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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.]
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.


(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]
Collins English Dictionary – Complete and Unabridged, 12th Edition 2014 © HarperCollins Publishers 1991, 1994, 1998, 2000, 2003, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2011, 2014


(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]
Random House Kernerman Webster's College Dictionary, © 2010 K Dictionaries Ltd. Copyright 2005, 1997, 1991 by Random House, Inc. All rights reserved.
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"
Based on WordNet 3.0, Farlex clipart collection. © 2003-2012 Princeton University, Farlex Inc.
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References in periodicals archive ?
A polynya is a stretch of open water surrounded by what?
"We thought this large hole in the sea ice - known as a polynya - was something that was rare, maybe a process that had gone extinct.
Barber, 2007: Investigations of newly formed sea ice in the Cape Bathurst polynya: 1.
Abu Dhabi, May 9 (BNA): A study led by NYU Abu Dhabi Institute (NYUAD) Research Scientist Diana Francis and co-authored by Clare Eayrs and David Holland, from NYUAD's Centre for Global Level Sea Change, CSLC, and Juan Cuesta of the University of Paris-East, have helped to unravel the mystery surrounding the occurrence of a mid-sea Polynya - a body of unfrozen ocean - that appeared within the sea-ice pack during the Antarctic winter in mid-September 2017.
Summary: Study has discovered atmospheric trigger for occurrence of Maud-Rise Polynya
Other than an adjacent polynya (about 10 [km.sup.2] next to the colony), our study site was surrounded by sea ice early and throughout the breeding season, which limited the area available for foraging, especially during the pre-breeding and incubation periods.
This ice-free region, or polynya, stayed open for three full winters before it closed.
Now, however, a study led by researchers from McGill University suggests a new explanation: The 1970s polynya may have been the last gasp of what was previously a more common feature of the Southern Ocean, and which is now suppressed due to the effects of climate change on ocean salinity.
The Cape Bathurst Polynya forms in the area and hosts several flaw leads throughout the winter [1] and the region becomes ice-free in the summer.
Siberian Polynya are among the hotspots, according to the report, released by
Despite the concerns expressed by environmental groups and Alaska Natives, the MMS claims that the drilling will take place far enough from shore to leave room for the near shore polynya (189) through which many marine mammals, including the bowhead and beluga whales, travel.