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Penguins of the Falkland Islands
  
 
mitesh
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p.1 #1 · p.1 #1 · Penguins of the Falkland Islands


Congratulations to mitesh for winning Feature Thread of the Week with 17 votes - View Previous Winners


I have had some time to go through more of the images I came back with from the Falklands. I also wanted to share a couple of cell phone videos I took that might help give a feel for what it was like to be there. Finally, I had quite a few members ask about logistics, so Iíll share a few learnings from my trip.

Enjoy .

King Penguins in love
Canon 1DX, 100-400 II



Magellenic Penguin chick in burrow
Canon 1DX, 100-400 II




Gentoo Penguin in sandstorm
Canon 1DX, 100-400 II




Gentoo Penguin chicks in nest
Canon 1DX, 100-400 II




Falkland Skua with Rockhopper Penguin chick
Canon 1DX, 100-400 II




Gentoo Penguin surfing
Canon 1DX, 100-400 II




Gentoo Penguin emerges from the surf
Canon 1DX, 100-400 II




Magellenic Penguin at sundown
Canon 1DX, 100-400 II




King Penguin on the beach
Canon 1DX, 100-400 II




Gentoo Penguin chick close up
Canon 1DX, 100-400 II




Magellenic Penguins at sunset
Canon 1DX, 100-400 II




Feb 25, 2017 at 01:07 AM
mitesh
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p.1 #2 · p.1 #2 · Penguins of the Falkland Islands


Videos:


Landing at Saunders Neck

Windy day on Saunders Neck

King Penguins fighting

Rockhopper Penguins and Imperial Shags

Small Black-browed Albatross Colony at Saunders Neck

_________________________________________

Itinerary


Fly to Stanley, Falkland Islands via Santiago and Punta Arenas, Chile. Flights within Falklands via FIGAS. Total luggage allowance for FIGAS flights is 45 lbs.

6 nights camping at Saunders Neck, 6 nights camping at Volunteer Point.


Equipment


Camping



  1. Outdoor Research Alpine Bivy
  2. Nemo Nocturne 30 sleeping bag
  3. Cocoon microfiber mummy liner
  4. Therm-a-rest Trail Pro Mattress
  5. Ground sheet
  6. Outdoor Research Backcountry Organizer #2 and toiletries
  7. MSR Dromedary Bag 10L
  8. Platypus 2L water bladder
  9. Water purification tablets
  10. Sea to Summit Wilderness Wipes
  11. Campsuds
  12. Spork
  13. Delorme inReach Explorer Satelllite Messenger



Camera gear



  1. 2 X Canon EOS 1D-X camera bodies plus charger and two spare batteries
  2. Canon EF 16-35/4L IS
  3. Canon EF 100-400/4-5.6L IS II
  4. CF cards (8 X 64GB, 8 X 128GB)
  5. Lens cleaning supplies (blower, brush, pre-moistened wipes)
  6. Rain covers



All camping gear fit in an REI duffle bag and was checked in, while all camera gear fit in a Gregory Targhee 45 backpack and was carried on.


Camping Experience


It is extremely windy in the Falklands, and the blowing sand and wet surroundings can be unforgiving on your gear. Try to keep things as covered as possible. A simple rain cover like the Storm Jacket covers I used won't keep the sand out. You might consider taking a roll of plastic food wrap and use that to wrap your camera bodies and lenses. That will allow you to see the screen and use the buttons while still providing a barrier to keep the sand and water out.

The camp site at Saunders Island is on the side of a mountain, under a large rock formation affectionately known as the "Swiss Hotel":





A dry toilet is nearby, but drinking water must be filled at the porta-cabin (about 1 mile away). Electricity to charge batteries is available in the generator shed at the porta-cabin. There is also an emergency radio there, but I highly recommend taking a satellite communication device of your own for emergencies. You can either buy food in Stanley, where there is much more selection, and fly it in (counts against your weight allowance on FIGAS), or you can purchase basic food items at the "store" at Saunders Settlement. It is basically a large pantry with canned foods, dry pasta, instant soups, and other generally non-perishable items. I am a vegetarian, but I understand it may be possible to get fresh meat from the Settlement.


Camping at Volunteer Point is much easier by comparison. There is a small corrugated metal wind barrier near the visitor rest area that serves as the campground. You may also be able to get permission to sleep inside the visitor rest area, but you will have to clear out early before the day tours arrive. There are dry chemical toilets next to the rest area. There is no drinking water, food, or any other supplies available at Volunteer Point, so you have to purchase everything in Stanley and bring it with you. You can charge batteries in the shed at Volunteer House.


Edited on Feb 25, 2017 at 03:17 AM · View previous versions


Feb 25, 2017 at 01:08 AM
eyelaser
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p.1 #3 · p.1 #3 · Penguins of the Falkland Islands


If these penguins had flight feathers they would soar....an outstanding series filled with emotion...what you captured in these photos was so much more than just beautiful images but the spirit within. You connected with these creatures in a way that is hard to describe...as if you were given the privilege of a intimate and private look into their lives which played out in front of you. They are voyeuristic in nature...very sensual but at the same time respectful.
Eric



Feb 25, 2017 at 01:35 AM
mikedec
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p.1 #4 · p.1 #4 · Penguins of the Falkland Islands


Beautiful images.


Feb 25, 2017 at 01:37 AM
morris
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p.1 #5 · p.1 #5 · Penguins of the Falkland Islands


These are a delight to view Mitesh. Not only have you captured some very special interaction, some are very creative compositions.

Morris



Feb 25, 2017 at 02:10 AM
scottst
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p.1 #6 · p.1 #6 · Penguins of the Falkland Islands


wow! Some amazing shots there and looks like an amazing trip.


Feb 25, 2017 at 02:15 AM
aboutthelight
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p.1 #7 · p.1 #7 · Penguins of the Falkland Islands


Truly outstanding! Tender and beautiful and harsh as well. Everything is top notch and shows the beauty of these birds and where they live. Also shows the emotion of what it must have been like to experience this.


Feb 25, 2017 at 04:03 AM
surfnron
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p.1 #8 · p.1 #8 · Penguins of the Falkland Islands


Great shots and informative videos Mitesh. The fighting penguins remind me of the Three Stooges. ~ Ron


Feb 25, 2017 at 04:05 AM
kwilliam8
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p.1 #9 · p.1 #9 · Penguins of the Falkland Islands


Wonderful and beautiful images! What a treat to visit such a location, and have the skills to take advantage of it. Images 1, 3, 4, 9, and 10 stand out to me, although all are great! I love your processing on image 3. Thanks for sharing these.
Keith W.



Feb 25, 2017 at 05:20 AM
DonGut
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p.1 #10 · p.1 #10 · Penguins of the Falkland Islands


Great stuff and always makes me want to go back and try for the "shots that got away".
Good info for the Falklands but there are alternatives to camping and certainly some other excellent destinations.
Don



Feb 25, 2017 at 05:22 AM
 

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kmunroe
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p.1 #11 · p.1 #11 · Penguins of the Falkland Islands


very nice set Mitesh


Feb 25, 2017 at 09:50 AM
arbitrage
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p.1 #12 · p.1 #12 · Penguins of the Falkland Islands


Super images Mitesh...I enjoyed all of them. Thanks for sharing all the juicy details of the logistics and planning. The Falklands is a great place to knock off a lot of penguin species without paying the mega bucks to go on a boat to the peninsula. Also it looks like you have a lot more control over what and when you shoot compared to the boat trips.

You did forget to add one thing to the logistics though....how does one manage to book a seat on the plane next to the world's most famous bird photographer?

TFS
Geoff



Feb 25, 2017 at 01:29 PM
kdacharya
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p.1 #13 · p.1 #13 · Penguins of the Falkland Islands


nicely done, miteshbhai, loved the mood and the interaction with the subject. what a trip it must have been, with all the harsh conditions that are not even affecting your photography one bit.
Bravo.



Feb 25, 2017 at 04:50 PM
maneyo
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p.1 #14 · p.1 #14 · Penguins of the Falkland Islands


just amazing... 1st one is and the sundown is just superb... thanks for sharing


Feb 25, 2017 at 04:53 PM
birdied
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p.1 #15 · p.1 #15 · Penguins of the Falkland Islands


Stunning images Mitesh !!!

Birdie



Feb 25, 2017 at 05:04 PM
dclark
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p.1 #16 · p.1 #16 · Penguins of the Falkland Islands


Terrific set of images! The videos were interesting too. It looked like the shooting conditions were not ideal with all the wind.
Thanks for posting the images and sharing the information on your camping trip.

Dave



Feb 25, 2017 at 05:47 PM
George Welch
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p.1 #17 · p.1 #17 · Penguins of the Falkland Islands


Some inspirational photography there, Mitesh. Doesn't get much better than that.



Feb 25, 2017 at 05:49 PM
louie champan
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p.1 #18 · p.1 #18 · Penguins of the Falkland Islands


A stunning series with very informative videos, thanks for sharing such a superb experience..


Feb 25, 2017 at 09:16 PM
suteetat
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p.1 #19 · p.1 #19 · Penguins of the Falkland Islands


Beautiful. Really love the Falklands and will need to get back there again somehow.


Feb 25, 2017 at 11:56 PM
Warkari
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p.1 #20 · p.1 #20 · Penguins of the Falkland Islands



These are absolutely stunning, Mitesh!! And excellent commentary. Fabulous!!

- Amit



Feb 26, 2017 at 01:25 AM
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