The first women at the South Pole

Forty-five years ago the first six women set foot at the South Pole in November 1969. These women were: New Zealander Pamela Young who worked under the New Zealand Antarctic programme as a field assistant to her biologist husband; Lois Jones, a geochemist at Ohio State University, who headed an all-female team consisting of Terry Lee Tickhill Terrell, Eileen McSaveney and Kay Lindsay to a study lakes in Antarctica's Dry Valleys and Jean Pearson, a reporter for the Detroit Free Press.

Read more ...

South Korea opens new Antarctic cooperation office in Christchurch, New Zealand

Amongst the nations that are showing a growing interest in Antarctica are many Asian countries such as China, India, Japan and South Korea. Several new stations have been constructed and the national research efforts are increased step by step.

Read more ...

The heat from the deep

Water temperatures in the West Antarctic shelf are rising. The reason for this increase lies in warmer waters rising from the deep due to climate change. Thus, it is likely to increase the melting of glaciers from below and the acceleration of glacial fluxes. These scenarios are predicted by scientists of the GEOMAR Helmholtz Center for Oceanography in Kiel, Germany together with colleagues from the United Kingdom, USA and Japan. The results of their study have been published in the international journal Science.

Read more ...

Governmental support for South Georgia and its wildlife

The UK Government has awarded the South Georgia Heritage Trust nearly £250,000 of funding, helping to secure the survival of one of the world’s most important seabird sanctuaries on the sub-Antarctic island of South Georgia. Supporting the world’s largest rat eradication, the grant comes from the Overseas Territories Environment and Climate Fund (Darwin Plus), an internationally renowned programme which gives funding to help protect some of the world’s most threatened species in the UK’s Overseas Territories. Ten other projects will receive grants thanks to £1.5 million of new government funding to protect biodiversity and the natural environment in the UK’s Overseas Territories.

Read more ...

Love is in the air – Kittiwakes choose their mates via odor

Mate choice is often the most important decision in the lives of humans and animals. This also holds true for Arctic animals. Scientists at the Konrad Lorenz Institute of Ethology at the Vetmeduni Vienna have compared the preen gland chemicals of black-legged kittiwakes with genes that play a role in immunity. Kittiwakes that smell similarly to each other also have similar genes for immunity. Since the birds prefer to mate with unrelated mates, the scientists have now found the likely mechanism by which they recognize relatedness.

Read more ...

Critical future for Canadian polar bears

Climate change hits hard on Arctic inhabitants. Its impact doesn’t stop before the king of the Arctic, the polar bear. Polar bears need sea ice because their prey mainly lives on it. Shifts in the timing and duration of ice cover, especially the possible lengthening of ice-free periods, may impact polar bears under projected warming before the end of the 21st century. This is the result of an international study published just recently in the journal PLOS One.

Read more ...

The Cerny Inuit Collection presents Abraham Anghik Ruben

Born in 1951 in the Canadian Northwest Territories, Abraham Anghik Ruben grew up on the land surrounded by nature and hearing legends, until he was forced to go to a school located far from his home. After this difficult time, he turned to art to find his roots.

Read more ...

Plane crashed on King George Island

A C-130 Hercules belonging to the Brazilian air force (FAB) crash-landed near the Chilean Base Eduardo Frei on King George Island on November 27 2014. Luckily, there were no casualties and the resulting fire on one of the jet engines was put out quickly.

Read more ...

Oceanwide Expeditions helps to recover ROV seagliders

With an extraordinary rescue operation the crews of the two cruise ships MV Plancius and MV Ortelius managed to recover unmanned remote controlled seagliders in the Greenland Sea a few days ago. With this action, Oceanwide Expeditions helped the oceanographer Dr. Katrin Latarius from AWI to successfully complete a scientific measurement program in the Greenland Sea. Oceanwide Expeditions adjusted its routes for the search of the seagliders. The ships stopped in the open sea, the crews were launching inflatable Zodiac boats into the water in order to rescue the two autonomous underwater vehicles of AWI out of the water.

Read more ...

A window into the past – Notebook from Scott’s last expedition found in Antarctica

The race to the South Pole between Roald Amundsen and Robert Falcon Scott is one of the most exciting and most tragic events in the history of polar exploration. Although a lot of the details are known, new artefacts appear out of the ice of Antarctica every now and then and shed light on further details on the fate of some of the expedition members. A photographer’s notebook left behind a century ago at Captain Scott’s last expedition base at Cape Evans, Antarctica, has been now discovered and conserved by New Zealand’s Antarctic Heritage Trust.

Read more ...