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Muskoxen Mosey in Arctic Refuge

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“With the Sadlerochit Mountains rising in the distance, two muskoxen mosey through a scene devoid of the human touch. The Arctic National Wildlife Refuge is one of the largest protected areas in the U.S. and one of the wildest places left on Earth—at least for now.”

Courtesy of National Geographic

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Bill_I_Am

You're welcome, stunned. And I'll second that!

Great post and lets pray it does stay protected. Thanks so much.

Tincup

Thanks for the info Bill!

Bill_I_Am

Yes, sorta.

"Arctic National Wildlife Range was established in 1960 to preserve unique wildlife, wilderness and recreational values. In 1980, the Alaska National Interest Lands Conservation Act (ANILCA) re-designated the Range as part of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, and provided four purposes that guide management of the entire Refuge: to conserve animals and plants in their natural diversity, ensure a place for hunting and gathering activities, protect water quality and quantity, and fulfill international wildlife treaty obligations."

https://www.fws.gov/refuge/Arctic/about.html

Tincup

This is absolutely lovely. Didn't Jimmy Carter establish this refuge to protect it from pipelines across the permafrost? Or am I misremembering?

Bill_I_Am

Haha, and you're welcome, Andrew. A muskoxen selfie, perhaps? :-)

Thank you for sharing this beautiful picture. It seems so strange for the whole picture to be totally devoid of people so the question has to be asked 'which of the two muskox took the photo?'

Bill_I_Am

I would expect a herd of 8–20 if it's summer, according to Wikipedia.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Muskox#Social_behavior_and_reproduction

Returner

Seems odd to see just a pair of them.

Bill_I_Am

You're welcome, Gayle! Most of the photos here at FWS look like it is not always that cold:

https://www.fws.gov/refuge/arctic/

But this page at Wikipedia talks about climate change in the refuge:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Arctic_National_Wildlife_Refuge#Climate_change

Bill_I_Am

Ahem, yes Plum, the elephant in the room.

Bommom

The muskoxen look like they're dressed for cold weather but it doesn't look as cold as I'd expect it to look. I guess climate change took care of any chances of snow in those mountains. Thanks, Bill!

Plumpossum

"...at least for now." Let's hope it is forever, not just for now. But there is a major obstacle to be overcome first.

Bill_I_Am

You're right, Judy, it sure does look like a painting! I'm glad you also like it.

Elsiesw

This almost looks like a painting. Beautiful.

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