“Petz” – the Antarctic Traveller – some of his pics


“Petz” or Prof. emeritus Wolf Arntz – has been staying with us for a week after his return from Antarctica. He generously shared with us his experience, knowledge and thousands of wonderful photographs of which a few are shown below. 

Larsen Ice Shelf, Weddell Sea, Antarctica

"Polarstern" - Germany's Polar Research vessel at the Larsen Ice Shelf

Life boats are tested regularly for their operational readiness - sight seeing time.

Life on the ice …

Leopard Seal - vicious and foul tempered and ready to attack, though it might not be obvious in this pic.

The well-tempered Crabeater Seals.

… on the sea bead …

A colony of Hemichordates, the closest extant phylogenetic relative between the chordates and other invertebrates, in other words, very early relatives of ours – surprised?

Stauromedusae - growing on the sea bed. Normally medusas are swimming freely - these ones have settled on the sea bed.

… and on the ice again …

Neumayer-Station, Germany’s Antarctic Station, Riisser Larsen Ice Shelf in the South Eastern Weddell Sea. On the left the entrance to the under-ice garage.

… and in the air …

Cape Petrel - one of many other birds - albatrosses and antarctic terns.

“Petz” – a name for a bear in German – that is what Wolf Arntz, formerly Professor of Marine Biology at the AWI (Alfred Wegener Institute for Polar and Marine Research in Bremerhaven), now Professor emeritus, is affectionately called by his friends. Petz has been to the Antarctic many times before as “Fahrtleiter” i. e. leader of the expedition, and this time since he has been a professor emeritus, he was invited as a guest and took on the task of “Fahrtenschreiber”, i. e. “Rapporteur” – rapporting on the weeks proceedings, such as: “… On board are 52 persons considered ‘scientists’, which include 2 meteorologists and 4 helicopter crew.  Seventeen are non-Germans representing 11 different nations.  Together with 44 members of crew, there is a total of 96.  The objective of the voyage is the investigation of potential effects of climate change on the biodiversity of biological communities and on ecosystem function in sub-Antarctic and high Antarctic areas…“ (Excerpt from rapport dd. 13 Feb 2011)


Larsen Ice Shelf melting.

Petz has written extensively on marine ecology with emphasis on the benthic (sea floor) system and on the upwelling systems of the Baltic sea, the Magellan region and the Humboldt current.

Petz was very much looking forward to fresh vegetables after 10 weeks of mainly meat and sausages in the last few weeks – you can imagine Colleen having a field day in supplying just that.

Here Petz is treating us to one of his very special Chilean seafood dishes.

Thanks, Petz, for letting us use your pics! We are looking forward to your forthcoming Antarctic-Book – make haste before it all will have melted away!

Much love
Colleen & Walter
Betty’s Bay, Easter Sunday 2011

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