Today I am going out of my comfort zone to report on a recent project in the South Georgia Islands. If you have ever wanted to spend the day in the life of a penguin, you may have already seen this research done by the Zoological Society of London on Sub-Antarctic South Georgia Island.
They placed a number of cameras around the Sub-Antarctic region and in Antarctica with hopes to gain an insight into the breeding cycle of penguins that would usually not be seen by humans. The lower latitudes experience extreme weather patterns and during harsh winter months, it is often impossible for scientists to stay on the islands to conduct research.
South Georgia is a British overseas territory best known for being one of the locations of the Falklands War. Captain James Cook was the first to land on the island in 1775 and claimed it in the name of the British Empire, despite it having been discovered on numerous occasions prior to his visit.
Despite its interesting history, it remains a haven for wildlife and the perfect location for researchers to study its main inhabitants, the king penguins. Cameras on South Georgia Island were weighed down with rocks over-looking king penguin colonies. They took several photos a day, and compiled them to make a time-lapse of a typical winter on the islands.
Penguin lover or not, a recent discovery of new emperor penguin colonies in Antarctica made headlines and are another example of how technology can improve our ability to collect data on species in remote areas.