For humpback Whales, minke whales & various species of seals
February and March are a time of great activity in Antarctica.
Read the inspiring travel recap of Chad Nordstrom, Research Biologist at the Vancouver Aquarium, about his voyage to Antarctica in March 2016:
Inclusive. Dedicated. Fun. Professional. Witty. Supportive. Engaging. Sharp. A few words to describe the One Ocean Expedition staff that I had the pleasure of joining for the Marine Mammals in Antarctica cruise this past March. Most of my favorite memories from the trip can’t be separated from the group of 17 people that helped bring the frozen continent into focus. I suspect it’s the same for most of the guests, because like nearly all of them, I was experiencing the Antarctic for the first time. Whether it was grinding our way through the brash ice in the zodiacs searching for seals or catching glimpses of fin whales from the bridge of One Ocean Voyager / Akademik Sergey Vavilov, the team telegraphed how special those occasions were without over emphasis and sometimes without words. One team member referred to them as ‘Antarctic moments’ and thankfully we had them in abundance.
In no particular order, some highlights include…
The somewhat expected and did not disappoint:
- Playful humpbacks in Wilhelmina Bay putting on a show
- Gentoo penguins being penguins on Cuverville Island
- Great questions and attitudes from guests
- Zodiac cruising among the ‘bergs’
- Entertaining and informative lectures
- Delicious food
- Snowball fight!
- Sighting Peale’s dolphins off the bow of the ship on our first sea-day
- How stunning glacial ice really is
- A rolling iceberg in Cierva Cove
- A Leopard seal spy-hopping around an ice floe in Paradise Bay to eye up a plump Crabeater seal
- Cool and funny short talks in the ‘Fireside Chat’ series in the lounge
- Visit to a Southern elephant seal haul-out at Hannah Point
- Becoming part of a close-knit team in a very short amount of time
Thanks to One Ocean Expeditions for providing me with the opportunity to join the cruise and for allowing me to share my knowledge and passion for marine mammal biology and research with the ‘Vavilovians’ in March of 2016.
Chad Nordstrom, Research Biologist
Chad Nordstrom is a senior Research Biologist at the Vancouver Aquarium who has been studying seals, sea lions, and whales for over 15 years. He holds an MSc in Zoology from the University of British Columbia and he’s primary interested in the drivers of marine mammal distributions in temperate and polar ecosystems. Chad’s research focuses on foraging ecology, bio-telemetry, habitat modelling, and acoustics.
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