Brigadoon - An Occasional Corner on the Internet
Designed by Mark Little
South America January to April 2017
Gypsy Cove, Falkland Islands
About 6 - 7 km from the Port Stanley is Gypsy Cove which was quite near to where the Crown Princess anchored outside of the bay making up the port. It is part of the Cape Pembroke Peninsula National Nature Reserve. The cove is a protected sandy beach where Magellan Penguins. Mark was especially interested in the Penguins, because the Magellanic Penguins were one of the breeds that he had not seen before, having seen the penguins along the southern coastline of Australia, on Macquarie Island and around Casey Base, Antarctica.
Although Mark was primarily interested in the penguins, one of the first birds that he saw was geese - he believes that they were Upland Geese. From what was said, Upland Geese are considered a pest. They are also considered a good alternative to mutton, and their eggs are enjoyed by many locals.
There were, however quite a few penguins around the area. There were small groups of birds just sitting on the sandy beach in the cover and in burrows scattered around the hillside. On face value, it would appear that the 500+ tourists that can visit the area on a single day have not had a serious impact on their nesting, as Mark and Alexa saw one nest that just off the edge of the boardwalk around the area.
As can be seen from the down on the penguin below, not all of the birds were adults, but the juveniles were losing the last of their down. It was rather deceptive as to the number of penguin in the area, as there weren't many birds on the beach or visible on the hill sides, but there was a steady stream of birds going to and from the nesting areas on the hills.
There were other birds in the area that looked like ducks, finches and cormorants, but Mark and Alexa are not "twitchers" (avid bird watchers), so they really had no idea what actual species theses birds were.
Still, that did not really matter as it was nice to watch them in their habitat as they wandered around the headland forming an arc around the cove.