Energy sources governing the growth of cryoconite holes have been investigated by monitoring the meteorological balance at the surface of the Manatee Glacier, British Columbia, the dimensions of 125 holes, and the thermal conditions within them. Cryoconite holes are shown to be rough indicators of the energy balance at the glacier surface. Both atmospheric and biological energy sources operate, thereby suggesting a genetic classification of holes with "solar" and "biological" end members.

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