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Gourdin Island


63° 12′ S


57° 18′ W


Gourdin is the largest in a group of islands lying 1 mile off Prime Head, on the north-east end of the Antarctic Peninsula. Its steep sides are covered with penguin rookeries. The island is one of 6 locations in the Antarctic Peninsula where all three Pygoscelid penguins breed contiguously.

What We’ll See


The Island was discovered by Captain Jules Dumont Durville during his Antarctic expedition of 1837-1840. He named it after Ensign Jean Gourdin, of Astrolabe, one of the expedition’s two ships.



Confirmed breeders: Adélie penguin (Pygoscelis adeliae), Chinstrap penguin (Pygoscelis antarctica), gentoo penguin (Pygoscelis papua), kelp gull (Larus dominicanus), brown skua (Stercorarius sp.) snowy sheathbill (Paloma antarctica).


Weddell seal (Leptonychotes weddellii) and Antarctic fur seal (Arctocephalus gazella) haul out. Leopard seal (Hydrurga leptonyx) often hunt offshore.

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