Friday, 31 January 2014
Feeling Hot hot hot
It is a balmy 9 degrees celcius here at Port Lockroy today. I am currently sat out on the deck of Pelagic, enjoying the bright sunshine and beautiful scenery whilst I wait for our batteries to charge and media offload to complete. It really is a spectacular view - blue skies with wisps of white cloud overlooking towering snowy mountains that line turquoise blue water. The water is so calm, it is almost like a mirror and the penguins seem to be relishing in the opportunity to dive in and out of it as if to cool off, leaping on and off the rocks that surround me. The air is perfectly still and the only sound I can hear are the braying penguins and the occasional crash of breaking ice bergs and tumbling snowy cliffs.
This morning, Andrew and I filmed Jack's family beneath the flag pole. We captured the penguin chicks panting in the heat, fighting for the shade of their parent's shadow with their siblings, and flapping as if no one has explained to them that they can't fly.
Our local skuas continue to do very well - I have seen plenty of penguin chicks being devoured (mostly when we are filming elsewhere on the island!) and even attacks on sheathbills. We are currently keeping a close eye on two skua nests, one of which includes a very fluffy ball of a chick that frustratingly loves to hide behind rocks.
I have been getting to grips with the outboard these last few days and have been taking myself off around the bay to keep up to date with the skuas and also check out any local seals. We haven't seen a leopard seal here for about a month now but there are plenty of crabeaters (that don't eat crabs but instead favour krill) and weddell seals hauled out on ice floes and snow-covered beaches.
Anyway, I am going to sign off now as I have about 15 minutes before I'm going back over to Port Lockroy to film and I really just want to make the most of the sunshine and continue to watch penguins leaping out of the water...