This afternoon we did a zodiac ride to a tiny speck of an island (Prion, but nothing to do with Jacob-Creutzfelt disease) that has a colony of giant wandering albatrosses (wing span 250 cm!!). The colony was not very dense and you had to stay on a boardwalk to not disturb the nests but it was still ok. We had to ride under a driving hail and that was not so fun. Riding the zodiac is hard on the back! Each wave causes a shock that is not buffered but anything and I can feel my spine slowly compressing.
Colony of nesting Imperial Shags
They also build up nest of mud like the albatross
Not much real-estate !
The kelp at low tide
Big crashing waves
Fur seal hidden in the kelp
The white dots are hail !
South Georgia pintail duck (looks like a common duck to me !)
The South Georgia pipit is a sparrow-sized bird only found on the South Georgia and it is the only song bird in Antarctica, and one of the few non-seabirds of the region.
"And you spend all that money to go take picture of a brown sparrow ?"
View from the hill
Albatross nesting (you cannot get closer then 10 m by regulation)
Half asleep on her nest
The nasal tubes allow the albatrosses to measure the exact airspeed in flight; the nostrils are analogous to the Pitot tubes in modern aircraft (Wiki), and they have excellent sense of smell (not a common bird trait)
Albatrosses barely move their wings they use Dynamic soaring and move gracefully up and down to collect the wind gradient
Petrel in flight