Logan: Today I had the pleasure of visiting the Torgersen Island Adelie Penguin colony. We can see the colony from station at a distance. We circled the island in the zodiac and I admired the tall peaks of jagged rock that these penguins somehow managed to traverse to get to the nesting sites. Unfortunately we had to approach the loading zone down wind of the colony, an area you do not want to be if you have a weak stomach. Immediately my stomach began to churn as I smelled the distasteful odor of Adelie guano that lined the rocky terrain in a pink shear.
We landed on the island and I quickly began to traverse the rock terrain to the peak of the island near the colony nesting sites. We were instructed earlier in the day that the chicks had already hatched and that we were to remain at distance as to not distract the parents with chicks. The Brown Skua, a large predatory bird, takes advantage of unprotected chicks, carrying them away from the colony to feed on the tiny brown fluff balls. I managed to find a good spot to sit on the rocks and turn on my GoPro and just sit and observe the activities of these beautiful birds. The noise that this colony could produce was outstanding. I watched these birds interact with each other in many different ways. Some would raise their necks high into the air as a sign of what I believed to be courtship, while others were just laid on the ground trying to stay cool. This particular colony is in decline. These penguins are an ice dependent species, and as the climate in this area continues to warm, this colony will likely disappear.
Erin, Ari, and Doug are still out on the LMG trying to place our suction cup tags on nearby humpback whales. Have not heard from them yet, but hopefully I get a call that a tag has been placed. That is all for today!!!