Glaciers - 8 of 29

Glaciers FAQs - 29 Found

Other than losing an aesthetic landscape feature, what effect does losing glaciers have?

Glaciers act as reservoirs of water that persist through summer. Continual melt from glaciers contributes water to the ecosystem throughout dry months, creating perennial stream habitat and a water source for plants and animals. The cold runoff from glaciers also affects downstream water temperatures. Many aquatic species in mountainous environments require cold water temperatures to survive, which the presence of glacier meltwater ensures. Some aquatic insects, fundamental components of the food web, are especially sensitive to stream temperature and cannot survive without the cooling effects of glacial meltwater. Such changes in stream habitat may also have adverse effects for threatened native bull trout (Salvelinus confluentus) and other keystone salmon species.

Tags: Global Change, Glaciers, Climate, Snow, Ice, Polar