Human beings often feel as if they've been around for a long time, but the planet has definitely been here for a lot longer. Despite the fact that we have spent a lot of effort trying to map everything out, there are still a lot of places we haven't been able to explore as much as we would like.
One of the places on the planet that continues to be almost impossible to inhabit, thereby continuing to surprise us, is Antarctica. We wanted to take a look at some of the truly surprising things that have been found frozen under the ice of Antarctica, so we've pulled together some of the weirdest discoveries out there.
It's about time we got started. It's time to dive right in and take a look at some of the strangest things ever found under the ice. We cannot believe that the things on this list are real!
15 Mountain Lakes
Using an echo machine, scientists were able to discover the first of the under-ice lakes in the 1970s.
Since then, the technology has got better and they've managed to discover more and more, some of the taking up enough space to include mountain ranges, all contained beneath the ice.
14 See-Through Fish
One of the theories for why animals like this don't look like those on the ground is that they've never had to look appealing to other animals, unlike the animals we see every single day.
It's believed that the reason it can be seen through is that it doesn't have the protein hemoglobin, which is what turns our blood red.
13 Gamburtsev Mountain Range
Despite how impressive science may be in the modern world, there are some things that it just can't answer, including how this mountain range still manages to exist under a thin sheet of ice.
By all accounts, it should have been gone well before human beings made their way there!
Pretty much everything about Antarctica has been a surprise to discover. While nobody thinks of plants when they think about the icy area, scientists have found various types of lichen and moss under the ice that are able to survive extremely cold temperatures.
Who knows what else we'll find under the ice one day!
We may all think about Antarctica a certain way, like a huge white abyss that stretches on for miles and miles. However, it wasn't always like this!
Scientists have discovered fossilized wood and the impressions of old leaves that show there was once ancient rainforests where there is now snow and ice.
10 German Base?
When it comes to theories about the Germans, it's smart to be as skeptical as possible. However, it is true that Hitler was exploring Antarctica and did build a hidden base just 960km from the North Pole.
Thankfully, the crew there was poisoned by tainted meat and they ended up abandoning it.
If modern history has taught us anything, it's that human beings will do anything to get their hands on oil, no matter where it is.
However, many people don't realize that there is oil under Antarctica, it's just that many believe it is far too dangerous to start removing it from the Earth. It is illegal to dig for oil there until at least 2048.
Nobody is denying that these under ice bubbles look very cool and beautiful, but there's a genuine reason to be scared about them escaping! They're made up of the Methane that is released when microbes digest the various organisms under the ice.
If the ice continues to melt, the methane could be released, which could be yet more dangerous for the environment.
7 Dangerous Bacteria
There is so much we don't yet fully understand what lurks in Antarctica. Some scientists have managed to find some microbes that date all the way back to 420,000 years ago.
Some believe that these microbes could even be dangerous, so let's hope that they're never released.
6 Elongated Skulls
It should come as no surprise that many people see these skulls as proof of some sort of otherworldly life, but it's actually much more bizarre than that.
Yes, human beings in the past used to purposefully do this to their own heads! It has been found in other areas of the world as well, not just in Antarctica.
5 An Unknown Creature
We often think that most creatures out there have now been discovered, but places like Antarctica are constantly proving us wrong.
This tiny octopus is a relatively new discovery, and scientists have been finding out new things about them within the last decade! We can't be the only people who think that it's very cute?!
4 Some Very Old Whiskey
There are some people out there that would do anything to get their hands on some good scotch that's over a hundred years old. However, the scientists waited years to make sure that they had the right tools to remove this stuff from the ice without breaking it.
We can only imagine they had quite the party with the bottles that survived!
3 Petrified Animal Remains
Scientists once found a distant relative of what we now call mammals under the ice of Antarctica. Believed to be over 250 millions years old, the cold had petrified the animal remains and have given scientists a chance to truly learn from them.
The size of a cat, this distant relative also laid eggs.
2 Ancient Fossils
Since the 1980s, scientists have been finding more and more ancient fossils, most of them belonging to prehistoric birds and marine life.
Over 71 million years old, these fossils are genuinely amazing finds that have been waiting under the ice for someone to come along and catalog them.
There are a lot of people out there that will travel to Antarctica in search of meteorites, and that's because so many of them end up landing there.
Once they do, they will often stay above the surface, but some have been found to crash through the ice and wait underneath for somebody to discover them.
Sources - NASA, Gizmodo & History Blog