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Impacts of tidewater glacier advance on iceberg habitatIcebergs in proglacial fjords serve as pupping, resting and molting habitat for some of the largest seasonal aggregations of harbor seals (Phoca vitulina richardii) in Alaska. One of the largest aggregations in Southeast Alaska occurs in Johns Hopkins Inlet, Glacier Bay National Park, where up to 2000 seals use icebergs produced by Johns Hopkins Glacier. Like other advancing tidewater glaciers, the advance of Johns Hopkins Glacier over the past century has been facilitated by the growth and continual redistribution of a submarine end moraine, which has limited mass losses from iceberg calving and submarine melting and enabled glacier thickening by providing flow resistance. A 15-year record of aerial surveys reveals (i) a decline in iceberg concentrations concurrent with moraine growth and (ii) that the iceberg size distributions can be approximated as power law distributions, with relatively little variability and no clear trends in the power law exponent despite large changes in ice fluxes over seasonal and interannual timescales. Together, these observations suggest that sustained tidewater glacier advance should typically be associated with reductions in the number of large, habitable icebergs, which may have implications for harbor seals relying on iceberg habitat for critical life-history events.
Rapid range expansion of a marine ectotherm reveals the demographic and ecological consequences of short-term variability in seawater temperature and dissolved oxygenThe distributions of marine ectotherms are governed by physiological sensitivities to long-term trends in seawater temperature and dissolved oxygen. Short-term variability in these parameters has the potential to facilitate rapid range expansions, and the resulting ecological and socioeconomic consequences may portend those of future marine communities. Here, we combine physiological experiments with ecological and demographic surveys to assess the causes and consequences of sudden but temporary poleward range expansions of a marine ectotherm with considerable life history plasticity (California market squid, Doryteuthis opalescens). We show that sequential factors related to resource accessibility in the core range—the buildup of large populations as a result of competitive release and climate-associated temperature increase and oxygen loss that constrain aerobic activity—may drive these expansions. We also reveal that poleward range expansion alters the body size—and therefore trophic role—of invading populations, with potential negative implications for socioeconomically valuable resident species. To help forecast rapid range expansions of marine ectotherms, we advocate that research efforts focus on factors impacting resource accessibility in core ranges. Determining how environmental conditions in receiving ecosystems affect body size and how body size is related to trophic role will help refine estimates of the impacts of future marine communities.
University of Alaska Anchorage Commencement Program May 2012University of Alaska Anchorage, 2012-05-06These official programs are distributed to attendees of the annual commencement ceremonies. The programs include the event schedule as well as the degrees and honors awarded, listing recipients of the degrees and honors. May 2012
University of Alaska Anchorage Commencement Program May 2011University of Alaska Anchorage, 2011-05-01These official programs are distributed to attendees of the annual commencement ceremonies. The programs include the event schedule as well as the degrees and honors awarded, listing recipients of the degrees and honors. May 2011