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Latest Southern Ocean Stories

2011-07-04 13:01:18

A new discovery reveals that the shrimp-like creature at the heart of the Antarctic food chain could play a key role in fertilising the Southern Ocean with iron "“ stimulating the growth of phytoplankton (microscopic plant-like organisms). This process enhances the ocean's capacity for natural storage of carbon dioxide. Reporting this month in the journal Limnology and Oceanography, an international team of researchers describe how Antarctic krill (Euphausia superba), once thought to...

2011-06-13 14:49:26

A deep-sea mystery has been solved with the discovery that the tiny 3 mm long marine animals, eaten by herring, cod and mackerel, use the same buoyancy control as whales. Reporting this week in the journal Limnology and Oceanography, researchers from British Antarctic Survey describe how Southern Ocean copepods "“ a crustacean rich in omega-3 oil "“ 'hibernates' in the deep ocean during winter when seas are stormy and food scarce. To reach the ocean depths the copepod's oily body...

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2011-05-30 08:29:58

Thirty-eight million years ago, tropical jungles thrived in what are now the cornfields of the American Midwest and furry marsupials wandered temperate forests in what is now the frozen Antarctic. The temperature differences of that era, known as the late Eocene, between the equator and Antarctica were half what they are today. A debate has been ongoing in the scientific community about what changes in our global climate system led to such a major shift from the more tropical, greenhouse...

2011-05-27 20:42:42

The first comprehensive study of sea creatures around the sub-Antarctic island of South Georgia reveals a region that is richer in biodiversity than even many tropical sites The first comprehensive study of sea creatures around the sub-Antarctic island of South Georgia reveals a region that is richer in biodiversity than even many tropical sites, such as the Galapagos Islands. The study provides an important benchmark to monitor how these species will respond to future environmental change....

2011-05-26 21:20:17

Research led by Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute scientist finds evidence that early antarctic circumpolar current development impacted global climate Thirty-eight million years ago, tropical jungles thrived in what are now the cornfields of the American Midwest and furry marsupials wandered temperate forests in what is now the frozen Antarctic. The temperature differences of that era, known as the late Eocene, between the equator and Antarctica were only half of what they are today. A debate...

2011-05-20 13:06:42

Investigations of changes in Weddell Sea habitat The research vessel Polarstern of the Alfred Wegener Institute for Polar and Marine Research in the Helmholtz Association will arrive back at its homeport of Bremerhaven after a seven-month expedition on Friday, 20 May. Nearly 200 researchers from institutes in 15 countries took part in the expedition. The oceanographers on board conducted measurements showing that warming of the water in the deep Weddell Sea continues further. The observations...

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2011-05-12 14:40:00

The first comprehensive study of the biological effects of Antarctic icebergs shows that they fertilize the Southern Ocean, enhancing the growth of algae that take up carbon dioxide from the atmosphere and then, through marine food chains, transfer carbon into the deep sea. This process is detailed in 19 new research papers published electronically in a special issue of the journal Deep Sea Research Part II: Topical Studies in Oceanography. The research team was led by MBARI marine biologist...

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2011-04-29 06:35:48

Scientists have observed a "super-aggregation" of more than 300 humpback whales gorging on the largest swarm of Antarctic krill seen in more than 20 years in bays along the Western Antarctic Peninsula. The sightings, made in waters still largely ice-free deep into austral autumn, suggest the previously little-studied bays are important late-season foraging grounds for the endangered whales. But they also highlight how rapid climate change is affecting the region. The Duke University-led team...

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2011-04-12 05:40:00

Young penguins in the Antarctic may be dying for lack of food, as melting sea ice reduces the numbers of small fish they consume as their primary food source, according to a new study published Monday in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS). The researchers found that just 10 percent of baby penguins tagged are returning in two to four years to breed, a drop of 40-50 percent since the 1970s. The study indicates that species often considered likely "winners" of climate...

2011-04-11 12:52:27

The Antarctic Peninsula has warmed rapidly for the last half-century or more, and recent studies have shown that an adjacent area, continental West Antarctica, has steadily warmed for at least 30 years, but scientists haven't been sure why. New University of Washington research shows that rising sea surface temperatures in the area of the Pacific Ocean along the equator and near the International Date Line drive atmospheric circulation that has caused some of the largest shifts in Antarctic...


Latest Southern Ocean Reference Libraries

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2007-10-24 13:46:19

The White-chinned Petrel (Procellaria aequinoctialis), is a large seabird in the family Procellariidae. It ranges around the Southern Ocean as far north as South Australia, Peru and Namibia, and breeds colonially on scattered islands; South Georgia, Prince Edward Islands, Crozet Islands, Kerguelen Islands, Auckland Island, Campbell Island and Antipodes Islands. The diet of the White-chinned Petrel is composed mainly of krill, followed by fish. White-chinned Petrels feed by surface...

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2007-03-16 22:42:57

The Southern driftfish or ragfish, Icichthys australis, is a medusafish of the genus Icichthys found circumpolar in all southern oceans between latitudes 50° S and 60° S, from the surface down to 1.24 mi (2,000 m). Its length is from 13.78 to 31.50 in (35 to 80 cm). The southern driftfish is similar to the rudderfish, and has soft easily-damaged fins, large eyes, and a small flexible mouth. Its flesh is soft and its bones are weakly ossified, giving rise to its second common name as...

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2006-08-09 14:35:18

The Wandering Albatross, (Diomedea exulans), is a large seabird from the family Diomedeidae which has a circumpolar range in the Southern Ocean. At breeding time they occupy loose colonies on isolated island groups in the Southern Ocean, such as Crozet Islands, South Georgia, Marion Island, Prince Edward Island, Kerguelen and Macquarie Island. Together with the Tristan, Antipodean and Amsterdam Albatross it forms the Wandering Albatross species complex. The Wandering Albatross has the...

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Word of the Day
call-note
  • The call or cry of a bird or other animal to its mate or its young.
'Call-note' is newer than 'bird-call,' which originally referred to 'an instrument for imitating the note of birds' but now also refers to 'the song or cry of a bird.'
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