25 June 2021
#AntarcticLog is a series of comics by Karen Romano Young. You can find the originals here.
That’s what we think of when we envision Antarctica. But it hasn’t always been this cold.
Despite its distance from the equator, it was still connected to the world ocean.
Millions of years ago, Antarctica was warm enough that frogs lived there. So what happened to cause the deep freeze we see today?
As the temperature dropped, Antarctic creatures made adaptations to allow them to keep living here despite the cold.
To observe the effects of the changes — and predict what might happen as the globe continues to warm — scientists look back through the “time machine” of ice cores that preserve life from long ago.
Scientists working along the coast of the Antarctic peninsula don’t have to dig that deep to see the effects of global warming: just decades of penguin observations tell the tale of ch-ch-ch-changes.