No Whales. No Seals. Just More Rain…

Post by Jake Levenson, Global Program Officer for Whales, IFAW Headquarters Office

Well the rain is really coming down now. 

What started as a few intermittent sprinkles has now matured into a full-on downpour. We've had no sun for the past couple of days, and now the generator fuel is running low. We are all hunkered down in the light keeper's hut, waiting for the weather to turn.

I'm no longer thrilled with this wind. A few hours ago we were enjoying a pleasant southerly breeze. Now, it's an all-out gale. My plans for the kite-cam will have to wait, possibly until next year. We have a sheet of plastic stretched across the broken window in our room, and it's whipping around in the wind so hard that I'm amazed it hasn't blown away yet (and us with it). But, it's staying put, and is actually working better at keeping us dry than the leaky roof.

Cardboard, plastic and a bit of luck help keep the rain outside:

And our plastic-wrapped window:

We've used all the juice in our laptop batteries (except mine, obviously), so data analysis is done for the day. Instead, we wait out the storm, reading books by headlamp and debating the future of the Western Pacific gray whale. Then, our headlamp batteries give out, and we're left in eerie silence.

But we're not left without entertainment. While the rest of us had sitting around the table, talking and reading, Vitaly had been quietly sitting in the corner with some modeling clay. We hadn't paid much attention until he reached for the camcorder, the one piece of equipment that still had a partially-charged battery. Turns out this quiet scientist has a knack for sculpting. Here's the result of his efforts. I'll try to upload the video later, but these photographs will have to do for now.



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