What’s behind the death of a tiny creature with an outsized role in the Antarctic?
Tiny, transparent, and threatened, krill are crucial to the Antarctic ecosystem. But the population of krill is crashing for reasons that continue to baffle the experts. A leading theory says that krill’s life cycle is driven by an internal body clock that responds to the waxing and waning of the Antarctic ice pack, and as climate change alters the timing of the ice pack, their life cycle is disrupted. To test it, NOVA travels on the Polarstern, a state-of-the-art research vessel, to the frigid ice pack in the dead of winter. From camps established on the ice, scientists dive beneath the surface in search of the ice caves that shelter juvenile krill during the winter. There, they hope to discover what’s causing the krill to vanish and, ultimately, how the shifting seasons caused by climate change could disrupt ecosystems around the world.
Scientists search for the killer decimating the population of shrimp-like creatures in Antarctica.
Boating the Yalour Islands, Antarctica
Adelie Penguins, Antarctica
Weddell Seal and Pup, Antarctica
Broken Fast, Ice Under the Midnight Sun and Impending Storm Edward VIII, Bay Kemp Coast, Antarctica
Emperor Penguin Colony, Cape Roget, Ross Sea, Antarctica
Dumont D'Urville Terre Adelie Coast, East Antarctica
Aurora Australis Over the Bellingshausen Sea, Ellsworth Land Region, Antarctica