Research projects

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See also Palaeo Environments, Ice Sheets and Climate Change team or Ecology & biodiversity

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AI for smart conservation

In the AI for smart conservation project, BAS are collaborating with local ecologists and conservation agencies to develop decision-making tools informed by sea ice forecasts. By combining satellite observations, GPS …

ASCCC

The ASCCC Project  has been funded by ACE (Antarctic Circumnavigation Expedition) to investigate, quantify and understand the role of polar and subpolar seabeds in the carbon cycle, particularly in response …

Diagram

Biodiversity

Fragmentation occurs when parts of a habitat are lost due to for example change of land use, leaving behind smaller unconnected areas. This makes survival of the species of the …

BAS Cambridge

Biodiversity at BAS Cambridge

Biodiversity@BAS is an initiative formed by BAS staff. Adopting current NERC Biodiversity policy​ and working closely with BAS Estates and Environment Office teams, its goal is to assist with the …

Black-browed albatross with chick

Black-browed Albatross Juvenile Tracking

Until the last decade, South Georgia held the third largest population of black-browed albatrosses at any island group (Phillips et al. 2016) [4]. However, assuming trends at surveyed sites are …

Wandering albatrosses displaying

Bycatch risk of wandering albatrosses from radar detection

Wandering albatrosses are threatened by bycatch. Populations at South Georgia have declined catastrophically since the 1960s due to incidental mortality (bycatch) in fisheries (Pardo et al. 2017) [1]. This led …

CACHE-ITN

Pushing forward our understanding of calcium production in the marine environment

Changing biodiversity

Baseline study to monitor how marine biodiversity will respond to climate change

Chinstrap Penguins

Chinstrap Penguin Tracking

The commercial fishery for Antarctic krill (Euphausia superba) operates in the southwest Atlantic, in particular along the west Antarctic Peninsula, and over the shelf breaks of the South Shetland Islands, …

Antarctic krill

CONSEC

CONSEC is addressing the challenge to understand the links between the biodiversity, structure and function of Southern Ocean ecosystems and the impacts of rapid environmental changes to improve scientific knowledge …

A close up of a box.

Continuous Plankton Recorder

Contemporary research has shown that the Southern Ocean is warming. Summer surface temperatures have risen by more than 1 degree Centigrade in the last 80 years and a strong upper-layer …

A close up of an animal

CUPIDO

CUPIDO aims to address: what is the role of zooplankton in promoting the transport of plastic in the ocean?
and how this plastic transport interferes with zooplankton’s ability to store carbon in the deep ocean?

Darwin Plus SO Red Listing

The IUCN Red List is the international standard for conservation, a crucial tool to communicate threats to species, which can be applied to all species and ecosystems. Molluscs represent a …

Background pattern.

EMBRC

European Marine Biological Resource Centre

Fish by-catch in the Antarctic krill fishery

Fish bycatch is a global problem requiring accurate information to develop conservation and management strategies. Within the Antarctic krill fishery, fish and larval fish are regularly observed as bycatch. Improved …

Aerial shot of St Andrews Bay in South Georgia

Fixed wing wildlife surveys at South Georgia

At South Georgia, the climate is changing. Further, species abundances are changing with the recovery of historically depleted species of seal, whale and finfish. In addition, the eradication of introduced …

A flock of seagulls are standing in a parking lot.

Gentoo Penguin Tracking

A fishery for Antarctic krill (Euphausia superba) operates over the shelf breaks of the South Orkney, South Shetland and South Georgia archipelagos [8]. Krill is an important food source for …

Grey-headed Albatross with chick

Grey-headed Albatross Juvenile Tracking

The grey-headed albatross is listed as Endangered in the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species because of a decline since the 1970s of the largest global breeding population, which is …

HEXPLORES

The HEXPLORES project aims to explore for active hydrothermal vents in the Red Sea Rift. Although the Red Sea Rift hosts the world’s largest submarine metalliferous sulphide deposit, no active …

Flying wanderer

Higher Predators – Long-Term Science

The British Antarctic Survey carries out Long Term Science that measures changes in Antarctic ecosystems and seeks to understand the underlying drivers and processes. Marine predators are sensitive to changes …

A whale in the sea.

Hungry Humpbacks

Whales are the largest krill predators in the UK Overseas territory of South Georgia, yet their impacts on krill stocks are poorly understood. Recently, whale surveys revealed high summer abundance …

Underwater view of a rock

IceAGE

The international IceAGE (Icelandic marine Animals: Genetics and Ecology) project, initiated in 2008 and managed by Drs Saskia Brix and Karin Meißner from DZMB Hamburg, Germany, builds on data obtainedby …

Impacts of Ocean Acidification on Sea-Surface

  In order to assess the impact of anthropogenic carbon dioxide (CO2) on the oceans today we are investigating the effect of decreasing upper ocean pH on calcifying zooplankton. Pteropods, …

Krill Hotspots

Antarctic krill (Euphausia superba) are a key component of the food chain throughout much of the Southern Ocean. These small, shrimp-like animals occur in dense swarms, but their distribution is …

A collection of small marine creatures

Larsen-C Benthos

On 12 July 2017, the Larsen-C Ice Shelf calved one of the largest iceberg originating from the Antarctic Peninsula ever recorded. As iceberg A68 moves north, it  leaves behind an …

A pile of hay with a mountain in the background.

Long term monitoring of plastics

This long-term study monitors the impact of marine plastics and other debris on breeding seabirds at Bird Island. Researchers have monitored the levels of marine plastics and other material from …

Penguins

Penguin foraging in a warming ocean

The aim of this project is to learn more about the feeding habits of penguins around the Antarctic Peninsula to understand how their behaviour may be changing as the waters …

A large ship in a body of water.

Protecting Marine Ecosystems in the South Atlantic

The food security and economies of Tristan da Cunha and St Helena, British overseas territories in the South Atlantic, are heavily reliant on marine harvestable resources and, to a lesser …

Reproduction in a changing world

Reproductive capacity and success of marine animals

Safeguarding Antarctic krill stocks for baleen whales

This Darwin Plus funded project aims to improve our understanding of how Antarctic krill, foraging whales and the krill fishery interact in space and time, to improve krill fishery management …

deployment of a sediment trap as part of an oceanographic mooring

Scotia Sea open-ocean biological laboratories

Sustained ocean observing programme

A group of clouds in the sky on a beach

SiCLING

The polar regions are experiencing the most rapid climate change observed on Earth: temperatures are rising in some regions of the Arctic and Antarctic at more than double the global …

A close up of an animal.

SO-AntEco

The South Orkney Islands is a small archipelago located in the Southern Ocean, 375 miles north-east of the tip of the Antarctic Peninsula. The seafloor around the South Orkney Islands …

A close up of an animal.

SO-AntEco Biodiversity

In this collaboration with the Natural History Museum (NHM) and the University of Liverpool, we have developed novel methods for using existing data to contribute to marine conservation and fisheries …

A group of people on a boat in the rain.

SONA

The Southern Ocean Network of Acoustics (SONA) represents a group of scientific institutes and industrial partners who have united to measure an under-sampled component of the ecosystem – the mid-trophic …

A boat sitting on top of a mountain

South Georgia Pelagic Biodiversity

The South Georgia Pelagic Biodiversity project is a Darwin-funded project, led by BAS, and in partnership with the Government of South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands (GSGSSI) and the …

Humpback Whale

South Georgia Right Whale project – Whale Tracking

The British Antarctic Survey whale research team at King Edward Point have been studying whale movements and patterns of habitat use in South Georgia waters. South Georgia was at the …

Wandering albatross in flight

Spatial Segregation of Seabirds at South Georgia

Seabirds are amongst the most globally threatened birds, often as a consequence of incidental mortality (bycatch) in fisheries [1] [2]. At South Georgia, wandering albatrosses have declined since the 1970s [3], and are listed …

Background pattern

The evolution and ecology of Antarctic sea floor communities

The evolution and ecology of Antarctic sea floor communities is a UKRI Future Leaders Fellowship, led by Dr Rowan Whittle, looking at the past, present and future of life at …

The Heated Settlement Panels

How will life and biodiversity on Earth will respond to climate change? This information is particularly urgent for the waters along the Antarctic Peninsula, which are experiencing rapid regional climate …

A close up of a bowl.

Using an Antarctic fungus as a wintertime biopesticide

Can a fungus from an Antarctic soil be used to control weevil larvae causing damage to UK soft fruits and forestry? The larvae of weevils, which overwinter in soil and …

white-chinned petrel

White-chinned Petrel Tracking

The white-chinned petrel is the most common bird species recorded as fisheries bycatch in the Southern Ocean [1]. Although currently listed as Vulnerable by the IUCN, limited population trend data …

A fish swimming under water.

Wildlife from Space

Many populations of wildlife are remote, inaccessible or difficult to monitor. The advent of sub-metre, Very-High-Resolution (VHR) satellite imagery may enable us study these animals in a much more efficient …