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 (pŏl′ən-yä′, pə-lĭn′yə)
An area of open water surrounded by sea ice.

[Russian polyn'ya, from polyĭ, open, hollow; see pelə- in Indo-European roots.]


(Physical Geography) a stretch of open water surrounded by ice, esp near the mouths of large rivers, in arctic seas
[C19: from Russian, from poly open, hollowed-out]


(pəˈlɪn yə)

n., pl. -yas.
an area of open sea water surrounded by ice.
[1850–55; < Russian polyn'yá, Old Russian polynĭi=pol(ŭ) empty, open + -ynĭi n. suffix]
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Noun1.polynya - a stretch of open water surrounded by ice (especially in Arctic seas)
body of water, water - the part of the earth's surface covered with water (such as a river or lake or ocean); "they invaded our territorial waters"; "they were sitting by the water's edge"
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References in periodicals archive ?
Indicative of what will happen as temperatures rise and sea ice disappears, this thread of open water, also called a polynya, is literally on the front line of climate change.
LAKE an area of clear sea surrounded by pack ice, also called a POLYNYA
Influence of chemical and biological factors on trophic transfer of persistent organic pollutants in the northwater polynya marine food web.
Their destination was a sizable region, called a polynya, of open water and thin ice that had appeared in the ice-bound waters near the toe of the Mertz Glacier off the Antarctic coast.
This ice-free region, or polynya, stayed open for three full winters before it closed.
So MSA may be an indirect recorder of sea-ice and polynya variability off the coast.
Up to 2008, fieldwork was concentrated in the Clavering Island/Sabine Island area, which is situated right next to a recurrent ice-free area, the Sirius Water Polynya at 74[degrees]30'N (Figures 1-3).
The only wintering site known was discovered in the 1990's and is located in a persistently-formed polynya in the Bering Sea south of St.
Siberian Polynya are among the hotspots, according to the report, released by
19) Northern Aboriginal people continue to hunt for beluga and narwhal from boats, canoes and kayaks (20) and at polynyas (21), and of the 56,000 Aboriginal peoples in northern Canada, approximately 91% of households consume "country foods".
Given that many Long-tailed Ducks overwinter in polynyas near the Belcher Islands and in western Hudson Bay (Robertson and Savard 2002), birds in our study may not have continued southward.
Observations of marine birds and mammals wintering at Polynyas and ice edges in the Belcher Islands, Nunavut, Canada.