Saturday, 22 July 2017

Impressions from the Falkland Islands, January-February 2017 (2)

(Photos by Frithjof C. Kuepper and Eleni Kytinou)

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First sight of the Falkland Islands, coming from Ascension Island


Welcome home! Kay's B&B in Stanley, our base during every expedition to the Falklands since December 2010


The famous shed in Kay's garden, offering accommodation when the house is full.
It has survived the 1982 Argentine invasion!


Harbor of Stanley, the Falklands' capital. Cruise ship passengers arrive at this wharf.


 Sunset in Stanley


Mined beach at Murrell Farm, East Falkland. At the end of the war, Argentina forces had left > 20,000 mines in a number of mine fields in the Falklands. Only recently, significant progress has been made to de-mine these areas.


My PhD student Emma Beaton at one of the gentoo penguin colonies at Murrell Farm


Eleni at the rockhopper penguin colony at Murrell Farm


Peat cutting area on Murrell Farm. Peat is the traditional, home-grown fuel in the Falklands.


Murrel Farm House, East Falkland


Argentine position (with RPG launcher and propane bottles) at the access road to Murrell Farm,
East Falkland.


Ammunition in Argentine position at the access road to Murrell Farm,
East Falkland.


Stevie Cartwright (Shallow Marine Surveys Group) with his truck outside Kay's B&B
before our dive at the Tussock Islands


Eleni and Akira before our dive at the Tussock Islands


 Eleni diving in the giant kelp forest at the Tussoc Islands


 Giant kelp forest at the Tussoc Islands


  Giant kelp forest at the Tussoc Islands


Collection of a substratum sample for algal isolation work (Germling Emergence Method)


  Giant kelp (Macrocystis) forest at the Tussoc Islands


 Tunicates on kelp phylloids


 Encounter with dolphins while snorkeling in Gypsy Cove


  Encounter with dolphins while snorkeling in Gypsy Cove
 

The gentoo penguin colony at New Haven, before boarding the ferry to Port Howard (West Falkland)


Eleni at the gentoo penguin colony at New Haven, before boarding the ferry to Port Howard
(West Falkland)


The gentoo penguin colony at New Haven, before boarding the ferry to Port Howard (West Falkland)


Crossing Falkland Sound - West Falkland is waiting for us!


Looking out for whales and dolphins in Falkland Sound


The Narrows, the maritime access to Port Howard


Reaching Port Howard


Port Howard


 We were on the ferry together with the Zimbabwean de-mining team currently clearing Argentine mine fields in the Falklands


Westward view towards the Passage Islands, seen from the road to Port Philomel and Port Howard


Port Philomel, where Skottsberg had discovered Cladochroa chnoosporiformis over a century ago


Akira and Eleni hunting Cladochroa in the intertidal at Port Philomel


Eleni holding a crab, Port Philomel


Akira in our improvised lab at Dunnose Head Farm, West Falkland


Cladochroa found!


 Mounting Cladochroa as herbarium specimens


The buildings of Dunnose Head Farm, West Falkland


Adenocystis utricularis at high tide (in the intertidal) at Dunnose Head, West Falkland


 Sunset over the Macrocystis (giant kelp) forest at Dunnose Head, West Falkland


Heron at Dunnose Head



Adenocystis utricularis in the rocky intertidal at Dunnose Head


Hunting seaweeds in the  intertidal at Dunnose Head, West Falkland


Leftover of a bomb from the 1982 war at Dunnose Head Farm


 Wildlife in the Falklands is totally fearless of humans!
Eleni's encounter with king cormorants, Dunnose Head


Tea time in Rosemary's cozy living room with a sea view


Hiking to a sperm whale skeleton in a shallow bay at Dunnose Head


Pilot whale skull, Dunnose Head


Magellanic oyster catchers, Dunnose Head


Frithjof with sperm whale skull, Dunnose Head


 Eleni with sperm whale skull, Dunnose Head


King cormorants, Dunnose Head


Farewell from Dunnose Head - loading the car


Seaweed collections next to the road from Port Philomel to Chartres,
West Falkland


Before our 2 dives in the Narrows, Port Howard, West Falkland


Before our 2 dives in the Narrows, Port Howard, West Falkland


Eleni diving in the Narrows, off Port Howard, West Falkland


 Sponges in the Narrows, off Port Howard, West Falkland


Suddenly a group of curious - or rather, invasive - sea lions showed up and buzzed us...


 Suddenly a group of curious - or rather, invasive - sea lions showed up and buzzed us... makes your heart beat faster!!


Critta Lee's house in Port Howard where we stayed


The small museum in Port Howard
with leftovers of the Argentine occupation and Falklands War, 1982


Gentoo penguin feeding its chick, New Haven


Collecting seaweeds in an estuary near San Carlos, East Falkland


 Estuary near San Carlos, East Falkland


The British forces' cemetery at Blue Beach, San Carlos, East Falkland


The British forces' cemetery at Blue Beach, San Carlos, East Falkland. The number of graves is rather small since most casualties were repatriated to mainland UK.


Blue Beach, San Carlos, East Falkland. This was the landing site of British forces during the reconquest of East Falkland in 1982.


Emma at Blue Beach, San Carlos, East Falkland


Snorkeling at San Carlos: Barnacles (Cirripedia) at high tide


Snorkeling at San Carlos:Chiton snail


Couple of Falkland steamer ducks at Blue Beach, San Carlos, East Falkland


Driving along the very long, lonely roads of East Falkland


 East Falkland scenery


Teal Inlet, East Falkland


Road near Estancia, East Falkland


Stone run, a typical Falklands feature of glacial origin, near Mt. Kent, East Falkland


Remains of an Argentine helicopter, shot down in 1982


The road to Stanley. The Falklands produce around 60% of their electricity from wind energy!


Wreck of the Lady Elisabeth and Stanley, with the characteristic skyline of the Two Sisters (centre right), Mt. Tumbledown and Sapper Hill


Young magellanic penguins at Gypsy Cove, near Stanley, East Falkland


 Magellanic penguins at Gypsy Cove, near Stanley, East Falkland


 This beach at Gypsy Cove is only for the penguins!


Coastal defense gun from WWI (when the Falklands were under threat of attack by the Germans!)


Stanley Cathedral, a landmark of the Falklands


Eleni under the Whale Bone Arch in front of Stanley Cathedral



Magellanic penguin at Gypsy Cove


 Magellanic penguins at Gypsy Cove


Penguins on the beach at Gypsy Cove


The road from Goose Green to North Arm, East Falkland. A bridge was being fixed, obliging traffic to drive through the river


Sheep shearing in North Arm


North Arm, Lafonia, East Falkland


North Arm, Lafonia, East Falkland


Lessonia kelp forest, North Arm, East Falkland


 Red-backed haw on a lonely house in Lafonia between Goose Green and North Arm. I had seen a bird of the same species here in December 2010!


Break at the famous Goose Green Galley Cafe, a popular venue for veterans from 1982


Goose Green


 Hare on the road from Goose Green to Darwin, East Falkland


Darwin, East Falkland - the village is named after Charles Darwin, who visited the Falklands twice


The Argentine cemetery near Darwin


Sunset in East Falkland after the long drive to North Arm


Sperm whale skull as part of a whale and whaling exhibit, Stanley


 Whaling exhibit, Stanley


 Frithjof on Berta's Beach, East Falkland


Gentoo penguin on Berta's Beach, East Falkland


 Dive excursion with SAERI / SMSG


  Dive excursion with SAERI / SMSG


 The South Atlantic Environmental Research Institute (SAERI)


 Jubilee Villas, Stanley


Kay's famous gnome garden - another Stanley landmark!


 Bunnies in Kay's gnome garden. They had spent almost a year at Oceanlab!


 Kay's B&B


Lab work at SAERI - last evening before Akira's farewell and return to Europe.


Leaving Stanley for Sea Lion Island


First sight of Sea Lion Island


Landed in Sea Lion Island: we were the only 2 passengers...


A couple of Upland Geese


Two skuas overpowering and killing a gentoo penguin chick


Two king penguins appearing on the scene


Gentoo penguins on Sea Lion Island


 Gentoo penguins on Sea Lion Island


 A gentoo penguin looking at the chick that has just been killed by the skuas


Sea Lion Island scenery


Magellanic oystercatcher


 How do you kiss an elephant seal?


Orcas cruising off the beach of Sea Lion Island, hunting elephant seals


Fighting elephant seals


Visit to the Italian scientists (in their container accommodation) who are studying elephant seals on Sea Lion Island


Shag colony, Sea Lion Island


The cliffs of Sea Lion Island... breeding habitat for rockhopper penguins
(who come up these cliffs, smartly using the swell)


Rockhopper penguins


 Memorial to the HMS Sheffield, which was sunk off Sea Lion Island during the 1982 Falklands War


Sea lion bull with a female of his harem


Magellanic penguin and Sea Lion Lodge, the only place to stay on the island, at sunset


Magellanic penguins and fighting elephant seal bulls


Juvenile elephant seals displaying already the typical fighting behavior


Orca outside the Orca Pool, Sea Lion Island


Pod of 5 orcas outside the Orca  Pool, Sea Lion Island


This young elephant seal better watches out... there is an orca waiting in the sea outside the pool!


As soon as we sat down for our picknick lunch, these 2 caracaras showed up



Couple of caracaras, Sea Lion Island


Eleni with a caracara on the cliffs of Sea Lion Island


On the way back to Stanley, we were again the only 2 passengers... and Eleni got the co-pilot's seat.


King penguins, Volunteer Point, East Falkland


 King penguins, Volunteer Point, East Falkland


 King penguins, Volunteer Point, East Falkland


 Dead king penguin chick, Volunteer Point, East Falkland


Beach at Volunteer Point, East Falkland


King penguins, Volunteer Point, East Falkland


Eleni with king penguins, Volunteer Point, East Falkland


Frithjof with king penguins, Volunteer Point, East Falkland


 King penguins, Volunteer Point, East Falkland


King penguins, Volunteer Point, East Falkland


King penguins, Volunteer Point, East Falkland


 King penguins, Volunteer Point, East Falkland


King penguins, Volunteer Point, East Falkland


King penguins, Volunteer Point, East Falkland


 Dhia's present! Dates from Kuwait were feeding us among the penguins...


 King penguins, Volunteer Point, East Falkland


 King penguins, Volunteer Point, East Falkland


 King penguins, Volunteer Point, East Falkland


Leftover from the Argentine invasion, Stanley


 Farewell party at the Malvina, Stanley


 Farewell party at the Malvina, Stanley


 Farewell party at the Malvina, Stanley


Last view of the Falklands, heading to Ascension Island


Sunset above the South Atlantic, about 1 hr before reaching Ascension for the refueling stop


We were traveling with Nigel Haywood, the previous Governor of the Falkland Islands



After an 8 h overnight flight from Ascension Island with the Royal Air Force, landed at RAF Brize Norton (Oxfordshire)