A boat ride in Greenland nearly turned deadly for an Australian tourist and the boat’s crew.
Jens Møller, who recorded video of the incident, posted this description on YouTube on July 19:
A tourist from Australia came to my uncle and asked if she could get a ride to the glacier just north of Ilulissat, Greenland, so he asked me if I wanted to be his translator. I am from another town where glaciers are fairytales, I was as much of a tourist as the Australian tourist, so I decided to join the crew.
The beautiful scenery was amazing, but the nature doesn’t care about anyone. That day almost became our last day.”
OurAmazingPlanet spoke to Jens, who said he started recording the scene when he heard light cracking noises coming from the glacier. Those on the 18-foot boat thought they might see a small portion of the glacier break away into the sea. They were half right; the ice fell, but it wasn’t a small amount.
The ice-fall generated waves so strong they nearly capsized the boat. Jens stopped recording and headed inside when he realized they were in danger, but the video he captured is pretty impressive. On the way back, OurAmazingPlanet reported, the boat’s engine struck a chunk of ice and was badly damaged. All things considered, they got off lightly.
The creature above is a majestic cormorant, a large bird that dives into the ocean to find food.
How far can it dive? Well, that’s the amazing part.
In the video below, you’ll see a majestic cormorant that has been fitted with a videocamera by researchers in Punta Leon in Patagonia, Argentina. The scientists from the Wildlife Conservation Society and the National Research Council of Antarctica were tracking cormorants’ dietary habits.
What they found is that it isn’t easy to be a cormorant. The hunt for food can be long and arduous. This bird, in particular, dives 150 feet to the bottom of the sea and remains there, searching from side to side for something to eat, before finally grabbing a “snake-like swimmer,” according to Time magazine’s website. The whole hunt, from dive to surface, takes nearly two minutes.
Keep in mind, that’s a feathered bird hanging out on the ocean floor. It’s near the southern tip of South America, close to Antarctica. The water is frigid.
Life finds a way.
“Happy Feet” and “March of the Penguins” don’t seem so pleasant anymore.
A long-buried report by an Antarctic explorer has surfaced, painting penguins as sexual opportunists whose appetites can only be described as extreme.
George Levick, a surgeon and medical officer on Capt. Robert Falcon Scott’s 1910-1913 south polar expedition, penned a four-page pamphlet in 1915 relating his observations of Adelie penguins at Cape Adare. He was so scandalized by what he’d seen that he labeled the pamphlet “Not for Publication.”
It remained hidden for almost 100 years before researcher Douglas Russell recently discovered it at a British natural history museum. Levick’s notes have now been published in the Polar Record journal, according to Fox News.
Turns out our favorite tuxedo patterned flightless birds aren’t so civilized after all.
Levick watched male penguins gang up to abuse their female counterparts and commit necrophilia, among other things.
“I saw another act of astonishing depravity today,” he wrote in 1911. “A hen which had been in some way badly injured in the hindquarters was crawling painfully along on her belly. I was just wondering whether I ought to kill her or not, when a cock noticed her in passing, and went up to her. After a short inspection he deliberately raped her, she being quite unable to resist him.”
At another point, Fox reported, he wrote: “There seems to be no crime too low for these penguins.”
Of course, Levick was anthropomorphizing, taking the penguins to task for actions that would’ve been criminal in humans. Among the things that shocked him was seeing penguins having homosexual intercourse — something that is far from rare in the animal kingdom.
“Homosexual behaviors in animals are no longer cause for hiding data, or even a blush,” according to the Fox story. “Plenty of animals are out of the closet, so to speak, from dolphins and killer whales to bonobos and greylag geese. Some estimates put the number of animal species that practice same-sex coupling at 1,500.”
Here’s something a bit less rare than the Venus transit but unusual nonetheless.
It’s video of a large iceberg tipping over.
The video was posted to YouTube in March by a user called osibaruch.
“This Iceberg was ‘calved’ by Argentina’s Uppsala glacier,” osibaruch wrote. “While we were passing by it with a catamaran, the huge berg lost a part of itself (look at the right side sinking) and then flipped over with a huge roar. In the process of melting this happens all the time, but it is seldom that it is captured on video WHEN it happens.”