This week we’re introduced to a variety of Casey’s residents who share something very special in common.

What Do a Dozen Daves on Station Do?

Casey has achieved a number of significant project and aviation milestones already this season – but none more impressive than assembling a cornucopia of 12 Daves on station… all at the same time. While Casey’s population is usually over the 100-mark, we certainly didn’t expect that over 10% would be blessed with a name that means ‘beloved’.

Of course, there has since been much station banter around what the collective term for a Dozen Daves should be. Whilst Twitter suggested “a caramilising of Daves” (which nobody understood nor accepted) and Instagram suggests a continuum of Daves, there were many others from the community such as:

  • A surplus of Daves (we could probably lose a few).
  • A deluge of Daves.
  • The Dave Divergence.
  • A suffering of Daves.
  • A dither of Daves
  • A Davasion…
  • A Daversity of people…

You get the idea! Maybe our Daves are not considered as beloved by all!

So it’s probably a good idea to personalise this story by introducing our Dirty Dozen – not to be confused with the American WW2 movie, nor the EWG list that ranks pesticide-impacted fruits and vegetables…

So, in alphabetical (first-name) order we have:

David Bisson-Yassa or “Canadian Dave”: Kenn Borek Air engineer for our Basler – ‘JKB’. He reckons travelling to the harshest continent on a 1943-built DC3 aeroplane (that served during WW2, including Operation Market Garden) makes it all worthwhile. So much so he’s done it twice.

Dave Paton: One of our BK117 helicopter pilots from Helicopter Resources. He loves the unique adventure that Antarctica offers and has flown multiple seasons with the AAD – both at Casey and Davis stations as well as on ship voyages south.

Dave Lomas: Our other BK117 pilot. Extensively experienced with Casey/Davis and voyage seasons (alongside the other BK117 Dave) that includes Macquarie Island resupply. Both of our BK117 Daves will be supporting the Denman Terrestrial Campaign (DTC), and will be based out of Bunger Hills for a large part of the 2023–24 summer season.

Dave Buller: Current Casey Station Leader and has done this role two previous times. Probably the least qualified out of all the Daves but loves a good challenge and is constantly amazed at the surreal experiences that this frozen continent generates on a daily basis. Has been ranked as Dave #7 by station.

Dave Burdon: A mechanic destined to be part of the AAD’s Traverse project. He’s on station now but will be heading 1200kms ‘up the hill’ via ‘road train’ to a location called Little Dome C. He wanted to come to Antarctica to have an exciting experience, meet new people and help with the AAD’s Million Year Ice Core (MYIC) project.

Dave Hately: One of our resident doctors who is visiting Casey before heading to Mawson as the wintering doctor there. Normally more of a tropical adventurer, he decided that the prospect of spending time down south was too good an opportunity to pass up.

Dave Souter: Coordinating scientist for the suite of deep field projects being conducted for the DTC at Bunger Hills this season. He loves dabbling in science and is the AAD’s Chief Research Officer back in Hobart, when not dedicating spare time to (almost) finishing every half-Ironman race back in Australia.

Dave Wardle: Station supply officer for the summer. From Toowoomba in QLD, Dave’s role is to support station and science programs by packing, storing and manifesting everything from scientific samples to Tim Tams. He’s here in Antarctica to inspire his son and daughter, challenge himself, experience somewhere pristine and of course, for the penguins!

Dave Yukich: Plumber – originally from Perth he decided to do something polar opposite after working up in northern Australia as a FIFO, and living in Indonesia for 12 years. He's loving his current experience and looking forward to what the rest of the season has to offer.

Dave Knoff: From Melbourne, Dave is the Field Leader for the DTC at Bunger Hills and previously a Station Leader at Davis. Like many of the Daves here – his favourite penguins are the Adélie’s. He will be in the field for around 8 weeks before packing up the camp and returning the 40-odd scientists and support personnel back to Australia.

Dave Holley: A carpenter from Orange, NSW, who is another Dave forming part of the AAD’s Traverse project team. His role will be to help build an inland camp at Little Dome C for the MYIC project, in temperatures anticipated to be between −30 and −40 degrees Celsius!

Dave Clarke: Ecologist and researcher from Monash University - and the lead for Securing Antarctica’s Environmental Future (or SAEF) projects at Bunger Hills this year. It’s Dave’s first time in Antarctica so he’s pretty excited about the opportunity to deploy out into the field to deliver science outcomes.

So there you have it. It’s good to know our Daves are out there kicking goals, making history and saving the world. Especially around Casey.

Dave Buller – AKA ‘Dave #7’ – Casey Station Leader

By Dave#7 – Station Leader