File:Spring in the Canadian Arctic.jpg

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Original file(3,800 × 4,600 pixels, file size: 3.33 MB, MIME type: image/jpeg)

Summary[edit]

Description
English: This image shows the western Canadian Arctic a few days after perpetual sunlight commenced for the entire region. The image captures the Arctic in a moment of transformation. Signs of winter are still present, but summer is clearly on the horizon. Sea ice in the Beaufort Sea has started to break up. A swath of open water, black in this image, separates the land from the dense pack of sea ice. Ice still fringes much of the land, but it is thinning. In many places, particularly around Banks Island, the land-bound sea ice is blue, pointing to thin ice or the presence of water on the ice.

Spring is beginning to touch land as well. While frozen lakes punctuate the landscape with white, many lakes are clear. The Mackenzie River flows ice-free to a broad partially frozen delta. Trapped behind a dam of ice, the muddy brown waters blur across the triangular delta. The water that is getting through the ice carries sediment into the Beaufort Sea, colouring the waters near the shore brown and green.

With access to constant light, flowing water, and warmer temperatures, plants are beginning to grow. The land around the Mackenzie River has a deep green hue. The line between tundra and forest runs through this image. The forest is dark green, while the tundra is still brown.

The land also shows the first sign of summer: large forest fires. One large forest fire is outlined in red. Smoke from nearby fires flows across the lower left corner of the image. The boreal forest needs fire to maintain the ecosystem, and large fires happen regularly in the summer. In the remote region shown here, lightning ignites most forest fires.
Date
Source NASA Earth Observatory
Author Jeff Schmaltz

Image captured by the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) on NASA’s Aqua satellite. Image courtesy of the MODIS Rapid Response Team at NASA GSFC.

Licensing[edit]

Public domain
This file is in the public domain in the United States because it was solely created by NASA. NASA copyright policy states that "NASA material is not protected by copyright unless noted". (See Template:PD-USGov, NASA copyright policy page or JPL Image Use Policy.)
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Date/TimeThumbnailDimensionsUserComment
current10:40, 16 June 2010Thumbnail for version as of 10:40, 16 June 20103,800 × 4,600 (3.33 MB)Originalwana (talk | contribs){{Information |Description={{en|1=This image shows the western Canadian Arctic a few days after perpetual sunlight commenced for the entire region. The image captures the Arctic in a moment of transformation. Signs of winter
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