Antarctica

A:

Tundra is the primary biome of Antarctica. The tundra biome is characterized by extreme cold and a lack of vegetation, which is mostly reduced to dwarf shrubs, grasses, mosses and lichens. Tundra is also distinguished by low biodiversity, as almost no amphibians or reptiles can survive its temperatures.

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  • What are the names of some cities in Antarctica?

    Q: What are the names of some cities in Antarctica?

    A: There are no true cities on the continent of Antarctica; instead, there are approximately 24 research stations with populations ranging from 1,000 to 4,000 people. The research stations are designed for scientific studies only, and they do not support tourism.
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  • Where is Antarctica located?

    Q: Where is Antarctica located?

    A: Antarctica is the ice-covered continent that surrounds the South Pole and is itself surrounded by the Southern Ocean. It is the fifth largest land mass on the planet.
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  • Which continents does the Arctic Circle pass through?

    Q: Which continents does the Arctic Circle pass through?

    A: The Arctic Circle passes through three continents: Asia, Europe and North America. This includes eight countries: Russia, Canada, Norway, Sweden, Finland, the United States (Alaska), Denmark (Greenland) and Iceland.
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  • What animals live at the North Pole?

    Q: What animals live at the North Pole?

    A: Many animals live at the North Pole, commonly referred to as the Arctic region, including arctic foxes, arctic hares, Alaskan malamutes, polar bears, seals and beluga whales. Some animals live closer to the bottom of the Arctic region, like malamutes, while others live close to the physical North Pole like polar bears, seals and whales.
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  • Who owns Antarctica?

    Q: Who owns Antarctica?

    A: Antarctica is not owned by any country, per the Antarctic Treaty. Before the Antarctic Treaty was signed, seven countries claimed parts of the continent, including Australia, the United Kingdom, Chile, Argentina, Norway, France and New Zealand. The treaty recognizes none of these claims.
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  • How do people adapt to the Arctic?

    Q: How do people adapt to the Arctic?

    A: People have adapted to the Arctic through behavioral means, such as the manners in which they construct their homes, and physiologically, as they have thicker bodies than people from other habitats possess. Humans can adapt to many different habitats because of their intelligence, but over time, their bodies evolve to suit the habitat as well. The Arctic is one of the most challenging habitats in which humans have permanently settled.
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  • What type of biome is Antarctica?

    Q: What type of biome is Antarctica?

    A: Tundra is the primary biome of Antarctica. The tundra biome is characterized by extreme cold and a lack of vegetation, which is mostly reduced to dwarf shrubs, grasses, mosses and lichens. Tundra is also distinguished by low biodiversity, as almost no amphibians or reptiles can survive its temperatures.
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  • Who first discovered Antarctica?

    Q: Who first discovered Antarctica?

    A: The first explorer to gather evidence of Antarctica's existence was Captain James Cook between 1772 and 1775. It was not until subsequent expeditions (1819-1820) by William Smith and James Bransfield that the shore was sighted. It was another year before the American Captain John Davis actually landed on the continent.
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  • When does Antarctica have its shortest days and longest nights?

    Q: When does Antarctica have its shortest days and longest nights?

    A: Antarctica has 24 hours of sunlight every year on December 21, when it is tilted towards the sun. The longest night, with 24 hours of darkness, in Antarctica happens when this southernmost continent is tilted away from the sun.
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  • Do people live in Antarctica?

    Q: Do people live in Antarctica?

    A: There are no permanent residents of Antarctica. However, there are many research stations in Antarctica that are populated throughout the year by professionals sent to study the continent.
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  • What kinds of plants grow in the polar regions?

    Q: What kinds of plants grow in the polar regions?

    A: Several types of plants grow in the Arctic and Antarctic regions of the world, including the Arctic willow, Antarctic pearlwort, pasque flower and bearberry. Generally, polar plants are small and grow low to the ground.
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  • Which animals live in the polar regions?

    Q: Which animals live in the polar regions?

    A: Animals that live in the polar regions include penguins, seals, bears, sea lions and walruses. There are two polar regions near the North and South poles, located at the northernmost and southernmost parts of the Earth. While the two regions are similar in temperature, animal life and survival differs between the poles.
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  • What animals live in the South Pole?

    Q: What animals live in the South Pole?

    A: Penguins are among the few animals that live in the South Pole. The South Pole is situated in the continent of Antarctica, where temperatures are too frigid most months of the year to be able to sustain much animal life. Due to this, there are no land-based vertebrate animals on the continent. In addition to penguins, approximately 200 species of fish are found in Antarctica's waters.
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  • What kind of animals live in Antarctica?

    Q: What kind of animals live in Antarctica?

    A: No animals live permanently in Antarctica; animals that live in the sea around Antarctica include fish, krill, penguins and a variety of seals. Most of these animals live permanently in the water because the land is too harsh and the temperatures are too cold.
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  • What is the climate like in Antarctica?

    Q: What is the climate like in Antarctica?

    A: The climate in Antarctica is extremely cold with very little precipitation. The coldest ever temperature to be recorded on Earth was -128.56 degrees Fahrenheit in Antarctica at Vostok Station.
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  • When can you see the Northern Lights?

    Q: When can you see the Northern Lights?

    A: In most parts of the world, the northern lights, or aurora borealis, are visible between late fall until early spring. In extremely northern areas, the lights may be visible from early fall until late spring.
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  • Why do penguins live in Antarctica?

    Q: Why do penguins live in Antarctica?

    A: Penguins live in Antarctica because they are especially adapted to the cold through their unique feathers, small feet and circulatory system. For instance, one of the species that lives in Antarctica, the emperor penguin, has an especially small bill and feet that help it to conserve heat.
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  • Who are the primary consumers of the tundra?

    Q: Who are the primary consumers of the tundra?

    A: The tundra's primary consumers are herbivores such as musk oxen, lemmings, caribou and arctic hares that consume grass, moss and lichen. These animals provide food for the secondary consumers, which are predators like arctic foxes and polar bears.
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  • How can we protect Antarctica?

    Q: How can we protect Antarctica?

    A: Protection of Antarctica, its surrounding oceans and its biodiversity requires concerted efforts to minimize human impact on a global level. Efforts include minimizing the number of tourists, closely regulating commercial activities in the region, addressing the issue of worldwide climate change and establishing internationally recognized sanctuaries, standards and systems of oversight.
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  • What is the South Pole's zip code?

    Q: What is the South Pole's zip code?

    A: The South Pole's zip code is 96598, and its territory contains the southernmost post office in the world. It might seem strange that an uninhabitable continent would need mail delivery, but these packages are extra special: they contain food, supplies and letters for the team of scientists at the Amundsen-Scott South Pole Station.
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  • What are the three oceans that border Antarctica?

    Q: What are the three oceans that border Antarctica?

    A: Antarctica is surrounded by the Southern Ocean. The International Hydrographic Organization created the Southern Ocean from parts of the Indian, Pacific and Atlantic Oceans in 2000. The Southern Ocean is the fourth largest ocean in the world, surpassing the Arctic Ocean.
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