We have now said goodbye to the towering cliffs and vast glaciers of the Balleny Islands and have been heading southeast tracking blue whales by following their low frequency calls. Yesterday we broke into the polynya that is the Ross Sea. The fantastic weather is following us - making it easy to appreciate this surreal part of the world.
It’s now day 8 at sea and day 3 at the Balleny Islands. The Balleny Islands are a group of volcanic Antarctic Islands situated at 67 degrees south. They are mostly barren rock, with steep cliff faces and covered by massive glaciers, but they are also home to some incredible marine wildlife!
It’s day three at sea and things are all humming along nicely. We’ve just passed 50 degrees south and any faint sighting of the mainland is long gone. The next time we will see land will probably be the Balleny Islands in a couple of days.
National Institute of Water and Atmospheric Research (NIWA), Antarctica New Zealand and the Australian Antarctic Division are undertaking a six-week research initiative in the Southern Ocean on areas of importance to humpback and blue whales and Antarctic toothfish.
A video has been produced to show how NIWA and a range of partners are collaborating to understand global ocean acidification and how increasing ocean acidity is affecting shellfish and the aquaculture industry.