This week at the station

This week at Macquarie Island: 22 March 2013

Settling in

After the Aurora Australis left, most of the new expeditioners had a couple of days quiet time. This time was used mainly to organise and settle into our rooms, which will be our homes for the next 12 months.

Time was also spent cleaning up and organising the residual pallets that were left around station and in the green store.

It has also been a busy time with briefings, familiarisation and inductions of station buildings, equipment, machinery and community. Two important briefs were about station limits and limitations whilst out in the field in this wonderful World Heritage Park. 

We have all received our survival packs, which are to be carried at all times when out of station limits. The field training program has commenced with most of the MIPEP people completing their field training, including the last few day down island.

On a couple of nights, when the sky cleared we were able to witness a aurora australis (southern lights). For many it was the first time to see this event. 

Needless to say we are all excited about living in and exploring this beautiful place. 

Aaron and Josh standing inside the hydroponics hut. There are two shelves with three rows of plastic hydroponic beds
Aaron and Josh cleaning and setting up the hydroponics hut
(Photo: Josh Tomasetti)
Saturday night special Chinese dinner, with 23 expeditioners sitting around two rows of tables. The tables are adorned with white linen tablecloths
Everyone enjoying our first special Saturday night dinner, Chinese style
(Photo: Josh Tomasetti)
Aurora australis or southern lights, appearing like a greenish silk curtain, as seen from the Ham hut looking southeast over Buckles Bay
Aurora australis or southern lights as seen from the Ham hut looking…
(Photo: Barend (Barry) Becker)
Predominantly green aurora australis or southern lights as seen from the Met observation enclosure, looking northwest
Aurora australis or southern lights as seen from the Met observation enclosure…
(Photo: Barend (Barry) Becker)
Patti and Dean form MIPEP, both wearing yellow rain gear, training Joker a brown and white springer spaniel
Patti and Dean from MIPEP training Joker
(Photo: Barend (Barry) Becker)
Digestors, which are cylindrical tanks, in the high grass near Landing Beach
Digestors near Landing Beach
(Photo: Barend (Barry) Becker)

Tasmanian Parks and Wildlife

Chris is our park ranger and today he came across a couple of pictures of the artefact corral which is next to the green store. These pictures were taken in 2009 which was pre rabbit eradication. Out of interest a couple of pictures taken today to show the difference.

2009 photo of artefact corral, a small area near the green store, containing old parts of a cart and 3 large rusted boiling pots. This photo shows the degradation caused by the rabbits
Artefact corral, next to the green store taken in 2009 when rabbits…
(Photo: Tas Parks and Wildlife 2009)
Taken from a different angle this 2009 photo of artefact corral, a small area near the green store, shows old parts of a cart, including a wagon wheel made of wood and 2 large rusted boiling pots. This photo shows a couple of rabbit boroughs into a small mound
Artefact corral taken in 2009, clearly showing the degradation caused by rabbits
(Photo: Tas Parks and Wildlife 2009)
Artefact corral taken from roughly the same angle as picture one (above), showing the recovery and regrowth of the vegetation
Artefact corral in March 2013 shows amazing regrowth and recovery after rabbit…
(Photo: Barend (Barry) Becker)
Artefact corral, taken in March 2013, roughly from the same position as picture above, showing artefacts (wagon pieces and rusted boiling pots) covered and surrounded by lots of green vegetation. It shows the recovery and regrowth after the rabbits have been eradicated
Artefact corral in March 2013 (from similar angle to picture above) shows…
(Photo: Barend (Barry) Becker)

Scenery

After re-supply and the departure of BOB, we have had a little more time to explore the grandeur of our immediate surroundings. The scenery is astounding and beautiful. The light changes with the weather and shows a different perspective of the terrain.  
Panoramic view looking north towards the station on the isthmus and North Head beyond
View taken from the lookout at the top of the steps on…
(Photo: Barend (Barry) Becker)
Panoramic view looking south with the station buildings in the foreground, then the isthmus and the plateau beyond
View looking south, from the golf tee on the Wireless Hill track
(Photo: Barend (Barry) Becker)
Looking south along the rocky East beach, with hills rising steeply from the shore and a single gentoo penguin in the foreground
East beach, near station limits
(Photo: Barend (Barry) Becker)
Panorama taken from West Beach over the ocean surf to North Head beyond. It is a sunny day with  around 30 birds hovering over the water and beach
View from West Beach over Hasselborough Bay and North Head
(Photo: Barend (Barry) Becker)

Wildlife

Along with the scenery, the wildlife is so abundant, diverse and special.

Numerous king penguins close up, on the beach, with several in the foreground looking in the same southerly direction
Several king penguins, seemingly seeking something to the south
(Photo: Josh Tomasetti)
Elephant seal in the wallow near station, that looks all old and wrinkled like a share pei dog
Shar Pei seal, near the helipad
(Photo: Barend (Barry) Becker)
Southern giant petrel flying over West Beach
Southern giant petrel flying over West Beach
(Photo: Barend (Barry) Becker)
White southern giant petrel, flying over beach with station building in the background
White southern giant petrel
(Photo: Barend (Barry) Becker)
Moulting elephant seal with large pieces of fur and skin peeling away
Moulting elephant seal
(Photo: Barend (Barry) Becker)
Who is a pretty boy? Gentoo penguin looking at its reflection in a puddle
Who is a pretty boy? Gentoo penguin looking at its reflection in…
(Photo: Barend (Barry) Becker)
A pair of gentoo penguins calling each other, their beaks pointing skyward
A pair of gentoo penguins calling each other
(Photo: Barend (Barry) Becker)
King penguin rookery at the base of Gadgets Gully. There are around 200 penguins in the picture, with more then half being rounded brown fluffy chicks which are almost as big as the adults
King penguin rookery at the base of Gadgets Gully. The chicks are…
(Photo: Barend (Barry) Becker)
A pair of curious king penguins on the beach near Gadgets Gully, with many other king penguins on the beach in the background
A pair of curious king penguins on the beach near Gadgets Gully
(Photo: Barend (Barry) Becker)
Young fur seal in the tussock grass and in front of one of the station buildings
Young fur seal on station
(Photo: Josh Tomasetti)
This page was last modified on 16 December 2010.