Friday, August 14, 2020

Photo Friday: Antarctica #7: Remains of the Whaling Past

These reports from our trip are feeling more and more like glimpses of a distant past, both personally and in this world where no one is traveling anywhere too far from home. Certainly not internationally! It's good to look back and remember, and this post is the first of two where it's all about history. In particular, the grim history of whaling.
 
Mikkelsen Harbor was used first by sealers, then in the early 20th Century by whalers. It's not much of a place, and I think they must have mostly just done some basic butchering before hauling the blubber off to someplace else (like Deception Island--I'll get to that in a couple of weeks) to be processed.

Approaching the island in the harbor, where the whalers had what look like seriously inadequate shelter. (Photo by Dave Dempsey)

The skeleton of the whaling boat is poignantly set off by hundred of whale bones.

The animals rule here now. We tourists slogged a long way around through the mud when a large seal (out of sight behind the boat) took possession of the beach. Penguins hopped around on the bones of boat and whales alike.

Dave caught some wonderful views of a parent feeding its nearly-grown chick. As noted, the island now belongs to the animals.

Dave had his moment of communing with a curious gentoo penguin.

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All images and text ©Rebecca M. Douglass, unless otherwise indicated.
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