At Sea, En Route to South Georgia

Dec 03, 2017 - National Geographic Orion

After departing Port Stanley at 10pm yesterday we were quickly exposed to the swell built up from the strong winds during the day. Fortunately the ship is fitted with stabilizers which eases the motion of the ship through the waves, thus the ship remained relatively busy with lectures and photography sessions in the lounge, or the lectures viewed from guest rooms through TV screens.

The morning started with a presentation from the National Geographic photographer Nick Cobbing about working for the National Geographic magazine and his passion for photography. Then our onboard photo instructor Ian Strachan held a workshop on iPhone and Android photography. Many of us use smartphones more as a paperweight and alarm clock than actually utilizing the pretty powerful camera functions which are easily accessible. The session kept many of us busy for the next hour at least, trying out all the new found functionality at our fingertips!

The final full presentation was by whale biologist Andy Szabo on whaling history and impact. Whaling was a huge industry of the Southern Ocean especially on South Georgia, our next destination, so this was a great introduction to the scale of the industry before we get to South Georgia and hopefully see the remains of the sad industry.

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About the Author

Peter Webster

Naturalist/Expedition Diver

Born in Scotland, Peter became fascinated with nature and wildlife from a very young age. This early interest led to him earning a degree in conservation biology followed shortly after by an M.Sc in marine and fisheries ecology. He is currently studying for another M.Sc in digital mapping. After working as a commercial diver for several years Peter was offered the position of Field Diving Officer with the British Antarctic Survey in 2012. He then spent the next 16 months in the Antarctic, stationed at Rothera Research Station, on the peninsula where he managed the dive operations and a team of scientific divers working on a wide range of research on climate change, ocean acidification, and increased seabed disturbance by icebergs. As well as diving Peter also spent several months in the Antarctic deep field working in aircraft operations, depot laying, and meteorological work whilst living in tents in conditions below -30oC. 

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