What Organisms Live in Antarctica Today?

What does it take to survive in Antarctica? For emperor penguins, the answer is teamwork—they huddle together by the thousands to keep incubating eggs warm. Learn how other organisms have adapted.

Antarctic Adaptations

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Antarctic Adaptations

Unlike human visitors, Antarctica's plants and animals don't require high-tech gear. How have these organisms adapted to thrive—not just survive—in such an extreme environment?

Create a Polar Creature

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Create a Polar Creature

Ice floes, katabatic winds, and subzero temperatures—welcome to life in Antarctica. What features would your ideal creature have to thrive in this extreme habitat?

Great White South by Herbert G. Ponting

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Great White South by Herbert G. Ponting

Ponting is one of the best photographers to have documented Antarctica. He was also a fine travel writer. Read an excerpt from his account of traveling with Robert Falcon Scott on his last expedition.

Microorganisms in Antarctic Seas

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Microorganisms in Antarctic Seas

During the winter, the sea ice off Antarctica covers an area so big that it's actually the largest continuous habitat on Earth. The algae that live there produce 25 percent of all oxygen on the planet.

Photographing Weddell Seals from Below the Ice

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Photographing Weddell Seals from Below the Ice

Weddell seals spend about 90% of their time submerged, making them a tricky animal to study. Before Davis developed a special camera, scientists could only speculate about the seals' lives below the ice.

Studying Antarctica's Marine Organisms

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Studying Antarctica's Marine Organisms

Antarctica's water is so clear that organisms have problems finding food. "It's like parents having to tell their young, 'We're not going to be able to feed you until Christmas, so hold your breath,'" says Donal Manahan.

The Worst Journey in the World

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The Worst Journey in the World

Why in the world would anyone spend five weeks trekking into the dark Antarctic winter to bring back a few penguin eggs? Find out, and learn just how harsh the journey was for this three-person team.