A review of scientific research trends within ASPA No. 126 Byers Peninsula, South Shetland Islands, Antarctica
Byers Peninsula, Livingston Island, was one of the first sites in Antarctica designated for environmental conservation and scientific protection. Research on Byers Peninsula has been predominantly international, with 88 indexed publications (93% of them published during last 20 years) from 209 authors affiliated to 110 institutions from 22 nations, all of which are signatories to the Antarctic Treaty. Palaeontological research represented 20% of the published articles. The variety of freshwater bodies within the area has made Byers Peninsula a reference site for limnological studies (24% of papers). The site also contains numerous outcrops and periglacial features relevant to geology, stratigraphy and geomorphology (29%). Terrestrial biodiversity is extraordinarily high for lichens, bryophytes and invertebrates (15% of articles). Only 5% of the publications concern research on human activities, including both archaeology and impact monitoring. Glaciology, meteorology and climatology studies represent only 7% of papers. This work highlights the international and multidisciplinary nature of science conducted on Byers Peninsula in order to promote international cooperation and to provide information relevant for environmental management and conservation.