©Wolfgang Kaehler

Antarctica on the Seabourn Quest Day 5 – At Sea


From left:  Chefs Edwin, Miroslav and Robert

It is Thanksgiving Day, and we are sailing on the Seabourn Quest through Bransfield Strait in the Scotia Sea past snow-capped islands. Wolfgang has befriended Miroslav, the Slovak chef in the Colonnade who speaks perfect German. Miroslav promised Wolf a schnitzel for lunch today. When we arrived at the restaurant, the aroma of sauerbraten and gulasch filled the lobby. We discovered an entire buffet steaming with German entrees from gulasch with rot kohl to kassler and spatzle. And so Wolf began his Thanksgiving feasting… During meals and on deck, we have gotten to know the expert Antarctic biologists, ornithologists, and geologists on board.

Wolf and I recognize Wayne Trivelpiece, with the Antarctic Ecosystem Resources Division of NOAA, from our trip in 1986. He has come on board from his research station he fondly calls Copa Cabana and will be traveling back to South America. We recall stories from our visit years ago and the fellow scientists Wayne and Wolf have known over the years. Wayne recalls how the first time he came to the Antarctic Peninsula he sailed on board the Hero, a wooden vessel that bucked and bounced its way through the rough and wild Drake Passage. Wayne and Wolf also recall the Explorer, an expedition ship they were both fond of that went down in Antarctica a few years back. Antarctica is such an interesting place because of the stories and the research happening at the many bases around the region.

At Copa Cabana, Wayne has been studying a colony of Adelie penguins for many years collecting a range of data. I mentioned in yesterday’s blog how the temperatures along the Antarctic Peninsula have increased more dramatically than anywhere else on the planet and how these temperatures are affecting the penguins. Wayne explains to me that a boon in krill fishing in the area is also taking its toll. These krill-rich waters have lured fishing vessels, many from China, who have a found a lucrative source for omega 3. The demand in America is tremendous, he points out, and so the industry is one more factor negatively influencing the food chain.


Sunset in Bransfield Strait (Nikon D4, Nikon 70-200 mmm)

Posted November 29, 2013 | Categories: Blog, Photography, and Travel. Tags: Adelie penguins, Antarctica, cruise, cruising, German food, Krill, NOAA, Seabourn, Thanksgiving, and Wayne Trivelpiece.

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