Today was our first full day at sea after leaving South Georgia. It was a great day to observe the power of the sea from the bridge. We also enjoyed quite a few excellent bird sightings, including the white-chinned petrel. Spending time on the outer decks proved challenging, but our intrepid bird expert Ben Shulman managed to take excellent pictures of various pelagic seabirds, including the white-chinned petrel, the northern giant petrel, the black-browed albatross, and the great shearwater.
After dinner, we officially left the province of Antarctica when we crossed the Antarctic Convergence Zone. This marine belt marks the spot where cold and dense north-flowing seawater from the Southern Ocean meets the relatively warmer waters of the Atlantic, Pacific, and Indian Oceans to the north. This natural boundary is about 20-30 miles wide; it separates two hydrological zones and marks a change in marine life and climate. The position varies in latitude seasonally and generally falls between the 48th and 61st parallels of south latitude. We had a chance to learn more about this fascinating feature of oceanography from climate expert and naturalist Zach Brown’s insightful presentation during recap.
The excitement on board is building as we approach our final region of exploration for this voyage: the Falkland Islands, a journey of over 700 nautical miles. We will spend tomorrow at sea as well.