The true North   /   Lotz, J.
Arctic, v. 66, no. 4, Dec. 2013, p. iii-iv
ASTIS record 78893

Prime Minister Harper summed up Canada's stance on Arctic sovereignty in five words: "Use it or lose it." But what is the best use of Canada's North? The government's focus on exercising sovereignty in the Arctic reflects 19th century thinking. The concept arose from the rise of nationalism in that century (Anderson, 1989; Hobsbawm, 1990). Leaders sought to create a shared sense of destiny among their peoples through a variety of means that ranged from identifying external enemies and establishing standing armies to demanding visas to cross their national frontiers. In Western Europe, you can now travel freely across such boundaries. It is impossible to protect sovereignty in Canada's North in traditional ways: this land is too large, too harsh, too demanding. One of the real perils of the North is boredom. If you do not learn to adapt to the Great Outdoors and the Little Indoors, you become prone to cabin fever. So there is no real point to stationing soldiers in the North with nothing to do but stand on guard for Canada. Two myths cloud thinking about Canada's North. The accelerated melting of the ice cover of the Arctic Ocean has revived the ancient dream of a Northwest Passage to Asia. The passage will continue to lure adventurers and tourists, but insurers of shipping will decide if it can ever become a commercial waterway. The Conservative government is playing up another northern myth, the belief that the region is a vast cornucopia of resources that will create jobs and wealth. Developing resources in Canada's North demands huge amounts of capital to make ventures like diamond mines and the Mary's River iron mine economically viable. The Faro lead-zinc mine in the Pelly Mountains of the Yukon involved a total capital cost of $114 million, of which $28 million came from government. In 1985, with the ore body exhausted, the mine owner declared bankruptcy, leaving behind a devastated landscape that will cost from $100 million to $1 billion dollars to return to its natural state (Ganley, 2009). The emphasis on sovereignty in Canada's North and the myths about it obscure the profoundly spiritual nature of this part of the country. It offers a unique venue for human regeneration and scientific research. The real resources of the North are quiet, solitude, and refuge from the stresses and strains of a crowded, urbanizing world. Here, in the eternal silences, life is stripped down to its bare essentials. Here you learn to come to terms with your demons and those of others as you struggle to survive. The North confronts you with your own insignificance, while at the same time uplifting you with its beauty and sense of eternity. ...

Dive behavior of eastern Chukchi beluga whales (Delphinapterus leucas), 1998-2008   /   Citta, J.J.   Suydam, R.S.   Quakenbush, L.T.   Frost, K.J.   O'Corry-Crowe, G.M.
Arctic, v. 66, no. 4, Dec. 2013, p. 389-406, ill., maps
ASTIS record 78894

We provide an exploratory description of the dive behavior of 23 beluga whales of the eastern Chukchi Sea stock, tagged with satellite-linked time and depth recorders at Point Lay, Alaska, between 1998 and 2007. Because of differences in how transmitters were parameterized, we analyzed data from tags deployed from 1998 to 2002 (n = 20 tags) and data from tags deployed in 2007 (n = 3 tags) separately. Using cluster analysis, we found three basic dive types in the 1998 - 2002 dataset. "Shallow" diving behavior was characterized by dives mostly 50 m in depth. "Intermediate" diving behavior was characterized by having one mode near the surface and a second mode near 250 m. "Deep" diving behavior was characterized by having one mode near the surface and a second mode more than 400 m from the surface. The average number of dives per hour ranged from 5.1 (SD = 2.1) to 9.8 (SD = 2.9) across dive types, with the fewest dives per hour in the deep diving category. In general, duration of dives ranged from 1 to 18 minutes; however, dives up to 21 minutes occurred in the deepest diving category. We found little evidence that dive behavior of the belugas in our sample varied by sex or age. In general, belugas dove more deeply in the eastern Beaufort Sea than in the western Beaufort or Chukchi Seas. The depths to which belugas most commonly dive in Barrow Canyon and along the Beaufort shelf break (200 - 300 m) correspond to the boundary where colder Pacific water overlies warmer Atlantic water, which is probably where Arctic cod (Boreogadus saida) are most dense. Diving depths within the Arctic Basin suggest that belugas are foraging mostly within the warm layer of Atlantic Water (~200 - 1000 m).

Residency times and patterns of movement of postbreeding Dunlin on a Subarctic staging area in Alaska   /   Warnock, N.   Handel, C.M.   Gill, R.E.   McCaffery, B.J.
Arctic, v. 66, no. 4, Dec. 2013, p. 407-416, ill., maps
ASTIS record 78895

Understanding how individuals use key resources is critical for effective conservation of a population. The Yukon-Kuskokwim Delta (YKD) in western Alaska is the most important postbreeding staging area for shorebirds in the subarctic North Pacific, yet little is known about movements of shorebirds there during the postbreeding period. To address this information gap, we studied residency times and patterns of movement of 17 adult and 17 juvenile radio-marked Dunlin (Calidris alpina) on the YKD between early August and early October 2005. Throughout this postbreeding period, during which Dunlin were molting, most birds were relocated within a 130 km radius of their capture site on the YKD, but three birds were relocated more than 600 km to the south at estuaries along the Alaska Peninsula. On average, juvenile Dunlin were relocated farther away from the banding site (median relocation distance = 36.3 km) than adult Dunlin (median relocation distance = 8.8 km). Post-capture, minimum lengths of stay by Dunlin on the YKD were not significantly different between juveniles (median = 19 days) and adults (median = 23 days), with some birds staging for more than 50 days. Body mass at time of capture was the best single variable explaining length of stay on the YKD, with average length of stay decreasing by 2.5 days per additional gram of body mass at time of capture. Conservation efforts for postbreeding shorebirds should consider patterns of resource use that may differ not only by age cohort but also by individual condition.

Pour donner lieu à la conservation efficace d'une population, il est essentiel de comprendre comment les individus se servent des ressources importantes. Le delta Yukon-Kuskokwim, dans l'ouest de l'Alaska, est l'escale de post-reproduction la plus importante des oiseaux de rivage du Pacifique Nord subarctique. Pourtant, on en sait peu sur les déplacements des oiseaux de rivage à cet endroit pendant la période de post-reproduction. Afin de combler ce manque d'information, nous avons étudié les durées de résidence et les habitudes de déplacement de 17 bécasseaux variables (Calidris alpina) adultes et de 17 bécasseaux variables juvéniles radio-marqués dans le delta Yukon-Kuskokwim du début août au début octobre 2005. Pendant la période de post-reproduction pendant laquelle les bécasseaux variables muaient, la plupart des oiseaux ont été déplacés dans un rayon de 130 km de leur lieu de capture dans le delta Yukon-Kuskokwim, mais trois oiseaux ont été relocalisés à plus de 600 km vers le sud, aux estuaires le long de la péninsule de l'Alaska. En moyenne, les bécasseaux variables juvéniles ont été déplacés plus loin du lieu de baguage (distance de déplacement médiane = 36,3 km) que les bécasseaux variables adultes (distance de déplacement médiane = 8,8 km). Par bécasseau variable, les durées de séjour minimales après la capture au delta Yukon-Kuskokwim ne différaient pas considérablement entre les juvéniles (médiane = 19 jours) et les adultes (médiane = 23 jours), certains oiseaux faisant escale pendant plus de 50 jours. La masse corporelle au moment de la capture était la meilleure et la seule variable expliquant la durée du séjour au delta Yukon-Kuskokwim, la durée moyenne du séjour diminuant de 2,5 jours par gramme supplémentaire de masse corporelle au moment de la capture. Les efforts de conservation des oiseaux de rivage en période de post-reproduction devraient tenir compte des modèles d'utilisation des ressources qui risquent de différer non seulement en fonction de la cohorte d'âge, mais également en fonction de l'état de l'individu.

Distribution of hauled-out Ladoga ringed seals (Pusa hispida ladogensis) in spring 2012   /   Trukhanova, I.S.   Gurarie, E.   Sagitov, R.A.
Arctic, v. 66, no. 4, Dec. 2013, p. 417-428, ill., maps
ASTIS record 78897

The spatial distribution and habitat selection of the Ladoga ringed seal (Pusa hispida ladogensis), an endangered freshwater seal, are poorly understood, particularly for the ice-covered period. A fixed-wing, strip-transect aerial survey conducted in early April 2012, before the Lake Ladoga breakup, provided data on seal density and distribution throughout the lake in relation to several environmental covariates: depth, distance to shore, recreational ice-fishing activity, and ice type. A predictive model was applied to combinations of covariates to estimate the total number of seals hauled out on ice of Lake Ladoga. The model estimate was 5068 (95% CI: 4026 - 7086) seals over an area of 16 827 km². The mean observed seal density was 0.29 seals/km² (SD = 0.351, range from 0 to 8.61), and density was highest (> 1 seal/km²) in regions that were relatively shallow (< 50 m). Densities appeared to increase with distance from shore but dropped off again at the longest distances. The average density was lower in fast ice habitats (0.13 seals/km²) than in drifting pack ice habitats (0.44 seals/km². Relatively high seal densities observed in "ice edge" zones (0.26 seals/km²) could be explained by the ice formation pattern of large ridged and hummocked areas in the transition zone between shorefast ice and secondary ice. The presence of fishermen had a highly significant negative effect on seal presence (ß = -7.8, p = 0.0014), resulting in a nearly twofold decrease in seal density in shorefast ice habitats (0.09 seals/km² in fishing areas and 0.15 seals/km² in areas without fishing activity). An extensive winter recreational fishery, in combination with potential negative trends in ice conditions on the lake, might reduce the amount of suitable habitat for the Ladoga ringed seal in the near future.

La répartition spatiale et la sélection de l'habitat du phoque marbré de Ladoga (Pusa hispida ladogensis), phoque d'eau douce en voie de disparition, ne sont pas bien comprises, surtout en ce qui a trait à la période d'englacement. Un levé aérien à base de transects en bandes effectué au début du mois d'avril 2012, avant la débâcle du lac Ladoga, a permis d'obtenir des données sur la densité et la répartition du phoque à l'échelle du lac par rapport à plusieurs covariables environnementales : la profondeur, la distance jusqu'au rivage, la pêche récréative sous la glace et le type de glace. Un modèle prédictif a été appliqué à des combinaisons de covariables afin d'estimer le nombre total de phoques qui se hissent sur la glace du lac Ladoga. Le modèle a permis d'obtenir une estimation de 5 068 (IC de 95 % : 4 026-7 086) phoques dans une aire de 16 827 km². La densité moyenne des phoques observés était de 0,29 phoque/km² (écart-type = 0,351, écart allant de 0 à 8,61), et la densité était plus élevée (> 1 phoque/km²) dans les régions relativement peu profondes (<50 m). Les densités semblaient augmenter en fonction de la distance du rivage, mais elles baissaient de nouveau lorsque les distances étaient plus longues. La densité moyenne était moins élevée dans les habitats à glace rapide (0,13 phoque/km²) que dans les habitats à banquises en dérive (0,44 phoque/km²). Les densités de phoques relativement élevées qui ont été observées dans les zones de « lisières de glaces » (0,26 phoque/km²) pouvaient s'expliquer par le modèle de la formation de glace des grandes zones de glaces tourmentées et moutonnées faisant partie de la zone de transition entre la banquise côtière et la glace secondaire. La présence de pêcheurs avait un effet considérablement négatif sur la présence des phoques (ß= -7,8, p = 0,0014), ce qui se traduisait par une diminution de presque la moitié de la densité de phoques dans les habitats à banquise côtière (0,09 phoque/km² dans les zones de pêche et 0,15 phoque/km² dans les zones où il n'y avait pas de pêche). L'intensité de la pêche récréative en hiver, alliée aux tendances potentiellement négatives en matière d'état des glaces du lac, pourrait avoir pour effet de rapetisser la quantité d'habitat habitable par le phoque marbré de Ladoga dans un avenir rapproché.

First records of the Arctic moth Gynaephora groenlandica (Wocke) south of the Arctic Circle : a new alpine subspecies   /   Barrio, I.C.   Schmidt, B.C.   Cannings, S.   Hik, D.S.
Arctic, v. 66, no. 4, Dec. 2013, p. 429-434, ill., map
ASTIS record 78902

Two adjacent populations of the Arctic moth Gynaephora groenlandica, a High Arctic endemic species, were found in southwest Yukon, ca. 900 km south of the species' described distribution. Species identification was based on larval morphology for one population and on larvae rearing and DNA barcoding for the other. All three approaches clearly separated G. groenlandica from the closely related and frequently sympatric G. rossii. These records represent the first reports of G. groenlandica in alpine environments, and we recognize these populations as a distinct subspecies, G. g. beringiana, on the basis of differences in habitat, geography, wing phenotype, and DNA barcode. Given the limited dispersal ability of G. groenlandica, these records may represent isolated relict populations. Disjunct populations and new records of other species recently described for the southwest Yukon suggest 1) that this region is understudied and a potential refugium for species characteristic of different biogeographic influences and 2) that this region may be changing considerably in response to recent rapid environmental change, which has influenced species distribution, abundance, and phenology. Our findings, however, might result from a relatively poor description of the arthropod fauna of remote locations; these discoveries should therefore instigate further survey efforts.

Deux populations adjacentes du papillon de nuit de l'Arctique Gynaephora groenlandica, espèce endémique de l'Extrême-Arctique, ont été trouvées dans le sud-ouest du Yukon, à environ 900 km au sud de la répartition décrite pour cette espèce. L'espèce a été identifiée à l'aide de la morphologie de la larve d'une population, et à l'aide de la croissance de la larve et de la codification à barres génétique de l'autre population. Les trois méthodes ont permis de distinguer clairement G. groenlandica de G. rossii, espèce étroitement liée et souvent sympatrique. Il s'agit des premières observations de G. groenlandica en milieu alpin, et nous reconnaissons ces populations comme étant une sous-espèce distincte, G. g. beringiana, en raison des différences sur le plan de l'habitat, de la géographie, du phénotype de l'aile et de la codification à barres génétique. Puisque la capacité de dispersion de G. groenlandica est restreinte, ces observations pourraient représenter des populations reliques isolées. Des populations isolées et de nouvelles observations d'autres espèces décrites récemment dans le sud-ouest du Yukon suggèrent 1) que cette région n'est pas suffisamment étudiée et qu'elle pourrait être un refuge pour des espèces caractéristiques d'influences biogéographiques différentes, et 2) qu'il est possible que cette région soit en train de changer considérablement en raison de l'altération rapide et récente de l'environnement, ce qui exerce une influence sur la répartition, l'abondance et la phénologie des espèces. Toutefois, nos constatations pourraient découler d'une description relativement mauvaise de la faune arthropode des régions éloignées et par conséquent, ces découvertes devraient inciter la réalisation d'études supplémentaires.

Dene hunting organization in Fort Good Hope, Northwest Territories : "ways we help each other and share what we can"   /   McMillan, R.   Parlee, B.
Arctic, v. 66, no. 4, Dec. 2013, p. 435-447, ill.
ASTIS record 78903

Social inquiry into hunting dynamics in northern indigenous communities in Canada has tended to focus on hunting individually or in small kinship groups, although the role of more formal community hunts is increasingly recognized. Descriptive data are limited, however, on the mechanisms by which foods harvested on such hunts are shared out. This paper considers whether or not the dynamics of sharing meat differed between a community hunt (September 2009) and a series of household-organized hunts (November 2009) in the K'asho Got'ine Dene community of Fort Good Hope (Radilih Koe), Northwest Territories. We consider how sharing might differ in terms of interactions initiated by a request from a recipient (discussed in other literature as "demand sharing"), versus those initiated by a harvester ("giving"). Results reveal that the number of sharing interactions was similar in each case and represented a substantial portion of the total harvest, but the greater number of requests for meat after the community hunt indicates there was more pressure on the community harvesters' supply than on household hunters' supply. At the same time, requests were made especially by elders and those in need, reflecting complex norms of resource management and flexible social networks. This study affirms the continued relevance of Dene norms of sharing within contemporary communities and increases our knowledge of the social dimension of community-based resource management.

De manière générale, l'étude sociale de la dynamique de la chasse dans les collectivités indigènes du nord du Canada porte principalement sur la chasse individuelle ou en petits groupes composés de personnes apparentées, bien que le rôle de la chasse communautaire davantage organisée soit de plus en plus reconnu. Il existe toutefois peu de données descriptives sur les mécanismes en vertu desquels la nourriture recueillie dans le cadre de la chasse est partagée. La présente communication tente d'établir si la dynamique du partage de la viande diffère ou non entre une chasse communautaire (septembre 2009) et une série de chasses organisées par des ménages (novembre 2009) au sein de la collectivité dénée K'asho Got'ine de Fort Good Hope (Radilih Koe), dans les Territoires du Nord-Ouest. Nous examinons en quoi le partage peut différer sur le plan des interactions déclenchées par un receveur (que l'on nomme « partager sur demande » dans d'autres documents), par opposition aux interactions déclenchées par un récolteur (« donner »). Les résultats ont révélé que le nombre d'interactions de partage était semblable dans chaque cas, et qu'elles représentaient une portion substantielle de la récolte totale, mais que le plus grand nombre de demandes de viande après la chasse communautaire indique qu'il y avait plus de pressions sur l'approvisionnement des récolteurs communautaires que sur l'approvisionnement des chasseurs faisant partie des ménages. Par la même occasion, les aînés et les personnes dans le besoin avaient fait des demandes particulières, ce qui illustre les normes complexes de la gestion des ressources et la souplesse des réseaux sociaux. Cette étude affirme la pertinence continue des normes de partage des Dénés au sein des collectivités contemporaines et enrichit nos connaissances de la dimension sociale de la gestion communautaire des ressources.

Changing daily wind speeds on Alaska's North Slope : implications for rural hunting opportunities   /   Hansen, W.D.   Brinkman, T.J.   Leonawicz, M.   Chapin, F.S.   Kofinas, G.P.
Arctic, v. 66, no. 4, Dec. 2013, p. 448-458, ill., maps
ASTIS record 78904

Because of their reliance on the harvest of fish and game, Alaskan rural communities have experienced a variety of impacts from climate change, the effects of which are amplified at high latitudes. We collaborated with hunters from the coastal community of Wainwright, Alaska, to document their observations of environmental change (e.g., sea ice, wind, temperature) and the implications of those changes for opportunities to hunt bowhead whale (Balaena mysticetus) during spring and caribou (Rangifer tarandus) during summer. We integrated hunter observations on wind with statistical analysis of daily wind speed data collected in the nearby community of Barrow, Alaska, between 1971 and 2010 to characterize changes in the number of days with suitable hunting conditions. Hunters in Wainwright currently observe fewer days than in previous decades with wind conditions suitable for safely hunting bowhead whales and caribou. The statistical analysis of wind speed data supported these conclusions and suggested that the annual windows of opportunity for hunting each species have decreased by up to seven days since 1971. This study demonstrates the potential power of collaboration between local communities and researchers to characterize the societal impacts of climate change. Continued collaborative research with residents of rural northern Alaskan communities could produce knowledge and develop tools to help rural Alaskans adapt to novel social-ecological conditions.

Les collectivités rurales de l'Alaska dépendent de la récolte du poisson et du gibier et à ce titre, elles sont assujetties à une panoplie d'incidences découlant du changement climatique, dont les effets sont amplifiés en haute altitude. Grâce à l'aide des chasseurs de la collectivité côtière de Wainwright, en Alaska, nous avons consigné les observations de ces chasseurs relativement à l'évolution de l'environnement (en ce qui a trait, par exemple, à la glace de mer, au vent et aux températures) de même que les incidences de cette évolution sur les possibilités de chasse de la baleine boréale (Balaena mysticetus) au printemps, et du caribou (Rangifer tarandus) à l'été. Nous avons intégré les observations des chasseurs au sujet du vent à l'analyse statistique des données de la vitesse quotidienne du vent, données recueillies dans la localité avoisinante de Barrow, en Alaska, entre 1971 et 2010, afin de caractériser les changements quant au nombre de jours où les conditions de chasse sont convenables. Comparativement aux décennies précédentes, les chasseurs de Wainwright observent un moins grand nombre de jours, à l'heure actuelle, qu'au cours des décennies précédentes pendant lesquels le régime des vents se prête à la chasse sécuritaire de la baleine boréale et du caribou. L'analyse statistique des données de la vitesse du vent permet de soutenir ces conclusions et suggère qu'annuellement, la période pendant laquelle chacune de ces espèces peut faire l'objet de la chasse a diminué dans une mesure allant jusqu'à sept jours depuis 1971. Cette étude témoigne du pouvoir de collaboration qui pourrait exister entre les collectivités de la région et les chercheurs dans le but de caractériser les incidences du changement climatique sur la société. Les travaux de recherche en collaboration continue avec les habitants des collectivités rurales du nord de l'Alaska pourraient permettre de produire des connaissances et d'élaborer des outils qui aideraient les Alaskiens à s'adapter aux nouvelles conditions socioécologiques.

Calton Point or Catton Point? A misprinted toponym on the Yukon Coast   /   Burn, C.R.
Arctic, v. 66, no. 4, Dec. 2013, p. 459-462, ill., maps
ASTIS record 78905

Capt. John Franklin's account of his journey along the western Arctic coast of North America presents two spellings of the toponym he gave to the point at the eastern end of Workboat Passage, the strait between Herschel Island and the mainland. "Pt. Catton" is printed in the text, and "Pt. Calton" on the accompanying map compiled by Lt. E.N. Kendall. One of these must be a misprint. Catton Point and Calton Point have been used by the National Topographic System and on Canadian hydrographic charts. Calton Point was adopted by the Government of Canada for use in November 1962. However, Catton Point is almost certainly the intended toponym after the Rev. Thomas Catton, FRS (c. 1758 - 1838), President of St. John's College, Cambridge (1819 - 22), and tutor when John F.W. Herschel arrived at the college in 1809. Catton was one of 13 fellows of the Royal Society honoured by Franklin in northern Yukon. No Calton has ever been elected to the Royal Society or included in the Dictionary of National Biography.

Dans le récit de son expédition tout au long de la côte ouest de l'Arctique de l'Amérique du Nord, le capitaine John Franklin a écrit de deux manières différentes le toponyme qu'il a donné à la pointe est du passage Workboat, soit le détroit entre l'île Herschel et la terre ferme. La graphie « Pt. Catton » est employée dans le texte, tandis que la graphie « Pt. Calton » est utilisée sur la carte d'accompagnement compilée par le lieutenant E.N. Kendall. L'une des deux graphies doit être une erreur. Au fil des ans, Catton Point et Calton Point ont été utilisés par le Système national de référence cartographique ainsi que sur des cartes hydrographiques du Canada. Le nom de Calton Point a été officiellement adopté par le gouvernement du Canada en novembre 1962. Cependant, il est presque certain que Catton Point était le toponyme désiré, d'après le nom du révérend Thomas Catton, MSR (v. 1758-1838), président du collège St. John's à Cambridge (1819-1822) et tuteur lorsque John F.W. Herschel est arrivé au collège en 1809. Thomas Catton était l'un des 13 membres de la Société royale à avoir été honorés par Franklin dans le nord du Yukon. Aucune personne du nom de Calton n'a été élue à la Société royale ou n'a vu son nom publié dans le Dictionary of National Biography.

Temporal patterns of Arctic and Subarctic zooplankton community composition in Jones Sound, Canadian Arctic Archipelago (1961-62, 1963)   /   Appollonio, S.
Arctic, v. 66, no. 4, Dec. 2013, p. 463-469, ill., maps
ASTIS record 78906

An analysis of overwinter (1961 - 62) and early summer (1963) collections of zooplankton in Jones Sound, Canadian Arctic Archipelago, found 31 life forms and species, of which 11 species of copepods were dominant. The collections are the earliest on record from the archipelago. These 50-year-old data form a historical base that may assist in analyzing impacts of changing patterns of sea ice distributions. Water-mass-diagnostic copepod species in this study varied with the seasons; those with boreal Atlantic-Subarctic water affinities were present in the winter, but absent or few in number in the summer. Those with Arctic Basin water affinities were few or absent in winter but present or found in greater numbers in the summer. These variations in copepod species may be related to varying presence or proportions of boreal Atlantic water or Arctic Basin water in Jones Sound as also suggested by concurrent physical and chemical oceanographic data. The copepod species found in Jones Sound are also present or dominant in comparable Arctic waters from East Greenland to the Beaufort Sea and in the Arctic Basin, as reported elsewhere, and all reports differ significantly in the relative numbers of the species present from season to season or year to year. Such differences within Jones Sound are documented between the data reported here and those from the summer of 1980 reported elsewhere. It is suggested that these variations also reflect the differing presence or proportions of boreal Atlantic and Arctic Basin water. The conclusion is that Jones Sound and other High Arctic waters are subject to the presence or absence of Arctic Basin waters and boreal Atlantic waters and that the composition of the copepod communities is indicative of those changes.

L'analyse d'ensembles de zooplancton prélevés au cours d'un hiver (1961-1962) et au début d'un été (1963) dans le détroit de Jones, archipel arctique canadien, a permis de repérer 31 espèces et formes de vie, dominées par 11 espèces de copépodes. Ces ensembles sont les plus anciens ensembles à avoir été répertoriés au sein de l'archipel. Ces données prélevées il y a 50 ans forment un fondement historique susceptible d'aider à analyser les incidences des tendances changeantes de la répartition des glaces de mer. Les espèces de copépodes relevées en fonction du diagnostic de la masse d'eau dans le cadre de cette étude variaient d'une saison à l'autre. Les copépodes ayant des affinités avec l'eau boréale subarctique atlantique étaient présents en hiver, mais absents ou en quantité restreinte en été, tandis que ceux ayant des affinités avec l'eau du bassin arctique étaient absents ou en quantité restreinte l'hiver, mais présents ou en plus grand nombre l'été. Ces variations sur le plan des espèces de copépodes pourraient être attribuables à la présence ou aux proportions variées d'eau atlantique boréale ou d'eau du bassin arctique dans le détroit de Jones, telles que le suggèrent également les données physiques et chimiques océanographiques concurrentes. Les espèces de copépodes repérées dans le détroit de Jones sont également présentes ou dominantes dans des eaux arctiques comparables, de l'est du Groenland jusqu'à la mer de Beaufort et dans le bassin arctique, tel que signalé ailleurs, et tous les rapports diffèrent considérablement quant au nombre relatif d'espèces présentes de saison en saison ou d'année en année. Les différences relevées au détroit de Jones sont répertoriées entre les données communiquées ici et celles de l'été 1980 communiquées ailleurs. On suggère que ces variations sont aussi le reflet de la présence ou de proportions différentes d'eau boréale atlantique et d'eau du bassin arctique. On en conclut que les eaux du détroit de Jones et celles d'autres endroits de l'Extrême-Arctique sont assujetties à la présence ou à l'absence d'eau du bassin arctique et d'eau boréale atlantique, et que la composition des communautés de copépodes est indicative de ces changements.

Range constraints for introduced elk in southwest Yukon, Canada   /   Strong, W.L.   Chambers, J.H.S.   Jung, T.S.
Arctic, v. 66, no. 4, Dec. 2013, p. 470-482, ill., maps
ASTIS record 78907

Forage availability, snow depths, and winter temperatures were assessed to determine if they might impose range constraints on introduced elk (Cervus elaphus) that voluntarily colonized a 95 km² area of southwest Yukon (Canada) in 1959. Parkland-like vegetation of stunted aspen (Populus tremuloides) and nonforest upland plant communities, which is atypical vegetation for a boreal forest environment, composed 30% of the colonized area. About 95% of the area produced less than 300 kg/ha of forage, which represents poor productivity compared to more southern elk ranges. In the remaining 5%, indigenous graminoid communities produced (average ± SD) 408 ± 131 kg/ha of forage, exceeded only by nonindigenous roadside vegetation with 652 ± 115 kg/ha. Data from radio-collared animals indicated that most elk occurrences (38% year-round) were associated with parkland-like vegetation, and fecal pellet groups were six times as frequent in indigenous graminoid vegetation as in forest vegetation. Late February 2011 snow depths of 41 ± 7 cm, during a year with a below-normal snowfall, suggested a potential for reduced winter access to forage. Meteorological data from 1981 – 2010 indicate that one-third of winter daily minima in the study area were likely lower than -20°C, a threshold below which the metabolism of an elk calf must increase to maintain its body temperature. Each assessed habitat variable was unfavorable to elk compared with other western North American winter ranges, which may have limited the development of a more robust population in the southwestern Yukon.

La disponibilité des fourrages, l’épaisseur de couche de neige et les températures hivernales ont été évaluées afin de déterminer si elles sont susceptibles d’imposer des contraintes à l’aire de répartition du wapiti (Cervus elaphus) introduit en 1959 en vue de la colonisation volontaire d’une aire de 95 km² du sud-ouest du Yukon (Canada). La végétation de type forêt-parc composée de trembles rabougris (Populus tremuloides) et les communautés de plantes non forestières en montagne, soit une végétation atypique en milieu de forêt boréale, composent 30 % de la zone colonisée. Environ 95 % de la zone visée produisait moins de 300 kg de fourrage par hectare, ce qui constitue une productivité médiocre comparativement aux aires de répartition de wapitis se trouvant plus au sud. Dans le 5 % qui reste, les communautés graminoïdes indigènes produisaient (moyenne ± écart-type) 408 ± 131 kg/ha de fourrage, ce qui était dépassé seulement par la végétation non indigène en bordure de route de 652 ± 115 kg/ha. Les données obtenues grâce aux bêtes dotées de colliers émetteurs ont indiqué que la plupart des occurrences de wapitis (38 % à l’année) survenaient dans la végétation de type forêt-parc. Par ailleurs, les groupements de pelotes fécales se retrouvaient six fois plus souvent dans la végétation graminoïde indigène que dans la végétation forestière. L’épaisseur de couche de neige de 41 ± 7 cm enregistrée à la fin février 2011, une année où les chutes de neige ont été inférieures à la normale, suggèrent que l’accès au fourrage pourrait être réduit l’hiver. Les données météorologiques prélevées de 1981 à 2010 indiquent que le tiers des températures minimales quotidiennes hivernales dans la zone à l’étude étaient vraisembla¬blement inférieures à -20 °C, un seuil en dessous duquel le métabolisme d’un jeune wapiti doit s’élever pour maintenir sa température corporelle. Chacune des variables de l’habitat qui a été évaluée n’était pas favorable au wapiti, comparativement à d’autres aires de répartition d’hiver de l’Ouest nord-américain, ce qui pourrait avoir eu pour effet de restreindre la formation d’une population plus robuste dans le sud-ouest du Yukon.

Mackenzie Inuit lithic raw material procurement in the lower Mackenzie Valley : the importance of social factors   /   MacKay, G.   Burke, A.L.   Gauthier, G.   Arnold, C.D.
Arctic, v. 66, no. 4, Dec. 2013, p. 483-499, ill., maps
ASTIS record 78908

Oral and written historical records indicate that the Mackenzie Inuit traveled up the Mackenzie River from the Arctic Coast to procure lithic raw material in the interior from a quarry at the mouth of the Thunder River, which is known locally by the Gwich'in of the lower Mackenzie Valley as Vihtr'ii Tshik. We evaluate this proposition using non-destructive polarized energy dispersive X-ray fluorescence to compare the geochemical signatures of the lithic raw material from Vihtr'ii Tshik (MiTi-1) and flakes and tools from the Mackenzie Inuit village of Kuukpak (NiTs-1), which is located more than 400 km downriver of the quarry source. The concentrations of nine selected elements-three major elements expressed as oxides (SiO2, Fe2O3T, and K2O) and six trace elements expressed as metals (Rb, Sr, Y, Zr, Ba, and Ce)-are compared using descriptive statistics, spider diagrams, and principal components analysis. The geochemical effects of chemical weathering on the surfaces of artifacts are evaluated by measuring element concentrations before and after removal of the weathering rind from select artifacts. The results of our analyses demonstrate that the lithic raw material available at Vihtr'ii Tshik is best characterized as chert, and that 86% of the flakes and tools from Kuukpak analyzed in this study are chemically similar to the raw material from Vihtr'ii Tshik. Historical records and archaeological data indicate that the people of Kuukpak traversed a complex social landscape to obtain stone from Vihtr'ii Tshik through direct procurement.

Les traditions orales et écrites historiques indiquent que les Inuits du Mackenzie remontaient le fleuve Mackenzie en quittant la côte arctique et allant vers l'intérieur des terres afin d'obtenir de la matière première lithique d'une carrière qui se trouvait près de l'embouchure de la rivière Thunder. Les Gwich'in de la basse vallée du Mackenzie appellent cet endroit Vihtr'ii Tshik. Nous évaluons ces révélations en utilisant la technique de fluorescence par rayons X en mode dispersion d'énergie (géométrie polarisante, méthode non destructive) afin de comparer les signatures géochimiques des roches trouvées à la carrière Vihtr'ii Tshik (MiTi-1) avec celles des éclats et des outils en pierre provenant d'un site villageois inuit appelé Kuukpak (NiTs-1) qui se trouve à 400 km en aval de la carrière. Les concentrations de neuf éléments chimiques - trois éléments majeurs exprimés sous la forme d'oxydes (SiO2, Fe2O3T et K2O) et six éléments traces exprimés sous la forme de métaux (Rb, Sr, Y, Zr, Ba et Ce) - sont utilisées pour calculer des statistiques descriptives et des diagrammes-araignées, et réaliser une analyse multivariée par composantes principales. Nous évaluons aussi les effets géochimiques causés par l'intempérisation de la surface des artefacts en mesurant les concentrations d'éléments avant et après l'enlèvement de celle-ci sur des artefacts sélectionnés. Les résultats de nos analyses chimiques démontrent que la roche provenant de la carrière Vihtr'ii Tshik est un chert, et que 86 % des éclats et outils analysés dans cette étude provenant du site villageois Kuukpak montrent des affinités géochimiques au chert de cette carrière. Les documents historiques et les données archéologiques nous indiquent que les gens de Kuukpak devaient naviguer à travers une géographie culturelle complexe afin de se procurer directement le chert de la carrière de Vihtr'ii Tshik.

Leonard Vincent Hills (1933-2013)   /   Strong, W.L.   Kooyman, B.P.
Arctic, v. 66, no. 4, Dec. 2013, p. 509-511, ill.
ASTIS record 78909

Leonard (Len) V. Hills was a palynologist and palaeontologist who enthusiastically pursued research, especially those studies that involved palaeoenvironmental interpretation. He was born in a log cabin at Judah, about 28 km south of Peace River, and raised in the rural Peace River district of west-central Alberta during the 1930s and 1940s. His formal education began in a one-room country school, but he finished high school in Peace River. After working several years for Mobil Oil Canada on a geophysical crew in southern Alberta, Len decided to further his education. At the University of British Columbia, he earned a BSc with honors (1960) in geology and archaeology, although early in his program he had seriously considered majoring in forest science rather than geology. His baccalaureate degree was quickly followed by a MSc (1962) from the University of British Columbia and a PhD (1965) from the University of Alberta, both in geology, with specialization in palynology. After working briefly for Shell Oil in Edmonton, Len obtained an assistant professorship at the University of Calgary in 1966 and rose to the rank of full professor within eight years. Much of his university research involved compiling and interpreting ancient microfossil (and to a lesser extent, Holocene) pollen stratigraphic sequences, which seemed his favorite, but his work also included macro-fossil and archaeological analyses. Although Len retired from his university position in 1996, he continued to conduct research, publish in peer-reviewed journals, and edit scientific documents. He also consulted for many years on numerous palaeontological impact assessment surveys for petroleum sites, pipelines, bridges, and road construction projects, which sometimes resulted in the recognition of archaeological resources. Len continued to supervise and mentor students in several faculties at the University of Calgary until a few weeks before his death in early August 2013, finally stopping not for lackof interest, but because of physical inability. Len's professional career as a geologist began during his undergraduate program, when he did field work for the British Columbia Department of Mines (1957-58) and later for the Geological Survey of Canada in British Columbia and Quebec. In 1964, Len made his first trip to the Arctic, accompanying Geological Survey of Canada Arctic geologist Hans P. Trettin (Frisch, 2013) to study the Melville Island "tar sands" (Trettin and Hills, 1966), which included a trip to Bathurst Island. Despite what was likely a harsh environment and physically demanding circumstances during the excursion, this first Arctic experience must have been professionally rewarding, because Len returned at least five times from 1968 to 1975 and again in the early 1990s to conduct additional research. These trips included work on Banks, Queen Elizabeth, Meighan, Axel Heiberg, Ellesmere, and Prince Patrick Islands, where he described Devonian to Cretaceous stratigraphic sections within the Sverdrup basin (an important hydrocarbon source area) and collected samples for microfossil analysis. During the early years, microfossil sequences in Arctic bedrock formations were not well known. In addition to stratigraphic work, Len and his students differentiated new microfossil taxa within recognized entities, identifying and naming ~50 new genera, species, and varieties of palynomorph. Not all of Len's research was restricted to microfossils. He, in association with other researchers, also recognized and named several previously unrecognized extinct macroflora: a spruce (Picea banksii Hills & Ogilvie), a walnut (Juglans eocinerea Hills & Sweet), an alder (Paraalnipollenites confusus Hills & Wallace), and a water fern (Azolla geneseana Hills & Weiner) that occurred in the present-day Arctic during a much warmer geological period. Over time, Len's primary attention gradually shifted from the Arctic southward to Yukon and the adjacent mainland portions of the Northwest Territories, into northern British Columbia, and eventually to southern Alberta, although he spent a great deal of time supervising students who conducted their thesis research in the Arctic and contributed to palaeontological studies conducted by others in the region.

Ecological and evolutionary consequences of experimental warming in a High Arctic tundra ecosystem   /   Bjorkman, A.D.
Arctic, v. 66, no. 4, Dec. 2013, p. 512-515, ill., map
ASTIS record 78910

Over the past 100 years, global temperatures have risen by an average of 0.85°C (IPCC, 2013). This trend is especially pronounced in the Arctic, where temperatures have risen by 2°C over the past 50 years alone and are expected to rise an additional 2°- 5°C by the end of this century (ACIA, 2005). This rapid increase in temperature is expected to have wide-ranging implications for Arctic ecosystems, including changes in biodiversity, ecosystem functioning, and nutrient cycles. The future of Arctic ecosystems will depend on three factors: the extent to which individuals can adjust to warmer temperatures through phenotypic plasticity, the rate of immigration of species from southern latitudes, and the rate at which evolutionary adaptation at the species level can take place in a rapidly changing environment (Aitken et al., 2008; Gienapp et al., 2008). In essence, if species cannot adjust to warmer temperatures in situ (phenotypic plasticity), they must move, adapt, or die. Widespread changes in the Arctic are already underway. Recent syntheses of plant community composition data have shown that some functional groups, particularly shrubs and graminoids, have responded positively to warming, while others, including lichens, have declined (Elmendorf et al., 2012). This "shrubification" of the Arctic is likely to have important consequences for the herbivore community and to alter snow distribution, duration, and albedo effects (Myers-Smith et al., 2011). Individual species have also shown changes in response to warming. Plants in areas of rapid warming often respond by flowering and senescing earlier, although responses vary substantially by location and growth form (Oberbauer et al., 2013). Despite a growing body of evidence that plants are changing in response to warming temperatures, little is known about the mechanisms behind these changes. Classical studies of Arctic species have demonstrated that although individual populations show a high degree of phenotypic plasticity, adaptation to local conditions was also widespread (Mooney and Billings, 1961). This genetic diversity within the species as a whole could become important as environmental conditions change. If plastic responses are not sufficient to keep up with the rapid rise in temperatures, adaptation within the population or through the migration of seeds or pollen northward may become necessary to maintain Arctic species. Rapid adaptation to environmental change has already been described in some species. The critical photoperiod of northern populations of pitcher plant mosquitoes (Wyeomyia smithii) has shifted towards that of more southern populations, thus lengthening the breeding season for these populations (Bradshaw and Holzapfel, 2001). In the Yukon, evolutionary adaptation accounted for 13% of an observed shift in parturition date for red squirrels (Tamiasciurus hudsonicus) (62% was a result of phenotypic plasticity) (Reale et al., 2003; Berteaux et al., 2004). In plants, evolution in response to increased drought was detected in a population of Brassica rapa after only a few generations (Franks et al., 2007). However, the vast majority of studies describing observed trait shifts in response to climate change provide no evidence of whether these shifts are plastic or adaptive (Parmesan and Yohe, 2003; Gienapp et al., 2008). Migration in response to warming temperatures has also been widely documented. In the United Kingdom, 63% of evaluated butterfly species have experienced northward range shifts over the past century (Parmesan et al., 1999). Similarly, British bird species have experienced an average northward range shift of 18.9 km (Thomas and Lennon, 1999). In the Arctic, a majority of surveyed sites show evidence of northward tree line advancement (Harsch et al., 2009). In a meta-analysis of data from 1700 plant and animal species worldwide, Parmesan and Yohe (2003) described an average northward range shift of 6.1 km (or 6.1 m upward in elevation) per decade across all species. Although migration is perhaps the most widely discussed of the three climate-change responses, it is far from certain that species will be able to track their optimal climate northward as the climate warms. Predicted rates of future climate change are much greater than those of historical changes; species will therefore be required to track changes in climate at speeds 100 times those of historical migrations (Davis, 1989; Aitken et al., 2008). ...

Parasites and pollution : why both matter to marine bird conservation in the North   /   Provencher, J.F.
Arctic, v. 66, no. 4, Dec. 2013, p. 516-520, ill.
ASTIS record 78911

... Objectives and Methods: To investigate questions about how mercury and intestinal parasites affect marine birds, and specifically eider ducks, I am using a combination of observational and experimental approaches. My research first examines mercury and parasite burdens found in migrating eider ducks as they arrive in Hudson Strait after overwintering in Greenland and Newfoundland. I worked with local hunters in Cape Dorset, Nunavut, during their annual spring eider duck harvest in 2011 and 2012 (Fig. 1). Using a large sample of birds collected during this collaboration, I will investigate how parasites and Hg are associated in eider ducks and relate each to the body condition of individual birds. My first objective also entails investigating whether a sex bias in both Hg and parasitism occurs in eider ducks, as a proxy of understanding how these two factors may affect sexes differentially. My second objective is to examine how parasites and Hg relate to arrival condition in female eider ducks during migration, a time of low body condition and high energetic stress. My thesis research will next focus on the relationship between mercury and intestinal parasites among female eiders breeding at East Bay Island, Nunavut (Fig. 2). Each year approximately 500 eiders are banded as they arrive on the island to breed. All birds caught are banded. In 2013, female eiders also received a temporary nasal tag, which helps us to monitor marked individuals and quantify metrics associated with their breeding and reproduction. Taking advantage of this annual capture and banding program at East Bay Island, I use an experimental approach to study how the variation in breeding propensity and productivity is related to Hg burdens, both in the presence and in the absence of gastro-intestinal parasites. Tagged females caught at the East Bay Island banding station will be given either an oral anti-parasite treatment (PANACUR; active ingredient fenbendazole) or a placebo treatment (water). At the same time, a small blood sample will be taken to assess female Hg burdens. The females will then be released and monitored to quantify their breeding. This experimental study will allow me to compare metrics of reproduction of females with varying levels of naturally occurring Hg while manipulating parasites in a treatment group of birds. Plans are underway to carry out another year of experimental manipulation at East Bay Island in 2014. ...

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