The Fascinating World of Antarctica!
Antarctic tourism is a rapidly growing sector of the tourism industry with an estimated 46,000 tourists visiting in 2000. The majority of Antarctic tourists visit the Antarctic Peninsula with most embarking from Ushuaia Argentina. While the number of ships carrying tourists to Antarctica has increased in recent years the overall impact of tourism on the continent has been relatively small. However, as the industry continues to grow it is important to consider the potential environmental and social impacts of Antarctic tourism.
Antarctica is the world’s southernmost continent lying almost entirely within the Antarctic Circle. It is surrounded by the Southern Ocean and almost entirely covered by ice. The average height of the ice is about 2.5 kilometers. Antarctica is the fifth-largest continent in the world after Asia Africa North America and South America. About 98% of Antarctica is covered by ice which averages 1.9 kilometers in thickness.
The weather in Antarctica is notoriously unpredictable and can change very quickly. The best time to visit Antarctica is during the austral summer months of December to February when the weather is typically milder and there is more daylight. During this time average temperatures range from -10 to 5 degrees Celsius (14 to 41 degrees Fahrenheit).
However, it is important to be prepared for all weather conditions as even during the summer months it is not uncommon for temperatures to drop below -20 degrees Celsius (-4 degrees Fahrenheit) or for strong winds to occur.
The continent of Antarctica is located in the southernmost part of the world and is almost entirely covered by ice. The continent is divided into two parts: East Antarctica and West Antarctica. East Antarctica is larger than West Antarctica and is considered to be a more stable part of the continent. The majority of the research stations in Antarctica are located in East Antarctica. West Antarctica is more mountainous and has a higher risk of earthquakes and volcanoes.
The human population of Antarctica is around 4,000 people. The majority of these people are scientists or support staff for scientific research stations. The largest settlement is McMurdo Station which has a population of around 1,200 people. The only other settlement with a population of over 1,000 is the Russian settlement of Vostok. There are no indigenous people in Antarctica and no permanent residents.
Antarctic Physical Geography
The physical geography of Antarctica is unique and diverse. The continent is largely covered by ice and is the highest driest coldest windiest and most isolated continent on Earth. Antarctica is home to 90% of the world’s ice and 70% of its fresh water. The continent is divided in two by the Transantarctic Mountains. To the west of the mountains is the Ross Sea and to the east is the Weddell Sea. Antarctica also has a number of smaller seas including the Bellingshausen Sea the Cosmonauts Sea and the Amery Ice Shelf.
Antarctic Flora and Fauna
The Antarctic is home to a wide variety of plant and animal life. The plant life is mostly limited to mosses lichens and a few flowering plants. The animal life is more varied and includes penguins, seals, whales, birds and many different types of fish. The Antarctic also has a wide variety of microorganisms including bacteria and algae.
Antarctic Cultural Geography
The continent of Antarctica is the world’s southernmost covering an area of 14 million square kilometers. It is almost entirely covered in ice with an average thickness of 2.3 kilometers. 98% of the continent is permanently covered in ice making it the largest desert in the world. The continent is home to a variety of unique wildlife including penguins, seals and whales. Despite its harsh conditions, Antarctica is home to a number of scientific research stations operated by a number of different countries.
What animals live in the Antarctic?
The Antarctic is home to many unique and interesting animals including penguins, seals, whales and seabirds. Penguins are the most well-known of the Antarctic animals and there are several different species that live in the region. Seals are another common Antarctic animal and there are both fur seals and elephant seals. Whales can also be found in the waters around Antarctica and there are a variety of seabirds that make their home on the continent.
How cold is Huron lake in Antarctica?
Huron Lake is located in the McMurdo Dry Valleys of Antarctica. The lake is covered by ice for most of the year and only accessible during the austral summer months. Temperatures in the dry valleys are some of the coldest on Earth with average winter temperatures around -50°C.