Sunday, May 25, 2008

Humble Island

It's a blustery Sunday night here at Palmer...winds at 25 knots with gusts up to 30. On nights like these, I like to relax in the warm confines of my room while listening to the turbulence outside my window, all the while appreciating the shelter that allows me to live in comfort at one of the harshest places in the world. Tonight, during a moment such as this, I took some time to look back on pictures of my adventures at Palmer and thought I'd share my experiences at Humble Island.

Humble Island is an island that has been off limits to Palmerites for the time we've been here due to nesting Giant Petrels. However, I've had the privilege to go to this island twice in April with the 2 people, Brett and Will, that go regularly to weigh the chicks as part of an ongoing scientific study. I personally could not pick up the birds to be weighed, but I could observe and write down the weights as we made our way around the island to the known nests.

My first impression was how crazy it was for those birds to be as big as they were (over 10 lbs) and still be considered chicks which means there was still growing to be done. Also, as Brett and Will approached the chicks, I was amazed at how feisty they were...squawking and trying to take a bite out of whoever was picking them up.

By now, these birds have left the nest and flown away to other destinations until next year, when the new nests are made, the chicks are hatched, and the weighing starts all over again.

Now to brave the winds and make my way to the galley for a late dinner.

Click here for some photos


  1. I sort of thought that the birds were expecting to be fed, since the only other things they had ever seen were mom & dad with dinner.

  2. I think Brett and Will take the birds back to the galley for one meal after the tagging is done. You know, to say thanks.