22 November 2011
The Antarctic Convergence is a natural boundary of the Southern Ocean where cold, northward-flowing Antarctic waters meet the relatively warmer subantarctic waters, creating a zone of very high marine productivity, especially for Antarctic krill.
Now south of the Drake Passage we had a much calmer day than yesterday and the team was on board together for the first time. With lower wind and more southerly latitude there was a significant change in the species mix, with far fewer Albatross (just a few Light-mantled Sooty, Grey-headed, Black-browed and a single Wandering), but increasing numbers of Antarctic Prions. A couple of Humpback Whales were seen well in the afternoon and a 1st summer Kelp Gull flying strongly south was a surprise. A total of 15 Antarctic Petrel around the ship in the late afternoon were unusual in such numbers, but the highlight was the sheer number of Antarctic Prions which spent hours circling around the ship through the afternoon.
|Black-bellied Storm Petrel|
|Kelp Gull, a long way from home|
|Wilson's Petrel in the snow|