INTROWhat ice sheet. The Antarctic ice sheet is

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INTROWhat is super large, white, has extreme temperatures and over a million inhabitants? Oh and is one of the most unique environments on this planet.  Any guesses! The north pole, Nope, although they are similar. The south pole. Yes and no. Technically the south pole is part of the place I am referring to. The place is the southernmost continent of Antarctica. The Antarctic is made up of the frozen continent of antarctica, the stormy southern ocean, and the sub-Antarctic islands. It literally surrounds the South Pole at the bottom of the world. Antarctica is an island continent that is mostly buried under snow and ice. It has a thick ice sheet and thousands of valley glaciers, floating ice shelves, ice cliffs and icebergs. It has the largest glacier in the world and layers of sea ice. The world’s coldest temperature was recorded in Antarctica in 1983 at a Russian research base. It was -89.2 degrees celsius that day. Wow! That is cold. Despite all that cold temperature Antarctica is the world’s driest desert. It receives less than 5 cm of snowfall per year. It contains 75% of the world’s fresh water but it is all locked up in ice.There are a variety of things that live in Antarctica. The creatures that live in Antarctica are Leopard seals, Orca whales, Blue whales, krill, tern  birds, gray gulls, southern elephant seals, weddell seals and penguins. The most popular creatures to live in Antarctica are penguins however. There are many different types of penguins that call Antarctica home.There are no permanent human settlements in Antarctica but there are a number of countries with research bases there. There are no trees or shrubs, and only two species of flowering plants are found: Antarctic hair grass and Antarctic pearlwort. There are many things that make Antarctica unique. It is the fifth largest continent in the world, yet it was last to be discovered and explored. Antarctica is larger than Europe and is almost twice as big as Australia. Antarctica is the coldest, driest, and windiest of all the continents. Most of Antarctica is covered by a sheet of ice called in ice sheet. The Antarctic ice sheet is the largest continental glacier in the world.You probably don’t know that as long you are dressed for the weather, you’ll be fine.  Many people travel to Antarctica every year for research and testing purposes.  You can go kayaking, hiking and exploring one of the most untouched places on earth. It is like walking on another planet because it is just ice and rock, there are no trees, plants or  anything else,no people have ever lived there, so it really is like walking on the Moon, or Mars, and that is what makes it exciting . The wildlife there, particularly the penguins have no fear of humans at all, they never had any predators on land, so they are totally confident and extremely curious about us, it also makes a great study area for people studying climate change. So that is what Antarctica is, where it is,what you can do there, and also some facts about Antarctica,  thank you for listening and enjoy the rest of your day.

Categories: Climate Change


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