Keystone Species Ranges are Changing

Palmer Antarctica LTER
Shifts in sea ice are affecting the WAP ecosystem and biogeochemistry. Despite dramatic shifts in Antarctic food webs, the number of the keystone krill species (Euphausia superba) has not changed significantly over the PAL LTER study area. However, researchers have observed reduced juvenile recruitment following positive anomalies of the Southern Annular Mode. North of PAL... Read more »

Ecosystem Resilience

Palmer Antarctica LTER
Between 2010 and 2017, the PAL LTER study area experienced cooler winter air temperatures, cooler summer surface ocean temperatures, and longer ice seasons relative to the first decade of the 21st century (but not relative to the 1950s-1970s). This has slowed sea ice declines, which is associated with increased primary productivity and ocean CO2 drawdown.... Read more »

Do Whales and Penguins Compete?

Palmer Antarctica LTER
Humpback whale populations are growing at their biological maximum as they recover from intense  commercial whaling. New cetacean research at PAL LTER shows that humpbacks forage in close proximity to the penguins near Palmer Station, and in similar portions of the water column used by Adélie penguins during critical chick rearing periods. Palmer LTER researchers... Read more »

Climate Forcing of the West Antarctic Peninsula

Palmer Antarctica LTER
Over the past five decades, the West Antarctic Peninsula (WAP) has experienced changes related to rapidly warming winter atmospheric temperatures, dramatic sea ice declines, and accelerated glacial melting. Interactions between ocean and atmospheric climate cycles (El Niño, Southern Annual Mode) influence shoreward heat delivery associated with deep warm ocean waters and alter the upper mixed... Read more »