Which Animals live in Antarctica?

Which animals live in Antarctica?

Antarctica is the southernmost continent on our planet and, therefore, one of the most isolated. The cold temperatures and the lack of freshwater make it difficult for plants to grow here. This means there are fewer animals in Antarctica than elsewhere, but they have a fascinating way of life.
Scientists have tried to figure out how many species live in Antarctica since earlier this century. There is still not an estimated number agreed upon by all scientists; however, we know over 3000 kinds of invertebrates (insects, spiders, mites, etc.) live here. Mammals only appear during certain times of the year and comprise a small part of the total population. Penguins rank at number one among the vertebrates in Antarctica with as many as 18 kinds of species. Not only are they common, but also pretty adorable and live in colonies on land and at sea.

You may wonder why animals want to live in such a hostile environment? Well, the answer is simple. Food and reproduction! There are many marine animals in Antarctica, which means the penguins don’t have to travel too far to find food. They see no reason not to stay put during the breeding season it makes good sense for them to do so.

Which animals live in Antarctica?


Penguins live in the Antarctic region in large colonies on the coastline or offshore islands. They can dive up to 600 feet deep underwater for food. They are graceful swimmers and divers who make a variety of sounds underwater. Their plumage has no bright colors, so they blend into their surroundings while swimming.
Penguins feed on different kinds of fish and krill found in the sea around Antarctica.


Seals are a species of seal found to dwell in cold seas. The females are known to be larger than the males. A female can weigh up to 1000 pounds, while a male is usually around 600 pounds. There are about 12 different species of seals in all, with six being found on each side of the Atlantic.
A seal can survive in waters ranging from freezing temperatures to tropical ones. They use their wide flippers and webbed feet for propulsion and eat fish or squid in the open sea. Seals tend to live a solitary life upon water but have been known to gather up in huge groups at certain times of the year.
They are easily identified by their soft fur, which covers most of their body. Seal pups have a pretty gray coat that turns dark brown with age. Their skin is usually smooth when they are born but tends to become rougher over time as rocks accumulate on them while playing around the shoreline. The average lifespan of a seal is about 20 years, though many cases have been reported of a seal living for up to 50 years.

Seals have been the center of many myths and stories worldwide, ranging from ancient Greeks having tales of half-human, half-seal creatures that dwelt in the sea to the Inuit tribes and their belief in a soul-stealing ‘monstrous’ sea goddess called Sedna. The name itself originates from the Greek word ‘selanikos’, which means diver.

Sea lions

Sea lions are a group of aquatic mammals. These animals’ flippers are thinner and more elongated than true seals. They also have a smoother coat, which is longer and darker than the true seal. In addition, these animals do not share the same flattened facial features as the true seals. They lack the characteristic nose structure which seals have. This is because the sea lions lack whiskers, and their facial muscles are twice as strong as those of true seals.

Sea lions typically have a body length of 2 meters, while females are generally larger than males. These animals weigh between 115 and 220 kilograms. Their average lifespan is 20 years in captivity, but they may live up to 30 years in rough conditions.

These mammals quickly move through the water using their flippers for propulsion and steering with their tail. They can accelerate to 8 kilometers per hour when swimming short distances on level ground or slightly rougher surfaces (though not horizontally). However, these mammals tend to move more slowly and conserve energy when swimming longer distances.
In terms of their communication behavior, sea lions are known to make various sounds. Such vocalizations include whistles, barks, and other low-frequency noises that might be limited to specific contexts or functions. Some of these mammals also spray water on each other in a playful manner to communicate with one another.

Sea lions’ whiskers have been found to play an important role in their sensory perception of their surrounding environment. These mammals can use such whiskers in place of sight if there is poor visibility underwater, particularly at night or during foggy conditions. They can locate prey based on their vibrations against objects around them. In addition, they may use such whiskers to detect changes in current, such as when they have to break away from an object or structure. These whiskers may also help these mammals detect the presence of nearby predators.
Sea lions eat many kinds of fish, krill, and squid in the wild. However, they can survive on various types of foods, including oysters and other types of shellfish. They typically hunt in groups, which improves their chances of capturing prey.

Polar Bears

Polar bears live in the Arctic, and they are white. They can be over 2 meters long and weigh up to 600 kilograms. Their fur is very smooth except for near their ears, nose, and paw pads. They have a thick layer of blubber under their skin to keep them warm. Polar bears eat seals, and also fish, birds, walrus, and whales. They are the world’s largest land carnivores.


These birds live in Antarctica and are one of the biggest seabird species.
They have a wingspan up to 3m (9.8ft) long! The albatross feeds on fish, squid, and krill in the ocean waters around Antarctica and then returns to land to breed – as most birds do.
Albatrosses take long flights between islands in search of food. They can live for 20 years or more, but many don’t survive their first year as they are too easy prey for predatory mammals such as seals. 


Seagulls live in Antarctica, hunting krill and other crustaceans.

Killer Whales

Also known as orca or blackfish, these marine mammals are the largest dolphin family. They are carnivorous mammals that feed on fish, squid, seals, and other smaller whales, dolphins, and porpoises. Some orcas hunt cooperatively while others target prey independently of one another. Orcas can dive up to 2 hours at depths up to 330 feet for various reasons such as hunting, traveling, and resting. These sea creatures swim at an average speed of 22 mph (36 km/h). Their brain-to-body mass ratio is second only to humans among land and water animals.

Humpback whales

These animals don’t mind the cold Antarctica waters at all, and they can stay down there for a considerable amount of time.

We would have never thought these huge creatures could dive into such a temperature because most other living things can’t withstand the cold when the water reaches 0 degrees Celsius (32 F) or lower.
The Humpback whale doesn’t mind the cold waters thanks to its big layer of fat beneath its skin, as this helps them keep warm in the crystal clear Antarctica Waters.

Humpbacks are majestic creatures, and although we don’t know much about them, we know that population estimates are improving as scientists research them more often.
This amazing whale species can live up to 30-50 years, depending on their health. They live in a family group and travel around the oceans all year long. They make migration routes as long as 16,000 miles (25,750 Km).

The Humpback whales are one of the loudest creatures in the ocean, which is pretty cool since they have been known to sing for hours. 

The reason why it hoots for hours could be because it sings a song to communicate with other whales, or maybe it’s just trying to pass the time while on its yearly journey from one end of the world to another.

Another thing about their songs is that most singers would try out new parts each year, which means they will have a different melody to sing with and share with others every year. (überprüfen ob wahr!!)