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SSF-Svalbard Science Forum

A warmer future: how warming and increased herbivore pressure affect vegetation change in the High Arctic, RiS ID 10030

Tildelt: kr 52 626

The International Tundra Experiment (ITEX) aims to study changes in vegetation by artificially warming the tundra using open-top chambers. On Svalbard, one experiment within this network is the long-term monitoring site in Endalen, encompassing both experimentally warmed and unwarmed plots as well as exclosure plots. As Svalbard is warming fast, increasing air temperatures over the past years may have led to vegetation changes even in the unwarmed sites. The focus of this study will therefore be on whether vegetation composition in naturally warmed control plots confers to early responses found in the experimentally warmed plots. The study will also investigate whether grazing exclosures have led to different shifts in vegetation compared to the plots that were subject to natural grazing. In addition to vegetation recordings, other factors such as soil moisture, snow depth, and snow melt will be measured as these may be potential factors explaining variation among plots and sites.


SSF-Svalbard Science Forum