Cold Deserts antarctica

Antarctica is the coldest desert and region on earth; the coldest temperature recorded there was a chilling -128.6 Fahrenheit, while the hottest ever recorded was a whopping difference of 63.5 Fahrenheit but this was recorded at the tip of Antarctica at Esperanza base where it is much warmer. At vostok station, located at the geographic center of Antarctica, the highest recorded temperature was only -7.5 Fahrenheit. Average rainfall (snow) in Antarctica is only 6.5 inches a year, the reason it is higher for a desert is because of the areas around the coast. A reliable max and min was not available

Net Primary Productivity

Cold deserts, and all deserts as a matter of fact, have the least primary productivity out of all biomes. Desert biomes cover the most area out of any others, yet still have the least primary productivity. The cold desert of Antarctica does not have much biodiversity except for in and around the surrounding waters; Penguins, seals, etc will live in these areas.

Soil Quality

Antarctica is made up of glacial ice, rock, and snow, but there is still soil. Antarctica is a continent which means there is land underneath all of that ice and snow, but most all of it are miles underneath so it doesn't matter too much.

Invasive and Endangered

King Crab

The water surrounding Antarctica has been frigid and cold for thousands of years, cold enough to keep this species out of its water for that time. With the warming waters of the ocean this species is able to live in these waters now. There are no organisms currently that are able to fight off or defend itself against this organism because of its hard exoskeleton.

Eretmoptera murphyi

The Eretmoptera murphyi, or a midge, while not on the continent of Antarctica, are becoming increasingly close to it. These have been found on the South Georgian islands in the Atlantic ocean, close to the Antarctic peninsula. These speed up the rate at which organisms decay in Antarctic soil.

Blue Whale

The Blue Whale is a commonly known endangered species. Blue Whales were "over harvested" by whalers whose goal was to use them for oil and meat. This over harvesting or over hunting led to a massive decrease in population size. Also habitat degradation can be applied to the declining amount of zooplankton, the whales food source.

Animals in Antarctica

The three most common animals in Antarctica are seals, whales, and penguins.

Adelie Penguin

Adelie Penguins are the most common type of penguin found in Antarctica. Adelie Penguins need to be able to swim to catch their food, which is krill. Because of this they have adapted sleek bodies and fur to help them move better through water.

Antarctic Fur Seal

Antarctic fur seals are one of the most common type of seals found there. An adaptation that has helped them survive in this biome is that they can move their flippers and support their body weight on them so that they can walk on land, like a dog or cow would be able to.

Sei Whale

Sei whales, along with others, is an endangered species that can be found around the coast of the cold desert Antarctic biome. They have developed thick blubber to keep their warmth in frigid waters.

Plants in the cold desert of Antarctica

You will find no plants in the barren snow covered vastness of Antarctica, but the surrounding islands as well as the Arctic peninsula contain some.

Antarctic Hair Grass

Antarctic hair grass is one of the very very few plant species found in Antarctica. It can be found on the South Orkney Islands, South Shetland Islands, and along the western Antarctica Peninsula. An adaptation that makes this organism viable in this biome is that it has thick tissues which help it out stand the cold environment.

Antarctic Pearl Wort

Antarctic Pearl Wort plants are self pollinators. This is an extremely good adaptation in this environment where there are not any organisms such as bees to help pollinate them. They are also easily carried by the wind which helps them spread throughout the environment.

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