Antarctica is known as the 7th continent and is the least inhabited landmass on earth. Not to mention that it’s technically the world’s largest desert. There’s simply no other place like it on the planet.
10: Health Checks in Antarctica
There’s a persistent rumor that anyone who goes to work and lives in Antarctica must have both their appendix and wisdom teeth removed. This is actually not true. However, what every polar visitor must-have is a full medical checkup. That is because all the stations in Antarctica do have medical facilities but not for complex surgery. So, it is true that if you are in need of root canal work or have a dodgy appendix, you probably want those removed before leaving for the White continent. By the way, Australia does actually insist that its doctors who go to Antarctica have their appendix removed before going there.
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9: Village of Stars
Antarctica is administered by 12 different countries namely Argentina, Australia, Belgium, Chile, France, Japan, New Zealand, Norway, Russia, South Africa, the United Kingdom, and the United States. Who between them runs 50 stations on the continent? Yet there’s only one proper civilian village in Antarctica. It is comprised of about 100 inhabitants with its own school, post office, internet, and cell phone coverage. Any guesses as to which country belongs to, its Chile. The village is called “Villa Las Estrellas” or Village of Stars.
8: Endless Time
Antarctica has no time zone, that’s because the continent is positioned in a way that it straddles all 24 of the world’s time zones. Bases and stations on the vast continent either keep time according to their home territory or even according to the supply line that feeds them. Technically the South Pole should operate in Greenwich Meridian Time or GMT but a person can literally walk through all of the world’s time zones in a matter of seconds. Therefore, time is not an issue in Antarctica.
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7: No Dogs Allowed in Antarctica
Slides pulled by husky dogs were an integral part of the first expeditions into Antarctica at the start of the 20th century. The expedition of Norway’s role, the first man to reach the South Pole in 1911 was entirely thanks to sleds and huskies. However, an environmental protocol was introduced in the 1980s to protect Antarctica’s wildlife, in which it banned all non-native species from Antarctica. Of course, humans are excluded from this band. That’s why huskies so synonymous with the polar region have been banned in Antarctica since 1994.
6: A Tinder Hook-Up
In December 2013 an American scientist at the US McMurdo base station in Antarctica decided to log on to the dating app Tinder just for the hell of it. He wanted to see if there was any woman who might be on Tinder in the most remote of places. To his utter amazement, he found that he had a match with the female researcher who happened to be a 45-minute helicopter ride away. They did meet up, although she had to leave Antarctica the next day. Tinder confirmed that it was probably the first-ever hook-up on Antarctica.
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5: No Ants Here
It seems incredible to believe but there are said to be no ants in Antarctica. It seems that they simply don’t have a reason to inhabit the cold continent. This makes it the only continent on earth that has no ants. This is confirmed by National Geographic, which also states that other parts of the world that have no ants include Greenland and Iceland. As well as parts of Polynesia and remote islands of the Indian and Atlantic oceans. They should make having a picnic in Antarctica a little less annoying.
4: The Only Insect in Antarctica
There is only 1 in 6 species that is endemic or native to Antarctica. It’s a midge or a small type of fly that goes by the name of the Chironomid Midge. Its scientific name is Belgica Antarctica. At only 0.23 inches in length, it’s tiny. The insect is only active in the summer. It lives most of its life in a larval state on the ice. The most amazing thing about this insect is that it is still considered the largest purely terrestrial animal in all of Antarctica. Since all other species of animals on the continent live at least some of the time in the water.
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3: The First Antarctica Baby
The first human baby to be born in Antarctica was Emilio Marcos who was born on January 7th,1978. He was born at 14 Sargento Cabral at the Esperanza base near the tip of the Antarctic Peninsula. His pregnant mother had been sent there on purpose in 1977 by the Argentinian government. This act was done to claim a portion of Antarctica for Argentina. It is claimed that there have been 11 births in Antarctica to date. All of them are either Argentinian or Chilean babies. No doubt about it this is one select group of people on earth.
2: The Ozone Layer Over Antarctica
There is a hole in the ozone layer over Antarctica that is absolutely massive. In fact, the hole is twice the size of Europe. According to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), this hole in the ozone layer over Antarctica is due to special atmospheric and chemical conditions that exist there and nowhere else on the planet. The hole is especially prevalent during springtime. So, wearing sunblock must be imperative in Antarctica, especially during the warmer months.
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1: Mighty Mount Erebus
The 7th continent is home to Mount Erebus. Mount Erebus is the most southern active volcano on the planet. Its summit reaches an elevation of over 12000 feet. Mount Erebus has what is known as a persistent convicting lava lake. This makes it only 1 of 5 long-lasting lava lakes on earth. Mount Erebus was also the site of the tragic aviation accident of Air New Zealand flight 901. The Plane crashed into the mountain on November 28, 1979, during one of the airlines’ popular sightseeing flights of Antarctica at the time. All 257 passengers on board were killed. To this day, the brief from the crash could be seen on Mount Erebus when the snow melts during summer.
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