Z8005 Polar Ecology

Faculty of Science
Spring 2014
Extent and Intensity
2/1/0. 3 credit(s) (plus extra credits for completion). Type of Completion: zk (examination).
prof. RNDr. Pavel Prošek, CSc. (lecturer)
prof. Ing. Miloš Barták, CSc. (lecturer)
doc. Mgr. Daniel Nývlt, Ph.D. (lecturer)
Guaranteed by
prof. RNDr. Rudolf Brázdil, DrSc.
Department of Geography - Earth Sciences Section - Faculty of Science
Contact Person: prof. RNDr. Pavel Prošek, CSc.
Supplier department: Department of Geography - Earth Sciences Section - Faculty of Science
Tue 13:00–14:50 Z2,01032
  • Timetable of Seminar Groups:
Z8005/01: Tue 15:00–15:50 Z2,01032, M. Barták, D. Nývlt, P. Prošek
( Z0076 Meteorology and climatology && Z0051 Geomorphology ) || PROGRAM ( N - GK )
The lecture is primarily meant for graduate and Ph.D. students of: physical geography, biology and geology. The prerequisities are basic konwledges of geomorphology, climatology, plant physiology and ecology. Necessary sources of information outside of lecture content will be provided to complete the essential knowledges .
Course Enrolment Limitations
The course is only offered to the students of the study fields the course is directly associated with.

The capacity limit for the course is 25 student(s).
Current registration and enrolment status: enrolled: 0/25, only registered: 0/25
fields of study / plans the course is directly associated with
Course objectives
Polar ecosystems are comparatively simple from point of view of their internal structure. On the other hand they exist as a result of long development whose effect is perfect adaptation of their biotic component to the extremal living conditions. It enables their existence on the bounds of energy, climate and food requirement. Polar ecosystems were form under influence of specific astronomic, geographical, oceanographic, atmospheric and geochemical factors. They have influenced their inanimate components (georelief and its substratum, atmosphere, hydrosphere, kryosphere, pedosphere) and subsequently biosphere. Nevertheless, arised ecosystems impact backward as a complex the whole planet - notably from the energetic point of view. Its reflexion is first of all global change of ocean water, global climate and consequently complicated cascade of processes, which form the development of shape of Earth surface and development of the biosphere.
  • 1. Introduction - delimitation of Arctic and Antarctic, their basic differences, discovering, exploitation and scientific utilizability. 2. Astronomic factors and their reflexion in polar regions. 3. Climate of polar regions - energy balance of the ground surface, water balance, baric field and atmospheric circulation, air temperature and air humidity, precipitation. Climate change and climate variation and their consequences i polar regions (glacials and interglacials and their influence on the hydrosphere, geosphere, cryosphere and biosphere). 4. Freshwater hydrology and oceanology. Surface water and ground water. Polar oceans - submarine relief, systems of sea curents, water substitution with the lower latitudes and its energy consequences. 5. Glaciology of polar regions - reasons of glaciation and its development, glaciation of continents and of sea surface, ice mass balance. Cryosphere as a stabilizer of Earth climate. 6. Development of earth surface in polar regions, glacial and periglacial geomorphologic processes - permafrost and its energy roots, regional structure, active layer of permafrost, frost weathering, slope dynamics. Soil in polar regions. 7. Vegetation in polar regions - limiting by abiotic factors (microclimate, nutrients, water), soil flora, space structure of polar vegetation (subpolar, polar, polar deserts and semideserts, polar wetlands). Origine of polar (alpine) plants, vascular plants and their adaptation and aclimatization on the polar environmet. Cryptogams in polar regions. 8. Stress physiology of polar plants. 9. Fauna of polar regions - invertebrates, evolution and space structure, physiological adaptation on polar conditions, nutrient succession. 10. Ecosystem of polar oceans - producents and consuments, nutrient succession. Relations between continental and maritime ecosystems. 11. Anthropogenic impacts on polar ecosystems - heat pollution of planetary geosystem, changes in chemical composition of atmosphere and their consequences (global transport of pollutants, anthropogenic change in greenhouse effect, ozone depletion and its consequences), changes in biodiversity.
  • Holdgate, M., W. Antarctic Ecology, 1970, Academic Press, London, New York
  • Oke, T., R. - Bounrady Layer Climates, Routledge, London and New York, 435 s., ISBN 0-415-04319-0
  • Stonehouse, B. - Polar Ecology, 1989, Blackie, Glasgow - London
Teaching methods (in Czech)
Přednáška, zpracování a prezentace vybraného tématu v rámci semináře
Assessment methods
Written examination, credit is claused by elaboration and presentation of chosen topic, presentation on practices is obligated.
Language of instruction
Further Comments
Study Materials
The course is taught once in two years.
The course is also listed under the following terms Autumn 2007 - for the purpose of the accreditation, Autumn 2005, Autumn 2007, Spring 2010, Spring 2012, Autumn 2011 - acreditation, spring 2012 - acreditation, Spring 2017, Spring 2020, Spring 2022.
  • Enrolment Statistics (Spring 2014, recent)
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