Although its edges have largely collapsed since then, the iceberg – labeled A-68a – is still The largest on Earth, And it is currently heading towards an island shelter for wildlife in the South Atlantic. New aerial footage by the British Royal Air Force (RAF) reveals what that island may be facing.
For starters, the RAF footage shows just how huge this ice giant is. (As of early April, the size of the A-68a was approximately 2,000 square miles, or 5,100 square kilometers, in area, I mentioned Live Science earlier). Berg Tower is steep 100 feet (30 meters) above sea level. According to RAF NewsIt is flooded with tunnels, crevices and caves. Huge chunks of ice, or “planters,” are rapidly cracking on all sides, leaving behind a trail of debris that could hinder boat movement in the future. (Water is used from time to time by fishing vehicles and recreational trips, According to the BBC).
However, what scientists are most concerned about is how deep below the ocean surface the girder is. When the A-68a separated from the Larsen C ice shelf three years ago, its lowest point was measured more than 650 feet (200 meters) below the surface, the BBC writes. It is possible that the iceberg has shrunk vertically and horizontally since then, although the RAF mission did not immediately reveal any visions there.
The depth of the glacier is important as the giant descends on South Georgia Island – a British overseas territory of millions of people PenguinsAnd the SealsAnd marine birds and migratory whales. If the A-68a were installed on the sea floor near the coast of South Georgia, it could create a deadly obstacle between the animals and their usual feeding areas.
Actual distance [the animals] You have to travel to find food (fish and krill) is really important, ” Geriant Tarling, an ecologist with the British Antarctic Society, He said in a statement. “If they have to take a big tour, it means they won’t come back to their little ones in time to prevent them from starving to death in the meantime.”
The A-68a will still likely float harmlessly around the coast of South Georgia before drifting north – however, the RAF said, it still appeared to be on its way to a direct hit and the BBC said Burgh is about 90 miles (150 km) from the island and can reach landfall by the end of December.
Originally published on Live Science.