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Tetons alpine streams: unsung heroes of diversity and vulnerability

Finn, Deb
Alpine streams are the highest-elevation headwaters of major river basins like the Mississippi and Columbia. Unique ecosystems in their own right, alpine streams support a diversity of animals, plants, and microbes that thrive in cold conditions with short seasonal windows of opportunity for growth and reproduction. Indeed, most alpine streams rely on meltwater from various sources – including glaciers, snowpack, and subterranean ice – with each source type generating a unique set of environmental conditions to which the local fauna and flora are adapted. I will give an overview of alpine stream ecology from a worldwide perspective then discuss ongoing research in the Tetons. I’ll emphasize conservation concern associated with climate change and the possibility of climate refugia to help alpine biodiversity ride out the worst of this storm.
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University of Wyoming. Libraries