CCW - Extinction: It's not just for Polar Bears anymore

Okay, so this one is a bit of a tear-jerker and I usually like to avoid mixing sentimentality with environmentalism, but it is very informative and interesting if sad. It is greenman3610's Climate Crock of the Week from about three weeks ago and as usual well worth watching.

I tend to be skeptical about anthropomorphizing our fellow earthlings, but I'll be damned if that wasn't a very affectionate mama walrus hugging her baby! If walruses weren't so ugly they just might top polar bears in terms of public concern...


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C'mon Jack Savage, that is total BS, although probably worthy of you.

What do Walrus eat?, and how deep can they dive?. Lounging around on the shore for extended periods isn't conducive to their long term survival. Maybe you didn't even watch the video?.

By Dappledwater (not verified) on 15 Oct 2010 #permalink

Perhaps they're really seals. You'd think those enormous tusks would give the game away that they're not. But, hey.

Jack, with all due respect, this is a ludicrous argument you are offering. The video discussed primary scientific literature and observations of long time local residents documenting a dramatic and previously unobserved behavioral change in large walrus populations. You responded with a link to a blog that provides evidence that walruses often come ashore in specific places at specific times and then claims this is evidence of a "media hoax".

Why do you swallow such a vapid argument? To be more clear, it is called a red herring. Just because walrus come ashore at some times in the season in some locations does not prove there is nothing unusual in the behaviour described in the studies greenman discusses.

The whole video was a farrago of speculation.

Show a few dead bodies...I guess you thought that in nature walrus never die.

Well, people believe what they want to believe.

I particularly liked the 12 year old "long term resident" who went on at length about the whiskers and the tusks and the whiskers,oh and the tusks. With mime.

Always good to see Mark (Death Spiral) Serreze. Glad to hear he has extended the life of summer sea ice up there for a couple of decades at least. Once upon a time it was all going to be gone by 2015, as I recall.

Sadly, man may well cause the walrus some serious problems but I doubt if it will be through the agency of carbon doxide emissions.

By Jack Savage (not verified) on 15 Oct 2010 #permalink

Shucks who to believe, the native communities in the Arctic & scientists studying the local wildlife, or Jack who doesn't know jack?.

By Dappledwater (not verified) on 15 Oct 2010 #permalink

Jack Savage -- "but I doubt if it will be through the agency of carbon doxide emissions."

And doesn't that just sum up the contrarian stance: It can be anything, and absolutely anything, even caused by mankind in some way, but never carbon dioxide emissions. Never, ever, ever. It... just... can't... be.

Once upon a time it was all going to be gone by 2015, as I recall.

I remember 2015, too!

2015. If 2012-13 turns out to be a strong el Nino following the current La Nina there'll be an almighty amount of super warm water available to flush into the Arctic from the Pacific. All it would take to reduce the multiyear ice to a few remnants clinging to the tops of Greenland and the Canadian archipelago is a flush of warm water combined with the conditions of June this year lasting through to late July.

If, if, that happens in any year soon, the summer ice looks to be gone. 2015 is possible, only good weather and cool water for several years will delay it until after 2020.

Pough, yup 2015, those were the days eh?.

By Dappledwater (not verified) on 16 Oct 2010 #permalink

Yes, they certainly will have been.

Jack's comments are a prefect encapsulation of the denialist position. Scientists studying something identify an issue and write about it, and then someone with absolutely no knowledge about it comes along and alleges the scientists have got it all wrong.

Tell me jack, have you even seen a walrus, let alone know the first thing about their habits? How about do you know anything at all about any wild animals and their habits? Have you read any scientific reports on wild animals? Have you any science training in wild animals? Any science education at all?

Anything will do, just to demonstrate that we should take what you say on the subject with the slightest level of credibility, and not just tell you to crawl back under your rock.


I was wondering if you knew how the current arctic wildlife managed to survive so far into this interglacial when it was quite warmer in the arctic a few thousand years ago?

I see you warmistas have plumbed new depths of hypocrisy.

Firstly to Adelaidy.

You latest offering of the end is nigh starts with the word "IF". IF the sun stopped burning we will all die, IF the wind stopped blowing we will all die and unfortunately IF there is a strong EL Nino and IF an almighty super warm water flushed.....the ice might melt.

This is stuff from the bible please keep your religious rantings to your self.

Now we come to good old Mandas and i quote "Jack's comments are a prefect encapsulation of the denialist position. Scientists studying something identify an issue and write about it, and then someone with absolutely no knowledge about it comes along and alleges the scientists have got it all wrong".

We have the residence of certain pacific islands claiming AGW is causing the islands to become inundated with rising sea levels, then along come some scientists studying the situation, write about it saying this is a non issue and along comes someone with absolutely no knowledge about it(thats you Mandas) and alleges the scientists have got it all wrong.

Hello kettle this is pot.

Vernon, a number of questions:

1. A few thousand years ago, or 6 -7 thousand years ago?.
2. How much warming, and where was the warming confined to?.
3. What caused the warming?.
4. What was the rate of warming back then?.
5. Yes or no, was there widespread mortality of Arctic wildlife?.

By Dappledwater (not verified) on 17 Oct 2010 #permalink


WTF is this shit:

".....We have the residence of certain pacific islands claiming AGW is causing the islands to become inundated with rising sea levels, then along come some scientists studying the situation, write about it saying this is a non issue and along comes someone with absolutely no knowledge about it(thats you Mandas) and alleges the scientists have got it all wrong...."

So once again you have categorically refused to read anything I post. I reposted some of my old comments on this issue for you just a couple of days ago, but once again you have shown your spectacular pig-ignorance. So, once again, here are my comments. Try reading them:

"....On the subject of places like Kiribati and Tuvalu, I have absolutely no doubt that the 'crisis' of sea level rise in these places is being grossly overstated for political purposes. These are very low lying nations, and they are affected quite badly by sea indundation from storms and king tides on a regular basis. But it has always been so. Of course, sea levels can rise at different rates in different locations, but it is ridiculous to believe that the sea level in the western Pacific has risen by up to a metre - which would be necessary to cause the problems which have been suggested - when there is no evidence to show that it has, and it hasn't risen by nearly that much anywhere else in the world.

The governments of these small nations are generally quite corrupt by western standards (lots of nepotism, which is standard practice in these cultures), and the countries are very poor. They rely on foreign aid (from Australia and New Zealand in particular - but China is now playing a much larger role) for most of their capital, and are fond of playing off one side against the other for favours or money. An example is that they agreed to side with Japan in the IWC in return for investment capital.

So as far as this issue goes, I would totally disregard anything any politician says about sea level rise, especially if he has a vested interest in beating it up....."

A grovelling apology is warranted I think. How about you admit your error for once in your sorry existence?

We have the residence of certain pacific islands claiming AGW is causing the islands to become inundated with rising sea levels

Changing the topic now eh?. But since you raised it ( like the global sea levels), the South Pacific region's sea level is increasing at a rate well above the global average.

Sea Level & Climate: Their Present State
December 2009

Note the graphic on page 13.

By Dappledwater (not verified) on 17 Oct 2010 #permalink

Ah, bugger!.
[don't worry, I fixed your link!]

By Dappledwater (not verified) on 17 Oct 2010 #permalink


I agree sea levels are rising in the SW Pacific (it would be hard to disagree given the evidence, unless you are crakar), but I do not believe they have reached the crisis level that some are espousing - yet!

but I do not believe they have reached the crisis level that some are espousing

Given that most crops grown in the islands are subsistence, guess that depends on whether it's your crops that are getting poisoned by intrusion of salt water. For the individuals currently affected I'm sure it is a crisis. Well, it certainly will be when most of the village can't grow enough crops.

Of course, some AGW denier who has never actually been to the South Pacific islands is eminently more qualified to pass judgement.

By Dappledwater (not verified) on 17 Oct 2010 #permalink


Post 17, I was not aware you posted in the arctic thread, please accept my humble apologies.

I did re read your original post 72, however the "hello kettle this is pot" comment was directed at you regards your post 79. I suggest you read that and then come back here and re read post 15 and then you can apologies to me.

DW post 18,

Well done on winning the womens netball gold medal you had to beat us at something i suppose.

Re changing topics, not at all i was just showing the hypocrisy of Mandas and therefore reducing everything he says to utter crap and nothing he says should be taken seriously that is all.

We all know why the walrus is soon to be the next poster child of AGW thats because the polar bears are refusing to die so you need a new scary story to frighten the little school children.

Come on crakar, did you 'watch' this year's ice melt in the Arctic? I took a bit of an interest and then, as things got worse and worse, I took more of an interest.

That means I checked the weather forecasts, the ice transport maps, the sea surface temperature maps as well as the satellite records of ice extent and area, and the reports of ships sailing around the god-forsaken place (I'm from Adelaide, I haaaate the cold) as well as the reports from universities and institutes I'd never before heard of. I checked them pretty well every single day.

I just could. not. believe. the recorded temperatures nor the anomalies in SST. I'm surprised any multi-year ice at all survived this year, it was just good luck with the winds and the weather.

You know as well as I do that there will be a strong el Nino sometime - 2 years, 5 years, 10 years from now. I have no idea how warm the waters entering the Arctic would be then, but if they're two or three degrees warmer than this year, the effect will be devastating. If it's within five years from now, Arctic summer ice _will_ disappear around 2015-16 unless the wonderful weather fairy waves her benevolent wand.

Re 20 and 21:

mandas hardly qualifies for the term "denier", he can be called a skeptic, but in the true sense of the word, not ala Watts or Monckton! Make your case, show the evidence he will not pretend it is not there.

I think one source of confusion about some S.Pacific Island nation claims of ongoing disaster from sea level rise is that it is not as simple as water rising above land. The issues are confounded by increased salt water intrusion into ground water, erosion and destruction of shallow water/salt-water marsh eco-systems. 50cm of rise can and does affect land that is 2M above sea level.

That said, I am not personally familar with the details in this particular case (Tuvalu) and I have no doubt that politics will influence the local politician's claims about the situation.

Let's all be careful with the labels and the accompanying mental boxes we all like to put each other in!

Coby, I wasn't calling Mandas a denier, I was alluding to someone else earlier in the thread. I'm sure Mandas will understand when he reads it.

As for Tuvalu, it's storm surges and king tides that are creating the problem. They're much larger because of global warming.

By Dappledwater (not verified) on 17 Oct 2010 #permalink

Well done on winning the womens netball gold medal you had to beat us at something i suppose.

Wot?, you forget the rugby seven too?.

By Dappledwater (not verified) on 17 Oct 2010 #permalink


Please show a reference that tides are affected by global warming.

My question remains:

The current walrus has been around as a species for ~750k year. They survived the Younger Dryas (cooling)which was shown to change the climate more drastically (months), and at greater speed that the current changes in climate. They have survived the warming coming out of the ice age ~14k years ago when it warmed 2-4C within in less than a decade. So how did they survive those events, which were more dramatic than the present, but they cannot survive this one?

Vernon: Here's one.

The effects of global climate change on seagrasses
Frederick T. Short and Hilary A. Neckles
Aquatic Botany
Volume 63, Issues 3-4, 1 April 1999, Pages 169-196

"A second factor resulting from sea level rise is change in the magnitude of tidal range: depending on coastal geomorphology and degree of tidal restriction already existing at a given location, expansion or lessening of tidal range may occur (De Jonge and De Jong, 1992*). Higher sea levels will increase tidal currents, particularly in areas of restricted tidal flow; together, higher sea level and restricted flow will increase the build-up of tidal head at high tide. The concomitant degree of increase in water level at low tide will determine if the overall tidal range increases or decreases. As sea level rises, increased tidal range will occur when the increase in high tide is greater than the increase in low tide, whereas decreased tidal range will result when the increase in low tide exceeds that of high tide. Over the approximately 50 year period from the late 1920s to the late 1970s, sea level rise has produced increases in tidal range in the Wadden Sea, The Netherlands (Fig. 7) in addition to the dramatic increase caused by the closure of the Zuiderzee (De Jonge and De Jong, 1992). Changing tidal range will likely exacerbate the effects of increased water depth on seagrass habitats, depending on the plant characteristics and local environmental conditions"

*Role of tide, light and fisheries in the decline of Zostera marina L. in the Dutch Wadden Sea
De Jonge, V.N.; de Jong, D.J. (1992)
in: Dankers, N.M.J.A. et al. (Ed.) (1992). Present and Future Conservation of the Wadden Sea: Proceedings of the 7th International Wadden Sea Symposium, Ameland 1990. 20: pp. 161-176


I kind of miss you at at the Wegman Under Investigation . . . thread.

DW, Please show a reference that tides are affected by global warming.

Sure. I see Chris S has already shown you one. But first answer the questions posed at #16.

By Dappledwater (not verified) on 18 Oct 2010 #permalink

So how did they survive those events, which were more dramatic than the present, but they cannot survive this one?

Yeah, some of my ancestors survived fighting in World War One, it makes no sense that they subsequently died in World War Two.

By Dappledwater (not verified) on 18 Oct 2010 #permalink

Chris S.,

That answer does not draw a linkage between tides and global warming. In fact, 1970 is when warming you attribute to man started, so I fail to see how a study that shows that sea level rose between 1920's to the 1970' in anyway shows a linkage between tides and global warming.


I wanted to get which logical fallacies that you present as arguments:

Your response (comment #16) to my general question which no one has answered.

Fallacy of many questions: This fallacy is often used rhetorically, so that the question limits direct replies to those that serve the questioner's agenda.

I restated my question and your comment #32 was once again logical fallacy.

False analogy: false analogy consists of an error in the substance of an argument (the content of the analogy itself), not an error in the logical structure of the argument.

Can anyone actually answer why this climate change is different from all other climate changes over the last 750k years?

Yes Vernon. This one is caused by humans. Next?

And happening at an unprecedented rate.

Vernon, I'll wait for you over a the GMU investigating thread.

Yes, and the current rate of acidification of the oceans is unmatched in the paleo record.

I wonder what it all means?.

By Dappledwater (not verified) on 18 Oct 2010 #permalink


So attributing to man is the sole reason that this current warming is different than all the past 750k year.


Because it is happening at an unprecedented rate.

You do realize that the warming from the 1970's to the 1990's was not unprecedented per Dr. Jones testimony to Parliament? I fail to see the cause of the warming matters to the walrus, so if you could show why the source matters, it would help.…

"Yet while previous evidence from ice cores retrieved in Greenland suggested the changes might have occurred over the course of a decade. New evidence from the mud cores shows that the changes likely occurred much more rapidly, over a period of a few months."

Steffensen, et al. 2008 High-resolution Greenland ice core data show abrupt climate change happens in a few years. Science, 321 (5889). 680-684. 10.1126/science.1157707

"The last two abrupt warmings at the onset of our present warm interglacial period, interrupted by the Younger Dryas cooling event, were investigated at high temporal resolution from the North Greenland Ice Core Project ice core. The deuterium excess, a proxy of Greenland precipitation moisture source, switched mode within 1 to 3 years over these transitions and initiated a more gradual change (over 50 years) of the Greenland air temperature, as recorded by stable water isotopes. The onsets of both abrupt Greenland warmings were slightly preceded by decreasing Greenland dust deposition, reflecting the wetting of Asian deserts. A northern shift of the Intertropical Convergence Zone could be the trigger of these abrupt shifts of Northern Hemisphere atmospheric circulation, resulting in changes of 2 to 4 kelvin in Greenland moisture source temperature from one year to the next."

Both of these studies show that both cooling and warming at more dramatic rates that currently being experienced have happened in the past. Walrus survived all of these, so why is the current warming different?


Once again, you cannot answer the question, so you now using the:

Argument from ignorance (appeal to ignorance): The fallacy of assuming that something is true/false because it has not been proven false/true. For example: "The student has failed to prove that he didn't cheat on the test, therefore he must have cheated on the test."

You are really into logical fallacies in place of reasoned arguments based on facts (published studies). Has any study shown that a very slight change in ph is harmful to the walrus. Can you provide a linkage to the study on the ph change in the Arctic?

Vernon, you keep rushing around throwing around smokebombs, continually evading the questions put to you. Here's some more?.

1. Why do you not attempt to my address questions at #16?.
2. Is it because you don't actually know, or simply that the answers will make you look foolish (again)
3. What is the connection between the immediate viability of the walrus populations and ocean ph.?
4. Why do you call a change in ocean ph of some 30% since pre-industrial times, "a very slight change".
5. Why do not attempt to address the claim I made #37?. Is is because you realize it's true, and based on the findings of peer reviewed studies?.

Answers my questions (all) and I will gladly provide links to the peer reviewed scientific literature, upon which I base my claims.

By Dappledwater (not verified) on 18 Oct 2010 #permalink

Good grief, what brought Vernon out of hibernation. He knows nothing about science but cuts and pastes rubbish from denier sites. He shows over and over again that he neither reads nor understands the papers he is quoting.

Go back to sleep Vernon, you are just wasting everyone's time since they have to explain every time how wrong you are every time you post your rubbish.

For your information, sediment cores show that the Arctic has not been ice free for at least 800,000 years or more. Since you are so good at finding rubbish papers show us that you can find good ones too and read up on when the Arctic was last ice free.

By Ian Forrester (not verified) on 18 Oct 2010 #permalink


I asked a question and do not intend to accede to your attempts to divert the question. Why is this to hard for you to grasp.


An the Arctic is not ice free now. How about an answer to a simple question and you save your Ad hominem and red herring for another day.


I think its fine if you project your own version of reality on this website, however do not expect me to accept it.

We should just leave it at that i think.


Try plagiarizing someone else's version of reality; maybe Crakar will accept that.

Your a funny man Skip, keep the cheap shots and not relevant opinions coming.

Your plagiarism of fraud is not one of my opinions. Its a demonstrated reality; and yes I will keep it coming as long as you continue in this line of accusing others of being mindless believers.

Vernon, all questions posed relate to matters that have been raised in this thread, mostly by you. I was hoping you'd make the effort to search the peer reviewed literature and discover how wrong you are. Never mind. I'll just have to demonstrate such.

By Dappledwater (not verified) on 18 Oct 2010 #permalink

That's fine. I am now adopting a new world view (it happens to suit my own personal preferences).

La Nina is now dominating my local climate and affecting temperatures in the atmosphere and the sea surface worldwide. It will last forever! El Nino is now a memory.

People will write history books long after I'm dead and gone about this mysterious climate feature that just stopped in 2010. What they won't know is that it happened because I said so.

If only.

Vernon: my link said: "A second factor resulting from sea level rise is change in the magnitude of tidal range"

You say: "That answer does not draw a linkage between tides and global warming"

Do you really need someone to hold your hand for you? OK, here goes.

a) Climate change will cause sea level rise (through thermal expansion and melting glaciers).
b) It has been proven that sea level rise can cause changes in tidal range (the study I link to).
c) Thus Climate change can lead to changes in the tides.

See? Easy as abc. Did you really need it spelled out?


If i where to accuse anyone here of being a mindless believer it would be you, at least everyone else here has an opinion about something. You just sit there and fire off cheap shots.


Now you are starting to sound like Tim "the drought will last forever" Flannery. Did you watch QandA last night, poor old TF got all his drought predictions wrong because he did not count on a shift in the Indian Di Pole and a strong La Nina.

Seriously, there will be another El Nino but while the PDO is in its -ve phase and will be for the next 20 or so years they will be quite weak and the La Nina will dominate.

Let me ask you, if Al Gores prediction of an ice free Arctic summer by 2013 falls flat on its face will you re evaluate your own predictions?

Chris s.,

I have reviewed the literature on SLR and it shows that while there have been decadal variation the overall SLR has not varied from the long term trend. Cazenave, et al, 2008 shows that accelerated thermal expansion component of SLR ended in 2003 and at this time cannot be determined if the accelerated rate was just decadal variation or not. New studies show that the ice loss measurements in the Antarctic and Greenland ice sheets are being over estimated, the actual ice loss is only half what is being predicted by GRACE.

All of that said, please show where tide surges have increased due to the current global warming vs the long term SLR which has been going on for thousands of years.

First, apologies for being off thread but I really want to clarify something with Vernon.

I'll keep following the discussion about the relationship between AGW and tidal flows, Vernon, but I was hoping you would help me out with another subject.

As a refresher, we had the following exchange on the GMU Investigating thread:

. . . North and the panel agreed with Wegman's findings. --Vernon

To which I responded"


Which of the Wegman "findings" did the North panel "agree with"?

(Hint: Read their executive summary--not McIntyre]--Skip

To which you retorted:


(Hint: read North's transcript from his testimony to congress.)

And I have read far more of it than you ever have, Vernon. That is certain. Since you did respond to my subsequent post (GMU Investigating #17) i am forced to assume that you're embarrassed because you talked smack and now you can't back it up.

If you want to disabuse me of my smug impression then answer this question:

What would North's testimony before Congress tell me that was substantively different from the NAS report on the hockey stick?

Vernon -this Cazenave et al? Present-day sea level rise: A synthesis in Comptes Rendus Geosciences.

The one that states "...whereas the sea level continues to rise, although at a reduced rate compared to the previous decade (2.5 mm/yr versus 3.1 mm/yr)"

Continues to rise.

I'm sure, as you've reviewed the literature, that you've read Milne et al in Nature Geoscience (seeing as you've reached relatively obscure journals such as Comptes (impact factor 0.931) Nature Geoscience (impact factor 8.108) should be high on your list of reading material) 2009 who state:

"Global mean sea-level change has increased from a few centimetres per century over recent millennia to a few tens of centimetres per century in recent decades. This tenfold increase in the rate of rise can be attributed to climate change through the melting of land ice and the thermal expansion of ocean water. As the present warming trend is expected to continue, global mean sea level will continue to rise."

Milne et al. cite Cazenave et al 2008 so they have read it, but do not agree with their (and your) assertion. I think you may need to read a little more before stating such things so categorically.

So, again, abc is easy as 123:

1) Sea Level is rising due to changing climate (Milne et al. and many others).
2) Rising sea level is known to affect tides (e.g. deJong & deJong)
3) Climate change can lead to changing tides (e.g. Pye & Blott 2008*, Suursaar et al. 2010**)

* Pye & Blott 2008 Decadal-scale variation in dune erosion and accretion rates: An investigation of the significance of changing storm tide frequency and magnitude on the Sefton coast, UK GEOMORPHOLOGY 102^

Abstract: "An increase in the Fate of mean sea-level rise at both Liverpool and Heysham is evident since 1990 ... The incidence of extreme high tides shows an identifiable relationship with the lunar nodal tidal cycle, but the evidence indicates that meteorological forcing has also had a significant effect.

**Suursuur et al. 2010 Wind and wave storms, storm surges and sea level rise along the Estonian coast of the Baltic Sea in MANAGEMENT OF NATURAL RESOURCES, SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT AND ECOLOGICAL HAZARDS II Book Series: WIT Transactions on Ecology and the Environment Volume: 127

Abstract: "Winter changes in atmospheric circulation above Northern Europe are among the most prominent regional manifestations of global climate change ... The paper presents a statistical analysis of sea level data from tide gauges during 1899-2008, an analysis of wind data from coastal stations during 1966-2007, and a corresponding wave hindcast study. The results show a positive trend both in local storminess and storm surge height."

^Geomorphology - impact factor 2.119 so you've reviewed that too right?

Since you did respond . . . is obviously supposed to read

Since you did NOT respond . . .

skip, Vernon's probably off doing some reading, it seems he's not managed to review all the literature on SLR after all.

Looking forward to a response. Or will he do a crakar?

I'd give odds he Crakars it.

Vernon, you referenced Cazenave earlier in this thread, I'm sure you'll be interested in her latest (h/t Hank Roberts):

Anny Cazenave and William Llovel (2010)
Contemporary Sea Level Rise
Annual Review of Marine Science
Vol. 2: 145-173
Abstract: "...We show that for the 1993â2007 time span, the sum of climate-related contributions (2.85 ± 0.35 mm yearâ1) is only slightly less than altimetry-based sea level rise (3.3 ± 0.4 mm yearâ1): 30% of the observed rate of rise is due to ocean thermal expansion and 55% results from land ice melt. Recent acceleration in glacier melting and ice mass loss from the ice sheets increases the latter contribution up to 80% for the past five years. We also review the main causes of regional variability in sea level trends: The dominant contribution results from nonuniform changes in ocean thermal expansion."…

How are you getting on with the rest of your reading?