from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • adj. Of, relating to, or growing in or under snow: nival species of plants.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • adj. Abounding with snow; snowy.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • adj. Abounding with snow; snowy.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • Abounding with snow; snowy.
  • Growing amid snow, or flowering during winter: as, nival plants.


Latin nivālis, from nix, niv-, snow.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
Latin nivalis, from nix, nivis, snow. (Wiktionary)


  • It consists of montane to altimontane beech, and mixed beech forests, submontane to altimontane spruce and spruce-fir forests, and alpine vegetation in the European Alps. It also includes small portions of submontane acidophilous oak and mixed oak forests, nemoral, sub - and oro-Mediterranean pine forests, and nival and sub-nival vegetation of the high mountains.

    Alps conifer and mixed forests

  • In the present climate, most streams and rivers originating within the Arctic have a nival regime in which snowmelt produces high flows and negligible flow occurs in winter.

    Effects of climate change on general hydro-ecology in the Arctic

  • Groundwater contributions are larger than those in arctic – nival systems.

    Terrestrial Water Balance in the Arctic

  • Subarctic – nival: dominated by spring snowmelt events, with peak water levels often the product of backwater from ice jams.

    Terrestrial Water Balance in the Arctic

  • Arctic – nival: continuous permafrost where deep infiltration is impeded by perennially frozen strata, base flow and winter flow are low, and snowmelt is the major hydrologic event.

    Terrestrial Water Balance in the Arctic

  • They demonstrated that most rivers are very sensitive to temperature rises on the order of 1 to 3 ºC, and that nival (snow-dominated) rivers become less stable while pluvial (rain-dominated) rivers become more stable.

    Terrestrial Water Balance in the Arctic

  • Stream flow is nival, and carries DOC-enriched spring runoff from peaty catchments to Toolik Lake.

    Effects of climate change on hydro-ecology of contributing basins in the Arctic

  • Based on physiographic types, five altitudinal vegetation zones have been identified within Lorentz National Park: lowland zone, montane zone, subalpine zone, alpine zone, and nival zone.

    Lorentz National Park, Indonesia

  • Open sub-nival plant communities found in rock and talus substrates at the elevation of 3,000-4,000 m.

    Caucasus mixed forests

  • The Tibetan Plateau, treeless except in the southeastern river valleys, supports a range of alpine vegetation types that includes meadow, steppe, cold desert and sub-nival cushion plant communities at elevations ranging from 3,500 to nearly 6,000 meters (m).

    North Tibetan Plateau-Kunlun Mountains alpine desert


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  • Super Bowl XLIX: New England 28, Seattle 24

    The landscape of hope was cold and nival
    And bleak were the chances of survival,
    But a foolhardy foe
    Can melt fields of snow
    And invite blessed rescue’s arrival.

    February 2, 2015