Kiwi Roa spent one more season amongst the – mostly wild – life in the Falklands.
This deep water semisubmersible drilling rig is run by an offshore drilling contractor, looking to exploit the expected oil wealth of the Falklands. It runs without anchors, using self-stationing propulsion 3,000 meters above the seabed.
The boat was pulled out of the water on a beach sledge cradle at the Canache, the first complete haul-out since leaving New Zealand four years earlier. To be fixed was damage to the keel from run-ins with rock in Antarctica and more recently in Cape Lagoon in the Falklands. High tide reached the top of the rudder, work having to be timed according to the tides and, as always, the weather.
The Falklands thrush is common on the islands. It cohabits quite happily with humans, and will eagerly accept food titbits.
At the very south of the Falklands archipelago, Barren Island and George Island host a wide range of avian life. The islands are run as a sheep farm and are free of rats, providing a safe environment for smaller birds.
Here is nothing scared of rats: nesting southern giant petrels, and their fledging chicks. It is advised to avoid approaching the nesting rookery too closely, as frightened adults may abandon the nest and never return.
Rock shags, or Magellanic cormorants, dive underwater for their food, but can’t be swimming or on the wing full time.
Gentoo penguin colonies dot the coast.
As always they are a curious waddle.
Young and old sound underwater, hunting krill. This is far offshore.
Dunbar Creek is an inlet in Byron Sound, at the north west of West Falkland.
The Sound is visible outside the entrance.
This is a Commerson’s dolphin, friendly and intelligent.
Despite the isolation, the whole region is under continuous surveillance, guarding against the old Argentine enemy. This Air Force Hercules has descended to investigate and see if they recognize the boat.