Shop Windows to the Universe

The Winter 2010 issue of The Earth Scientist includes a variety of educational resources, ranging from astronomy to glaciers. Check out the other publications and classroom materials in our online store.

    Image Courtesy of Jean Pennycook

From: Jean Pennycook
Cape Royds, Antarctica, October 28, 2008

Spring Is Here

It is spring here, although you wouldn't know it. Temperatures are -10C to -13C, and in every direction all you see is ice and snow. But we know this is spring for Antarctica because the Sun is up. The first babies we see this year are the Weddell seal pups. The females haul themselves out of the water through cracks in the ice to bear the pups and nurse them until they are able to swim. The mothers will lose almost a third of their body weight in order to provide nutrition to these pups before they will be able to eat again.

In the pictures, a brand new pup that is only hours old has its umbilical cord still attached (right). Another pup is one day old (left). Females lay in groups ready to have their pups (lower).

Go to the next postcard

Postcards from the Field: Adelie Penguins 2008

You might also be interested in:

Cool It! Game

Check out our online store - minerals, fossils, books, activities, jewelry, and household items!...more

The Cryosphere

The cryosphere includes the parts of the Earth system where water is in its frozen (solid) form. This includes snow, sea ice, icebergs, ice shelves, glaciers, ice sheets, and permafrost soils. Approximately...more

Antarctica

Antarctica is unique. It is the coldest, windiest, and driest continent on Earth. The land is barren and mostly covered with a thick sheet of ice. Antarctica is almost entirely south of the Antarctic Circle...more

Spring Is Here

It is spring here, although you wouldn't know it. Temperatures are -10C to -13C, and in every direction all you see is ice and snow. But we know this is spring for Antarctica because the Sun is up. The...more

Return to Royds

This year the penguins arrived early. Our remote camera recorded the first ones Oct 21, a full week earlier than last year. The sea ice edge is 50 miles away so their walk is much further than last season,...more

Penguin Weather Vanes

Normally when I come down to the colony on my daily rounds the penguins are sitting every which way on their nests. Some face each other, some face away from each other, some face inwards, some outwards,...more

Baby Come Back.

The colony is very quiet now, the nesting groups of penguins are mostly males patiently keeping the 2 eggs warm while the females are out foraging for food. This year the sea ice edge, where the females...more

"The Birds" of Royds

Penguins aren't the only ones that come to Cape Royds to raise their chicks. The South Polar Skua makes its home here during the same time because the pickings are easy. Penguin eggs and chicks fall prey...more

Windows to the Universe, a project of the National Earth Science Teachers Association, is sponsored in part is sponsored in part through grants from federal agencies (NASA and NOAA), and partnerships with affiliated organizations, including the American Geophysical Union, the Howard Hughes Medical Institute, the Earth System Information Partnership, the American Meteorological Society, the National Center for Science Education, and TERC. The American Geophysical Union and the American Geosciences Institute are Windows to the Universe Founding Partners. NESTA welcomes new Institutional Affiliates in support of our ongoing programs, as well as collaborations on new projects. Contact NESTA for more information. NASA ESIP NCSE HHMI AGU AGI AMS NOAA