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Monday, February 24, 2014

Antarctica - Port Lockroy Research Center - One of the Few

Port Lockroy was established in 1944 by the British to report on enemy submarine activity. Ultimately there was none, though they did provide weather reports. The base continued as a scientific base after the war under the auspices of the British Antarctic Survey. Port Lockroy was closed in 1962 with the building falling into disrepair. The UK Antarctic Heritage Trust renovated the building in 1996 and the site was designated as a Historical Site and Monument 61 under the Antarctic Treaty. We feel very fortunate to visit any of the few research centers in Antarctica.

There is a limit on the number of people who can be ashore at one time on the island, so the group was divided into 2 groups. There is a gift shop (one of the few places to buy gifts) and a museum.

The Penguins have nested under the building, outside the building and all over the island and there ongoing research on the island, relating to the Gentoo Penguins. Interestingly, one of the research studies found that the baby Penguins are safer in this environment as the predator birds (Skuas) are less willing to prey upon the babies with humans in the area. So glad to see visits by humans are positive!

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