At the top of the world is a cold and icy area called the Arctic. It is made up of the Arctic Ocean and parts of North America, Asia, and Europe. Much of the ocean is frozen into sea ice, which forms and melts with the seasons. The barren land also freezes many months of the year. People and other animals have adapted to life in these harsh conditions. But rising temperatures and melting ice are creating new challenges for life in the Arctic.

Image credits: main image, courtesy of NASA.