Site: McMurdo Dry Valleys LTER

Credit: Tracey Jones, Antarctica NZ Pictorial Collection: K024C 07/08

In the austral summer, the shallow margins of ice-covered lakes melt, forming moats around the permanent ice covers of the lakes. Waters here interact with streams, soils, and the atmosphere (unlike those under the permanent ice). Recent study of these moats has uncovered these as the locations of the highest biomass per unit area in the dry valleys landscape.