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In a first, bird flu reaches Antarctica, threatening to wipe out tons of penguins and other birds

2023 has been a bad year for emperor penguins. In August, a study in the journal Communications Earth & Environment found that the loss of polar ice in Antarctica is likely to lead to a “catastrophic breeding failure” for penguins throughout Antarctica, eventually causing them to be unable to naturally sustain their own species by the end of the century....

Originally posted on salon.com

Fur seals are declining thanks to lack of food and climate change, study finds

The Antarctic fur seal (Arctocephalus gazella) is among the most beloved sea animals, with its wet puppy dog eyes, big white whiskers, rolly poly gray body and slippery flippers. Unsurprisingly, the fur seal is almost universally regarded as adorable. The act of clubbing one for its fur is a horrific practice that has thankfully been banned — but in a way, humans are still clubbing these animals over the head with drastic changes to the global climate....

Originally posted on salon.com

Will glaciers go “extinct” in our lifetime? Here’s what a future without polar ice would look like

July 2023 was officially the hottest month in recorded history — and, as such, was a regrettable milestone in the history of climate change. Scientists lamented the “new abnormal” that made itself apparent throughout that month, one that included extreme weather events like wildfires, tropical storms and freakishly scorching heatwaves....

Originally posted on salon.com

This year is so hot, Antarctica is missing sea ice equivalent in size to Argentina

New data from the National Snow and Ice Data Center (NSIDC) reveals that Antarctic sea ice is growing at its lowest rate in recorded history, with the continent missing an Argentina-sized amount of sea ice.

Because climate change is melting Antarctic sea ice at an unprecedented rate, scientists have mostly focused on the problems caused by the infusion of so much water into the ocean — problems like rising sea levels and collapsing ocean currents....

Originally posted on salon.com