East Antarctica, also called Greater Antarctica, constitutes the majority of the Antarctic continent, lying on the Indian Ocean side of the continent, separated from West Antarctica by the Transantarctic Mountains.
West Antarctica, or Lesser Antarctica, one of the two major regions of Antarctica, is the part of that continent that lies within the Western Hemisphere, and includes the Antarctic Peninsula.
The Transantarctic Mountains comprise a mountain range in Antarctica which extend, with some interruptions, across the continent from Cape Adare in northern Victoria Land to Coats Land.
The Antarctic is a polar region, specifically the region around the Earth's South Pole, opposite the Arctic region around the North Pole.
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It lies almost entirely within the Eastern Hemisphere and its name has been accepted for more than a century.
The Eastern Hemisphere is a geographical term for the half of the earth that is east of the prime meridian and west of the antimeridian.
It is generally higher than West Antarctica and includes the lofty Gamburtsev Mountain Range in the centre.
The Gamburtsev Mountain Range is a subglacial mountain range located in East Antarctica, just underneath the lofty Dome A, near the Southern Pole of Inaccessibility.
Apart from small areas of the coast, East Antarctica is permanently covered by ice.
Ice is water frozen into a solid state.
The only terrestrial plant life is lichens, mosses and algae clinging to rocks, and there are a limited range of invertebrates including nematodes, springtails, mites and midges.
Algae is an informal term for a large, diverse group of photosynthetic organisms which are not necessarily closely related, thus are polyphyletic.
A lichen is a composite organism that arises from algae and/or cyanobacteria living among filaments of a fungus in a symbiotic relationship.
Mosses are small flowerless plants that typically grow in dense green clumps or mats, often in damp or shady locations.
The coasts are the breeding ground for various seabirds and penguins, and the leopard seal, Weddell seal, elephant seal, crabeater seal and Ross seal breed on the surrounding pack ice in summer.
The Weddell seal, Leptonychotes weddellii, is a relatively large and abundant true seal with a circumpolar distribution surrounding Antarctica.
The leopard seal, also referred to as the sea leopard, is the second largest species of seal in the Antarctic.
Elephant seals are large, oceangoing earless seals in the genus Mirounga.