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Posted Fri Jan 30 2009: from Alaska Dispatch:
Northern life endures a midwinter's thaw
[The] thermometer at KJNP radio station in North Pole registered a low of minus 58 degrees Fahrenheit on Jan. 3 ... On Jan. 16, the same thermometer read plus 55 degrees. In Anchorage, temperatures varied from minus 31 degrees Fahrenheit at Campbell Creek Science Center Jan. 7 to plus 52 degrees at Merrill Field Jan. 16.... In areas where the warm wind was a real snow-eater, leaving the ground bare, red-backed voles lost their network of tunnels under the snow where they live, eat, and sometimes even breed in midwinter when times are good. "It can be 10-to-15 degrees warmer under the snowpack," said Ian van Tets, a biology professor at the University of Alaska Anchorage. "For a little furry animal those 10-to-15 degrees can make a big difference. "I think this is going to be a bad winter for voles and lemmings," he said. "There's probably going to be a lot of die-off."
[Read more stories about: arctic meltdown, global warming, holyshit]

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HarryP says: "55 degrees at the north pole?! Is that with or without windwarm?"
Dean says: "Are the Arctic scientists sunbathing?"

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'Doc Michael says:
Voles and lemmings are key prey for raptors, wolves, foxes... a bad year for...
Wait -- did you say 55 degrees at the North Pole? In January!?

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