Patagonian Chile Travel Diary - p 3 of 4
Those on the beach seem to delight in swimming parties, cavorting around but seldom going out into the sound to fish, at least during late morning. The sight of these amiable creatures is bittersweet. As much fun as they are to watch, we're again reminded that we should be on the Falklands, enjoying Gentoo, Rockhopper, and even King Penguins that nest there. Oh, to have that morning back.
Meanwhile, some of the parents are still tending full-grown youngsters, just now shedding the last of their natal down. The young spend a lot of time flexing wings that will propel them through the water. We smile as we watch penguins clumsily waddle along on land. But once in the ocean they zip about with astonishing speed and agility. Water, not air or land, is their true element.
15 January 2008
But the birds are more my style. I wander off to find a Long-tailed Meadowlark, which acts just like our North American meadowlarks and is in fact in the same genus. Later I'm called back to join Duncan and los ovejeros for an alfresco lunch: boiled potatoes, bread, and of course broiled lamb.
The other common denizen of these fertile valleys is Black-faced Ibis, which soars about and never stops complaining about things. They are quite comfortable among the sheep but do not appear to use them to scare up insects and other prey.