A team of students led by researchers at the Duke Marine Lab will explore the changing distribution of krill around the Antarctic Peninsula. Krill are a key prey species in this ecosystem, supporting a number of animals including whales, seals, and penguins, but they are dependent on winter sea ice and may be in trouble as climate change progresses. Using data from acoustic zooplankton surveys, students will create maps and other products to visualize the spatial distribution of krill over the past 20 summers, then create metrics that allow us to quantify the way that krill distribution around the Antarctic Peninsula is changing as the climate shifts and ice melts. These results will be key to our understanding of the impacts of climate change on this polar ecosystem.
Project Lead: Douglas Nowacek
Project Manager: Amanda Lohmann