The day began with a beautiful orange sunrise over the island of Steeple Jason. The Falkland Islands have about 60-70% of the total population of black-browed albatrosses, and the colony on Steeple Jason is the largest in the world with about 180,000 breeding pairs. On the island, we also saw some very large South American sea lions basking in the sun in the tussock grass and a small gentoo colony as well.
In the afternoon, we sailed over to Carcass Island, named after the HMS Carcass. The bomb-class navy vessel was refitted as a survey ship and sent down to participate in the first hydrographical survey of the Falkland Islands under the command of John MacBride in 1766. On the island, we split into three groups for long, medium, and short hikes. All ended at the tea and cookie house hidden by Monterey cypress trees. Along the way, we saw several new species of birds including yellow-billed teals, Magellanic oystercatchers, Cobb’s wrens, grass wrens, black-crowned night herons, and even a rare sighting of a great grebe. We ended our day with the sun setting in front of us as we turned our compasses west and back towards Ushuaia.