MARCH 27 on board Professor Multinovskiy- We spent a lovely day,
cruising Antarctic Sound in sunshine, with icebergs, bergy bits, brash
ice, and the huge tabular ice all around. Huge numbers of Leopard Seals
were lying on the ice floes, while small packs of Gentoo Penguins
porpoised amongst the floes, and occasional Antarctic Minke Whale fins
broke the surface. Feeding Humpback Whales were still about. A single
ANTARCTIC PETREL was spotted sitting near an iceberg with a group of 3
Cape Petrels! And, I spotted the first SNOW PETREL of the trip in the
ice. We made a continental landing at the Argentinc station, Esperanza.
Guides gave us a tour of the area, including the Nordenskoljd hut. Tea
and some "retail therapy" were provided! On the nearby beach, two
Weddell's Seals were "singing"-- first time I have ever heard/seen this!
A wounded Crabeater Seal was lying nearby. Afterwards, we relocated the
ship to Brown Bluff for another continental landing. What a change 7
days has made--- as the entire area was now covered in snow, with long,
frozen icicles hanging from the cliffs. We Zodiac cruised the en route
to our landing site, in order to have closer views of the Leopard Seals.
And, indeed, we enjoyed some close ups-- including the interior of the
mouth of one! Many Gentoo Penguins & Antarctic Fur Seals were on the
beach. One single Adelie Penguin was still present. Darkness was
falling when the last Zodiac returned.
MARCH 28- Today, we are making our way to the South Orkney Islands,
where we hope to land tomorrow. More Snow Petrels, and Light-mantled
Sooty Albatrosses were spotted. Quite a few FIN WHALES, and one group of
SOUTHERN BOTTLENOSE WHALES were spotted. Cruising has been very easy,
with little swell or winds. Fog has set in this afternoon.