These Adelies have a problem,
they went out fishing at high tide and now.
some hours later have returned. In the meantime
the tide has gone out. Still attached to the land
is the "ice-foot" an ice step left behind
as the tide rises and falls in the winter months
to which the floating sea ice is loosely attached.
When the sea ice breaks out, the ice-foot is left
behind for a period of days to weeks before rising
temperatures and the waves cause this to break off
So what was a short
hop down for the penguins is now a step too high
for them. I spent a couple of hours one afternoon
watching and following an ever increasing number
of penguins as they came back from their fishing
trip. They wandered up and down the shore-line trying
to find somewhere to get up, but to no avail. Eventually,
the tide came back in and so they floated back up
to the right level and were able to get back to
their nests. The ice-foot broke off completely a
few days later in a mild storm.
Photo; © Paul
Ward - Pentax equipment, 100mm lens, 35mm film,
This picture may not be copied or used
in any manner without prior written permission.