Saturday, September 27, 2008

A Little About the Southern Ocean at the New Ocean Hall in D.C.

Today I went to the new Ocean Hall that opened at the National Museum of Natural History. I did not think at all about it having anything to do with Antarctica, although considering Antarctica is surrounded by a major ocean it is not surprising I found references to it. They actually have a special corner of the exhibit about the Arctic and Southern Oceans. It is really interestingly done with comparison info on the two oceans on top of each other. Below are some pictures I took of the Arctic and Southern Ocean part of the exhibit. Definitely worth checking out if you are in the D.C. area and it is a new permanent exhibit, so no rush to go see.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Scott Honored at Anatarctic Festival 2008

To honor Robert Falcon Scott there is special screenings of the 1948 movie, Scott of the Antarctic. If you are not going to the Antarctic Festival, then you can still check this movie out, as I just added it to my Netflix Queue, which means it is available on DVD. The proceeds from the Antarctic Festival showings will go towards helping the Antarctic Trust's efforts to preserve Scott's hut that still stands in Antarctica.

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Television Shows with Penguins: "Music and Movement" episode of Hi-5

Hi-5 is not all that great of a show, but it does have a penguin appearance in the "Music and Movement" episode. In this episode there is a part with one of the characters singing the word Antarctica over and over again and at the same time slowly adding pieces to end up with a penguin costume. It is actually pretty dorky and really not worth catching unless your kids happen to like the show and penguins.

Friday, September 19, 2008

Encounters At the End of the World

I have been seeing stuff about Encounters at the End of the World for a while now, but it did not come to a local theater until this month. I finally got around to seeing it last night.

It was not entirely an exciting movie, but it was a great unique documentary. I like how it focused on the people that work there and the research they do with barely touching on penguins. Sure, I love penguins, but I love the other things about Antarctica, too, and this documentary shows people that there is more to Antarctica than penguins.

Some of the interesting parts include underwater footage and footage of the researchers at Mt. Erebus, a volcano. My favorite thing, though, is that it showed David Ainley talking a little about Adelie Penguins. I know most probably do not know who he is, but I remember him being one of the authors of a lot of the articles I used in my Endangered Penguins Research paper back in college.

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Television Shows with Penguins: "Break an Egg" Episode of Time Warp Trio

The "Break an Egg" episode of Time Warp Trio is about their magic book transporting them to Antarctica and them ending up as part of the deadly Scott expedition to the South Pole. Can they find the book and get home to their own time and place before they freeze or starve to death with the rest of the expedition?

Time Warp Trio has some episodes on DVD, but this episode is not among them. The show does still sometimes show reruns on Discovery Kids and this episode is occasionally shown. Also, this episode has a book based on the episode and/or this is one of the episodes based on the book.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Television Shows With Penguins: "All Creatures Great and Small" episode of Airline

Airline is a about SouthWest airlines and the crazy things that go on at airports and on the airplanes. In the "All Creatures Great and Small" episode part of the situations it shows is Pete and Penny penguins (I think they are Magellenic, but I may be wrong) from the San Diego Zoo flying to Chicago.

This episode of Airline sometimes replays on the Biography Channel. It is also on the Season 1 DVD collection of this show.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

History's Lost & Found James Caird Episode

History's Lost & Found is a show that talks about various historic artifacts. In Episode 54 one of the artifacts they talk about is the James Caird, which was the life boat that Shackleton used to get to the South Georgia Islands and get help for his men stranded in Antarctica after the Endurance sank. The episode is kind of interesting although the segment is only a few minutes of the 30 minute episode. It basically tells the story of the historic event and then tells about what happened to the boat after that up until where it is today. By the way today it is at Dulwich College in London, England.

History's Lost & Found still airs episodes every Sunday at 3am and 3:30am, so eventually this episode may replay. I had recorded early this summer. Currently only the first episode of this series is on DVD, but maybe someday they will release the whole series.

Monday, September 15, 2008

My Antarctic Bathroom

Below are pictures of my Antarctic Bathroom, which is the only clean and completed room in my house. It has a shelf of little penguin knick knacks I have collected from all over including a few from the tip of South America and South Africa. It has a white medicine cabinet that represents an iceberg. It is a metal cabinet, so I have placed my penguin magnets and some penguin postcards and such on it. I have two white hook racks that are also supposed to represent ice, especially with their clear knobs.

I found the penguin shower curtain at Target the other day. Although, it is a surfing/sun penguin type design it still fits pretty well because the penguins are pretty realistic looking besides the surf gear and it has blues in it. Also, part of the Target line of penguin bathroom accessories is the Penguin trash can I put up on top of the closet and a cup I put on top of the sink.

The toilet seat is blue and the medicine cabinet is like an iceberg floating on the ocean blue of the cabinet. Lastly I have some penguin handtowels and blue bath towels and a penguin rug.

Sunday, September 14, 2008

U.S. Air Force Makes First Night Landing in Antarctic

On Thursday the U.S. Air Force made the first known night landing in Antarctica using night vision goggles. The plane was a C-17 that flew the standard supply route from Christchurch to McMurdo Base. The night landing could prove to make restocking Antarctic stations in the middle of the winter possible. Here is an article about it.

Antarctic Salamander

A partial skull of an ancient giant salamander was found in Antarctica in 1986, but was only recently described by scientists. Here is an article that talks about the salamander. It is dated to about 240 million years ago and is believed to have looked a little bit like modern crocodiles. It was a more toothy type then most salamanders.

Antarctic Festival 2008 Starts September 26 and Next Year There Will Be None

Here is an article about the Antarctic Festival, an annual event in Christchurch, New Zealand, will be taking a break next year to better the festival for 2010. In the meantime the 2008 one still has not happened, as it kicks off on September 26, 2008.

British Sports Car Made for Antarctic Terrain

Here is an interesting article about the British Sports Car Maker, Lotus, making a car for the Antarctic. Not only can it go up to 84MPH on snow and ice, but it runs on biofuel. Oh, and it even has radar to detect crevasses and can run in conditions as cold as minus 72 Celsius.

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Ozone Hole Over Antarctica Expected to Get Larger

Here is an article about the Ozone Hole that sometimes is just over the Antarctic, although sometimes it ends up also over Australia and New Zealand. I found it interesting because before reading it I thought it was getting smaller or at least staying the same. According to the article the ozone hole is expected to deplete more as the sun rises again in Antarctica at the end of the winter darkness. It is not the CFCs that are expected to be the issue, but rather chlorine and bromine in the atmosphere.