Falkland Islands


We spent three days in the Falkland Islands (called the Malvinas Islands by the Argentinians). The Falkland archipelago consists of two primary islands (West and East Falklands) and countless small islands. We visited several of these.

New Island

Our first landing in the Falklands was on New Island. The weather was beautiful — very little wind and a mix of clouds and blue skies. After landing on the beach, we hiked for about a mile to the other side of the island to a cliff-side colony of black-browed albatross, rockhopper penguins and imperial shags (cormorants). On the hike, we also saw some geese and megellanic penguins. We shot for over ten hours!

The highlight for me was spending time observing the albatross. They’re incredibly majestic birds, and we were able to see them at relatively close proximity (15 ft).

West Point Island & Grave Cove

On our second day in the Falklands, we made two landings. The first was at West Point Island. We hiked about two miles to the west side of the island to reach an albatross colony next to large grass tussocks. We saw continual takeoffs and landings.

In the afternoon, the weather had turned, and we faced wind and rain. We stopped at Grave Cove, so named after several 19th-century whalers’ graves on the beach. There we saw a large rookerie of gentoo penguins.


Saunders Island

Saunders Island is a sheep farm owned by the Pole-Evans family. It features a narrow neck that’s barely above sea level and covered by white sand. There we saw several gentoo colonies. On the cliffs to the east were albatross, cormorants and rockhoppers.

To the left is a photo of me (taken by my friend Vincent Ho) on New Island. In this shot, I was taking one of my favorite photos of the trip (the one with the caption “Albatross nest along a cove” in the gallery below).

Photos on this page were taken with a Canon 5D Mark II or Canon 1D Mark IV camera. High-res versions of the photos can be found here.

Copyright © 2011 Eric Traut