The Ross Sea region contains one of the most productive marine ecosystems in the Southern Ocean, encompassing open ocean, pack ice, and coastal habitats, including much of the world’s largest marine protected area. It also harbours diverse land based ecosystems ranging from iconic Antarctic lakes to ancient soils that house many unique biota. The goal of Project Three is to determine how ecosystems within the Ross Sea region may respond to environmental challenges associated with global climate change under the Paris Agreement scenario
The project will focus on the questions:
1. How can we expect the distribution of organisms to change in a +2 world?
2. How vulnerable are food webs to changes in sea ice dynamics and ocean circulation?
3. What are the consequences of these changes for ecosystem integrity?
Event number K882
A collaboration with the US Long Term Ecological Research (LTER) group, saw a team at Lake Fyxell in the Taylor Valley studying how microbial mat communities respond to rising lake levels. The research focuses on community dymanics between the transitional zone between land and lake. The team dived in the lake, carrying out experiments and deploying instruments that will help quanitfy the contribution of these dynamic zones to lake and soil ecosystems. The aim is to see if these communities will retain their unique Antarctic characteristis in a changing climate.
Miles’ Antarctic research journey began in 1992 with the American programme. He is currently an Associate Professor at the University of Otago’s Department of Marine Science. With over 20 years Antarctic research experience Miles says in a warming world transferring fundamental knowledge of Antarctic biology into how the ecosystem may look in the future is important and rewarding.
For more information about Miles' research Please click here
Antarctica’s unique ecosystems have captured Charlie’s research attention for 12 years. The Senior Lecturer at University of Waikato believes that fundamental and unique insights gained from studying Antarctic ecosystems can underpin our understanding of important ecological processes everywhere.
For more information about Charlie’s research background please click here