Elephant Seals Study Antarctic Climate Change
Elephant seals are stepping up to help solve the mysteries of climate variation in Antarctica.
The icy continent seems to be fracturing faster than usual, and scientists are hard-pressed to find out why: this is because the saline content in the ocean allows it to dip well below zero before freezing over (a la Titanic), making it extremely difficult and hazardous for humans to plumb the depths of the ice shelves.
For elephant seals, however, it ain't a thang.
The fat-snouted pinniped, two ugly tons of blubber and roar, is plunging to its usual frigid depths these days in the service of climate science, and of scientists' budgets.
If you're interested in how scientists explore the inhospitable and mysterious content at the bottom of this fair planet with limited means and some serious creativity, check out Herzog's Encounters at the End of the World.