An engaging and beautifully illustrated guide to some of the most exciting wildlife in the world. This enchanting guide to the birds, animals and marine life of the Arctic Ocean and its polar fringes, is a fascinating and informative read. Visitors to the region can cruise the arctic coast in the company of blue whales and belugas, observe polar bears pursuing barnacle geese and seals, and experience a host of shorebirds and wildfowl gorging on the abundant food. Tony Soper's expert knowledge is richly supplemented with full-colour illustrations by award-winning wildlife artist Dan Powell. This revised edition includes a new section covering the distinct flora and fauna of the Bering Sea, an area about to see a significant increase in visitor numbers as a direct result of changes in the ice cover of the Arctic Ocean.
Table of Contents
New appendix covering Bering Sea to include:
Fish: Silver salmon, Hump-backed salmon
Birds: Snow goose, Sooty shearwater, Short-tailed shearwater, Bald eagle, Horned puffin, Tufted puffin, Common murre, Pigeon guillemot, Crested auklet, Parakeet auklet, Least auklet, Marbled murrelet, Kittlitz’s murrelet, Ancient murrelet, Cassin’s auklet, Whiskered auklet, Rhinoceros auklet, Red-necked phalarope, Wilson’s phalarope, Glaucous-winged gull, Herring gull, Mew gull, Aleutian tern, Red-legged kittiwake, Short-tailed albatross, Laysan albatross, Blackfooted albatross, Harlequin duck (and in molt on water), Fork-tailed storm petrel, Leach’s petrel, Red-faced cormorant, Pelagic cormorant
Mammals: Grey whale, Sei whale, Long-finned pilot whale, White-sided dolphin, Stellers sealion, Northern fur seal, Harbour seal, Sea otter, Suslik Arctic ground squirrel, Spermophilus undulatus
Plants hanseatic log cloudberries
Tanaga Island Seabeach senecio, Senecio pseudo-arnica
Cape Shalaurov-Izba: Dwarf willow, Dryas, Knotweed, Cottongrass, Draba, Alpine saxifrage
Wrangel: Wooly lousewort, Spider plant, Nodding lynchis
Kolyuchin Island: Mountain sorrel, Boreal Jacob’s ladder, Lapland butterbur, Scurvy grass, Glaucous gentian, Yellow mountain saxifrage, Knotweed, chickweed, Monkshood Aconitum delphinifolium, Cowparsley, Arctic fireweed, Northern wormwood, Purplish braya
Typically, belugas swim steadily along the surface, unlike most other whales, breathing in a rather thin steamy burst a couple of times a minute. They spend a lot of time under the pack ice, with the broad and flexible head used as a cushion to lift the floes in order to breathe. They can break through as much as 100cm of solid ice.
They are a talkative species – a ‘gam’ of belugas would be the perfect description for a pod whose species was known to whalers as the sea canary because of its varied and musical vocabulary. They indulge in trills, clicks, squeals, bell sounds, whistles and raspberries, sounds which are heard clearly above the surface.