Arctic peatlands
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Arctic_peatlandsWetlands cover about 70% of the Arctic with the most extensive wetland types being non-forested and forested peatlands. Peatland species comprise 20–30% of the Arctic and sub-Arctic flora. Arctic peatlands also support biodiversity worldwide through bird migration routes. Seventy-five percent of the more than 60 bird species with conservation priority in the European part of the Arctic are strongly associated with tundra and mire habitats. Peatlands also provide crucial ecosystem services such as habitat maintenance, permafrost protection, and water regulation. Over recent years, the southern limit of permafrost in northern peatlands has retreated by 39 km on average and by as much as 200 km in some parts of Arctic Canada, with some of this attributed to climate change. The northward movement of the treeline will affect not only Arctic biodiversity through shifting habitats and species, but also reduce albedo (surface reflectivity), further enhancing warming of the atmosphere.