As Gifford and Thomas are parked in front of Summit Camp, I am parked about 460 miles away as the crow flies, or, as a lost redpoll flies, at Kangerlussuaq International Science Support for the next 6 weeks. This is my third time here in Kanger, but my first time being here in May… my first time seeing snow and brown instead of green plants and flowers. I’m here early to start research on the ecology of the Arctic mosquito. The ponds are just starting to thaw but are very alive, more alive than the surrounding landscape.
Tomorrow I’m heading to the ice margin to check out 10 or so ponds that I have been monitoring over the past two years. I’ve never seen them this early, but imagine they’ll be alive and well, and also full of mosquitoes, just like the pond I visited today.
I’ll post a few entries as the biology gets going so stay tuned, and be sure to look for tweets about the first flower, first mosquito bite, first musk ox etc. I’ve already been teased by pictures of ptarmigan, foxes, hares, and caribou still decked out in their winter wear.