• antarctica

    Antarctica (6): unknown territories…

    Global climate change is a man-made hazard that affects us all. Nowhere is its impact so far-reaching as it is at both the South and North Pole. There are many negative effects, but large-scale melting of ice sheets and a subsequent rise in sea water level are the most conspicuous. In Antarctica, especially the Antarctic Peninsula is influenced by an increase in temperature, resulting in large-scale ice shelf collapses. Major ice shelf destruction occurred e.g. in 1995 (Larsen A ice shelf) and 2002 (Larsen B ice shelf). The Larsen B area, originally a region fully covered by sea ice, completely collapsed between January and March of 2002. It only took 1 month to destroy this 10000-year old, 220m…

  • antarctica

    Antarctica (5): The Antarctic Peninsula and finally some sampling!

    In our previous blog post about this 2016-2017 Antarctic research expedition on the German RV Polarstern, we were stranded in the ice near Neumayer Station II, at the eastern side of the Weddell Sea. After delivering some important provisions to the residents of the base, we could finally leave the area and navigated towards the Antarctic Peninsula in the west. This is where all the main research activities were planned: observations of whales and other large marine mammals, sea bottom imaging with an ROV (Remotely Operated Vehicle), releasing and retrieving fish traps for trophic (feeding) analysis and sampling of benthic (bottom) fauna. Our main goal was to reach the Larsen B area, originally a region…

  • antarctica

    Antarctica (4): on the ice!

    I am a lucky man, in more than one sense, and I love the life I’m living. I am so lucky that I can live it with my fantastic wife and daughter and travel the world with them. Travel has given us so much joy and long-lasting memories. However, I must admit I personally have also been given quite a few unique travel opportunities in the past. I used to work as a marine biologist at Ghent University (Belgium). When I started working at the Marine Biology research group, I somehow managed to find one of the most exotic subjects for my master’s thesis and PhD: coral reefs, both in cold-water and tropical…