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What narwhals can teach us about the climate change tipping point.

Here's the beginning of my column about narwhals, and what they can teach us about the climate change tipping point:

In these heady days of hope and audacity, the fate of some 600 narwhals in Canada’s Arctic has the makings of a cautionary tale.

These unicorns of the northern seas, creatures of legend and imagination, regularly feed around Baffin Island in Canada’s high north. In late September they migrate to open waters to escape the encroaching ice.

Last fall, the ice was late in forming so the whales lingered. Then it formed in a flash, trapping them by late November in rapidly shrinking breathing holes. Video images showed narwhals jostling to gasp for air, their spiral tusks jutting out like exhausted pleas for help. 

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