Tag Archives: rocky mountains

Kosmische Kollision in den Rocky Mountains

Geologen entdecken das größte und älteste Streufeld von Kratern auf der Erde, das vor 280 Millionen Jahren entstand

Wenn kleine Asteroiden mit einem Durchmesser von wenigen Metern die Erdatmosphäre durchdringen, werden sie durch Reibungskräfte zerrissen und abgebremst. Wenn es sich um feste Eisen-Meteoroide handelt, kann jedes dieser Gebilde einen kleinen Krater in die Erdoberfläche reißen. In enger Nachbarschaft entsteht so ein Streufeld von Kratern – jeder von ihnen kann eine Größe von bis zu 100 Metern besitzen. (more…)

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Small Alpine Insects are Big Messengers of Climate Change

West Glacier, Mont. – Two rare alpine insects – native to the northern Rocky Mountains and dependent on cold waters of glacier and snowmelt-fed alpine streams – are imperiled due to climate warming induced glacier and snow loss according to a study by the U.S. Geological Survey and its partners. (more…)

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Alpine Bumblebees’ Rapid Adaptation to Climate Change Offers Glimmer of Hope to Declining Bee Population

COLUMBIA, Mo. – Rising temperatures in alpine habitats worldwide have resulted in declines in flowering among indigenous plants and contributed to dramatic declines in populations of several bumblebee species prevalent in those regions. Now, researchers at the University of Missouri in a study published in Science, have found that two alpine bumblebee species have responded to this decline in flowering due to warming temperatures by evolving shorter tongues. The results suggest that some bumblebee species may be able to adapt to environmental challenges caused by climate change. (more…)

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Rocky Mountains bewahrten Nordamerikas Tierwelt vor dem Aussterben

Wissenschaftler des Senckenberg Biodiversität und Klima Forschungszentrums haben die „Grande Coupure“ untersucht – während dieses Aussterbeereignis vor etwa 33 Millionen Jahren verschwanden rund 60 Prozent aller europäischen Säugetiere in Folge veränderter Klimabedingungen. In ihrer kürzlich im Fachjournal „Proceedings of the Royal Society B“ veröffentlichten Studie zeigt das deutsch-amerikanische Forscherteam, dass der Aufstieg der Rocky Mountains weite Teile der Säugetierwelt Nordamerikas auf die veränderten Umweltbedingungen vorbereitete und so vor dem Verschwinden bewahrte. (more…)

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New Evidence Shows Power of East Coast Earthquakes

Virginia Earthquake Triggered Landslides at Great Distances

Earthquake shaking in the eastern United States can travel much farther and cause damage over larger areas than previously thought.

U.S. Geological Survey scientists found that last year’s magnitude 5.8 earthquake in Virginia triggered landslides at distances four times farther—and over an area 20 times larger—than previous research has shown.

“We used landslides as an example and direct physical evidence to see how far-reaching shaking from east coast earthquakes could be,” said Randall Jibson, USGS scientist and lead author of this study. “Not every earthquake will trigger landslides, but we can use landslide distributions to estimate characteristics of earthquake energy and how far regional ground shaking could occur.” (more…)

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2001-02 Drought Helped to Shift Rocky Mountain Pine Beetle Outbreak into Epidemic

A new University of Colorado Boulder study shows for the first time that episodes of reduced precipitation in the southern Rocky Mountains, especially during the 2001-02 drought, greatly accelerated development of the mountain pine beetle epidemic.

The study, the first ever to chart the evolution of the current pine beetle epidemic in the southern Rocky Mountains, compared patterns of beetle outbreak in the two primary host species, the ponderosa pine and lodgepole pine, said CU-Boulder doctoral student Teresa Chapman. The current mountain pine beetle outbreak in the southern Rockies — which range from southern Wyoming through Colorado and into northern New Mexico –is estimated to have impacted nearly 3,000 square miles of forests, said Chapman, lead study author. (more…)

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Statistical Analysis Projects Future Temperatures in North America

COLUMBUS, Ohio – For the first time, researchers have been able to combine different climate models using spatial statistics – to project future seasonal temperature changes in regions across North America.

They performed advanced statistical analysis on two different North American regional climate models and were able to estimate projections of temperature changes for the years 2041 to 2070, as well as the certainty of those projections.

The analysis, developed by statisticians at Ohio State University, examines groups of regional climate models, finds the commonalities between them, and determines how much weight each individual climate projection should get in a consensus climate estimate. (more…)

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The Depths of Winter: How Much Snow Is In Fact On the Ground?

*Will lasers and GPS technology finally enable accurate measurement of snowfall?*

Equipped with specialized lasers and GPS technology, scientists are working to address a critical wintertime weather challenge: how to accurately measure the amount of snow on the ground.

Transportation crews, water managers and others who make vital safety decisions need precise measurements of how snow depth varies across wide areas. (more…)

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