MSN augments “Fake News” with photoshopped penguin photos

Guest post by Jim Steele

Director emeritus Sierra Nevada Field Campus, San Francisco State University and author of Landscapes & Cycles: An Environmentalist’s Journey to Climate Skepticism

MSN appears to be a source of climate fear mongering and “fake climate news” based on their story under the headlines Antarctica hits record high temperature at balmy 63.5°F .

The story was accompanied by what can only be a horribly photo-shopped photograph for the unassuming warmunista of a mushroom-shaped ice form teetering on a rocky outcrop.


Supposedly it was photographed on the opposite side of the continent from which the record temperature occurred. Climbing such a structure would be a difficult technical climb for an experienced mountaineer. Furthermore when Adele penguins come ashore to breed they avoid the ice if possible, only crossing snowfields as the seek ice-free breeding territories. Lastly if you magnify the picture 500%, the penguins become extremely pixilated, the ice chunk less so, and the background rocks even less so, a fingerprint of 3 different photographs with different resolution that have been overlain.

MSN reported, “An Argentine research base near the northern tip of the Antarctic peninsula has set a heat record at a balmy 63.5° Fahrenheit (17.5 degrees Celsius), the U.N. weather agency said on Wednesday.” The record was set in 2015 and the WMO report simply confirmed the temperature. The Wunderblog had reported in March 2015, “On March 24th Base Esperanza (under Argentinean administration) located near the northern tip of the Antarctic Peninsula reported a temperature of 17.5°C (63.5°F). Although this is the warmest temperature ever measured since weather stations became established [in 1953] on the southern continent, it is complicated by what the very definition of ‘Antarctica’ is.

To induce fear over Esperanza’s temperature record MSN writes, “Antarctica locks up 90 percent of the world’s fresh water as ice and would raise sea levels by about 60 meters (200 ft) if it were all to melt, meaning scientists are concerned to know even about extremes around the fringes.”

However high temperatures at Esperanza tell us nothing about climate change, or if there is any threat of melting ice caps or rising sea level. Instead Esperanza presents a prime example of how temperatures can rise dramatically without any increased input of heat. Argentina’s Esperanza weather station is situated on the most extreme equatorward tip of the Antarctic peninsula and its mean monthly temperature for March is -3.6 C. But Esperanza’s location subjects it to episodic warm northwesterly winds which is why it is also infamous for its foehn wind storms that can dramatically increase temperatures by 10 to 40 C degrees in a matter of hours.

This record 17 C (63.5 F) temperature recently recorded, is 20 C above average, and as expected the record temperature is the result of foehn winds. Foehn winds warm temperatures via adiabatic heating (no heat input) as descending winds passing over the nearby mountains warm from adiabatic compression. It is meaningless weather regards penguins. But no mention of foehn winds by MSN.

At least the Wunderblog, was honest about the cause of record warming in 2015 stating,

“A strong high pressure ridge and a Foehn wind led to the record temperatures as Jeff Masters explains here:

This week’s record temperatures were made possible by an unusually extreme jet stream contortion that brought a strong ridge of high pressure over the Antarctic Peninsula, allowing warm air from South America to push southwards over Antarctica. At the surface, west to east blowing winds over the Antarctic Peninsula rose up over the 1,000-foot high mountains just to the west of Esperanza Base, then descended and warmed via adiabatic compression into a warm foehn wind that reached 44 mph (71 km/hr) at 09 UTC on March 24th, near when the maximum temperature was recorded. A similar event also affected Marambio on the 23rd.”

Likewise in the 2016 paper Absence of 21st century warming on Antarctic Peninsula consistent with natural variability researchers with the British Antarctic Survey reported, “The trend in the SAM led to a greater flow of mild, northwesterly air onto the AP [Antarctic Peninsula] with SAT [surface air temperature] on the northeastern side increasing most because of amplification through the foehn effect.”

This isn’t the first time such photo fakery has been used. There’s the Ursus Bogus episode, and NCDC’s fake flooded house, to name a couple. Anything for the cause – Anthony


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Never let the truth get in the way of a good story it would seem.

David A

“…you magnify the picture 500%, the penguins become extremely pixilated, ”
HA, LOL. If you take a close look at CAGW alarmists you realize they have become extremely pixilated. ( Crazy, insane)


I remember Pixilated Penguin. It was on the flipside of Russ Conway’s UK hit Side Saddle. I think I may be showing my age here. 🙁

Gunga Din
Pop Piasa

Steely Dan’s song about a very pixilated woman:


@ Gunga Din

Sorry for the duplication – I didn’t catch your post on first reading, and linked to the same video farther down.


Gunga Din

No need for “regrets”.
I’m sure lots of readers didn’t see my clip but did see yours.
It’s all good.


My response to this article is amazement at this quote: “Antarctica locks up 90 percent of the world’s fresh water as ice and would raise sea levels by about 60 meters (200 ft) if it were all to melt, meaning scientists are concerned to know even about extremes around the fringes.”

That is possibly the WORST piece of writing I’ve seen in donkey’s years! “…meaning scientists are concerned to know even about extremes around the fringes.” –??? Y’know, I think it’s really nice that the owners of media outlets want to give morons a chance at a job, but this is a public admission that they’re willing to hire the functionally illiterate as long as those kids can holler ‘global warming’ with great enthusiasm.


If you’d like to see the textbook fraud Jim Steele exposed and splattered all over the wall by actual scientists, have a look here:

Tom Halla

MSN apparently cannot even bother with a good fake.


To suggest that the tip of the peninsula has anything to do with mass of the continent is a blatant lie and is as false as the childish collage photo.


The lower right of the ice is clearly reflecting blue water, not the dark rock on which is supposed to be sat.

Blatant forgery. More FAKE NEWS.

Now look at Pelosi’s bullshit and lies about Sessions testimony. She must resign.

Caligula Jones

Shhhh. Warmists don’t do math, and so don’t have any sense of proportion.

Seriously, the sheer size of the peninsula, let alone its geographical location compared to the rest of the continent would be like taking today’s temp in Florida, and saying that it means something to the average temp of the American South East.


More like taking a temperature reading in Key West and declaring that you know something about the temperature for the entire US (and part of Canada).

Caligula Jones

“MarkW March 2, 2017 at 10:52 am”

Yeah, I was trying to do the math, but that was my point. Antarctica is ‘yuge”, the Peninsula is large (and not much like the interior), and taking one temp, for one day, at the tip of the Peninsula means basically nothing.


A fake story is to good even for the bottom of a septic tank dwellers like warmist and the main stream media to pass up on!

Timo (not that one)

Two many times, to times this week, too think these grammatical errors are just a typo.

Pop Piasa

“Those feet’ll steer you wrong sometimes”…

Good catch!

And isn’t it also a bit deceptive to run a two year old story as news, with a headline which makes it sound like it’s happening Right Now. Maybe they should call it “olds” instead of “news.”

Reuters ran this propaganda piece, too.

Base Esperanza is at the very tip of the Antarctic Peninsula, so it has the mildest temperatures on the entire continent. But, nevertheless, Weather Underground shows that it hasn’t gotten above freezing all day.


I’m sure there are some “warm” pools in the area as well, ones you can actually swim in..

Can’t recall the name of the place at the moment though

Alan the Brit

A BBC holiday programme several years ago showed wealthy (mostly) American tourists disembarking from their tour vessel, to land on the shores of Antarctica, & to wallow in the hot pools in their swimwear!

Peter MacFarlane

Alan, I’ve been on one of those trips. We went swimming at Deception Island and believe me it was not warm at all – the air was around 2C and the water the same. And this was in March, ie as warm as it gets.
Hot pools? Bah.

Caligula Jones

Yeah, I heard the same thing about swimming in England…


2 stinkin’ degrees . . and people wonder why we stick with Fahrenheit . .

R. Shearer

That picture has been used many times, e.g., in 2013 with an article on Arctic warming.


The 2013 story got about five comments all of which found the picture risible. At least they got it on the correct continent this time.

Editors and writers grab clip art. It’s not that they’re particularly evil, they’re just looking for something with some impact and they’re not going to spend a lot of time looking (or thinking).


And they wonder why they have so little credibility…

BTW, I think they are immoral, or at least amoral.

It’s difficult to distinguish between incompetence and dishonesty.


It’s difficult to distinguish between incompetence and dishonesty.

Never attribute to malice that which can be adequately explained by stupidity, but don’t rule out malice. Heinlien’s Razor


Sounds to me like you are admitting that they don’t care about accuracy, just catching the most eyeballs.
If it’s true for the picture, why should we not also assume it’s true about the story itself?

“Editors and writers grab clip art. It’s not that they’re particularly evil, they’re just looking for something with some impact and they’re not going to spend a lot of time looking (or thinking).”

These people are liberals. What they eat for breakfast is political. EVERYTHING they do is about advancing their agenda.

That photo was selected for very specific reasons with malice and forethought.


Roving Broker,

Dishonesty starts with a ‘D’ ….

Encompetence starts with an ‘E’ …

not so hard.


“That photo was selected for very specific reasons with malice and forethought.”

I agree with Matthew W. The Lefties use every trick in the book when they are trying to sell a story.


MarkW March 2, 2017 at 6:45 am

Sounds to me like you are admitting …

It’s more of an accusation.


In my high school newspaper/journalism class, we learned about the “inverted pyramid”. Broad strokes first, details last. Ideally, tell the overall story of the whole article in the first sentence. The assumption being that few readers will go through the whole article so give them the gist as quickly as possible.

Naturally, such a structure is easily propagandized. Spin the broad statements on the front page and bury the inconvenient details in the back. Or in this age of digital media, at the bottom where all the annoying ads usually are.


The most likely explanation is that the sea level has receded since the penguins got up there


It is a stock photo from 2010.


Stock photo(shop). FIFY


Thank you!


Wonder how a couple of flight less birds got on top of a approx 20 foot tall chuck of ice ?

Must be the vertical climbing sub-species of Adele penguins; Pygoscelis adeliae Verticalis……

Cheers, KevinK.


All we get from the MSM are lies, half-truths and distortions. They have confused tens of millions of people.

I know how those pixelated penguins got up there…

Very funny. Reminds me of the BBC’s spaghetti trees.

Robert from oz

Pure gold . Just brilliant .

Mike McMillan
David A

LOL, dang, that’s one pixilated bear.
CAGW makes everything and everbody pixilated.


I’ll bet that polar bear is pixilated too. It gives no sign of being hungry, so it must not have been stranded there long.

That is very funny!

LOL Great work. Fotoforensics shows the bear and penguin equally pixelated. Hmm what does that tell us?

I’m sorry Jim, you are flat out wrong here. It’s rare that on WUWT my area of expertise is relevant but it is in this case. All the fotoforensic site can do is pick up artefacts in the image. And every time an image is saved, uploaded, displayed, copied saved etc. jpeg compression artefacts are created and exacerbated along the high contrast hard lines in an image. It’s just the nature of the compression algorithm. It’s why professional photographers take images in RAW format and submit them in TIFF format. They are used in jpeg on the internet because the compression allows for a small file size. The trade off is the loss of quality and the artefact creation.


The ice chunk itself is photoshopped, and crudely. The actual base photo is of a barren rocky shore.


Craig (@Zoot_C),

every time an image is saved, uploaded, displayed, copied saved etc. jpeg compression artefacts are created and exacerbated along the high contrast hard lines in an image. It’s just the nature of the compression algorithm.

But then all elements in the photograph would show the same level of compression, Craig; you know that. Neither the horizon nor the rock edges display it. The bottom left corner of the ice is straight and turns up. The terrain beneath it, however, dips, and is facing the sunlight.

@MRW, no, it does not work that way and that’s why people are paid big money to develop algorithms to combat it. It’s kind of chaotic bit it’s almost always guaranteed along the light side of hard edges of high contrast. ie. anything against a blue sky. We combat it daily as photogs.

Pop Piasa

A palm tree on the right side would really balance the whole photo niceley and “lead the eye”, don’t you think?

Mr Bliss

It needs a Unicorn….

Louis Hooffstetter

That explains a lot about the stories I see in the BBC.


The penguins are on top of a big block of ice. Did they think that their readership would assume that the penguins just flew up there?

Michael of Oz

It used to look like this before man. get some feels.comment image


Perhaps the two pseudo-photos above suggest why the polar bear in the first pseudo-photo gives no signs of being hungry, though it might be soon.

So the claim is that they did not fly up there? …humor

R.S. Brown

Were we to suppose the penguins FLEW up onto the ice and
couldn’t get down ? Or maybe they nested there and the ice
melted away from around them ?

It’s the kind of visual propaganda the viewer is supposed to have
a visceral reaction to without thinking about the details.

Who could DENY the penguins are in trouble ?

Be skeptical….

Even Leo Decaprio and the polar bear cub think it looks fake.


I was waiting for Leo to show up here. He’d be right at home with the whole story.

Pop Piasa

He hires trolls for that.


A Foehn Wind is a Chinook in Alberta and Montana, just different names. Leo experienced one when he was filming The Revenant during the month of January west of Calgary, and returned to the US proclaiming that he’d just experienced the worst example of global warming in his life. The entire western provinces howled in derision. Even the Canadian PM guffawed.


Esperanza Base at approximately 63S (below, or north, of the Antarctic Circle), gets a foehn wind influenced record high temperature, while Reykjavik, Iceland, at 64N gets a nation-wide paralyzing (February) record 20 inches of snow last weekend. MSM probably won’t be mentioning that story, even though the effect on Iceland was much more severe. My guess is more than few editors think it is winter down at Esperanza.


They will take any extreme conditions, warm or cold, as proof that ‘something is happening’.

A CBC announcer was talking to a climatologist about the record warm February temperature in Toronto (Canada). He wanted to know if it proved global warming. The climatologist pointed out that two years ago Toronto had a record cold February. It wasn’t the record warm temperature that should be paid attention to, it was the extremes that prove that ‘something is happening’.

You could just tell that the announcer didn’t find that very satisfying. He wasn’t sophisticated enough to realize that the record cold February disproved global warming just as much as the record hot month proved it. Nuance is an endangered species. It’s like Al Gore told him: “If you can’t say something alarming, don’t say anything.”

Caligula Jones

Yes, and one of the Toronto blogs I read (TRYING to find local events, but they keep filling it up with crappy lists and fake news) went on about the WARMEST FEBRURARY EVAH:

“The average temperature of 3.48 C beat out the previous record of 3.39 C set in 1998.”

Um, that’s an average of the HIGH temp, BTW…not mentioned in the “article”.

john harmsworth

Toronto? Isn’t that the place where they called in the army when it snowed? They’re not even Canadian!

Caligula Jones

Well, there is Toronto and TROC (that’s The Rest of Canada), and yes, most people outside of Toronto make fun of us. And we’ll never live down calling in the Army down BUT:

1) the mayor at the time was almost as crazy as Rob Ford, (without the excuse of drug abuse)
2) we received a winter’s worth of snow in two days
3) other areas of the nation also call in the Army, as New Brunswick did this year (for snow as well)


Incredible timelapse video shows snow getting deeper and deeper as Iceland’s capital has biggest snowfall in 80 years with 20 inches in 24 hours

Worth looking at.


I think that was also on the BBC News website.


Samuel C Cogar

HA, if you are at Esperanza, Antarctica (bout 63° S latitude) then you are as far north as you can get from the South Pole and still be on the Antarctica continent.
comment image

So, an air temperature of 63.5° F at Esperanza, Antarctica at 63° S latitude isn’t that much more amazing than the summer air temperature of 70° F at Fairbanks Alaska at 64° N latitude.


Snow packs in the Sierras have gotten so deep that the traditional tools for measuring it, can’t.

What’s funny is that here in New England, USA, we get snow falls like that every year or two. Here’s some good detail on one from 2015. Some years we get more than one.

It will shut us down for a day or two, and some places a few more.

Roger Dewhurst

Nothing like pixelated penguins with a glass of whisky.


Chilly Willy is not happy about this!

CO2 is causing a rise in pixels.

Stewy Beef

I need to set the record straight, here.

Penguins can, indeed, fly.
They just need an assist from a suitably sized catapult or slingshot.
Admittedly, the trajectory is a bit more “ballistic” than “controlled flight”, but they absolutely can be made to go airborne.

The same can be said of the common barnyard chicken, another “flightless” bird. As many a farm boy can attest, the chicken can also be made to fly. A topic I may have some aerodynamic engineering experience with.

Bryan A

Penguins do fly, and maneuver quickly while in flight, they simply do it underwater

Keith J

But their wings serve negative lift in order to counter buoyant force as their plumage along with body makes for a density lower than water.

Samuel C Cogar

My experience tells me that most all of the common barnyard chicken breeds are capable of flying, …… iffen you don’t fatten them up too much. But they are of the same mindset as the Roadrunner who prefers “running” instead of flying.

If available, barnyard chickens will roost in trees if they don’t have a chicken coop/house to spend the nighttime in.

Pamela Gray

Chickens can fly. On the farm we had to clip their wings to keep them from flying over their pen enclosure.


There’s fly and then there’s FLY!


Lest we forget…there’s flying, and then there’s “falling with style”.



The British Aviation Authority used to test the strength of windshields on planes using a device that could fire out dead chickens at extremely high speed.
The device was pointed at the aircraft’s windshield and if the chicken didn’t break it, it was assumed that the windshield would survive the impacts of actual collisions with birds when in flight.
British Rail had recently designed a new locomotive and was testing various designs of windshields, so they borrowed the device from the BAA.
Adjusting it to approximate the maximum speed of the train, they loaded a dead chicken and fired it at the first windshield design.
The chicken went straight through the windshield, broke several components and left a huge dent in the compartment door. Surprised by the result, they asked a BAA official if they had done the test correctly.
An engineer checked everything and suggested that for their next test they defrost the chicken.



That’s the best laugh I’ve had in days! Thanks Auto. It just had to be British Rail. 😉

Adam B.

Lastly if you magnify the picture 500%, the penguins become extremely pixilated, the ice chunk less so, and the background rocks even less so, a fingerprint of 3 different photographs with different resolution that have been overlain.

I don’t disagree that the story is purposefully alarming, but I’m not sure about this particular analysis. You may be confusing pixelated edges at various resolutions with image compression artifacts. The affect is more noticeable around contrasting edges.

You can view a higher res version of the above image and zoom in. Although there are still artifacts, I do not see any obvious betrayals of multi-image compositing. Not saying it wasn’t edited, just that it was done well.


I would agree. This is bad journalistic practice – using a picture from 2010 to illustrate a
minor point about a weather event in 2015 but that is a long way to go to claim that the
picture is a fake. I imagine that the reason it was taken was because it was so unusual.
And probably there is more of the ice hiding behind the picture explaining why the structure
is stable and how the penguins got up there.

There is also something not right with the shadows. Where are the penguin shadows? Based on the ice’s shadow we should see similar shadows elsewhere.


Penguins could not get on top of that block of ice unassisted. They can jump out of water. They cannot jump to any significant height on land. The photo is either photoshopped or staged. Either way it is yet another bit of climate hype deception.


In cinema there is the concept of “forced perspective”, where multiple actors can be at different spots in the scene, and with the right camera angle can be filmed to look like they are occupying the same space. Peter Jackson used this technique regularly in his LotR movies to make the actors playing the hobbits look like hobbits despite not actually being 3 1/2ish feet tall (along with other tricks, like using child doubles in shots where they face away from the camera).

So there very well could be a penguin-climbable slope on the backside of the ice mass, hidden via forced perspective. How to Take a Fake Picture with a Real Camera.

Everything about the picture does not jive with penguin behavior. Nor does it jive with the ice placement in an environment where there is no other ice anywhere land or sea. Nonetheless I realized there was an off chance that the penguin reached the top by means not visible. So I uploaded the pic to Fotoforensics and got this picture analysis

The penguins not only looked unusually pixalated, but their pixalation disrupts the upper edge of the ice. In the original the penguins appear behind the upper edge. In the forensics the pixalation bites into the ice and disrupts the edge. With all things considered it appears fake.

Jim, the fotoforensic site, whilst fun, is essentially useless unless you are working on an image straight from the camera. The image that ends up with you has been compressed many many times, and then again by your browser and then again by you as you copy it to do the forensics’ on. It’s a useless gimmick ( source me. Adobe certified expert). You are mistaking jpeg compression artefacts with evidence of photoshopping. As someone who has made countless composite images I can tell you that the ‘evidence’ in your site above appears very different in an actual photoshopped image that has not been around the web a few thousand times. See my post below where I explain that it is a Reuters stock file image.

Bryan A

Not sure your high res version indicates a lack of shopping. Looking at the pixelated edges around the Penguins, it appears that the pixelation has definite larger right angle zones surrounding flippers and heads

Here it is blown up 3x using Irfanview . I think the pixelation around the penguins and even around the ice block is pretty apparent compared to , eg : the horizon .

@Bob Armstrong. Those are jpeg compression artefacts and are impossible to avoid because of the nature of jpeg compression. Do it with a random sample of images involving a subject taken against a blue sky. I guarantee you in a sample size of suitable jpeg images you will see the same effect >95%


We are supposed to ignore physics and biology and assume the picture is not photoshopped? Sorry. It doesn’t require counting pixels to see that this is manufactured photo.


The ice chunk itself is photoshopped into the frame. The original frame depicts a barren rocky shore.

Timothy Soren

Reuters has a photo credit from 1/1 2010 and location of pic at Cape Denison, Commonwealth Bay, East Antarctica


“Antarctica contains 90% of the worlds freshwater” is a meaningless statistic. Absolutely zero percent of anyones freshwater comes from Antarctica. It’s another example of abuse of language and data being taken out of context is used to miseducate people.

Chris Hanley

Gravity-defying ice.

Chris Hanley

It really is an appalling job, why doesn’t it fall over, the shadow outline on the rocks is ham-fisted and how come is there no sign of any melt water at the base?
As for the flooded house it is also a joke, the BS artist had no idea of linear perspective the horizon line being at the water line at the house the camera lens would have been half under water so any foreground should be submerged:comment image?w=720


Ah, no, you fail to realise that in the warmist world you can have sloping water. So the picture is correct, and the water level slopes up towards the house…. 😉


Sloping water is very common. Sloping water allowed the penguins to swim up onto the ice on the rock.

John F. Hultquist

Cut the heads off of chickens and they can run around like an alarmed warmest.
[Sorry; not nice.]

Pamela Gray

Very true. As children during butcher day we got to run them down to take them to the boiling water tank for a dip. The feathers were easier to pluck after a plunge. Bloody business as the cut neck would fling blood around as we caught them. I remember it being fun but smelly work.

Pamela Gray

I mean chickens, not warmists.


Did you flour the immature eggs and deep fat fry them?


Works on ducks, too. It is messy.


What temperature range was measured by the Esperanza sensor on March 24th, 2015?
Maybe 50°F ? Or more?


Good job, Anthony. It seems there has been a sharp increase of climate hype stories that fall apart under even slight scrutiny. This one may be one of the biggest whoppers.

The other Arctic record temperature form 1982: 19.8 Deg. C

Sorry, no penguin pictures, but 2.3 Deg. C higher 35 years ago.

David A

So fake pictures, fake records, and pixulated reporters.


Someone tell those penguins it’s safe to come down now. Those weren’t really polar bears, just a lot of overfed democrat women dressed as polar bears.

Brian H

Definitely a foeny foto.





Another thing wrong with this story, the world almanac this new record is updating used different criteria of what qualified as “Antarctica” .

The previous record included only locations within the Antarctic circle (66 degrees South or better). Apparently meteorologists prior to the AGW political movement considered Esperanza Station unrepresentative of general conditions in Antarctica and excluded it for the purposes of almanac records of extremes. So this might not be the highest temperature ever recorded at Esperanza, it might just be the most recent temp higher than the record for inside the Antarctic circle.
The record high temp for inside the Antarctic Circle remains 59 degrees at Vanda Station, Antarctica, on Jan. 5, 1974.


Here’s Vanda Station.

It’s defunct. The ecologists insisted all trace be removed to avoid contamination of the environment. So they needed a replacement for a regular source of Antarctica is so hot stories.'00.0%22S+161%C2%B040'00.0%22E/@-77.5274021,161.7678879,74680m/data=!3m1!1e3!4m5!3m4!1s0x0:0x0!8m2!3d-77.516667!4d161.666667?hl=en

Interesting that Vanda sat in the moisture shadow of three converging mountain chains. Kind of like the Death Valley of Antarctica.


Has anyone proved this is photoshopped?

Asked MSN for a comment?

You see that’s the difference between this website and the NY Times: the Times asks for comment and fact checks. It doesn’t just sling mud at people.

And it was a record high temp, wasn’t it? Which is of interest and concern… is this article trying to divert attention from that fact?

and I don’t see the posts on the record low Antarctic ice here anywhere ???

Patrick MJD

Griff, it’s very easy to test a digital image for tampering, if you know what utilities to use and what to look for. So, like polar bears, you know nothing about what you speak.

Bryan A

Shopped or not, It definitely isn’t Esperanza on 3-24-15, almost 3400 miles away on a continent that is 3500 miles accross. In fact there is a good Google 360 view at Ninnis and Mertz Cross on Azimuth Hill Antarctica that shows what the area looks like.
A good picture used out of context, is bad reporting in any book

Bryan A

In fact, the only images in the MSN article are from Scott Base and Commonwealth Bay respectively 3400 & 2500 miles away from Esperanza Base. If Esperanza Base on 3-24-2015 is the news, show us an image from there then, not some recycled image from someplace else designed to jerk heart strings.

That is like telling us that LA is overcrouded and showing a picture of New York City


“the Times asks for comment and fact checks. It doesn’t just sling mud at people.”

Hilarious comment of the year from Griff

You are missing the point Griff. The object is to discredit a report which is uncomfortable news by diverting attention to the nature of a stock photograph. If it had not been the photograph, doubtless something else would have been found which was equally as minor. However you are right is suggesting we discuss the nature of the report, as opposed to the aesthetics of the Penguin picture.

Patrick MJD

Or to fuel emotion rather than fact. Yeah, I missed that point! The fact is, it is fake.

Tom Halla

Gareth and Griff==>the whole damn story, illustration and copy, is bogus, all the way down. It is a fabricated illustration to a grossly misleading story.


There is nothing uncomfortable about the report.
It really is funny how easily you alarmists are fooled.
It’s almost as if you have no brain power to speak of.


No, I thought that was exactly what was happening… an attempt to discredit an uncomfortable report by diverting attention.

I was however also trying to make the point that this site is advocacy, not reporting: the news media often have higher standards than websites.

There seems to be a tendency among sceptical sites to have a go at photos… which is ridiculous seeing some photo editor who has really nothing to do with writing the articles usually just sticks in first stock photo which vaguely matches the subject…


news media have high standards?

Once again you be-clown yourself.

Pillage Idiot

The NY Times covered up the starvation deaths of 6,000,000 Ukranians at the hands of the Soviets. They received a Pulitzer prize for their reporting. After their falsehoods were exposed, they still did not disavow the Pulitzer.

I will accept Griff’s polar bear expertise, as an anonymous commenter, on the WUWT blog, before I will ever uncritically accept anything written in the NY Times.


the story is misleading since they didn’t mention that it was caused by a warming wind (Foehn wind),that lasted for part of a day,as it cooled back down to freezing. There were other previous record highs in the 50’s,that happened numerous times in the past at the base.

Jeff Masters made this statement:

“A strong high pressure ridge and a Foehn wind led to the record temperatures as Jeff Masters explains here:

This week’s record temperatures were made possible by an unusually extreme jet stream contortion that brought a strong ridge of high pressure over the Antarctic Peninsula, allowing warm air from South America to push southwards over Antarctica. At the surface, west to east blowing winds over the Antarctic Peninsula rose up over the 1,000-foot high mountains just to the west of Esperanza Base, then descended and warmed via adiabatic compression into a warm foehn wind that reached 44 mph (71 km/hr) at 09 UTC on March 24th, near when the maximum temperature was recorded. A similar event also affected Marambio on the 23rd.”

That is the TRUE nature of the phenomenon, a temporary WEATHER event that dissipated in just a few hours.

Has nothing to do with “global warming” or insignificant increase in atmosphere CO2 levels. Nothing uncomfortable about it,Gareth. It is warmist loons like you who make a mountain out of a molehill,milking it for propaganda purposes.

What is sad is that Senator Schumer,you and Griff go bananas over a tiny region of the continent,cause by a short term weather event.


SunSettommy: They are also the first to scream that any temperatures that are colder normal, is just weather and should be ignored.

Bryan A

AYUP, Higher Standards like using Stock Photos from different parts of a continent 3000 miles away to make a point about a weather situation that is already 2 years old and an entire continent away


Seriously, Is there any eco-babble that you won’t defend?

BTW if there were actually a record low in ice … this would be a bad thing because…?
Wishing for more ice is like wishing for more desert. Life is orders of magnitude more prolific at the equator for good reason.


For an alarmist, all that matters is that the narrative must be supported. It doesn’t matter how badly the alarmist has to embarrass itself, support the narrative at all costs.


err griff mate..its SUMMER down here


Griff—You’re proving what skeptics say. You care only about the actual temperature and NOTHING about why it occurred. It’s HIGH!!!!!! For 5 hours once in a while, yes. Why? Who cares? It’s HIGH!!!!!!! Your comprehension of science is just so lacking.


As always Griff doesn’t know what the difference between weather and climate is.
Everything is interpreted based on whether it supports one of his religious convictions or not.

the Times asks for comment and fact checks.
Two reporters in a bar:
Reporter 1: Anyone know what Trump is doing?
Reporter 2: My girlfriend’s aunt’s hairdresser says Trump is in bed with Putin.

MSN breaking news – Reporter 1 exclusive:
Confidential sources report KGB blackmailing Trump over kinky sex orgy.


Griff, why are you concerned about a 2015 high in a place that last was that temperature in the 1980’s? No one is commenting on the Antarctic ice because like all claims by climate hypesters, it turns out to be unimportant. Low sea ice in the Antarctic is doing nothing adverse to world climate. So back to the topic of this post: Why would MSM consistently decide to lie and deceive readers about climate?


“And it was a record high temp, wasn’t it? Which is of interest and concern…”

It’s cooled off since then, Griff.

jim heath


john harmsworth

Does not even qualify as resembling science.


I think the photo could be genuine. Of course there would have to be an easier way to get onto the ice from the back, but penguins are much more agile on land than you might believe. And it isn’t unusual for penguins to get onto snow or ice patches on sunny days in Antarctica. I’ve often seen this behavior in Gentoos and Royal Penguins. Admittedly I haven’t seen Adeles do it, but I have rather limited field experience of that species. Remember that those feather coats have to keep the penguins warm in sub-zero water, so I imagine they can get uncomfortable on land when temperatures creep up over freezing.
Jim Steele is right that they only breed on rocks though, I’ve seen them scramble hundreds of meters up a steep snowbank to get to a suitable rocky patch.


Correction “Royal Penguins” should be “King Penguins”. I always mix those two names up.

Derek Andrews

Just out of curiosity,this temperature sensor wouldn’t happen to be next to the exhaust of the generators, or down wind from a heat source perchance ?


Actually not needed to get extremely high temperatures during Föhn conditions. Next time you hear abot record warmth in Greenland, check where it happened. It will almost certainly be in Narsarsuaq which is famous for extreme föhn effect.

As soon as I saw the term ‘warmunista’ I gave up reading. You cannot condemn people for using the word ‘denier’ and claim the high moral ground when you patently use the same insulting terms in a different context.

Gareth I use warmunista as a kinder apolitical term than alarmists. What do you recommend for a term for people who think CO2 causes everything?


I often refer to them as global warming advocates or global warming believers. I changed to “advocate” when there were objections to “believer” as being religious (which it isn’t, but I gave up on logic with said persons). Actually, I don’t object to the “d” word—it’s additional proof that the advocates don’t have a science case. If this were REAL science, the “skeptics” would be referred to as those who have a different theory, not those who deny science. Even the use of the term “pseudoscience” would have been less indicative of the advocates not being able to make their case. Of course that term opens the discussions to actual scientific investigation, something that is not wanted by advocates.

Tom in Florida

Stupid comes to mind.

Gunga Din

“What do you recommend for a term for people who think CO2 causes everything?”

The wizards of COZ?

If anyone has an interest in false news and dodgy reporting, they may find this of interest :

Patrick MJD

Wales. The country in the UK where the Welsh burn houses owned in Wales by the English.

The same country where English immigrants persecuted school children for speaking their native language and wouldn’t allow official documents to be printed in Welsh!

Once you realise your beliefs and morals are defunct, it’s always a good fallback position to attack the integrity of someones country or their culture. You are both beneath contempt for reverting to such Philistine pig ignorant tactics.

Apologies Phil, I think I may have misread your post. Mae’n ddrwg gennyf

john harmsworth

As Gareth attacks the Phillistines. Who aren’t even around to defend themselves!

Patrick MJD

The Romans forced the “Angles” to speak and write in Latin. The French forced us to write and speak French, the official language, “English” was actively banned. I don’t quite see your point.

“The Romans forced the “Angles” to speak and write in Latin. The French forced us to write and speak French, the official language”

No they didn’t that’s a fallacy.

There was no such thing as English when the Romans arrived and there was no such thing as English when they left. Latin was the language of the aristocracy whilst there was little to no written language for the common man. That which was spoken was Brittonic Celtic and has no relation to modern English. And after the Romans left the language which replaced the common tongue was am Anglo-Frisian version of German that was spoken by the people left behind by the Romans. With the influx of Angles and Saxons who spoke their own version of old high German the common tongue became a mixture of all three.

English is a form of German and a recognisable form of English as we understand it didn’t come around until maybe 1500 whilst the aristocracy spoke French for a few centuries after invasion the common tongue remained an evolving form of the Germanic Anglo Saxon that had been around a long time. The common man was certainly not forced to speak any language, certainly not that of the aristocracy. Keeping the populace illiterate by maintaining Latin as the language of the church and French as the language of the gentry was a contrived plan to maintain control of the minds of the populace.

Modern English didn’t exist until some time into the 1600’s when the language in Europe had a major shift.

Your comments about Wales are also incorrect but meant to be provocative. As I am in content moderation i will only address those as I am able.


The ever reliabe Bob Ward!


Heh!! I suspected as much, but was reluctant to visit the LSE Grantham Institute site link to find out. Lo and Behold! For those at WUWT not familiar with Mr. Ward and his long history with Grantham Institute, check out the Bishop Hill site and use the Navigate, Search menus with “bob ward” or, for easier links to Josh’s enhancements, “bob ward josh” . Quite a guy.


I would disagree that foehn winds have no heat input. They do have a heat input, through the agent of moisture output. They get their extra warmth though condensation, rainfall, and dry adiabatic warming.



You know what “adiabatic” means? “No heat exchange”, from greek a- “not” -dia- “through” -batos “passable”.
There is no heat input. The temperature increase comes from energy of position as the air moves downward in the gravitational field.


“Adiabatic” is a most interesting word. I find it fun to just say it over and over again! (Yeah, I’m not like other people!)


>>You know what “adiabatic” means?

Yes, I know what it means. But the air is only warmer on the way down, because it has been given heat through the latent heat of condensation.

No moisture, no foehn wind. Understand now?



The fake picture has been circulating for years. Reuters, for one, has been using it. I wonder who has the credit?


Ok, I’m not calling it photoshop fake. I’m calling it a piece of art deliberately planned to not document but to lie about nature. Media are full of that kind of crap. Nice one if you don’t think about the carbon fingerprint created by shooting two penguins.

Steve Fraser

Here is a link. Pauline Askin is the photographer. Look at the version of the posting thare. The image edge boundaries and resolution are much crisper.…46958.56058.0.56326.….0……0j0i22i30k1j33i160k1j33i21k1.OInek218RZE#imgrc=_

Crisper but the penguin pixelation still disrupts the ice forms top boundary

It’s Pauline Atkins — anyone with Twitter account (which would not be me) could send her a twit and ask her about it at


If you do, let us know here.

I just tweeted her directly. Such an odd ice shape would prompt a photographer to take several photos. As photographers know, we only get one really good photo for every 100. So I asked her for any photos of the backside of the ice that would reveal a gentler slope that enable the penguins to climb to the top.

Will absence of such evidence mean you are correct? You have suggested the opposite in my argument.

john harmsworth

Send her Griff. That’s a twit we can do without.

Craig says, “Will absence of such evidence mean you are correct? You have suggested the opposite in my argument.”

PLease Craig dont be so snarky. The absence of such evidence only means we will never know for sure. Did reuters get back to you that there is no evidence?


The CofG of this ice mushroom would be so far to the right that it would topple. The smooth ice shows it was a peak on a larger iceberg. 100% photoshop, even without the added penguins.

However, you can get ice mushrooms if there are some rocks around, to shade the ice beneath them….

Daniel Mannix

I spent 2 months in the area in 1996, and we had an unusual warm spell because of high pressure. Continuous storms are the norm, but the rare high pressure yields conditions very much like Vancouver in the winter–both being martime climates. The Antarctic peninsula is the Florida of Antarctica. The photo is definitly not from anywhere around Esperanza, and penguins would never achieve such a precarious position.


“minds bound and cramped by their own theories and despisers of their fellows….They make poor observations because they choose among the results of their experiments only what suits their objective, neglecting whatever is unrelated to it and setting aside everything which might tend toward the idea they wish to combat.
Claude Bernard (1813-78)

Worth noting that the previous record was only slightly lower at 62.8F, set way back in 1961, also at Esperanza.

So “balmy” temps of 63F are not unusual there.

Interestingly the photo originally appeared in 2013, as part of an article by the International Science Times about the record Antarctic COLD temperature in 2010!

I expect we’ll see plenty more of it every time there is a bit of warm weather there.

David A

Ok, so we can infer .2 degrees C rise in 56 years. Well I’ll be pixilated.

Kaiser Derden

actually the story admits that that was not even the Antarctic’s highest record temp …

Kaiser Derden

The heat record for the broader Antarctic region, defined as anywhere south of 60 degrees latitude, was 19.8°C (67.6°F) on Jan. 30, 1982 on Signy Island in the South Atlantic, it said. (from the story)


Putting aside the photoshop inquiry, the photo makes no logical sense. The hunk of ice would have been washed into place by a severe storm with waves big enough, strong enough to place it, or push it, into this unlikely spot, probably much earlier in the season. The idea that penguins would have stayed put through all of this long enough to find themselves isolated from the ocean and terra firma is utter nonsense. So, unless there is a gentle ramp to the heights of this ice chuck unseen on the far side – where one would expect to see a shadow, but one does not – one can be assured that the photo is pure hogwash, without any further investigation into photoshop techniques.


Agreed. The only way this would be natural is if there is a ramp on the other side that allowed the penquins to get to the top. Then, it would qualify as use of a photographic angle to produce a photo that gives a false impression of what is going on.

That’s called using your photographic eye. We are taught to use perspective and position to create striking images.


Craig: I’m well aware of that. I clearly label all my photos that are “artistic” as such. I do not use photos to try and bend people’s perceptions of reality. I consider that dishonest.

So what is your evidence that the photographer is dishonest here? They have taken this image along with many others and submitted it to their employer for the stock image file. It has been used a number of times since then for different articles. At what point has the photographer been dishonest by the time you have become aware of the image? It was submitted without comment.

Ian W

Many people do not have any grasp of geography. Antarctica is huge you will see from this overlay picturecomment image that the claim that a temperature at the northern tip of the Antarctic peninsula is rather like claiming that the temperatures in the Bering straits affect the temperature of Iowa. The do-you-want-fries-with-that greens are extremely easily led due to their ignorance


comment image


Life imitates art. ;*]

There is a pattern of deception by alarmists which has been called out, two notable examples being Friends of the Earth and Greenpeace. False advertising is a criminal offense, if the authorities have the gumption to enforce the law.

Art Stanton

Don’t they know that ice kills Adelie Penguins?


It’s not photoshopped. It’s a series of pictures that Pauline Askin took in Cape Denison in late 2009 – early 2010.


Yes, there must be access unseen behind the ice block after all. I don’t believe a reporter with Reuters would be making things up…

“I don’t believe a reporter with Reuters would be making things up…”

Why not?


Pat Frank

Very notorious example of Reuters using photoshopped pictures as evidence.


Yeah, why not?

Tony Mach

I would say in that case Jim Steele has published fake news. No evidence of fakery – no cookie.

[but you’ve provided no evidence other than your own opinion -mod]

Mod. It’s no less evidence than has been provided to the contrary

Except for the very obvious common sense of “How does that mass of ice balance itself?” What magic keeps it from toppling over to the one side

Perhaps its the greater body of ice behind that slopes to the shore not yet eroded by the summer tides that follow the natural channel from the north. Perhaps?

“Perhaps its the greater body of ice behind that slopes to the shore not yet eroded by the summer tides that follow the natural channel from the north. Perhaps?”

Just-So Story.


pat. I’m very aware of that image and story which is precisely why it would be suicide for them to include composite images in their library now. Reuters did not manipulate the image, the photographer did. And when it was discovered he was suspended then fired. Reuters are a news agency, not a content delivery service. They as an entity have no position but they must rely upon the integrity of their content providers. The image above was quickly found out and dealt with. To suggest a manipulated image would stay in their catalogue for 6 years undetected is a bit wide of the mark. But by all means, report them for bad practice. Their code of conduct means they must investigate it.


Reuters defended the reporter for several weeks. Only when the evidence became overwhelming did they decide to cut their losses by firing the reporter.
This issue does create the instant hew and cry that the Lebanese engagement did, so the heat levels are not the same.

Mark, it does not alter the facts. The reporter was removed. It has not happened since


Context is very important.
You left out all of the important details, like the huge outcry and that Reuters defended the “reporter” for weeks.
You want us to believe that absent the outcry, Reuters still would have removed the reporter, and from that concluded that absent any outcry, Reuters went through it’s stock images and removed all photo-shopped pictures.
Based on what? The evidence of their past behavior does not support the picture you are trying to paint.

Caligula Jones

Yes, not Photoshopped, but forced perspective. That chunk of ice could be a foot tall.

But definitely deceptive if used in the context of “poor penguins, ice is running out”.


>>It’s not photoshopped.

It is photoshopped.

a. The ice block is unstable, with a far-right CofG. It could not stand on a small plinth like that.

b. The ice shadow is from forward-top-left, casting a shadow to the right and slightly towards us. The rocks shadow is from back-top-left, which is why the rocks are giving no shadow. Had the ice sun-angle been correct, many of those rocks would have been giving shadow.

c. The upper ice shadow is far too smooth. This is a jagged ice shadow on jagged rocks, and it cannot give a smooth shadow.

d. The left penguin has the back-top-left sun position. But the right penguin does not show the same illumination.

e. The penguins could not have got on top of this plinth. And if there were a rear access ramp, we would see its shadow. And there is no shadow.

Photoshop deceit. SOP for the warmist lobby.


A: You have no evidence that the ice you see is all there is in a 360 view.
b: The shadow is not unusual. It merely means you have no understanding of perspective, In fact the shadow is evidence of the ice being longer to the rear than can be seen.
c.d,e dismissed as lack of education.