Changing Planet

Ice Fish Survives Where All Others Freeze


Chionodraco hamatus, one of the Antartic’s ice fish, can withstand temperatures that freeze the blood of all other types of fish, Census of Marine Life scientists reported today.

The ice fish is sometimes called a bloodless or white-blooded fish, because it lost its ability to make hemoglobin during its evolution.This makes the fish a medical curiosity.

This finger-length juvenile was photographed during a 2008 expedition to the Antarctic. The photo was released by the Census of Marine Life along with pictures of many other marine species that scientists say are found at both poles, even though their cold-water habitat is separated by thousands of miles and the tropics.

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Photo Credit: Russ Hopcroft, University of Alaska Fairbanks, Census of Marine Life.

Forty years in U.S., UK, and South African media gives David Braun global perspective and experience across multiple storytelling platforms. His coverage of science, nature, politics, and technology has been published/broadcast by the BBC, CNN, NPR, AP, UPI, National Geographic, TechWeb, De Telegraaf, Travel World, and Argus South African Newspapers. He has published two books and won several journalism awards. He has 120,000 followers on social media. David Braun edits the National Geographic Society blog, hosting a global discussion on issues resonating with the Society's mission and initiatives. He also directs the Society side of the Fulbright-National Geographic Digital Storytelling Fellowship, awarded to Americans seeking the opportunity to spend nine months abroad, engaging local communities and sharing stories from the field with a global audience. Follow David on Facebook  Twitter  LinkedIn

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