Heard Island


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Related to Heard Island: French Southern and Antarctic Lands

Heard Island,

barren, uninhabited subantarctic island, 142 sq mi (368 sq km), S Indian Ocean, located some 300 mi (483 km) SE of the Kerguelen Islands. Mountainous and largely covered by snow and glaciers, it is volcanic in origin. Mawson Peak, 9,006 ft (2,745 m), is an active volcano, and the highest peak in Australian territory. The island is a nature preserve and home to a large population of seals and penguins and other birds. It was discovered by U.S. Capt. John J. Heard in 1853 and and has been administered by Australia since 1947. Together with the smaller nearby McDonald Islands and Shag Island it forms the Territory of Heard Island and the McDonald Islands, 159 sq mi (412 sq km).
References in periodicals archive ?
Daniel, a lecturer in Sport, Fitness and Outdoor Recreation at Meadowbank College in New South Wales, is planning to sail solo to Heard Island - home to the highest peak in the Australian Territories-with the aim of becoming the first person to sail, climb and kayak solo at the sub-Antarctic island.
Daniel Kelton, a professional sports and fitness expert, will need to be in good shape for his solo sailing, kayaking and climbing adventure to Heard Island.
Australia oversees two important commercial fisheries for Patagonian toothfish and mackerel icefish in the waters around the Heard Island and McDonald Islands region of the vast southern Indian Ocean.
Twelve of us established three field camps on Heard Island, which we used as a base to attach satellite trackers to animals, while our marine science colleagues on the research ship Aurora Australis spent 40 days rolling and pitching around Heard Island in a carefully constructed pattern, studying the animals.
The basic approach was to choose the predator species that, by virtue of their numbers, consume the most food from the waters immediately around Heard Island.
Measurement of the basic physical characteristics of Brown Glacier commenced in November 2000, and the Heard Island glaciology team--from the Australian Antarctic Division, the Antarctic Climate and Ecosystems Cooperative Research Centre, the University of Tasmania and the University of Alaska--repeated these measurements during the 2003-04 Antarctic season, to see what changes had occurred.
Because Heard Island is difficult to get to, and scientists can't always be there to measure how much ice is melting, the glaciology team aim to predict melt rates based on data from a remotely operating weather station near the glacier, combined with energy balance models.
The majority of glaciers are retreating worldwide and Heard Island fills a gap in an otherwise vast expanse of ocean by providing a point where change in the climate of the Southern Ocean can be monitored.
For one thing, since Heard Island, oceanographers have begun accepting marine biologists' concerns about their acoustic experiments.
From remote Heard Island far off the Antarctic coast, scientists next week will send sound waves throughout the world's oceans as part of an experiment to determine whether greenhouse gases are indeed warming the planet.
A dozen listening stations scattered around the globe will monitor the Heard Island transmissions in an attempt to measure the time it takes for the sound to cross the seas.
In the Heard Island experiment, a transmitter lowered from a ship to a depth of 200 meters will create a low-frequency hum of about 57 hertz.