Gary the Dieso gives his impression of his 12 months on Macca

A year on an island in the middle of the Southern Ocean

From the deck of the Nuyina my first impressions was what an amazing island I have come to work and play on. We sailed through the fog to be greeted by waterfalls and penguin sanctuaries on this dot in the Southern Ocean.

Coming ashore we were welcomed by elephant seals and gentoo penguins as we invaded their home. My favourite places on the island would be out in the field huts and nuggets royal penguin colony .

Green Gorge hut is the top of my list, a rustic comfortable hut right on the beach overlooking a king penguin colony. The kings would line up along the beach and scuttle off on approach only to be overcome by curiosity which forces them to come back and investigate.

While sitting quietly on the beach taking photos, elephant seal pups caterpillar their way to you and peer at you with their gargantuan eyes.

Nuggets Point has a large royal and king penguin colony which I was lucky enough to visit several times- a great spot with lots of history. It has the digestors that was used to melt down seals and penguins for their oil. The royals are so funny - their mission is to trapes up the creek to the overland track then turn around and come back down their freeway .

The royal’s are so inquisitive they will come and chew on your boots or poles and camera gear, it must be salubrious, and then hop away off to go fishing. They don’t seem to fear us and are very entertaining. Even the birds eye you off as if you’re their next meal.

Having been here a year now and having met and worked with a great bunch of people, I will miss our island zoo. Probably not the weather though - it has to be the windiest place on earth, looking forward to going home.