Skip to main content
U.S. flag

An official website of the United States government

Effects of wind-hardened snow on foraging by reindeer (Rangifer tarandus)

January 1, 1991

Various methods were investigated for assessing the relationship between wind-hardened snow (upsik) and forage availability to reindeer. Mean bottom area of individual craters was not a function of depth, hardness or integrated hardness. Individual crater area was partially dependent on specific cratering time (r2 = .60). Cratering time per active period increased with integrated snow hardness (r2 = .88). Number of craters and total area cratered increased with decreasing site hardness. Reindeer always cratered microsites of lesser depth and hardness than found in the general feeding site. A threefold decrease in snow hardness resulted in a fourfold increase in forage availability

Citation Information

Publication Year 1991
Title Effects of wind-hardened snow on foraging by reindeer (Rangifer tarandus)
Authors W.B. Collins, T.S. Smith
Publication Type Article
Publication Subtype Journal Article
Series Title Arctic
Index ID 1012852
Record Source USGS Publications Warehouse
USGS Organization Alaska Biological Science Center