Ice Conditions (ice + condition)

Distribution by Scientific Domains

Selected Abstracts

Large-scale climatic signatures in lakes across Europe: a meta-analysis

Abstract Recent studies have highlighted the impact of the winter North Atlantic Oscillation (NAO) on water temperature, ice conditions, and spring plankton phenology in specific lakes and regions in Europe. Here, we use meta-analysis techniques to test whether 18 lakes in northern, western, and central Europe respond coherently to winter climate forcing, and to assess the persistence of the winter climate signal in physical, chemical, and biological variables during the year. A meta-analysis approach was chosen because we wished to emphasize the overall coherence pattern rather than individual lake responses. A particular strength of our approach is that time-series from each of the 18 lakes were subjected to the same robust statistical analysis covering the same 23-year period. Although the strongest overall coherence in response to the winter NAO was exhibited by lake water temperatures, a strong, coherent response was also exhibited by concentrations of soluble reactive phosphorus and soluble reactive silicate, most likely as a result of the coherent response exhibited by the spring phytoplankton bloom. Lake nitrate concentrations showed significant coherence in winter. With the exception of the cyanobacterial biomass in summer, phytoplankton biomass in all seasons was unrelated to the winter NAO. A strong coherence in the abundance of daphnids during spring can most likely be attributed to coherence in daphnid phenology. A strong coherence in the summer abundance of the cyclopoid copepods may have been related to a coherent change in their emergence from resting stages. We discuss the complex nature of the potential mechanisms that drive the observed changes. [source]

Development of a historical ice database for the study of climate change in Canada

Frédéric Lenormand
Abstract The Canadian government has been compiling various observations on freshwater and coastal sea ice conditions for many years. However, the records are not easily accessible and are dispersed within different government departments. Given this, a major effort was undertaken in order to gather all available observations into a common database,the Canadian Ice Database (CID). This database will respond to the needs for climate monitoring in Canada, the validation and improvement of numerical ice models and the development of new remote-sensing methods. Indeed, several studies have shown that freshwater ice and sea ice are good proxy indicators of climate variability and change. The first version of CID contains in situ observations from 757 sites distributed across Canada, which were originally kept on digital or paper records at the Meteorological Service of Canada Headquarters and the Canadian Ice Service (CIS). The CID holds 63 546 records covering the period from ice season 1822,23 to 2000,01. An analysis of the database allows one to trace the temporal evolution of the ice networks. The freeze-up/break-up network of 2000,01 only represents 4% of what it was in 1985,86. A drastic decline of the ice thickness and the snow on ice network is also observable. In 1997,98, it represented only 10% of the network that existed in 1984,85. The major budget cuts in Canadian government agencies during the late 1980s and the 1990s offer the most plausible explanation for the drastic decline in the ice observation networks. Weekly ice coverage determination on large lakes from satellite imagery by the CIS and the national volunteer ice monitoring program, IceWatch, may provide a means of reviving, at least, the freeze-up/break-up network. Copyright © 2002 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd. [source]

Effects of atmospheric circulation on ice conditions in the southern Baltic coastal lagoons

Józef Piotr Girjatowicz
Abstract Relationships between atmospheric circulation patterns and ice conditions in the southern Baltic coastal lagoons were explored. Ice data consisted of number of ice days (L) and duration of ice season (S) in the Szczecin Lagoon (off Karnin), the Puck Bay (off Puck) and the Vistula Lagoon (off Krasnoflotskoye) from 1950/1951 to 1989/1990. Atmospheric circulation patterns for the period studied were extracted from Lity,ski's ,Calendar of atmospheric circulation types' developed at the Institute of Meteorology and Water Management (IMWM). A circulation pattern was identified by three numerical parameters: the zonal circulation index, the meridional circulation index, both pertaining to a zone delimited by coordinates 40,60°N, 0,35°E, and the surface pressure index for Warsaw. The number of days with individual atmospheric circulation patterns occurring from October to March was calculated. Subsequently, the selected patterns were combined by wind direction sectors and several month-long periods that most closely correlated with ice conditions. The highest linear correlation coefficients (r>0.8) were obtained for the relationship between the number of days with winds from the east from December to February and December to March and the winter number of ice days (L). Somewhat higher were multiple correlation coefficients with winds from the east and west as circulation type predictors. Slightly lower correlation coefficients for the sectors and circulation periods mentioned were obtained for the duration of the ice season (S), although some of the coefficients were significant even at the probability level of ,=0.01. Higher correlation coefficients were obtained for correlations involving ,cold' circulation patterns (sector NE+E+SE winds) and ice conditions than for those involving ,warm' patterns (sector SW+W+NW). Copyright © 2001 Royal Meteorological Society [source]

Climatic responses in spring migration of boreal and arctic birds in relation to wintering area and taxonomy

Kalle Rainio
Large-scale climate fluctuations, such as the North Atlantic Oscillation (NAO), have a marked effect on the timing of spring migration of birds. It has however been suggested that long-distance migrants wintering in Africa could respond less to NAO than short-distance migrants wintering in Europe, making them more vulnerable to climatic changes. We studied whether migratory boreal and arctic bird species returning from different wintering areas show differences in responses to the NAO in the timing of their spring migration. We used data on 75 species from two bird observatories in northern Europe (60°N). By extending the examination to the whole distribution of spring migration and to a taxonomically diverse set of birds, we aimed at finding general patterns of the effects of climate fluctuation on the timing of avian migration. Most species arrived earlier after winters with high NAO index. The degree of NAO-response diminished with the phase of migration: the early part of a species' migratory population responded more strongly than the later part. Early phase waterfowl responded strongest to NAO, but in later phases their response faded to non-significant. This pattern may be related to winter severity and/or ice conditions in the Baltic. In the two other groups, gulls and waders and passerines, all phases of migration responded to NAO and fading with phase was non-significant. The difference between waterfowl and other groups may be related to differences between the phenological development of their respective macrohabitats. Wintering area affected the strength of NAO response in a complicated way. On average medium distance migrants responded most strongly, followed by short-distance migrants and partial migrants. Our results concerning the response of long-distance migrants were difficult to interpret: there is an overall weak yet statistically significant effect, but patterns with phase of migration need further study. Our results highlight the importance of examining the whole distribution of migration and warrant the use of data sets from several sampling sites when studying climatic effects on the timing of avian life-history events. [source]

Interannual changes in seasonal ground freezing and near-surface heat flow beneath bottom-fast ice in the near-shore zone, Mackenzie Delta, NWT, Canada

Christopher W. Stevens
Abstract Interannual changes in seasonal ground freezing and near-surface heat flow beneath zones of bottom-fast ice (BFI) were examined over the winters of 2005,06 and 2006,07 within the near-shore zone of the Mackenzie Delta, Canada. Winter variability in ground thermal conditions was determined at three monitoring sites. Ground-penetrating radar surveys were conducted in late winter to determine spatial variability in landfast ice conditions and the extent of ice-bonded sediments. Shallow water sites (<0.5,m-water depth) were characterised by early onset of BFI, freezeback of the active layer and mean winter sediment bed temperatures ranging between ,3°C and ,10°C. In contrast, deep water sites (>1,m of water) experienced prolonged periods of floating ice, which limited the duration of ice contact with the sediment bed and the depth of seasonal frost, and resulted in warmer winter ground temperatures (between ,0.5°C and ,2.6°C). Under similar water depths, interannual changes in ice growth altered the timing of BFI and winter heat loss from the ground. When comparing conditions over the two winters, 2005,06 was characterised by a decrease in ice thickness that limited the extent of BFI and seasonal cooling of the ground. These changes in ice conditions had a greater effect on the thermal conditions at sites where water depths were close to the maximum ice thickness. The short ice contact times at these sites are important to the thermal state of permafrost, as only minimal heat exchange contributing to permafrost cooling occurs prior to freezeback of the active layer. Copyright © 2010 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd. [source]