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Cool Things from the Ice

Posted February 5, 2011 @ 5:53pm | by TravelWild

Bruno Zehnder became completely, utterly obsessed with penguins, even changing his middle name to “penguin.”  This January 2000 story in Vanity Fair is not the least bit dated.  It’s a wildly entertaining read about a womanizer, possible spy, photographer—and passionate lover of penguins.

Camille Seaman’s photographs from Antarctica have a bleak beauty—the black water and gray skies, the muddy penguins, the surprising bright blue of the icebergs.  She has several series devoted to icebergs and one to penguins—and much more on her site.   “The Last Iceberg chronicles just a handful of the many thousands of icebergs that are currently headed to their end.”  Gorgeous, and worth your time.

Smithsonian has a write up of how Antarctica’s seasonal residents survive in such extreme conditions.  It’s good, practical advice for visitors, too, including the ever popular “layers, layers, layers” maxim on dressing properly for the always changing weather.

I loved this little blurb from a recent traveler to Antarctica about how visitors just lose it the first time they see penguins.

The problem is, apparently, there are lots of people who really love penguins.  They REALLY LOVE PENGUINS.  And when presented with many penguins, in real life, like, right there, they FREAK OUT.  They go nuts, rush the colony of penguins, screaming, and all hell breaks loose.  “Penguin Madness.”  Apparently this happens often enough that the tour guides actually stood between us and the penguins the first time we landed, LOL!—The Antarctica Files

On the Daily Mail, a photograph of emperor penguins mourning the loss of their chicks.

Part of my job is to accept that with the spectacular sights of nature also come the stark facts of life, and to see emperor penguins mourning in a human-like way over the death of their chicks is heart-wrenching.—Photographer Daniel J. Cox

What else is living in the frigid waters of Antarctica?  How about a weird translucent fish-thing and a leggy basket sea star and….well, see for yourself on Our Amazing Planet.

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