Arctic Environments

Marine Wildlife and Habitats

Marine Wildlife and Habitats

Research includes polar bears, nearshore marine ecosystems, walruses, seabirds, habitat dynamics, quantitative ecology and biometrics.

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Changing Arctic Ecosystems (CAE)

Changing Arctic Ecosystems (CAE)

Through the CAE Initiative, USGS is gaining better understanding how wildlife populations of special interest are responding to habitat changes in the Arctic.

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The current warming trend in the Arctic is unlike anything previously recorded and is affecting the region faster than any other place on Earth, bringing dramatic reductions in sea ice, altered weather, and thawing permafrost. 

Implications of these changes include rapid coastal erosion which threatens villages and critical infrastructure, degradation to wildlife habitat, increased greenhouse-gas emissions from thawing permafrost, and threats from invasive species; all of which have potentially significant impacts on subsistence activities and cultural resources. Changing habitats and related impacts to species are of great importance to land and wildlife managers as well as indigenous peoples. Federal, State, and tribal managers need to understand how climate is impacting the lands and species for which they are responsible, and what actions may be warranted to protect those resources for.

The USGS is committed to providing the information, models, and other tools that managers need to support decision making.