Hibernation periods of Arctic ground squirrels found altered in response to climate change

Updated: May 26 2023 5:44PM

New Delhi, May 26 (PTI) A new research analysed more than 25 years of climate and biological data about Arctic ground squirrels to find shortened hibernation periods and differences between those of males and females.

The females were also found to come out of their hibernation a little earlier in response to warming, which the researchers said could have both positive and negative ripple effects throughout the food web in these ecosystems.

"I think the thing that makes our study unique is that we are looking at a long enough dataset to show the impacts of climate change on a mammal in the Arctic," said senior author Cory Williams, assistant professor in the Department of Biology at Colorado State University, US, who began studying arctic ground squirrels more than 15 years ago.