Saturday, October 27, 2007

Looking For Penguins - Part 2

It's a new day and a new opportunity to hunt for penguins.

This morning, our friend Marcus Horning, who heads one of the Weddell Seal research groups, called us and told us that he had spotted several emperors on the sea ice near Tent Island. So, we geared up and headed out once more.

Sure enough, we saw one bird almost right away once we were near the island, and then, two more. Soon, we had three birds and then we found an additional five more.

Below, we are surrounding some of the birds.

Jessica catches her first of two penguins.

And, Cory catches one.

And, so does Cass!

Since we are limited by the number of boxes that we can carry on the snowmobile sled, Matt, Paul, and I return to Penguin Ranch with five birds, while Cory, Cass and Jessica watch the remaining three yet-to-be-captured birds (below).

Matt drives very carefully all the way home with the birds in the snowmobile sled. It's hard to believe that , he had never driven a snowmobile before. He plots a very careful route back to the Ranch.

Once there, Paul and Matt release the birds in the corral.

Penguins are amazing. They walk out of the boxes, look around a bit puzzled, and then start to preen themselves. Nothing seems to faze them. They don't pace, they don't fight with each other, they just settle down and clean their feathers. Their view of life seems to be when life gives you lemons, make lemonade. We could all learn from them.