Thursday, April 24, 2008

Ozone Hole Recovery Could Case Antarctic Warming

This is an interesting, although dense, article about how if the ozone hole in the Southern Hemisphere begins to recover it could lead to warming in Antarctica. Currently, Antarctica as a whole is not warming as much as it has in other areas in the Southern Hemisphere. Apparently the ozone hole recovery would weaken the winds in the Western Antarctic and that somehow keeps the Antarctic isolated from the rest of the region's warming. Basically the article leaves me confused on what the connection between ozone hole recovery and warming in Antarctica and in the end the article mentions global warming caused by greenhouse gases is more likely to cause warming in the Antarctic.

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Fedor Nears End of Journey

Here is one of the latest articles I have found about Fedor's journey sailing solo non-stop around Antarctica. He is nearing the end of the journey. He is expected to complete the circumnavigation within the next two weeks and has about 4000 kilometers left to travel. Currently, though, he is dealing with strong headwinds and making very little progress towards the end point. The current end date prediction is May 5.

Yes, Even Antarctica Has Bugs

Here is an interesting article I found about an entomologist that studies the flightless midge, which is found in Antarctica. The flightless midge is only about half an inch long, but it qualifies as the largest animal living exclusively on land in Antarctica.

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Television Shows with Penguins: Go, Diego, Go! Penguin Episodes

The Nick Jr. Go, Diego, Go! show has three different episodes that feature penguins. This show is a spin-off of Dora the Explorer, which has the one penguin episode I wrote about earlier this month. The Go, Diego, Go! show is about Diego, a Latino boy around age 7, rescuing or helping animals.

One of the penguin episodes is called "Pepito's Penguin School." In this episode Diego helps a penguin named Pepito find his penguin school. It involves them finding different penguins in Antarctica until they find the one that is of penguins the same species as Pepito. This includes showing Adelies. I believe that Pepito ends up being a Emperor Penguin, but I forget for sure. At least that is what he looks most like.

The second Go, Diego, Go! episode with penguins is called "Macky the Macaroni Penguin." In this episode Diego helps bring a newly hatched Macaroni penguin back to his mother. Along the way he helps the penguin learn how to get around like a penguin including waddling and sliding on his belly.

The third Go, Diego, Go! episode is called "Diego, the Hero." In this episode Diego helps rescue his sister Alicia, who is stuck on a ship stuck in the ice. On board the ship are injured penguins, so he is also helping the injured penguins get to the Snowy Rescue Center. The main penguins shown are Adelie Penguins.

Monday, April 21, 2008

Space Robot to be Tested in Antarctica

This is one of the more interesting articles I have come across in a while. It is about a space robot that they are going to test in Lake Bonney in the McMurdo Dry Valleys region of Antarctica in November 2008. This robot is called ENDURANCE (Environmentally Non-Disturbing Under-ice Robotic ANtartic Explorer). This type of robot is being tested to be later used to explore the ocean under the ice on Jupiter's moon Europa.

Sunday, April 20, 2008

Chinese to Complete Interior Antarctic Base in 2009

I have written about China building their third Antarctic base in the past. They have already begun the preparations for this base at Dome A and I recently read an article about them expecting to finish this base next year. The expedition to construct the main structure is scheduled to start work in November and complete the base in January 2009. This base will be the first Chinese base built inland.

Friday, April 18, 2008

Antarctic Ice Core

Here is an article about Antarctic ice core samples being drilled and researched at South Dakota State University. The ice core is being drilled in the West Antarctic Ice Sheet and is being looked at to determine the make up of the Earth's atmosphere over the past 100,000 years. In particular they are trying to create a year by year record of the atmosphere's composition for the last 40,000 years.

Environmentalists Claim Victory over Japan Whaling

Earlier this year I wrote about the green groups and governments trying to stop the Japanese whaling in Antarctica, such as in this post. Today I came across an article in which the green so-called pirates have claimed their actions a victory, as the Japanese returned home from their whaling expedition having only caught half of the amount they planned to catch.

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Television Shows with Penguins: Dora the Explorer To the South Pole Episode

The "To the South Pole" episode of Dora the Explorer does appear on one of the Dora DVDs, so I kind of went back and forth between if this should be a movie or television show with penguins. In the end I am entitling it a television show, as that is what it started as, but am going to label it to be filed in both categories. The DVD it is on by the way is Dora the Explorer - Meet Diego.

In "To the South Pole" Dora and her cousin Diego discover a penguin at the Animal Rescue Center and end up going on an adventure to take the penguin back to his home in Antarctica. This is a fun unique Dora episode because it has them going on a plane and a snowmobile as part of their journey. Of course, it is also an awesome episode because of the penguins.

Sunday, April 13, 2008

Television Shows with Penguins: Cyberchase's Penguin Tears Episode

To compliment my Movies with Penguins series of posts, I am also starting a series called Television Shows with Penguins, which will all be placed in the Television Shows with Penguins label category. This series will include television shows I come across that feature a penguin character as a recurring role or a particular episode in the television series that happens to contain at least one penguin. If you have any shows/episodes that you know of with penguins, then please comment and let me know, so I can feature it in an upcoming post in this series of posts.

The first television show with penguins that I will spotlight is one specific episode in the PBS series Cyberchase. Cyberchase is an animated show that teaches/reinforces grade school kid math concepts through enjoyable episodes with adventures requiring a specific math concept. One of the episodes is called "Penguin Tears" and as expected it has penguin characters. The math concept taught in the episode is angles.

In this Cyberchase episode the Cyberchase gang is in Penguia, which is a location in the show's cyberland where penguins live. Playing a hockey like game is something the penguins are playing and the gang tries there hand at it. They then end up on a mission to find the Prism of Penguia, which keeps the penguins happy and Hacker (the evil guy in the show) is after. So, what does tears have to do with it? Well, the penguins take turns being the penguin crying as a way of paying homage or something and allowing the penguins to be happy without the prism. Cyberchase is a great show for kids and this episode is fun with the penguin characters, although it is not really set in Antarctica, but kind of a cyberantarctica. They, however, call is Cyberia, which sounds cooler, but is totally a misleading twist on the real Siberia where there are absolutely no penguins in the wild. The show does not try to be based in reality besides the math concepts taught, so it really is not a big deal that they do that.