Ongoing bird list for the year 2010. This is my first official year list! Pictures to follow soon. Only new year (and life) birds are listed as the months roll on. Exceptions to this rule are special birding excursions, where all species seen are listed – these are demarcated in a bullet list. Life birds marked with **…except those for the first half of the year (through to June, when I returned to the US) because those were all life birds!
January: (NZ and Antarctica)
New Zealand gull
South polar skua
The day finally came when we were slated to leave Antarctica, but in my case hopefully not for too long…the time flew by quickly, as it always does when in places so exotic, and I was wishing that we could have stayed longer. But the summer season was over, and we were on one of the last planes out. The passenger load on our flight was indeed packed to the limit – over 260 people. A lot of them were rambunctious Kiwi “Nav Chaps” who had been hired and flown into McMurdo for the sole purpose of helping to offload the cargo ship (American Tern) that had brought in all the winter supplies (which had in turn been able to come in only because of the channel carved into the ice by the Oden). This task usually took about 10 days, but they finished it in a week’s time. During their stay, no alcohol was sold or served throughout McMurdo…I think this fact alone attests to their notorious unruliness!