Sunday, January 07, 2007
After six seasons, we finally saw penguins...close
up! The Oden had just pulled into the Ice Pier
when we looked and saw lots of penguins and lots
of people, huddling near Hut Point. When we got
there, about a hundred Adelie Penguins were there
including two little guys that were hanging out
in the sun near the Hut. One was sleeping, but
this one seemed to want to preen in front of the
People of course were getting their hero shots,
including me of course. However, this is about
as close as you can actually get to the penguins.
The Antarctic Treaty forbids getting so close to
the wildlife that they are bothered by your presence.
These guys seemed to thrive with the attention they
were being given.
We ran into all kinds of friends at the Point who
were doing just what we were doing...hanging out,
watching the penguins and enjoying the perfect day.
The weather was beautiful...no wind, not a cloud in
the sky and overall a good feeling in the air.
Lynn and I laughed that some people pay $10,000 or
more for an experience like this, and we got it for
free. In fact, we're being paid to be here.
Right before we were getting ready to leave, the
Polar Sea icebreaker cruised by and another band
of penguins ran away from it toward their brothers
and sisters on Hut Point. They were fast little
critters and moved like those photos of wildlife
in Africa you see almost moving as one. I hope
this isn't the last time we see penguins this year.
With the possibly of open water upon us, maybe
Emperor penguins will be next.
Posted by Tom Hamann at 2:17 AM