In collaboration with the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) climate stations were installed at six locations in the Ross Sea Region including Scott Base, Marble Point and Bull Pass all in the summer of 1998-1999, Mount Fleming in 2001-2002, Granite Harbour in 2002-2003 and Minna Bluff in 2002-2003, Don Juan Pond 2010-2011 and Bull Pass 2011-2012. These stations make continuous ... atmospheric and soil climate recordings to provide information for comparison of soil climatic attributes with those from Arctic regions, to help understand the impacts of global climate changes on cold region soils and permafrost. New Zealand took over the annual maintenance and data collection from climate stations in the Victoria Valley in the 2001-2002. Each station monitors soil moisture, soil temperature and salinity to depths of 1.2 m. Measurements of atmospheric variables include air temperature, relative humidity, solar radiation and wind speed and direction. MRC temperature probes were installed at depths of 2 cm to 1.2 m at Minna Bluff and Granite Harbour (2002-2003). Measurements are made at 20 minute intervals and averaged and recorded every hour. In the 2005-2006 field season, in collaboration with Dr Mauro Guglielmin of the Italian Antarctic Program, boreholes up to 30 m in depth were drilled in the vicinity of our soil climate stations at Marble Point, and Bull Pass. The data logger records temperature every 6 hours from a string of 16 thermistors (Campbell 109) positioned at various depths down the boreholes up to 29 m.
Values provided in spatial and temporal coverage are approximate only.
Taken from the 2008-2009 Progress Report: Variations to work plan or objectives: Since the original submission of the proposal the project has undergone a change of focus due to logistic constraints imposed by the vertebrate pest eradication plan at Macquarie Island. The revised project objectives now ... relate to the influences of climate and oceanographic variability including changes in sea-ice extent, on the winter foraging behaviour and habitat use of the Antarctic fur seal, a numerous component of the Antarctic foodweb. Research is being undertaken at three sites with the collaboration of UK, US and South African scientists.
The changes necessitate a reduction in the power of predictions pertaining to Southern Ocean trophic models. However the project will provide much needed insight into the winter behaviour of one of Antarctica's most numerous marine predators.
Field work: In 2007/8, 78 geolocation light loggers were deployed on adult Antarctic fur seals at three subAntarctic/Antarctic sites: South Georgia (n=30), Cape Shirreff (n=18) and Marion island (n=30). Blood and whisker samples were collected for each individual at deployment and on return to facilitate analysis of winter prey consumption.
Laboratory activity/analysis: Currently whisker samples are being readied for isotopic analysis.
These data are not yet publicly available.