For the first time ever, we are able to observe the formation of an “ice finger of death” through some breathtaking footage.
These days it’s rare to uncover a phenomenon completely new to science, one that expands our knowledge of the world in unique and wondrous ways. But just as it happened in the past few years with uncontacted tribes, unseen caves, and sea beasts, the forming of Antarctic brinicles – also known as “ice fingers of death” – was recently introduced to armchair adventurers in the form of some breathtaking footage.
Brinicles are otherworldly, finger-like structures that reach down from the floating sea ice into frigid Antarctic waters. While scientists have been aware of their existence since the 1960s, they are rarely observed in real-time. Ice fingers only occur in specific conditions in Earth’s polar regions, under blocks of floating sea ice, making them not only difficult to track but almost impossible to capture on camera. This is what makes the below footage from BBC’s Frozen Planet series (Season 1, Series 5) so special.