Bones on the tundra

Bones on the tundra

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Credit: SIMON FRASER/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Bones of a musk ox on stony tundra ground. Tundra is the flat, treeless Arctic region that lies between the polar regions of perpetual snow and ice and the northern limit of tree growth. In the brief, warm summer weather, the surface layer of the permafrost (permanently frozen subsoil) thaws, leading to a short flowering season. Here, the nutrients released by the decay of the musk ox carcass have allowed localised plant growth. Tundra vegetation consists mostly of mosses, lichens and small dwarf shrubs. Photographed on Clavering Island, North East Greenland National Park, Greenland.

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Keywords: animal, arctic, bones, carcass, carrion, clavering island, dead, decaying, environment, geography, head, landscape, mammal, musk ox, national park, nature, north east greenland, nutrient release, ovibos moschatus, permafrost, plants, rocky, scenery, shrubs, skeleton, skull, stony, summer, tundra

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