Four women have been selected to run the post office in Antarctica and count penguins

Four women have been selected for an uncommon job in Antarctica – operating the world’s most southerly post office and present store — and counting penguins.

Port Lockroy, the post office which additionally serves as a museum, has been closed since the COVID-19 pandemic started. In preparation of re-opening Port Lockroy, the U.Okay. Antarctic Heritage Trust posted 4 job positions: a base chief, postmaster, store supervisor and wildlife monitor, the belief stated in a press launch.

They acquired 4,000 functions, however 4 women had been chosen to journey 9,000 miles to do the job: Clare Ballantyne, Mairi Hilton, Natalie Corbett and Lucy Bruzzone. Vicky Inglis, who had beforehand labored there, will return for 10 weeks as the crew’s chief to assist get them settled.

The crew will work for 5 months at Goudier Island in the Antarctic Peninsula, abandoning all “home comforts,” the belief stated.

Penguins around old British base of Port Lockroy
Penguins round the previous British base of Port Lockroy, Goudier Island, Antarctic Peninsula, Antarctica. 

DeAgostini/Getty Images

They will not have operating water or a flushing bathroom, and will cope with sub-zero temperatures. They will stay in virtually whole daylight, as the continent has about six months of daylight throughout its summer time months – October to February – and six months of darkness in their winter months, March to September. 

The 4 will share their space with a colony of gentoo penguins, which they are going to be in cost of counting as a part of the trusts’ effort to monitor and defend the birds. The belief’s position is to protect British Antarctic Heritage and monitor the impression of wildlife. The belief cares for the island’s buildings and property, information the quantity of ships and guests and after all, runs the most southerly post office and present store.

The women will start coaching this month, together with classes from a “penguinologist,” and may even get distant first assist coaching, UKAHT stated. They will embark on their mission in early November and will keep in Antarctica till March 2023.

Clare Ballantyne, Mairi Hilton, Natalie Corbett and Lucy Bruzzone. Vicky Inglis, who labored there earlier than, will return for 10 weeks as the crew’s chief to assist get them settled.


Clare Ballantyne has been named postmaster. She might be in cost of coping with roughly 80,000 postcards mailed from Port Lockroy every year. She just lately earned a grasp’s diploma in earth sciences and labored as a cleaner and gross sales assistant whereas at Oxford University. 

“I’m most looking forward to stepping onto Goudier Island and taking in the cacophony and pungent smell of the penguins, the backdrop of the glaciers and Fief mountains – and being able to call it home for the next few months,” she stated.

Mairi Hilton is wildlife monitor. She might be in cost of counting the penguin inhabitants and maintaining a tally of new hatchlings and nests. Hilton just lately earned a Ph.D. in conservation biology in Australia. She has been on wildlife analysis expeditions in the Peruvian Amazon and Trinidad and Tobago. 

Natalie Corbett might be store supervisor. She will take care of the present store positioned at the finish of the world, which might obtain up to 18,000 guests throughout the season. She has a background in retail and began her personal business, creating handcrafted pet equipment impressed by her three rescue canine.

Corbett obtained married in June, however will have to go away her husband behind. She stated she is treating this like a “solo honeymoon.” 

Lucy Bruzzone is the base chief. She will handle the crew, coordinate all ship visits and work with expedition leaders. She beforehand accomplished a three-month Arctic expedition in Svalbard – the space between Norway and the North Pole.

Back to top button