Polar Biology

http://link.springer.com/journal/300

List of Papers (Total 222)

Patterns of magnesium content in Arctic bryozoan skeletons along a depth gradient

A growing body of evidence suggests that ocean acidification acting synergistically with ocean warming alters carbonate biomineralization in a variety of marine biota. Magnesium often substitutes for Ca in the calcite skeletons of marine invertebrates, increasing their solubility. The spatio-environmental distribution of Mg in marine invertebrates has seldom been studied, despite...

Culturable bacteria community development in postglacial soils of Ecology Glacier, King George Island, Antarctica

Glacier forelands are excellent sites in which to study microbial succession because conditions change rapidly in the emerging soil. Development of the bacterial community was studied along two transects on lateral moraines of Ecology Glacier, King George Island, by culture-dependent and culture-independent approaches (denaturating gradient gel electrophoresis). Environmental...

Guano deposition and nutrient enrichment in the vicinity of planktivorous and piscivorous seabird colonies in Spitsbergen

The crucial role of seabirds in the enrichment of nutrient-poor polar terrestrial ecosystem is well-known. However, no studies have examined the potentially different impacts associated with piscivorous and planktivorous bird colonies on the surrounding tundra soils. Therefore, we compared guano deposition and physical and chemical parameters of soil near two large seabird...

The distribution of ciliates on Ecology Glacier (King George Island, Antarctica): relationships between species assemblages and environmental parameters

Ciliates are important consumers of pico- and nano-sized producers, are nutrient regenerators, and are an important food source for metazoans. To date, ecological research on ciliates has focused on marine ecosystems rather than on glacier habitats. This paper presents the first major study on ciliates from the Ecology Glacier (South Shetland Islands, Antarctica). The objective...

Diversity of RuBisCO gene responsible for CO2 fixation in an Antarctic moss pillar

Antarctic “moss pillars” are lake-bottom biocenoses that are primarily comprised of aquatic mosses. The pillars consist of distinct redox-affected sections: oxidative exteriors and reductive interiors. Batteries of SSU rRNA genotypes of eukaryotes, eubacteria, and cyanobacteria, but no archaea, have been identified in these pillars. However, rRNA-based phylogenetic analysis...

Potential misidentifications of two climate indicator species of the marine arctic ecosystem: Calanus glacialis and C. finmarchicus

Calanoid copepods of the genus Calanus represent an important, nutrient-rich food source for a multitude of Arctic marine organisms. Although morphologically very similar, their life histories and ecological roles differ. Because the distribution of Calanus glacialis and C. finmarchicus corresponds to Arctic and Atlantic water masses, respectively, they are regularly used as...

Growth responses of Sphagnum hollows to a growing season lengthening manipulation in Alaskan Arctic tundra

The global increase in surface air temperature has produced an overall lengthening of the growing season by 3–5 days/decade in the Northern Hemisphere during the last 30 years. The direct impact of a longer growing season has not been well documented for Sphagnum moss communities in the Arctic. We hypothesized that an increase in the growing season length may be detrimental to...

Influence of allochtonous nutrients delivered by colonial seabirds on soil collembolan communities on Spitsbergen

Despite a widespread recognition of the role of seabird colonies in the fertilization of nutrient-poor polar terrestrial ecosystems, qualitative and quantitative data documenting any consequential influence on soil invertebrate communities are still lacking. Therefore, we studied community structure and abundance of springtails (Collembola) in ornithogenic tundra near two large...

Tardigrada of the Revdalen (Spitsbergen) with the descriptions of two new species: Bryodelphax parvuspolaris (Heterotardigrada) and Isohypsibius coulsoni (Eutardigrada)

Despite a century long history of research, tardigrade fauna of the Svalbard Archipelago remains poorly known. In order to deepen our knowledge of tardigrade biodiversity in the Arctic, we collected forty-one moss and lichen samples from the Revdalen and on the south-east slopes of the Rotjesfjellet (Spitsbergen, Svalbard Archipelago) in June 2010. In these samples, twenty-five...

Genetic structure of declining chinstrap penguin (Pygoscelis antarcticus) populations from South Shetland Islands (Antarctica)

Seabirds and their response to climate perturbations are important bioindicators of changes in Antarctic ecosystems. During 30 years of observations of two chinstrap penguin (Pygoscelis antarcticus) colonies, one on King George Island and the other on Penguin Island (South Shetland Islands, Antarctica), the size of the breeding populations decreased by 84 and 41 %, respectively...

The effects of loggers on the foraging effort and chick-rearing ability of parent little auks

We studied the effects of loggers attached to chick-rearing little auks (Alle alle) on their daily time budget (proportion of time spent in the colony and at sea), foraging activity (duration and proportion of long and short foraging flights), chick provisioning rate and their growth and development on Spitsbergen. We found that experimental parent birds performed shorter but...

Eukaryotic phylotypes in aquatic moss pillars inhabiting a freshwater lake in East Antarctica, based on 18S rRNA gene analysis

Aquatic mosses of Leptobryum species form unique tower-like pillars of vegetation termed “moss pillars” in Antarctic lakes. Moss pillars have distinct redox-affected sections: oxidative exteriors and reductive interiors. We have proposed that a “pillar” is a community and habitat of functionally interdependent organisms and may represent a mini-biosphere. Batteries of 16S rRNA...

First observation of krill spawning in the high Arctic Kongsfjorden, west Spitsbergen

In the past, two euphausiid species prevailed in the high Arctic Kongsfjorden, the arcto-boreal Thysanoessa inermis (Kroeyer, 1846) and Thysanoessa raschii (Sars. 1964). Both were considered expatriates from the Barents Sea or Norwegian Sea and non-reproductive due to low temperatures. The macro-zooplankton of the fjord has been studied as a component in an ecosystem context...

Low-diversity fungal assemblage in an Antarctic Dry Valleys soil

The McMurdo Dry Valleys of Antarctica present extreme environmental challenges. Life is restricted to patchy occurrence of lichens, mosses and invertebrates, plus soil microbial communities. Fungi have been described in lichen symbioses but relatively little is known about the occurrence of free-living soil fungi in the Dry Valleys. A challenge in estimating fungal species...

Macrozoobenthos of two Antarctic glacial coves: a comparison with non-disturbed bottom areas

There are only few studies on shallow Antarctic benthic communities associated with habitats affected by intense mineral sedimentation inflow. The analysis of macrofaunal communities associated with two shallow, isolated glacial coves was performed in Admiralty Bay (King George Island) and compared with non-disturbed sites. Multivariate analyses (hierarchical classification, nMDS...

Spring bloom dynamics in Kongsfjorden, Svalbard: nutrients, phytoplankton, protozoans and primary production

The marine ecosystem in Kongsfjorden (79°N), a glacial fjord in Svalbard, is to a large extent well known with regard to hydrography, mesozooplankton and higher trophic levels. Research on primary production and lower trophic levels is still scare and especially investigations from winter and spring periods. The spring bloom dynamics in Kongsfjorden were investigated in 2002. The...

Meiofaunal distribution in Hornsund fjord, Spitsbergen

The meiofaunal community structure at 32 stations in Hornsund fjord (77°N) was investigated, and results were compared with data from another Spitsbergen fjord, Kongsfjorden (79°N). Steep environmental gradients of sedimentation, organic matter content, and salinity from the inner to the outer basin of the fjord are present due to intensive glacial discharges of meltwater and ice...

Nicomache (Loxochona) lokii sp. nov. (Annelida: Polychaeta: Maldanidae) from the Loki’s Castle vent field: an important structure builder in an Arctic vent system

The discovery of the Loki’s Castle vent field at 2,350 m depth on the Arctic mid-ocean ridge in 2008 represents the first known black smoker vent system in the Arctic region. Preliminary results on the benthic invertebrates collected at Loki’s Castle indicate the presence of an endemic fauna dominated by tube-building polychaetes, melitid amphipods and gastropods. Here, we...

The overwintering of Antarctic krill, Euphausia superba, from an ecophysiological perspective

A major aim of this review is to determine which physiological functions are adopted by adults and larvae to survive the winter season with low food supply and their relative importance. A second aim is to clarify the extent to which seasonal variation in larval and adult krill physiology is mediated by environmental factors with a strong seasonality, such as food supply or day...

Age-dependent genetic structure of arctic foxes in Svalbard

Arctic foxes are highly mobile arctic predators with a very weak population genetic structure over large parts of their range. Less is, however, known about the more local genetic structure within regions. Here, we analyze genotypes at 12 microsatellite loci for 561 arctic foxes trapped in the high-arctic archipelago Svalbard and investigate the genetic structure in three...

Summertime primary production and carbon export in the southeastern Beaufort Sea during the low ice year of 2008

Following the extreme low ice year of 2007, primary production and the sinking export of particulate and gel-like organic material, using short-term particle interceptor traps deployed at 100 m, were measured in the southeastern Beaufort Sea during summer 2008. The combined influence of early ice retreat and coastal upwelling contributed to exceptionally high primary production...

Introduction to the special issue on the biology of the circumpolar flaw lead (CFL) in the Amundsen Gulf of the Beaufort Sea (Arctic Ocean)

The sea-ice cover of the Arctic Ocean is decreasing in areal extent and volume more rapidly than model predictions of its response to continued warming of earth’s lower atmosphere. Reflecting this decrease is the spatial and temporal widening of the circumpolar flaw lead, a zone of open water and unconsolidated ice along the coastlines of the shallow seas that surround the deep...

Exitomelita sigynae gen. et sp. nov.: a new amphipod from the Arctic Loki Castle vent field with potential gill ectosymbionts

The newly discovered deep-sea hydrothermal vent field “Loki’s Castle” at 2,350 m depth at 70°N on the Knipovich Ridge north of the island Jan Mayen is the only known black smoker field from the Arctic Ridge system. This vent field holds a unique fauna clearly distinct from vent sites along the Mid-Atlantic Ridge south of Iceland. In addition to numerous maldanid and ampharetid...

Cetacean surveys in the Southern Ocean using icebreaker-supported helicopters

Cetaceans in the Southern Ocean are potentially impacted by anthropogenic activities, such as direct hunting or through indirect effects of a reduced sea ice due to climate change. Knowledge on the distribution of cetacean species in this area is important for conservation, but the remoteness of the study area and the presence of sea ice make it difficult to conduct shipboard...

Red fox takeover of arctic fox breeding den: an observation from Yamal Peninsula, Russia

Here, we report from the first direct observation of a red fox (Vulpes vulpes) intrusion on an arctic fox (Vulpes lagopus) breeding den from the southern Arctic tundra of Yamal Peninsula, Russia in 2007. At the same time, as a current range retraction of the original inhabitant of the circumpolar tundra zone the arctic fox is going on, the red fox is expanding their range from...