Antarctic Wildlife: Creatures of the Deep

Oxford, England
51.752020900000, -1.257726300000
Journal Entry:

Hello again! My name is Mensun Bound, and I am the Director of Exploration for the Endurance22 Expedition. Together, we have talked about the penguins and other large creatures of the Antarctic, and now it’s time to dive deep beneath the icy surface of the Weddell Sea to investigate this fascinating world. The creatures may not be as big as whales or giant squid, but they are so important to the Antarctic ecosystem.

I said before that the most obvious animals of the Antarctic are the birds, seals and whales, but the most numerous (by far!) are plankton. Their diversity and biomass is incredible. In places around Antarctica the sea is like a minestrone soup of small aquatic life forms. I have worked a lot with deep-ocean remotely-operated-vehicle teams, and sometimes when we turn on the lights of our submersibles we find ourselves passing though swarms of plankton that are so thick it is just as if we are in the middle of a snow blizzard.