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New analysis from the South Sandwich Islands

A particular situation of the journal Deep-Sea Analysis that includes contributions from British Antarctic Survey (BAS) scientists presents a variety of latest analysis that provides to our understanding of the understudied South Sandwich Islands.

The South Sandwich Islands are an remoted group of islands within the Southern Ocean. The waters surrounding the islands are an vital habitat for migratory whales and are dwelling to all kinds of marine benthic life. The islands are additionally an vital habitat and refuge for penguins and different seabirds. Regardless of this, the area has traditionally been understudied and was recognized as “knowledge poor” in a 2017 assessment by the Authorities of South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands.

Now, a particular situation of the journal Deep-Sea Analysis devoted fully to the ecology of the South Sandwich Islands has helped handle this knowledge hole and shed new gentle on this biologically vital area. The difficulty options ten authentic articles that reply vital questions in regards to the islands’ oceanography, ecology, and foraging grounds that help predators equivalent to whales and penguins.

Candlemas Island, a small uninhabited island of the Candlemas Islands within the South Sandwich Islands. Photograph: Mark Belchier

Among the many new articles included within the particular situation is a research by BAS fish ecologist Philip Hollyman, utilizing fish and invertebrates collected by fisheries to research the distribution of scavenging communities on islands. For the primary time, the research recognized seawater temperature as a key driver of scavenger group construction, suggesting that communities may very well be affected by local weather change situations. Different contributions embody a research by BAS ecological modeller Sally Thorpe and Eugene Murphy, demonstrating the islands’ function in diverting the move of the Antarctic Circumpolar Present (ACC). The ACC is the world’s largest ocean present and is important to the steadiness of the Antarctic ice sheet.

Saunders Island, a crescent-shaped island that lies between Candlemas Island and Montagu Island within the South Sandwich Islands. Photograph: Gemma Clucas

Whereas the papers included within the situation handle some vital knowledge gaps, in addition they spotlight how little is thought in regards to the South Sandwich Islands and surrounding oceans and recommend future analysis priorities.

Dr. Martin Collins, Senior Scientist on the BAS Ecosystems Staff and Senior Editor of the particular situation, says:

“The South Sandwich area contains the deepest a part of the Southern Ocean, some distinctive hydrothermal habitats and extremely productive floor waters, which help globally vital populations of seabirds and whales. This assortment of paperwork is a vital addition to our data of this understudied area and can assist inform future administration of the world.”

You possibly can entry the complete particular situation and be taught extra about all of the papers included on the Deep-Sea Analysis web site.

You possibly can be taught extra in regards to the South Sandwich Islands, together with its historical past, ecological significance of governance on the Authorities of South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands web site.

/ Public assertion. This supply group/creator(s) materials could also be of a one-off nature, edited for readability, model and size. The views and opinions expressed are these of the creator(s). See in full right here.

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