Preprints
https://doi.org/10.5194/hess-2023-297
https://doi.org/10.5194/hess-2023-297
28 Feb 2024
 | 28 Feb 2024
Status: this preprint is currently under review for the journal HESS.

Thermal Regime of High Arctic Tundra Ponds, Nanuit Itillinga (Polar Bear Pass), Nunavut, Canada

Kathy L. Young and Laura C. Brown

Abstract. This study evaluates the seasonal and inter-seasonal temperature regime of small tundra ponds ubiquitous to an extensive low-gradient wetland in the Canadian High Arctic. Pond temperatures can modify evaporation and ground thaw rates, losses of greenhouse gases and control the timing and emergence of insects and larvae critical for migratory bird feeding habits. We focus our study on thaw ponds with a range of hydrologic linkages and sizes across Nanuit Itillinga, formerly known as Polar Bear Pass (PBP), Bathurst Island, and whenever possible, compare their thermal signals to other Arctic ponds. Pond temperatures and water levels were evaluated using temperature water level loggers and verified by regular manual measurements. Other environmental data collected included microclimate, frost table depths and water conductivity. Our results show that there is much variability in pond thermal regimes over seasons, years, and space. Cumulative relative pond temperatures were similar across years, with ponds normally reaching 10–15 °C for short to longer periods except in 2013, a cold summer season when pond temperatures never exceeded 5 °C. Pond frost tables and water conductivities respond to variable substrate conditions and pond thermal patterns. This study contributes to the ongoing discussion of climate warming and its impact on Arctic landscapes.

Kathy L. Young and Laura C. Brown

Status: open (until 25 Apr 2024)

Comment types: AC – author | RC – referee | CC – community | EC – editor | CEC – chief editor | : Report abuse
  • RC1: 'Comment on hess-2023-297', Anonymous Referee #1, 19 Mar 2024 reply
  • RC2: 'Comment on hess-2023-297', Anonymous Referee #2, 25 Mar 2024 reply
  • RC3: 'Comment on hess-2023-297', Anonymous Referee #3, 08 Apr 2024 reply
  • RC4: 'Comment on hess-2023-297', Anonymous Referee #4, 15 Apr 2024 reply
Kathy L. Young and Laura C. Brown

Data sets

Replication Data for: Thermal Regime of High Arctic Tundra Ponds, Nanuit Itillinga (Polar Bear Pass), Nunavut, Canada K. L. Young and L. C. Brown https://doi.org/10.5683/SP3/KGRQDO

Kathy L. Young and Laura C. Brown

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Short summary
This work details the temperature and related variables of several High Arctic ponds in the Nanuit Itillinga (Polar Bear Pass) National Wildlife Area through nine seasons. The ponds show much variability in their temperature patterns over time and space. Ponds normally reached 10–15 °C for parts of the summer except in 2013, a cold summer season when pond temperatures never exceeded 5 °C. This study contributes to the ongoing discussion of climate warming and its impact on Arctic landscapes.