Origin and geomorphology of lakes in the polar regions

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© Oxford University Press 2008. All rights reserved. A characteristic and often dominant feature of many polar landscapes is the great diversity and abundance of their standing waters especially in the Arctic. By comparison, Antarctica has comparatively little surface water, although notable large and often saline lakes exist in the oasis areas and alongside many glaciers, whereas coastal ponds and lakes are abundant in the maritime and peripheral Antarctic regions. This chapter provides an introduction to the different origins, distinguishing features, and landscape controls that result in an extraordinary diversity of lakes and ponds in both polar regions. The main emphasis is on the description of the geological and geomorphological processes involved in the formation and modification (natural change) of these high latitude lake ecosystems. The review draws on examples from both polar regions to emphasize the differences and similarities that exist between lake ecosystems of the two hemispheres.

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Polar Lakes and Rivers: Limnology of Arctic and Antarctic Aquatic Ecosystems

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