Arrival Húsavíkposted on June 23, 2020
Following the strenuous yet rewarding crossing from Faroe Islands, Husavik was a bit of Shangri-La for the crew. A sheltered harbor and a cozy town with a spa resort, restaurants, stores and other comforts society has to offer. We would spend a couple of days indulging and recovering, getting ready for the work the lay ahead. Húsavík was to be our base of operations for the following 4 weeks. It was the ideal location for the Arctic Whale project, as the Skjálfandi bay where the Húsavík is located, holds numerous whale species.
Furthermore, the bay provides shelter, which facilitates whale observations and scientific work. The town is also home to The University of Iceland’s Research Centre, which we proudly partnered with for the project. It is lead by Dr. Marianne Rasmussen who joined us in Faroe Islands on our scouting mission for white sided dolphins.
In addition to the research center, there are numerous whale scientists, students and biologists from across the world that all do their part in unraveling the mysteries of the arctic whales. We partnered with the Whale Wise team, that co-founded by Tom Grove and Alyssa Stoller. The two lead an ambitious team of whale conservationists, that amongst others use drones collecting blow samples from whales as an assessment tool.
It was also time for a crew change. Tord flew back to Northern Norway, Fabrice took off to Bahamas to film dolphins and Hugh would eventually return to London for journalistic work, which included telling the story of the Arctic whale project. Diane and I would soon be joined by photographer Connor McDonell and Sandra who had been preoccupied with the equally important onshore communication of the Arctic Whale project. More on this in the next blog post!
Featured image: Our first blue whale encounter. Photo by Tom Grove.