Only small areas of land are ice-free, so flora does not find much development opportunities, limited to a few species of the lowest plants – lichens, mchów i słodkowodnych alg. Rośliny kwiatowe występują jedynie na szczególnie wysuniętym ku północy Półwyspie Antarktycznym. They are represented by two species: Antarctic daredevil grass and Colo-banthus of the clove family. Today's terrestrial flora, which actually exists only on Graham's Earth, it is endemic, while the neighboring Antarctic and subantarctic islands are more rich. Tundra dominates there with mosses characteristic for it, stands, tussoc grass, niektórymi roślinami kwiatowymi i karłowatymi krzewami. Cały obszar antarktyczny jest niezamieszkany. W XIX w., when northern sea whaling and seal hunting have become less profitable and when overfishing has also made Pacific fisheries deserted, However, whalers and seal hunters have settled on some islands around the Antarctic. The first man stood in Antarctica in 1895 r. (from the crew of a Norwegian whaler, ,Ąntarctic” under the command of L.. Christensena). From 1928 r., when built by R.E. Byrd "town” Little America (Little America) over Whale Bay on the Ross Barrier, miejsce to przez wiele lat odwiedzały wyprawy amerykańskie. Little America była pierwszym zamieszkanym nieustannie (with small breaks) "Little town” Antarctic, in which up to several hundred people wintered. From 1942 r. permanently inhabited weather stations appear on the continent. Currently, he is in Antarctica every year since 1 thousand. do 6 thousand. people, inhabiting 40 points distributed more or less evenly around the entire circumference of the land and at several points in its interior, at the South Pole. The greatest threat to the natural environment of Antarctica is the uncontrolled development of tourism. More and more often, attractive flights to these areas are organized by New Zealand and American airlines. Już w początkach eksploracji kontynentu aktualne było zagadnienie politycznej przynależności wysp i terytoriów antarktycznych. Pretensje wysuwały państwa południowoamerykańskie – Argentina and Chile, as well as France and Great Britain. The latter began the formal annexation of continental areas in 1917 r., by taking the territory between 50 ° and 80 ° long. zach. Later, w 1923 r., an attempt to annex the periphery of the Ross Sea between 150 ° long. east. a 160 ° long. zach. New Zealand has taken. In years 1928, 1931 i 1939 Norway includes several Antarctic islands and an area of the continent between 20 degrees long. zach. and 45 ° long. east, a Australia w 1936 r. section from 45 ° to 150 ° long. east.