Aside from the ‘normal' work Davis expeditioners have to get done, there are 28 (!) secondary duties to choose from that keep us all busy, contribute to the community feel, and overall help keep the station running smoothly… brewing the beer, writing news updates, Electoral Officers, Work Health & Safety, Australia Post ggent, photographers, Hobby Hut Coordinator, Gym Manager, helping out in the kitchen (aka ‘slushy’) and organising social activities etc…just to name a few.
One of our more critical secondary duties includes looking after the station hydroponics, to give us all enough greens to confidently nod whenever a mum should ask ”…but are you eating properly?”
There’s a bunch of us on station that help out with “hydro”. Chef Nick’s personal farmers are weather observers Liam and Amy, comms tech Matt, doctor Meg, diesos Amy and Luke and boilermaker/welder Kieran.
When you're surrounded by ice, freezing temperatures in the vicinity of −40degC and no plant life whatsoever, to step into a warm room filled with greenery is pretty nice. No surprise it’s definitely one of the best duties to be involved with.
Smelling the plants, basking in the heat and humidity…working on the old tan under the UV lights…it almost feels like being back home! Almost.
There’s a pretty good variety of seeds to choose from. Our hydro team's expertise and TLC is pulling bumper crops of salad greens and herbs, pretty potent chillis, capsicum, cucumber and tomatoes. With no resupply support from February to November it feels like luxury to be able to enjoy fresh salads and herbs in the middle of an Antarctic winter!
Liam (Senior Observer, Bureau of Meteorology)