Thursday, February 25, 2010
Friday, February 12, 2010
Sunday, February 7, 2010
Looking back through my journal of the last two months I feel incredibly fortunate. For the friends that joined us, for the wildlife we’ve encountered and for the friends that we’ve made along the way. Even with all this richness I am drawn to the far south. And so I’m leaving Stephen in charge of Narama while I fly to Ushuaia, Tierra del Fuego to board a ship and sail to Antarctica. I’ll be working as a wildlife guide, giving lectures on seabird ecology and spending every moment I can on deck, looking at the all rich wildlife and ice-filled scenery! Stephen will be enjoying the warmth and hospitality of Mexico and sharing it with his parents who are coming to visit. I’ll join them all again in a few weeks, but first to the penguins and ice!
Tuesday, February 2, 2010
With just the two of us onboard we had to get the routine down. One would steer alongside (about 20m away) a whale shark, the other would be waiting with mask and fins then leap off the side of the boat and start swimming. The sunlight dappling on the light-coloured spots on the dark body had a mesmerizing effect. Or perhaps it was the sheer size! The largest we estimated to be 6-8m (easy comparison since it was over half a boat length). The crescent-shaped tail looked underwater to be over a meter tall. The first time you swim toward one of these beautiful giants your heart seems to skip a beat and you have to consciously remind yourself that they only eat plankton and small fish. Then you have to concentrate on swimming and you realize this fish seems to be travelling fast without actively moving its body. There’s a lot of other small fish and Remora along for the ride. To see this animal in its element was an experience of a lifetime!
Stephen swimming alongside a Whale Shark.