Climate change in the Arctic has affected the behavior of white gulls

Climate change in the Arctic has affected the behavior of white gulls listed in the Red Book. Birds move from typical lowland areas to rocks and change their diet.

As Maria Gavrilo, the deputy director for scientific work of the Russian Arctic National Park, told us earlier, almost the entire population nested large colonies on islands or capes. Now these colonies are fragmented into small rock formations. Changed and food birds: instead of hunting near the edge of the perennial ice, white gulls began to look for food in the straits and bays, where the glaciers are descending into the sea.

According to scientists, the reason for the dispersal of seagulls is that there are more hungry polar bears on the islands. In summer, ice retreats farther to the north, because of which the clumsy lacks the habitual prey and begin to catch the birds.

To find out how these changes affect the number of rare birds, full international studies are needed, which have not been conducted since 2006, Gavrilo said. In the Russian part of the Arctic, according to the latest data, there are 11-13 thousand pairs of white gulls. Their habitat includes the archipelagos Spitsbergen, Franz Josef Land, the Northern Earth and other islands.

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