Black-browed albatross Thalassarche melanophrys in flight over the sea Saunders Island Falkland Islands
Gentoo penguin Pygoscelis papua nesting colony at sunrise Sea Lion Island Falkland Islands
Striated caracara Falcoboenus australis Falkland Islands
Vanilla daisy Leucheria suaveolens Saunders Island Falkland Islands
Commerson's dolphin Cephalorhynchus commersonii surfing the waves Saunders Island Falkland Islands

This scattering of over 700 islands in the South Atlantic came to everyone's attention when Argentinian forces invaded in 1982. The resulting conflict was fairly short-lived, but the episode lives long in peoples' memories.

What is less well known about the Falklands is how fabulous the archipelago is for wildlife.  There are huge colonies of Penguins (up to 5 species most years) and Imperial Shags while the majority of the World's Black-browed Albatrosses nest here.  There is even an endemic bird (Cobb's Wren) as well as a few endemic plant species. These include the Vanilla Daisy (below left) which, if you get close enough on an inevitable windy day, does have a lovely vanilla scent.

Mammals can include Orcas and Dolphins just offshore while Southern Elephant Seals line the beaches with males arguing over ownership of a harem.  There are plenty of raptors, skuas and smaller birds too.  It truly is an amazing place to visit and the wildlife is exceptionally approachable as some of the pictures on this page illustrate.

One of the most spectacular things we saw on the islands was some Circumzenithal Arcs (second picture right) which happened one evening just before dinner.  A friend and I were late leaving Elephant Corner on Sea Lion Island, I looked up and saw the rainbow-like arcs.  We just had time to grab a few images before rushing back to the lodge to eat. Nobody else on the island actually saw this rare phenomenon!

If you would like to book this or any other of my talks, please telephone me or send me an email.  Sending an email can be done via my 'contact me' page.

Falkland grass wren Cistothorus platensis falklandicus singing from Diddle-dee Empetrum rubrum Sea Lion Island Falkland Islands November 2015
Circumzenithal arc and sun dogs at sunset over Sea Lion Island Falkland Islands November 2015
King penguin Aptenodytes patagonicus adults about to go out to feed Volunteer Point East Falkland Falkland Islands
Southern elephant seal Mirounga leonina two males fighting Falkland Islands