Alaskan Tundra Facts

Mount McKinley in Alaska.
••• Jupiterimages/Photos.com/Getty Images

The word "tundra" translates to "treeless heights" and means ecosystems that have no trees and cold temperatures. Tundra exists in Alaska's northern and western coasts.

Climate

Woman walking in snow.
••• Thomas Northcut/Photodisc/Getty Images

The Alaskan tundra boasts an average annual temperature colder than five degrees Fahrenheit and receives less than four inches of precipitation a year.

Plants

Few plants grow in Alaska's cold climate.
••• Feng Yu/iStock/Getty Images

Plants survive the harsh conditions of the tundra by going dormant through winter, growing protective coatings, or retaining old leaves for nutrition. Some plants found in the Alaskan tundra include the arctic dryad, arctic poppy, wooly lousewort, Labrador tea, and arctic birch.

Animals

Brown bear in Alaska.
••• Byrdyak/iStock/Getty Images

Animals have adapted to the Alaskan tundra by developing warm winter coats, compact bodies to preserve heat, and camouflage for different seasons. Some animals found on the Alaskan tundra include caribou, arctic fox, arctic hare, arctic ground squirrel, and arctic grizzly bear.

Features

Frozen tundra.
••• Photos.com/Photos.com/Getty Images

Alaskan tundra does not have any trees. It is also very windy and has dramatic seasonal changes, including drastic changes in daylight hours throughout the year.

Threats

Pollution threatens the tundra.
••• Digital Vision./Photodisc/Getty Images

Alaska's tundra is threatened by airborne pollutants, oil and gas development, and global warming.

Related Articles

Plant Life in the Coniferous Forest
What Are Some Natural Environmental Issues in the Tundra?
Life Forms That Can Survive in the Humid Subtropical...
Plant Adaptations in the Tundra
Plants & Animals in the Taiga Biome
Facts About the Rainforest Layers
Animals That Live in the Tropical Forest That Are Omnivores
Plant & Animal Adaptations in Temperate Forests
Why Are Trees Important to the Ecosystem?
What Kind of Flowers Are in the Tundra Biome?
What Are the Major Types of Terrestrial Ecosystems?
What Are the 8 Ecosystems?
Features of a Forest Ecosystem
Tundra Characteristics
Animals Found in the Tropical Evergreen Forest
What Are the Causes of the Destruction of Ecosystem?
Description of Tundra
How Do Plants & Animals Survive in the Arctic Tundra?
What Foods Do Animals Eat in the Tundra?
Common Russian Plants & Animals