Since 2011, I have been spending November to April each year working for the British Antarctic Survey (BAS) on Signy Island in the South Orkney Islands, Antarctica. I work as a Zoological Field Assistant on the penguin and seal long-term monitoring programme. Before this, I spent 2.5 years on the sub-Antarctic island of Bird Island, South Georgia, in the South Atlantic.

This blog gives readers an insight into my day-to-day life in the Antarctic, from my first trip south in 2008 to the present day.

Monday, 10 April 2017


I am now back in the UK and thought I'd conclude my blog for the season with a couple of pictures.  However, having looked through my pictures from the last couple of weeks, I seem to have far too many nice ones, so it looks like there will be two final blog posts instead of one.  Here is the first.  

The final two weeks at Signy gave us some lovely weather.  Each day had new interesting clouds and patterns...

Each morning had a sunrise...

Each evening the sky turned pink as the sun set...

Clear skies left behind a starry night.  It is only at the very end of the season when the nights really start to draw in that we get to see the stars.  And then, only when its clear, which is pretty unusual!  Below you can see Orion.  I like Orion as it is the only constellation that I have spotted that I recognise both in the Northern and the Southern Hemisphere (although there must be more than this one).  At Signy, Orion is always low in the sky, and laying on his back.  You can see the three main stars of his belt in the picture below, but then you have to turn him upside down to see what is normally seen in the UK.

In the picture below, towards the centre right you can spot (not very clearly I know) an upside down kite shape.  This is the Southern Cross.  It can be used with the pair of brighter stars below and to the right of it to work out which direction is South.

Occasionally at Signy it snows what I consider to be "proper" snowflakes.  The kind you draw as a child but never really see.  It seems to be true, that they are all unique in shape.  It would also appear to be true that they are very hard to photograph, so please excuse the quality of these images.  The patterns seemed to show better in black and white.

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