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> Animals
Olivia Perez (Kersti's niece
post Jul 20 2006, 11:28 PM
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Dear Charla,

Are there any animals there and what kind? And what do they eat? Do your studies involve animal research of any kind?

Thank you,

Olivia
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Charla_Jordan
post Jul 22 2006, 05:26 AM
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Hi Olivia—Excellent question!

Yes there are many animals here at Toolik Field Station, some you see and some you don’t. The most common animals are Voles (like a field mouse), Arctic Ground Squirrel (called a Sik Sik), Foxes, Wolves, Caribou, and Bears. They eat a variety of food. Voles, Sik Sik, and Caribou are herbivores and only eat plants—like tussocks (grass) and seeds. The foxes and wolves are carnivores and eat meat—foxes eat voles and birds and wolves eat any animal they can catch from voles to Caribou. The bears are omnivores, which mean they eat plants, like berries, and they eat meat, like fish.

Our studies do involve animal research in a round about way. Here at Toolik the research team that I am working with has fenced off a plot of land so that the animals cannot eat the vegetation. Then they compare the amount of vegetation growth in the experimental plot to the rest of the unprotected field. This way they can tell if the animals eating habits is affecting the Tundra growth.

Thanks for your great question! Charla
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