu'il existe des hypothèses disparates (écologiques par opposition à paléoclimatiques) quant à la formation de ces épaulements, on a arrêté de s'en servir à titre d'indicateur paléoclimatique depuis plus d'une vingtaine d'années. Ici, ce débat fait l'objet d'un nouvel examen où l'on se penche sur la validité des hypothèses divergentes à la lumière du nouveau mappage régional des épaulements des îles de la Reine-Élisabeth. L'hypothèse d'ordre écologique - durée insuffisante de la saison de croissance découlant de la couverture de neige longévive en saison - omet de tenir compte de la nature poecilitique du lichen et de son aptitude à endurer de courtes saisons de croissance. Cette hypothèse ne permet pas d'expliquer adéquatement l'existence d'épaulements précis ou de tenir compte de la présence de ces épaulements en terrain carbonaté à végétation éparse. Par ailleurs, les épaulements qui délimitent l'ancienne étendue des minces calottes glaciaires des plateaux correspondent aux épaulements associés aux anciens champs de neige pérenne, ce qui indique que ces épaulements dénotent les expansions de neige et de glace du petit âge glaciaire et non pas de la couverture de neige longévive saisonnière plus récente. On suggère que ces caractéristiques représentent un important indicateur climatique du petit âge glaciaire et par conséquent, qu'on devrait s'en servir à des fins de reconstruction paléoclimatique.

Evidence for selective caching by arctic ground squirrels living in alpine meadows in the Yukon   /   Gillis, E.A.   Morrison, S.F.   Zazula, G.D.   Hik, D.S.
Arctic, v. 58, no. 4, Dec. 2005, p. 354-360, ill.
ASTIS record 58148

Male arctic ground squirrels (Spermophilus parryii) rely on food they cached the previous year for the energy they need to compete for mates each spring. We collected cheek-pouch contents of arctic ground squirrels trapped during three summers (2000-02) as an indication of what squirrels cached. Among adults, both males and females carried material in their cheek pouches, but males did so more frequently than females (4.4% vs. 0.6% of captures). Males carried material later in the summer than females, and also carried different material (seeds and rhizomes as opposed to nesting material). These differences probably reflect different purposes of cheek-pouch contents-females carried material for immediate use, whereas males carried food for caching. Only 24 of over 100 species of vascular plants growing at our alpine study site were carried, and presumably cached, by male arctic ground squirrels. The seeds or rhizomes of one species, Polygonum viviparum, were found in over 90% of cheek-pouch contents examined, even though that species grew at relatively low density and was no more common than another species in the same genus (Polygonum bistorta) that was never found in cheek-pouch contents. Collectively, this evidence indicates that males are highly selective in what species they cache. Many of the species carried by arctic ground squirrels in this study have also been found in Pleistocene fossil caches from central Yukon, indicating that food preferences of this species may have remained stable over time.

Les spermophiles arctiques mâles (Spermophilus parryii) dépendent de la nourriture qu'ils ont cachée l'année précédente pour obtenir l'énergie dont ils ont besoin pour se trouver une compagne d'accouplement au printemps. On a recueilli le contenu des abajoues de spermophiles arctiques capturés pendant trois étés (de 2000 à 2002) pour obtenir un aperçu de ce qu'ils emmagasinaient. Les spermophiles adultes, tant mâles que femelles, transportaient des matériaux dans leurs abajoues, mais c'était plus souvent le cas chez les mâles que chez les femelles (4,4 % par rapport à 0,6 % des spermophiles capturés). Les mâles transportaient des matériaux plus tard pendant l'été que les femelles, sans compter que ces matériaux étaient différents (des graines et des rhizomes par opposition à des matériaux destinés à la nidification). Ces différences sont probablement le reflet de la raison d'être différente du contenu des abajoues - les femelles transportaient des matériaux dont elles allaient se servir immédiatement, tandis que les mâles transportaient des aliments qu'ils allaient mettre en réserve. Sur la centaine d'espèces de plantes vasculaires poussant au site alpin que nous avons étudié, seulement 24 d'entre elles étaient présentes. Ces plantes avaient probablement été mises en réserve par les spermophiles arctiques mâles. Les graines ou les rhizomes d'une espèce, soit le Polygonum viviparum, ont été trouvés dans plus de 90 % du contenu des abajoues examiné, même si ces espèces poussaient selon des densités relativement faibles et qu'elles n'étaient pas plus courantes qu'une autre espèce du même genre (Polygonum bistorta) qui ne se retrouvait jamais dans le contenu des abajoues. Dans l'ensemble, cela indique que les mâles font preuve d'une grande sélectivité quant aux espèces qu'ils mettent en réserve. Grand nombre des espèces transportées par les spermophiles arctiques visés par cette étude ont également été retrouvées dans les caches fossiles du Pléistocène du centre du Yukon, ce qui laisse croire que les préférences alimentaires de cette espèce n'ont guère changé au fil du temps.

The eastern limit of Beringia : mammoth remains from Banks and Melville Islands, Northwest Territories   /   Harington, C.R.
Arctic, v. 58, no. 4, Dec. 2005, p. 361-369, ill., maps
ASTIS record 58150

Two mammoth fossils (presumably woolly mammoth, Mammuthus primigenius) from northwestern Banks and southwestern Melville Islands, Northwest Territories, Canada, have been radiocarbon-dated to the Last Glacial Maximum (LGM), at 21 000 and 22 000 14CYBP, respectively. These fossils not only are the northernmost mammoth records for North America, but also indicate that the Mammoth Steppe and Beringia extended eastward at least to Ballast Brook, Banks Island (74.3° N, 123.1° W), and possibly to the Cape James Ross area of Melville Island (75.7° N, 114.4° W). The specimens, a tibia and a tusk, probably represent woolly mammoths that moved northeastward from the Mackenzie Delta region during the LGM, when worldwide sea level had dropped about 120 m, leaving large tracts of sea bottom exposed off the Beaufort Sea coast and the west coast of Banks Island (then largely clear of glacial ice). Evidently herb tundra rich enough to supply the mammoths' needs characterized the regional landscape at that time. It is proposed that the term "Beringia" be used in the broad sense where evidence exists for a land connection between Asia and North America, regardless of its cause(s) and its supposed westerly or easterly limits, and that "Beringia" be used in a standard way: followed by its geological age in parentheses. Also, the term "Bering Isthmus" seems preferable to the commonly used "Bering Land Bridge."

Grâce à la datation au carbone 14, on a déterminé que deux fossiles de mammouths (probablement des mammouths laineux, Mammuthus primigenius) de l'île Banks au nord-ouest et de l'île Melville au sud-ouest, dans les Territoires du Nord-Ouest, au Canada, remontent au dernier maximum glaciaire (DMG), soit à 21000 et à 22000 14C BP, respectivement. Non seulement ces fossiles représentent les restes de mammouths trouvés les plus au nord de l'Amérique du Nord, mais ils permettent également d'indiquer que la steppe à mammouth et la Béringie s'étendaient vers l'est tout au moins jusqu'à Ballast Brook, sur l'île Banks (74,3° N, 123,1° O), et peut-être même jusqu'à la région du cap James Ross de l'île Melville (75,7° N, 114,4° O). Les spécimens, soit un tibia et une défense, représentent probablement les restes de mammouths laineux qui se sont déplacés vers le nord-est à partir de la région du delta du Mackenzie pendant le DMG, lorsque le niveau de la mer à l'échelle planétaire avait baissé d'environ 120 m, ce qui avait découvert de grandes bandes de fond marin sur la côte de la mer de Beaufort et sur la côte ouest de l'île Banks (qui n'avait à l'époque que peu de glace glaciaire). Il est évident qu'une toundra herbeuse assez riche pour subvenir aux besoins des mammouths caractérisait le paysage de la région à l'époque. On propose que le terme « Béringie » soit utilisé dans son sens large lorsqu'il existe des preuves selon lesquelles l'Asie et l'Amérique du Nord auraient été raccordés, sans égard à sa ou ses causes et à ses limites ouest et est présumées, et que « Béringie » soit employé de manière standard, c'est-à-dire qu'il soit suivi de son âge géologique entre parenthèses. Aussi, l'expression « isthme de Béring » semble préférable à l'expression « pont continental de Béring » couramment utilisée.

Trends in the dates of ice freeze-up and breakup over Hudson Bay, Canada   /   Gagnon, A.S.   Gough, W.A.
Arctic, v. 58, no. 4, Dec. 2005, p. 370-382, ill., maps
ASTIS record 58152

Hudson Bay experiences a complete cryogenic cycle each year. Sea ice begins to form in late October, and the Bay is usually ice-free in early August. This seasonally varying ice cover plays an important role in the regional climate. To identify secular trends in the cryogenic cycle, we examined variability in the timing of sea-ice formation and retreat during the period 1971-2003. The dates of ice freeze-up and breakup at 36 locations across Hudson Bay were catalogued for each year from weekly ice charts provided by the Canadian Ice Service. We used the nonparametric Mann-Kendall test to determine the statistical significance of the trends and the Theil-Sen approach to estimate their magnitude. Our results indicate statistically significant trends toward earlier breakup in James Bay, along the southern shore of Hudson Bay, and in the western half of Hudson Bay, and toward later freeze-up in the northern and northeastern regions of Hudson Bay. These trends in the annual ice cycle of Hudson Bay coincide with both the regional temperature record and the projections from general circulation models. If this trend toward a longer ice-free season continues, Hudson Bay will soon face important environmental challenges.

Chaque année, la Baie d'Hudson connaît un cycle cryogénique complet. La formation de la glace marine commence en fin d'octobre et la baie est habituellement exempte de glace en début d'août. La présence saisonnière du couvert de la glace de la Baie d'Hudson revêt une importance primordiale sur le climat régional. Dans cet article, on étudie la variabilité des dates de formation et de retrait de la glace marine de la Baie d'Hudson dans le but d'identifier des tendances séculaires durant la période 1971 à 2003. Les dates de formation et de retrait de la glace marine ont été cataloguées pour tous les ans dans le cas de 36 endroits à travers la Baie d'Hudson et la Baie James en utilisant des images hebdomadaires publiées par le Service canadien des glaces. Le test non paramétrique Mann Kendall a été utilisé pour déterminer la signification statistique des tendances alors que la méthode de Theil Sen nous a fourni un estimé de l'ampleur de ces mêmes tendances. Notre analyse statistique nous indique qu'il existe des tendances significatives vers une date de déglacement plus avancée dans la Baie James, le long de la côte sud de la Baie d'Hudson, et dans la partie ouest de la Baie d'Hudson. De plus, des tendances significatives vers un gel plus tardif ont été observées dans les régions du nord et du nord-est de la Baie d'Hudson. Ces tendances dans le cycle annuel de glace de la Baie d'Hudson coïncident avec les tendances des températures de la région de même qu'avec les projections des modèles de circulation générale. Si cette tendance vers une durée plus courte du couvert de glace continue, la région de la Baie d'Hudson relèvera des défis environnementaux importants dans un proche avenir.

A review of tourism research in the polar regions   /   Stewart, E.J.   Draper, D.   Johnston, M.E.
Arctic, v. 58, no. 4, Dec. 2005, p. 383-394, maps
ASTIS record 58153

Polar travel has grown dramatically in the last two decades and in recent years has become the focus of academic inquiry. Using a model initially developed for understanding the nature of culture, action, and knowledge in the development of human geography, we explore the nature, scale, and scope of research related to tourism in the Arctic and the Antarctic. We take a comparative approach to highlight the tourism issues that are largely similar in the two polar regions. Polar tourism research appears to cluster around four main areas: tourism patterns, tourism impacts, tourism policy and management, and tourism development. By assessing these emerging research clusters, we identify research gaps and potentially fruitful lines of inquiry.

Ces vingt dernières années, les voyages polaires ont beaucoup gagné en popularité, au point où une équipe de chercheurs s'est récemment penchée sur cette forme de tourisme. À l'aide d'un modèle qui servait, à l'origine, à comprendre la nature de la culture, de l'action et des connaissances du développement de la géographie humaine, on a exploré la nature, l'échelle et l'étendue des recherches effectuées en rapport avec le tourisme dans l'Arctique et dans l'Antarctique. Grâce à une démarche comparative, on a mis en évidence les enjeux touristiques qui se ressemblent beaucoup dans les deux régions polaires. La recherche sur le tourisme polaire semble se concentrer sur quatre grands aspects, soit les tendances en matière de tourisme, les incidences du tourisme, les politiques et la gestion du tourisme ainsi que le développement du tourisme. Grâce à l'évaluation de ces aspects de la recherche, on réussit à déterminer les écarts de recherche ainsi que les champs d'enquête qui pourraient éventuellement porter fruits.

Integrating human health into environmental impact assessment : case studies of Canada's northern mining resource sector   /   Noble, B.F.   Bronson, J.E.
Arctic, v. 58, no. 4, Dec. 2005, p. 395-405, 1 map
ASTIS record 58154

This paper examines the integration of human health considerations into environmental impact assessment (EIA) in the Canadian North. Emphasis is placed on the northern mining sector, where more land has been staked in the past decade than in the previous 50 years combined. Using information from interviews with northern EIA and health practitioners and reviews of selected project documents, we examined three principal mining case studies, northern Saskatchewan uranium mining operations, the Ekati diamond project, and the Voisey's Bay mine/mill project, to determine whether and how health considerations in EIA have evolved and the current nature and scope of health integration. Results suggest that despite the recognized link between environment and health and the number of high-profile megaprojects in Canada's North, human health, particularly social health, has not been given adequate treatment in northern EIA. Health considerations in EIA have typically been limited to physical health impacts triggered directly by project-induced environmental change, while social and other health determinants have been either not considered at all, or limited to those aspects of health and well-being that the project proponent directly controlled, namely employment opportunities and worker health and safety. In recent years, we have been seeing improvements in the scope of health in EIA to reflect a broader range of health determinants, including traditional land use and culture. However, there is still a need to adopt impact mitigation and enhancement measures that are sensitive to northern society, to monitor and follow up actual health impacts after project approval, and to ensure that mitigation and enhancement measures are effective.

Dans cet article, on se penche sur l'intégration des considérations en matière de santé humaine dans le cadre de l'évaluation des incidences environnementales dans le Nord canadien. On met l'accent sur le secteur minier du Nord, où plus de terres ont été jalonnées ces dix dernières années que pendant les 50 années précédentes. À la lumière des commentaires obtenus en entrevues avec des spécialistes des évaluations environnementales et de la santé du Nord ainsi que de l'examen de certains documents de projets, on a examiné trois études de cas principales portant sur l'exploitation minière - soit les exploitations d'uranium du nord de la Saskatchewan, le projet de diamants Ekati, et le projet de mine et d'usine de la baie Voisey - afin de déterminer si et comment les considérations en matière de santé dans le cadre de l'évaluation des incidences environnementales ont évolué ainsi que la nature et l'étendue actuelle de l'intégration de la santé. Les résultats indiquent que malgré le lien manifeste entre l'environnement et la santé ainsi que le nombre de mégaprojets de haut calibre entrepris dans le Nord canadien, la santé humaine, et plus particulièrement la santé sociale, n'est pas traitée adéquatement dans le cadre de l'évaluation des incidences environnementales du Nord. Généralement, les considérations de santé dans le cadre de l'évaluation des incidences environnementales se limitent aux incidences d'ordre physique directement attribuables aux changements environnementaux découlant du projet, alors que les déterminants d'ordre social ou autre n'ont pas été considérés du tout ou se sont limités aux aspects de la santé et du bien-être que les promoteurs du projet contrôlaient directement, notamment les occasions d'emploi, de même que la santé et la sécurité des travailleurs. Ces dernières années, on a enregistré des améliorations sur le plan de la santé dans le cadre de l'évaluation des incidences environnementales afin de tenir compte d'une gamme plus vaste de déterminants en matière de santé, ce qui comprend l'utilisation traditionnelle de la terre et la culture. Cela dit, le besoin d'adopter des mesures de mise en valeur et d'atténuation des incidences qui respectent la société du Nord se fait toujours sentir, de même que des mesures qui permettent de surveiller et de suivre les incidences réelles sur la santé une fois les projets approuvés. Il y a aussi lieu de s'assurer que les mesures de mise en valeur et d'atténuation portent fruits.

Characteristics and significance of the transition zone in drained thaw-lake basins of the Arctic coastal plain, Alaska   /   Bockheim, J.G.   Hinkel, K.M.
Arctic, v. 58, no. 4, Dec. 2005, p. 406-417, ill.
ASTIS record 58157

In the three-component conceptual model of arctic soils, the transition zone is recognized as a layer intermediate between the seasonally thawed active layer above and the stable permafrost below. Although typically frozen and therefore part of the near-surface permafrost, the transition zone episodically thaws over a time period ranging from sub-decadal to multi-centennial. From an analysis of 138 pedons from the Arctic Coastal Plain near Barrow, Alaska, we were able to delineate the upper boundary of the transition zone in 78% and the lower boundary in 70% of the pedons. The transition zone exhibits the effects of cryoturbation, contains abundant redistributed organic carbon, is enriched by ice in the forms of lenses, veins, and nets (reticulate vein ice) and has abundant soil moisture. The surface (upper boundary) of the transition zone is found at an average depth of 34 ±7 cm below the ground surface and has an average thickness of 23 ±8 cm. We observed no significant differences in the thickness of the transition zone or the depth of its boundaries in drained thaw-lake basins ranging in age from 300 to 5500 years BP, suggesting that the processes leading to the development of this zone occur rapidly in Arctic Alaska. Recognition of the transition zone has implications for understanding pedogenic processes in permafrost-affected soils and for determining the response of near-surface permafrost to climate warming.

Dans le modèle conceptuel à trois composantes des sols arctiques, la zone de transition est reconnue comme une couche intermédiaire entre la couche active supérieure qui dégèle selon les saisons et le permafrost stable au-dessous. Bien qu'elle soit généralement gelée et que par conséquent, elle fasse partie du permafrost près de la surface, la zone de transition dégèle de manière épisodique sur une période allant de moins d'une décennie à plusieurs centaines d'années. D'après l'analyse de 138 pédons provenant de la plaine côtière de l'Arctique près de Barrow, en Alaska, on a pu délimiter la borne supérieure de la zone de transition dans 78 % des pédons et la borne inférieure dans 70 % d'entre eux. La zone de transition affiche les effets de la cryoturbation, puis elle contient du carbone organique distribué en abondance, elle est enrichie par la glace sous la forme de lentilles, de veines et de réseaux (glace de veine réticulée) et son sol renferme une humidité abondante. La surface (borne supérieure) de la zone de transition se trouve à une profondeur moyenne de 34 ±7 cm sous la surface du sol et son épaisseur moyenne est de 23 ±8 cm. Aucune différence considérable n'a été observée quant à l'épaisseur de la zone de transition ou à la profondeur de ses bornes dans les bassins de lacs de dégel allant de 300 à 5 500 ans BP, ce qui laisse croire que les processus ayant mené au développement de cette zone se produisent rapidement dans l'Alaska arctique. La reconnaissance de la zone de transition a des incidences sur la compréhension des processus pédogénisés dans les sols affectés par le permafrost ainsi que sur la détermination de la réaction du permafrost situé près de la surface au réchauffement du climat.

Simultaneous den use by arctic foxes and wolves at a den site in Nunavut, Canada   /   Hendrickson, C.J.   Samelius, G.   Alisauskas, R.T.   Larivière, S.
Arctic, v. 58, no. 4, Dec. 2005, p. 418-420
ASTIS record 58159

Arctic foxes (Alopex lagopus) and wolves (Canis lupus) often use similar den sites. Interspecific interactions and competition for den sites are therefore possible among these species. At the Kangowan River in Nunavut, Canada, we observed arctic foxes and wolves simultaneously using a den site for pup-rearing during a two-day period in the summer of 2000. We also found evidence that both species had used the den site in May that year. Interspecific interactions in summer included avoidance, tolerance, and aggression. Foxes and wolves used separate entrances and did not appear to share a common space. Our observations of arctic foxes and wolves occupying a den site concurrently suggest that avoidance and interspecific tolerance may have facilitated coexistence at this den site.

Les renards arctiques (Alopex lagopus) et les loups (Canis lupus) s'installent souvent dans des tanières du même genre. Par conséquent, il est possible que chez ces espèces, il y ait des interactions inter-espèces et une certaine concurrence pour l'obtention des tanières. À la rivière Kangowan, dans le Nunavut, au Canada, on a observé des renards arctiques et des loups qui se servaient simultanément d'une tanière pour élever leurs petits pendant une période de deux jours à l'été 2000. On a également trouvé des preuves que ces deux espèces s'étaient servies de la tanière au mois de mai de cette même année. L'été, les interactions inter-espèces prenaient la forme de l'évitement, de la tolérance et de l'agression. Les renards et les loups empruntaient des entrées différentes et ne donnaient pas l'impression de partager des lieux communs. Par ailleurs, nos observations des renards arctiques et des loups qui occupent une même tanière en même temps laissent croire que l'évitement et la tolérance inter-espèces pourraient avoir joué un rôle dans la coexistence à cette tanière.

The Keys Project in northern Alaska, 1951-53   /   Tedrow, J.C.F.
Arctic, v. 58, no. 4, Dec. 2005, p. 421-424, ill., maps
ASTIS record 58160

... In the years following World War II, the U.S. Government was concerned with the paucity of information available about terrain features surrounding the Arctic Basin. To provide a better understanding of polar conditions, the U.S. Air Force authorized the Physical Research Laboratories, Boston University, to conduct a three-year study. The study, known as the Keys Project, was funded by the Wright Air Development Center, Wright Patterson Air Force Base, Ohio. Its objective was to identify various terrain conditions on the North Slope of Alaska and correlate these features with multi-spectral, aerial photographic mosaics. It was hoped that the annotated mosaics could then be used not only to identify terrain conditions in northern Alaska, but also to evaluate tundra conditions in similar Arctic regions. The project director was F.C. Erickson, who also served as the chairman of the Geography Department at Boston University. Project headquarters were at Umiat, Alaska (69°23' N, 152°10' W; Fig. 1). Umiat, located on a gravel terrace along the Colville River, had served as a base of operations for assessing oil, gas, and oil-shale potentials in Naval Petroleum Reserve No. 4 .... The base consisted of a gravel airstrip with the capacity to handle larger aircraft, a small radio tower-weather station, diesel-powered electrical generators, a cluster of deteriorating Quonset huts, and a vacated repair shop. Umiat had no running water, and potable water had to be trucked in from the nearby Colville River. The Colville, the largest river in northern Alaska, could accommodate float planes at Umiat and elsewhere, and broad gravel bars and terraces served as landing strips for wheeled aircraft. The project was classified at that time, so very little public information is available. Since this project provided an important step for many subsequent bioenvironmental research projects on the North Slope, it is important to document this particular period of early field observations. The following account of the Keys Project is based on recollections and personal notes of the author, who joined the project in 1953. [The author describes field work completed during the 1951-1952 and 1953 seasons.] ... In the years following the 1953 field season, the Office of Naval Research, through the Arctic Institute of North America, funded Tedrow and Cantlon to continue the soil and plant ecological investigations begun under the Keys Project. Those projects were operated from the Naval Arctic Research Laboratory in Barrow, Alaska ....

New prey species documented for northern pike (Esox lucius) : Bald Eagle (Haliaeetus leucocephalus)   /   Brown, R.J.   McIntyre, C.
Arctic, v. 58, no. 4, Dec. 2005, p. 437, ill.
ASTIS record 58162

... We examined stomach contents of northern pike (Esox lucius) to document their prey species during a fish sampling study in the eastern interior of Alaska in summer 2000. Sampling occurred in the Black River drainage near 66°42.3' N, 144°15.6' W. Most northern pike that were feeding had fish prey in their stomachs. But two northern pike captured on 11 June 2000 had recently consumed newly hatched chicks of the bald eagle (Haliaeetus leucocephalus), a species that to our knowledge has not been reported previously as prey of northern pike. Both bald eagle chicks were positioned head forward, and their posterior regions were partially digested. We estimated the chicks' ages from their development as younger than five days. The northern pike predators were 71 and 77 cm fork length. We captured the fish within one km of each other, one in an oxbow lake and one in the Black River near the lake's outlet. We assume that the chicks were from the same nest because of the proximity of the fish capture sites and the similar development of the chicks. We can only speculate on how the chicks ended up in the water; perhaps they fell out of their nest, or their nest fell into the water. In interior Alaska, bald eagle nests are usually located in large trees within 100 m of shorelines of water bodies .... Bald eagle nest trees that occur along large rivers or lakes can fall into water bodies when banks erode or when beavers (Castor canadensis) cut the trees. Northern pike are generally considered to be nonselective piscivores, eating primarily fish along with a small proportion of other vertebrate and invertebrate prey .... food selection of northern pike is thought to depend more on size, relative abundance, and vulnerability than on species preferences. Therefore, it should not be too surprising to find unusual prey species occasionally. For example, Solman (1945) found a yellow-headed blackbird (Xanthocephalus xanthocephalus) and Lagler (1956) found a garter snake (Thamnophis sirtalis) in their respective northern pike feeding studies. Neither of these species is common prey for northern pike. Similarly, bald eagle chicks are not a predictable or common food source for any animal, including northern pike ... but it is clear that northern pike will eat them on the rare occasions when they are available.

Richard Slobodin (1915-2005)   /   Damas, D.
Arctic, v. 58, no. 4, Dec. 2005, p. 438-439, ill.
ASTIS record 58164

Richard Slobodin, premier ethnologist of the Dene and cosmopolitan scholar, died on January 22, 2005, six weeks before his 90th birthday. Born and educated in New York City, he earned BA and MS degrees from the City College of New York. ... Dick enrolled in anthropology classes at Columbia University, but in 1942 the war brought the first of two interruptions in his anthropological career. ... In August 1946, Dick returned to the Mackenzie specifically to study the social organization of the Peel River Kutchin (now rendered Gwich'in). This research was to form the basis of his doctoral dissertation, but its completion would be delayed for more than a decade. ... the widely cast net of Senator Joseph McCarthy and his committee resulted in Dick's being blacklisted and thus excluded from academic employment. For the next seven years, he had to find work elsewhere .... Finally, he was offered a chance to continue his studies at Columbia, where he completed his thesis and received the PhD degree in 1959. ... those of us who knew Dick fairly well could not conceive of his advocating the overthrow of a government or any other subversive activity. He perceived socialism as a means to achieve social justice. Nevertheless, his association with Marxism would again cast a shadow over him. ... Later he applied for a position at McMaster University, but was once more faced with government opposition regarding the visa. Eventually, strong letters of support from the chairman of the Sociology department, the faculty association, and the president helped secure the visa, and Dick was appointed at McMaster in 1964. In 1970 he became a Canadian citizen. The 1960s, a period of considerable activity for Dick, included four field trips to the western Subarctic, several articles on the Gwich'in, and the publication of Band Organization of the Peel River Kutchin (1962). ... During the 1960s and early 1970s, Dick was instrumental in developing anthropology at McMaster from a wing of Sociology into a separate department (1973) with the hiring of a number of scholars. ... In the 1970s, Dick continued his scholarly production on such topics as reincarnation, chieftainship, and culture history. ... Dick fell victim in 1981 to the compulsory age-related retirement policy of the time. He regretted the necessity to retire, since he had held a permanent position for only 17 years. ... During his retirement years, as well, Dick found relaxation in the seafaring novels of Patrick O'Brian. More serious interests included the activities of the United Church of Canada and support for the New Democratic Party, to which he was awarded a life membership. In these years Dick engaged in copious correspondence. ... Despite these and other liberal commitments, Dick was staid and conservative in his demeanour and living habits. He had more than his fair share of personal disappointments and tragedies .... Dick will be sorely missed by his friends and more poignantly so by his family. ...

Challenges and accomplishments : a celebration of the Arctic Institute of North America   /   MacDonald, R.
Arctic, v. 58, no. 4, Dec. 2005, p. 440-451, ill.
ASTIS record 58167

... In 1942, a group of Canadians held private discussions about how Canada could increase her administrative, scientific, and technical competence in the Arctic to match that of other Arctic nations, such as the Soviet Union. ... In September 1944, at Montreal, the proposal for the new institute was approved. ... The proposal identified a need for independent scientific research: basic general research, studies on the problems of Arctic living, and an examination of the Arctic's relationship to the physical, social, and economic problems of the world. ... Offices were established at McGill University and in December 1945, by Act of Parliament, the Arctic Institute of North America was chartered. ... During these first 30 years, AINA not only met the challenge of getting organized but played a key role in promoting the Arctic, encouraging research, publishing a variety of studies on the region, and developing infrastructure and systems that could carry the research into the future. ... By the 1970s, the institute had begun to lose its central role in Arctic research. The Canadian government was increasingly conducting its own research projects because of sovereignty concerns. The University of Alaska was developing into a focal point for American expertise and hence for funding by American agencies .... The institute work did go on, but deficits were occurring. In 1974, a working group was struck to examine AINA's future direction. ... During this time, in spite of some success in finding new funds, there was a continued feeling that Montreal ... was far from the centre of new northern activity (and potential funding) in the Canadian west, especially Alberta. ... the Alberta government was reported to have offered a trust fund of five million dollars, and the University of Calgary made space available. Reaction to the potential move of the institute was swift. McGill offered to continue housing AINA rent-free and to provide some money, and three francophone universities indicated support .... An initial board meeting approved the move, but the decision was controversial, and a subsequent larger meeting that included the Fellows rejected the plan, fearing AINA would become a tool of petroleum companies. But in May 1975, a meeting in Calgary with only board members endorsed the move. Resistance remained. In Edmonton, the Boreal Institute questioned having two northern institutes in Alberta ... and served notice of possible legal and other action if any of its programs were taken over. ... In Quebec, the government served notice of its intention to declare the library as part of Quebec's cultural heritage so that it would remain in the province. However the legal notice came two days late, and almost all the library (60 000 items) arrived in Calgary on 3 February 1976. ... Despite the relocation, the financial situation did not improve sufficiently. ... After negotiations, in 1979 the University of Calgary took over the institute, though AINA retained a certain degree of autonomy with its own advisory board (later board of directors) drawn largely from outside the university, the ability to raise funds beyond the university grant, and the continued integrity of its library, including caveats on any disposal. Though tensions in the relationship would remain, the change did usher in some stability. ... Arctic continued to be one of the premier peer-reviewed multidisciplinary journals on the Arctic region. ... With respect to content, biological sciences had replaced earth sciences as the dominant subject, while social science articles increased slightly and those in defence research and other disciplines remained relatively steady. ... In 1978, the Arctic Science and Technology Information System (ASTIS) was established and initially funded in part by the Arctic Petroleum Operators' Association. ... Four core programs were established [in 1987]: a Networking Program, to promote collaborative links with other groups interested in the North; a Database Program to strengthen the AINA library and ASTIS; a Research Facilities Program to promote and maximize the use of the Devon Island and Kluane field stations; and a Research, Publication and Secondment Program. Priority subjects to be addressed in the latter program included northern land-use planning, engineering and architecture in cold climates, government structures, sustainable economic development, social and natural sciences, and the humanities. The board of directors also authorized the establishment of a program trust fund to create a cushion on which the institute could rely in future to cover costs (through interest or, if necessary, capital). Arctic ... continued to be the flagship of the institute. ... ASTIS continued to grow as Canada's major northern abstracting and indexing service. ... Funding for ASTIS continued to come mainly from indexing contracts, product sales, and small grants from industry. The AINA library collection also continued to grow, with increased support from the University Library, donations from the petroleum industry ..., government publications, and journals received in exchange for Arctic. Although AINA's books were balanced [in 1999] and its trust fund had grown significantly, the end of the 20th century ushered in a new era of challenge for the institute. ... The institute continued to support its core programs - Arctic, ASTIS, the Kluane Lake Research Station, grants-in-aid, and scholarships - while developing new initiatives and turning increasingly to the World Wide Web for the distribution of information. ... The ASTIS printed and CD-ROM publications ceased in 1999 when the full ASTIS database was made available on the Web for free. ... Arctic began to make papers available on the AINA website for free, as PDF files, three years after their publication. In 2002, research associate Constance Martin initiated a project to catalogue AINA's collection of more than 4000 photographs and to create a database, using professional archival standards, from which images could be recalled for scholarly and public use. ... That same year AINA entered into a publishing agreement with the University of Calgary Press to establish a joint initiative called the Northern Lights Series. ... For 60 years, AINA has accomplished a great deal of which it can be proud. ... Interest in northern research is experiencing a renaissance as governments, universities, and industry recognize the strategic and economic importance of the Arctic and its role as a bellwether of global climate. As Canada and other circumpolar nations gear up for the 4th International Polar Year in 2007-08, the institute is eminently well situated to build on its past successes and continue to fulfill its mandate of expanding and disseminating knowledge and understanding of the North. ...

Nunavut environmental database   /   Arctic Science and Technology Information System
Arctic, v. 58, no. 4, Dec. 2005, p. 452
ASTIS record 83257

The Nunavut Environmental Database (NED) at now contains descriptions of more than 18800 publications and research projects about the Canadian territory of Nunavut and adjacent marine areas. NED covers all subjects, not just the environment. NED describes publications of all types, from government reports to academic research papers. There are now 1200 NED records that provide links to PDF files of publications, using Digital Object Identifiers (DOIs) or URLs. NED also describes all research projects conducted in Nunavut since 1990, using research licence information collected by the Nunavut Research Institute, the Nunavut Department of Environment, the Nunavut Department of Culture, Language, Elders and Youth, and the Central and Arctic Region of Fisheries and Oceans Canada. NED is produced for the Nunavut Planning Commission by AINA's Arctic Science and Technology Information System (ASTIS).

© Arctic Institute of North America. Records from this database may be used freely for research and educational purposes, but may not be used to create databases or publications for distribution outside your own organization without prior permission from ASTIS.