Reply Wed 5 Nov, 2008 06:54 pm
even the poor little lemmings are now being threatened by increasing temperatures in the northern regions .
it seems that the old story about lemmings drowning themselves if there is overpopulation can be laid to rest . the lemmings - and perhaps other species - will be decimated "naturally" by the global warming occuring .


Climate pushing lemmings to cliff
Climate change is bringing wetter winters to southern Norway, a bleak prospect for the region's lemmings.

Scientists found that numbers of the animals no longer vary over a regular cycle, as they did until a decade ago; there are no more bumper years.

The snow is not stable enough, they think, to provide winter shelter.

Writing in the journal Nature, the researchers suggest the lack of Norwegian lemmings is affecting other animals such as foxes and owls.

In boom years, lemmings are the most plentiful and important prey for these carnivores.

Until the mid-1990s, the lemming population in the study area in southern Norway varied on a cycle of three to five years.

Rather than hibernating, lemmings spend the winter living in the space between the ground and a stable layer of snow above.

Dry winters would allow large numbers to survive until spring, resulting in a population explosion.

On occasions, there were so many that snowploughs were deployed to clear squashed animals from roads.

These years often saw Norwegian lemmings (Lemmus lemmus) having to compete hard for food.

The desperate search led some to jump off high ground into water, leading to the popular - but wrong - assumption that they were prone to commit collective suicide.

But the peak years are not occurring anymore. The research team, composed of Norwegian and French scientists, believes the winters are now too humid, leading to the "wrong kind of snow".
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Reply Fri 9 Jan, 2009 01:26 pm
Does that include the US congress
Reply Fri 9 Jan, 2009 01:42 pm
au :
are you being ruled by norway ? <GRIN> you could do worse .
i understand that the norwegian economy has been running a sizeable trade surplus for many years by taking a good chunk of the revenues from gas and oil companies for the benefit of all norwegians .
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