Arctic/alpine pollination workshop in Kluane National Park, Yukon - Part 1

Hello all, my lengthy summer travels concluded on Friday when we drove about 2,000 km from New Orleans to Peterborough, Ontario in 36 hours.  I am slowly sorting through all of my photos from my trips, starting with the workshop titled "Pollination, Climate Change and Invasive Species in Arctic and Alpine Ecosystems" in Kluane Research Station in Yukon.  There will be at least one official document reporting on the outcomes of the workshop, so I will not comment on the specifics. The general conclusion is that researchers (from both Canada and US), the Yukon government, local First Nations groups, and independent scientists all agree about the importance of climate change and pollination and the limited information currently present about Arctic and alpine regions.  Therefore, we will try to incorporate scientific communities and citizens in northern communities to start documenting zoological and botanical changes in various spatiotemporal scales.

Below are photos from the first two days of my Yukon trip (21st to 22nd).

Arriving in Whitehorse on July 21st.  The weather was miserable and rainy.
A white frame outlining a horse outside city hall.

The following morning from my hotel room.  Much nicer weather, although it still drizzled from time to time.

A notice board high above the ground.

Watched a short documentary in the Parks Canada tent showing the history about the waterway travels during the gold rush era.

Fireweed (Chamerion sp.) on Yukon River
Fireweed (Chamerion sp.) along the Yukon River

Our transportation to Kluane Research Station arrived shortly after lunch.

First coyote

Delphinium sp.
Delphinium glaucum

A red-bummed Bombus sp. visiting D. glaucum flower

Fireweed (Chamerion sp.)
Fireweed - the official territorial flower of Yukon since 1957.  There are two most common species in Yukon - C. angustifolium and C. latifolium.  Both species have large flowers (greater than 2 cm in diameter), but C. angustifolium is erect and the raceme has many flowers, while C. latifolium is decumbent to ascending and has few flowers on the raceme; therefore, I believe this is C. angustifolium.

Solidago simplex - it is common along the roadside and the research station.

Looking back the way we just came from via the Alaska Highway.

Views along Alaska Highway
The landscape is incredible at Kluane National Park, everything is so grand and spectacular!

Second coyote from the drive

Views along Alaska Highway
More beautiful view from the car.

Arriving at the research station - this is the air strip.

One end of the strip.

The other end.

The buildings.

A building dedicated to Dr. Walter A. Wood, a Governor of the Institute and once the President of the American Geographical Society.

Rusty, the research station dog
Rusty the dog.

The research station is surrounded by my study species - Shepherdia canadensis!  I was very excited to see it and surprised at how well the (female) plants are doing in terms of fruit production.

Another S. canadensis.

An Oxytropis sp.

Fireweed (Chamerion sp.)
Bumble bee visiting C. angustifolium

Fireweed (Chamerion sp.)
More fireweed flowers.  They were also very abundant around the station and frequently visited by pollinators.

Grass-of-Parnassus (Parnassia palustris)
Grass-of-Parnassus (Parnassia palustris).  Love the false green nectaries on the stamens (along with the veins on the petals) to attract pollinators.

A fly fooled by the false nectaries.

Bombus sp. on Northern Sweet Vetch (Hedysarum boreale)
Bombus sp. on Northern Sweet Vetch (Hedysarum boreale)

An albino(?) fly.

Unopened Wild flax (Linum lewisii)

A wintergreen (Pyrola sp.).

A knotweed (Polygonum sp.)

A flower fly visiting paintbrush (Castilleja sp.)

A bumble bee visiting paintbrush (Castilleja sp.)

A Mormon Fritillary (Speyeria mormonia) found on willow.  I highly recommend this easy-to-use brochure for identifying the common butterflies in the Yukon.

A waxwing on tree top - taken with my kit lens.

The other research station dog
The second pooch living in the research station.  This dog loves to play fetch!

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