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New algorithms for bio-acoustic monitoring of ptarmigan works very well
28. November 2022

After two years of collaboration with French bio-acousticians, the Ptarmigan module is now thoroughly testing the resulting algorithms for automatic detection/classification of Willow and Rock ptarmigan from our bio-acoustic monitoring on Varanger Peninsula.

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Arctic Fox conference in Svalbard
11. October 2022

The 6th International arctic fox conference was arranged by the Norwegian Polar Institute in Longyearbyen 26-29 August. The conference was held at the University Centre in Svalbard and had in total 69 participants, of which 24 were online, from 14 countries.

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NEW COAT CASE STORY!
13. September 2022

Long-term monitoring represents a baseline approach for climate-ecological studies. Analyses and modeling of such monitoring data provide opportunities to generate explanatory predictions, used to test ecological theories, but also anticipatory predictions, suited to inform future management and policy decisions.

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High numbers in the Svalbard reindeer populations
7. September 2022 This year's counting trip has been completed and many reindeer were counted on the isolated peninsulas on the west coast of Svalbard. These localities form one of the core areas for monitoring Svalbard reindeer. Both the population on Brøggerhalvøya and on the islands in Forlandssundet – Sarsøyra and Kaffiøyra – were large this year with consistently good calf production at all monitoring...

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COAT's prediction for the willow ptarmigan populations in Finnmark corresponds quite well with FeFo's assessments
30. August 2022 COAT has modeled the population fluctuations of willow ptarmigan in Finnmark and looked at what influences changes in the population. The modeling is the result of a collaboration between COAT and several stakeholders, including the landowner Finnmarkseiendommen (FeFo).Now we have the results of this year’s FeFo assessment (i.e. line-transect surveys) to compare with our predictions which was...

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Record year for the arctic fox in Varanger
26. August 2022

Despite moderate abundances of rodents (an increase phase year) 12 arctic fox litters and 76 pups have been registered on Varanger Peninsula so far this summer.

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COAT predicts this year’s ptarmigan density in Finnmark
12. July 2022

COAT has modeled the population fluctuations of willow ptarmigan in Finnmark and looked at what influences changes in the population. The modeling is the result of a collaboration between COAT and several stakeholders, including the landowner Finnmarkseiendommen (FeFo).

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One more PhD in COAT
13. June 2022

On 8th of June Eivind Kleiven has successfully defended his PhD thesis “Population cycles in small rodents seen through the lens of a wildlife camera".

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Fresh PhD in COAT
8. June 2022

On the 3rd of June Pedro Da Silva Nicolau has successfully defended his PhD thesis “Boreal rodents fluctuating in space and time. Tying the observation process to the modeling of seasonal population dynamics".

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New PhD in COAT
2. June 2022

On 24th of May Isabell Eischeid has successfully defended her PhD thesis “Tundra vegetation ecology from the sky - Aerial images and photogrammetry as tools to monitor landscape change.

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Automatic sound stations and bioacoustics: The backbone of COAT Varanger's annual winter field work on ptarmigan
13. May 2022

Members of COAT Varanger’s ptarmigan module has recently deployed the sound stations for this year’s monitoring in the study area just above Bergebydalen in Nesseby municipality. This work started back in 2017, and this is therefore the 6th years of monitoring the two arctic ptarmigan species by use of bioacoustics.

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Monitoring of gyrfalcons, golden eagles and ravens in Varanger
29. April 2022

COAT have in collaboration with Rovfuglgruppa I Vest-Finnmark, for the fourth consecutive year, checked how many gyrfalcons, golden eagles and ravens that are attempting to breed on the Varanger peninsula.

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New study started in Svalbard
19. April 2022 We have started a large carcass-project in Svalbard and the first pictures is already collected. It will be interesting to see how the predators behave. The project is a collaboration between Norwegian Polar Institute, COAT and Nord Universitet. To read more about this study see Norwegian Polarinstitue's article presenting the study (in Norwegian). The same study has been carried out by COAT...

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Track our red foxes online!
18. February 2022

You may have heard about our gps-tracking project of red foxes on Varanger Peninsula. You can now participate by exploring the latest positions on this interactive and automatically updated map.

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COAT related publications from the SUSTAIN project
9. February 2022 SUSTAIN was a nationally coordinated research project funded by the Research Council of Norway during 2015-2021. The project included three geographic nods (research groups): Centre for Ecological and Evolutionary Synthesis (CEES) in Oslo, Centre for Biodiversity Dynamics (CBD) in Trondheim and COAT in Tromsø. A SUSTAIN special issue of the journal Climate Research has now been published. 

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Drone-based mapping of changed vegetation
8. December 2021

COAT researchers monitor vegetation disturbances by biotic and abiotic factors, such as herbivory and extreme winter weather. However, these are not typical vegetation classes included in remote-sensing based maps.

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NEW! COAT Video
14. October 2021 COAT expands the vegetation monitoring at Svalbard, now including drones and high-resolution imagery. The team is learning to use advanced equipment to capture not only changes in the vegetation but also to quantify disturbances from herbivores and damage after winters with a lot of ice covering the ground.

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COAT predicted an increase in ptarmigan populations in Finnmark this year and this corresponds well with FeFo's own surveys
29. September 2021 COAT has modeled the population fluctuations of willow ptarmigan in Finnmark and looked at what influences changes in the population. The modeling is the result of a collaboration between COAT, the research project SUSTAIN and several stakeholders, including the landowner Finnmarkseiendommen (FeFo). The stakeholders wanted the models to be used to predict the ptarmigan populations one and...

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Do the forbs miss the Mammoth?
21. September 2021

An international team led by a COAT -professor at UiT proposes a mechanism by which the large Pleistocene mammals were essential in promoting a very high floristic diversity, and that a similar mechanism is likely to promote diversity in our contemporary grasslands. The idea arised in the tundra grasslands of Varanger Peninsula during monitoring for COAT.

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NEW COAT CASE STORY! (In Norwegian)
17. September 2021 The Eastern European vole is the only alien mammal species in Svalbard and the host for a zoonotic parasite. In a new paper published in PNAS, COAT researchers analyze the vole’s population dynamics. These analyses provide insight about the expected development of the vole population in a warming climate in Svalbard and more generally, what drives the renowned vole and lemming cycles in the...

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Cascading effects of moth outbreaks on subarctic soil food webs
31. August 2021

Large-scale moth outbreaks have led to profound changes in plant communities from birch forests dominated by dwarf shrubs to grass-dominated systems. However, the indirect effects on the belowground compartment are poorly known.

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NEW! COAT CASE STORY
16. June 2021

Long time series are important for understanding changes in nature. Despite extensive research on vegetation in Svalbard, long-term monitoring has been lacking. But we can now present “Year 1” of Svalbard vegetation monitoring within COAT.

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This year's snow measurements in Komagdalen and Vestre Jakobselv have been carried out
29. March 2021 Snow measurements are an important part of the monitoring done in COAT – snow is indeed an important driver of many processes underlying dynamics of arctic ecosystems. The measurements we do focus on simple measurements of snow depths in different habitats (snowbeds, hummock, meadow, heath), as well as much more detailed assessment of the different layers in the snow cover, particularly the...

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Understanding and predicting how climate change impacts Svalbard ptarmigan population dynamics
18. February 2021 Iterative near-term forecasting is a promising approach to better understand and manage rapidly changing ecosystems such as the Arctic. Forecasts generated on a short-term time scale allow scientific hypotheses to be tested more frequently, speeding up scientific advancement, and are relevant to managers because the time scale can be influenced by decision-making. This approach was used by...

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Red fox traps placed in Varanger
11. February 2021 In the first week of February, a small team from COAT and local experts Alfred Ørjebu and John Arne Kristiansen placed 3 wooden box traps designed for live trapping red foxes in southeastern Varanger peninsula. The effort is part of a new research project that attempts to deploy GPS collars on red foxes to investigate their movement behavior as part of the COAT Arctic Fox module

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New method: Chemical traits of single leaves using near‐infrared reflectance spectroscopy (NIRS)
26. October 2020 Measures of plant chemical traits are often achieved by merging several leaves, masking potential foliar variation within and among plant individuals. In a new study, COAT researchers developed a new application of Near-infrared Reflectance Spectroscopy (NIRS) methodology that provides measures of carbon, nitrogen, phosphorus, and silicon from single, whole leaves down to the size of just 4 mm.

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Vegetation fieldwork Varanger 2020
13. October 2020

Vegetation monitoring was carried out in late July and early August in Komagdalen and Vestre Jakobselv on the Varanger peninsula. Besides the annual monitoring in heath and meadow sites, the fieldteam also conducted point intercept frequency in newly established heath sites further away from the productive river valleys.

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This year's Svalbard summer is the warmest on record
28. September 2020 The average temperature for June, July and August at Svalbard Airport was 7.2 degrees, which is 3 degrees above normal, and 0.5 degrees above the old summer record from 2015. For Svalbard Airport, a series of measurements dating back to 1899 has been prepared. This year's summer is extreme. It joins the ranks of hot summers for the last 20 to 30 years, and stands out completely from the...

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Good news from the arctic foxes in Varanger
24. September 2020

There were five dens with confirmed reproduction this summer, despite the low small rodent abundance. Three were in the eastern half of the Peninsual and two further to the west. It is likely that there were some places with some remaining lemmings, as quite a few lemming remains were found on at least one den.

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The annual vegetation monitoring in Svalbard was successfully carried out
24. September 2020

Thanks to local forces already in Svalbard and Ingrid traveling up, the annual vegetation monitoring in Svalbard was successfully carried out despite restrictions to travel due to covid-19.

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COAT has established a monitoring system for the invasive Eastern European vole (formerly named the Sibling vole) in Svalbard
28. August 2020 The new Reconyx cameras adapted to COAT’s small mammal photoboxes arrived (at last!) in August and have just enabled us to finalize the monitoring system for the invasive Eastern European vole (formerly named the Sibling vole) in Svalbard.Read more: Community-based actions against an invasive rodent and its zoonotic parasite in Longyearbyen.

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Blog post at JEcol
25. August 2020 The COAT article “Can novel pest outbreaks drive ecosystem transitions in northern-boreal birch forest?” in Journal of Ecology was shortlisted for the Harper Prize early researcher award earlier this spring.

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New paper from The Moss Tundra Module
24. March 2020 Recently the Moss Tundra Module by Ravolainen et.al has published the paper High Arctic ecosystem states: Conceptual models of vegetation change to guide long-term monitoring and research in Ambo’s special edition Terrestrial biodiversity in a rapidly changing Arctic.

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New COAT-related RCN project
24. March 2020

The Research Council of Norway has funded a new three-year project that will be led by core personnel from the tundra-forest module of COAT.

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Several popular scientific contributions from COAT in Fram Forum 2020
18. March 2020

Fram Forum is an annual popular scientific publication of the Fram Centre. COAT researchers contribute with several articles in the 2020 issue.

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A new batch of Arctic foxes released on the Varanger Peninsula
6. February 2020

On January 27th Statens Naturoppsyn (SNO) together with Norwegian Institute for Nature Research (NINA) and COAT released 14 arctic fox pups on Varanger Peninsula.

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COAT researchers win the first Fægri price
13. December 2019

COAT researchers Ole Petter Laksforsmo Vindstad and Jane Uhd Jepsen have won the first Fægri price for an article on geometrid moths in the Norwegian popular science journal Naturen.

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Implementation of research infrastructure – update from COAT Svalbard
8. October 2019

COAT Svalbard has now implemented and operationalized several types of research infrastructure in the core areas in Nordenskiöld Land and in Brøgger Peninsula.

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New small rodent exclosures by COAT Varanger
27. September 2019

COAT Varanger has established small rodent exclosures that distinguish between direct and indirect climate impacts on vegetation.

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Deployment of CO2 sensors
28. August 2019

As a part of the project COAT-Tools we are collaborating with the department of computer science here at UiT. They are working on sensor technology that can help us collect the data we need in an efficient way.

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Declining tundra bird populations linked to Arctic greening
1. July 2019 Many arctic bird populations have declined substantially during the last decades. Preliminary analyses in connection with the development of an ecosystem-based assessment system for Norwegian arctic tundra have shown that this also applies to COAT’s intensive monitoring sites in Varanger Peninsula. Many bird species are particularly vulnerable during the breeding season, and especially those...

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An uncertain future for the mountain birch forest
17. December 2018

Outbreaks by geometrid moths have caused extensive damage to mountain birch forest in northern Scandinavia during the last 15 years. A new study helps to explain why the damage has been so severe and suggests that the forest may fail to recover in the most heavily affected areas.

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First recording of a breeding introduced arctic fox on Varanger Peninsula
19. November 2018

Screening of the photos from trail cameras has just revealed that one arctic fox litter was born on Varanger Peninsula this summer.

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Weather stations up and running!
6. November 2018 We proudly announce that the first three COAT weather stations at the Varanger peninsula are now installed. They started transmitting data during the first week of October. The stations are located in the birch forest in Bergebydalen (150 masl), in the tall shrub zone in Torvhaugdalen (268 masl) and at the top of Reinhaugen (470 masl). Links to the stations will be available at the COAT...

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