MIPEP hunters do it tough but get rewarded, tourists preparation is underway and expeditioners clean-up, dress-up and showcase the flora and fauna of Macquarie Island with some stunning photography.

Macquarie Island Pest Eradication Project

What a difference a couple of months can make. A few months ago, the hunters rarely stopped as conditions were so cold and if you stopped walking, within minutes you’d freeze. Stopping for a break or lunch? Forget it! The weather has certainly improved and whilst the team are still experiencing cold, wet and windy days, those days are less frequent. It’s now daylight at 3:30am and we’re seeing many more sunny days with winds under 20 knots. These are much better conditions to be out in, especially if you’re averaging 20km a day over rough terrain.

The hunters enjoyed their short break on station last week and are now back in the field. We’ll see them again on the 23rd in time to prepare for the special Macca Christmas do!

Ranger in Charge

Preparation for tourists

Over the week the rangers held a briefing for all staff who wish to act as guides for tourists during the summer. Over twenty expeditioners are keen to help the rangers show tourists from a number of companies some of the amazing wildlife Macca has to offer. Expeditioners are really keen to meet new people and share some stories from the past year.

Paul has completed some finishing touches to the boardwalk at Sandy Bay. The east coast has recently come alive with lots more adult penguins in colonies and on the shore over the past few weeks.


Albatross team

The albatross team of Jaimie and Anna remain out in the field and have been making their way back up the island from Hurd Point towards VJM. Over the last week they have worked in the southwest area of the island. They have been in the area of the amphitheatre conducting checks for adult wandering albatross which are expected to return soon. The team have also been working in Petrel Peak monitoring nest progress and monitoring hatching for grey-headed albatross and black-browed albatross.

Remediation team

The good weather over the last couple of days has seen the remediation team complete the addition of liquid nutrient in the fuel farm. The team has now moved onto adding liquid nutrient at the Main Power House site, this will hopefully be completed in the coming days. After the addition of liquid nutrient the team will monitor the concentration of nutrients in the water at both sites. This will give the team an idea of how much of the added nutrient is staying on or leaving the sites. This is important as too little or too much nutrient can affect the way in which the microbes function. Water samples, post nutrient addition, at the fuel farm have been collected with the team overcoming some elephant seal obstacles near the seeps at the base of the escarpment. These will be analysed in the lab over the coming weeks.

The team have also been on a cleanup mission, not only inside where they have been conducting a thorough stock take of their equipment but also outside at the remediation sites. With the help of station leader Narelle and BSS Jim the team conducted an emu parade around the main power house site. A big thank you to Narelle and Jim for their assistance with this task.


With nearly everyone back on station for the weekend it was a good excuse to throw a party with the theme being ‘Come as your favourite movie star or celebrity’.

Dustin Hoffman attended along with a famous pole dancer, Jungle Jim, John Cleese, Edward Sissorhands, George Clooney, the Ghostbusters, a Warrior Woman and many more (some more recognisable than others).

Jaimie and Anna, who were at Hurd Point at the time of the party, also joined in as characters from the Wizard of Oz (we think). See photos below.



Summer colours of Macquarie Island

Moments in Time

Excerpts from old station logs

Wednesday 9th December, 1964

5:30am rise Fine with mist/light rain west winds. Unloading continues, building team worked until 11:30pm on Met office now to ‘safe stage’, foundations for hospital continued by Allen, Twigg, King assisted by stair and OIC digging for aerial mast stays.

Berrigan with Walkem on indoctrination of Rustons.  Field parties Ashton, Gill, Jenkins plus two scouts to plateau for day trip on grass collection likewise Caine and Thomas with two scouts to plateau for biological collection. OIC discussed reports with Director during PM. Pictures for those still awake in mess after dinner. Weather still very favourable for changeover. Bed 9:30pm.

Monday 10th December, 1973

A perfect day I’d say. Practically no wind for most of the day. Mostly 100% blue sky, a little cloud at times, sea calm. A day that makes Macquarie Island truly the ‘Jewel of the South Pacific’.

Balloon building roof installed now on high part of building. Wiring proceeding well but some question re the flood lights — cable to Young.

Irynej out still on rabbit job. Couldn’t raise him on the sked — some trouble with transceiver. ‘Ham radio’ repaired, lined up and tried successfully in evening to Melbourne.

Tasmania sent 13 notices for Island tracks etc requested permission to install as they are nioce notices and would blend with surroundings. Party has settled in well now. Thoughts turning to going walkabout which is a good sign. Slight seismic disturbance today. Cable news of a quake in mid-pacific could have been the occurrence we recorded.

11th December 1976

Council work day. All pare men (and women) except the builders hard at work rat proofing the ‘supermarket’ food store. The end double skins were removed and holes cemented up. Afternoon fire session. We, under the guidance of the Fire Chief Ian discharged all the foam extinguishers and recharged them. Evening fine at first Bruce doing star shots until 1:30am when the cloud obscured the sky once again (11 shots taken).

Saturday 13th April, 1996

There is another satellite communication ellie ashore, between Lusi and Hurd, but the weather and sea whole OK today look better for tomorrow for a boat trip. So today was more of the same in the mess and elsewhere, with Saturday duties including repair of old wood pallets (they wouldn’t send any new ones!) and a stocktake of Fort Knox. A quiet evening after the big one last night. Ingrid prepared seafood, but to accompany it we just had a little cider and homebrew — and even a couple of bottles of non-alcoholic grape juice — and nobody wanted anything more!