NASA / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY NASA / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
On August 13, 2005, almost the entire Ayles Ice Shelf calved from the northern edge of Ellesmere Island. This continues the trend of dramatic loss of these ice shelves over the past century, reducing the remaining ice shelves there from six to five. Since 1900, approximately 90% of the Ellesmere Island ice shelves have calved and floated away. There is insufficient new ice formation to replace the ice that has been lost. The Ayles calving event was the largest in at least the last 25 years; a total of 87.1 sq km (33.6 sq miles) of ice was lost in this event, of which the largest piece was 66.4 sq km (25.6 sq. This piece is equivalent in size to approximately 11, 000 football fields or a little larger than the island of Manhattan.
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