Antarctica's moss piglet

Antarctica's moss piglet

It’s tiny, virtually indestructible and one of Antarctica’s toughest inhabitants. Now the “moss piglet”, aka the tardigrade, is helping us understand how to better protect this most extreme and vulnerable environment.



AUDIO: Ambient music plays

VISUAL: Microscope footage of a moss piglet

TEXT ON SCREEN:  This is a moss piglet

(Officially known as a tardigrade)

A tiny critter that is almost indestructible

VISUAL: Microscope footage of a moss piglet in some dirt and vegetation

TEXT ON SCREEN: This one lives in water droplets in the moss and soil of Antarctica

VISUAL: Microscope footage of a moss piglet

TEXT ON SCREEN: Moss piglets and other microscopic critters are critical to the soil life cycle there

VISUAL: Footage of earthworms in dirt

TEXT ON SCREEN: Conditions are too harsh for bigger soil invertebrates like worms

VISUAL: Microscope image of a moss piglet and other microcritters in some dirt and vegetation

TEXT ON SCREEN: so it’s down to these tough little critters to keep the soil healthy through nutrient cycling and decomposition

VISUAL: Researcher getting a sample of moss

TEXT ON SCREEN: RMIT scientists are looking at how they cope in contaminated soil

VISUAL: Two researchers waving at camera, panning away to shot of Antarctic landscape

TEXT ON SCREEN: They’re the first in the world to study the effect of soil contamination on moss piglets

VISUAL: Gloved hand holds some moss while the other hand moves it around with tweezers

TEXT ON SCREEN: It’s part of research to develop the first guidelines for healthy, clean soils in Antarctica

VISUAL: Footage of Antarctica from inside a helicopter, footage of a plane landing

TEXT ON SCREEN:  Minimising our environmental impact

VISUAL: Footage of Antarctican landscape

TEXT ON SCREEN: And protecting one of the most vulnerable - and breathtaking - places on the planet

TEXT ON SCREEN: Supported by

VISUAL: Australian Antarctic Program logo

VISUAL: RMIT University logo

08 July 2019


08 July 2019


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