Animals Take Refuge In The Freezing Cold Ocean
The water is cold, but it is better than living on dry land. Temperatures of a few degrees below zero are to be preferred over -60°C extremes in midwinter – and conditions are more stable in the ocean, which offers easy access to food.
The ocean surrounding Antarctica is full of plankton algae, which thrive in the nutrient-rich, clear meltwater. The clear water allows the Sun to supply energy for the small creatures. The many plankton algae make up food for krill – tiny crustaceans – which are consumed by about all other animal species in Antarctica. So, the plankton algae keep the entire ecosystem around Antarctica – and major parts of the rest of the world – alive. The algae produce 50-85 % of all the oxygen in the atmosphere.