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11 December 2012 / leggypeggy

Minke whale makes an appearance off Petermann Island

Adélie penguins

Singing Adélie penguins

The afternoon landing on Day 3 was at Petermann Island, another destination not far from the Lemaire Channel.

Petermann is small, only 2 kilometres long, but famous as the world’s southernmost home for Gentoo penguins. There quite a few Adélie penguins waddling around too, and the blue-eyed shags nest amongst both types of penguins.

As with Pléneau Island, we saw the penguins courting, singing and blatantly stealing stones from other another’s nest.

Petermann still has one refuge hut (pic here), built in 1955 by Argentina. There’s also a cross to honour three members of the Btitish Antarctic Survey who died 30 years ago when they attempted to cross the sea ice from Faraday Station to Petermann.

At a latitude of 65°10’S, the island is as far south as we got, unless it counts if our Zodiacs ventured a few metres farther south.

Our Zodiac had a fair run and even ‘chased’ a minke whale for a closer inspection. He/she skimmed the surface frequently and randomly, so we spent a lot of time trying to guess—wrongly—where the next surfacing might be.

We learned that minke are just beginning to arrive in the Antarctic—because the supply of feed has become adequate.

As much as we would like to be in all places at once, we missed seeing the humpback whale that others saw earlier in the day.

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  1. lmo58 / Dec 11 2012 11:17 pm

    Love the penguins Peggy! And the shot of the Minke whale was good too. It’s enough to make you really, really want to go to Antarctica!


    • leggypeggy / Dec 11 2012 11:20 pm

      Everyone should really, really go to the Antarctic. I feel so privileged to have had the chance.


      • dou dou / Dec 13 2012 9:15 am

        You are so privileged! I have always wanted to go.


      • leggypeggy / Dec 13 2012 9:45 am

        I feel very privileged to have reached Antarctica. I hope you are able to get there one day. With your interest in birds, you’ll love it.


  2. Robert Henderson / Dec 12 2012 12:28 am

    Dear Peggy and Poor John. You must be so disapointed with your trip, especially taking the trip to Antartica. You’ve only seen about six different species of penguine, enormous cliffs of ice to dwarf cruise ships, minke whales and stunning views of the wilderness. What an enormous privillage.


    • leggypeggy / Dec 12 2012 5:26 am

      Hi Robert. It’s been a sensational trip and we feel so blessed to have been able to experience so much. The Antarctica has certainly been the ice-ing on the experience. Pun intended.


  3. Sy S. / Dec 12 2012 10:02 am

    LeggyPeggy you are so south on the globe that it is amazing. I used Google Earth and was able to see Pléneau Island, in Antarctic. And moving to the other end of Antarctic and beyond is New Zealand, Tasmania and Australia (even showed Canberra, Victoria on the map). Further, it is great that you have good weather and can see long distances/scenic views, animals…. and take photos.. even whales.

    Sy S.


    • leggypeggy / Dec 12 2012 2:35 pm

      We went so far south, we were hanging upside-down. Hahaha. But seriously, it was all so incredible and the weather was so mild. I can hardly believe our luck.


  4. Matt / Dec 12 2012 10:33 am

    Hey Peggy, it’s Matt from New York! I didn’t forget about your blog. Nice recaps of our Antarctic landings!


    • leggypeggy / Dec 12 2012 12:35 pm

      Thanks Matt—keep watching because I plan on doing an item on each one.


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