“Hey! There she is!” my friend cried, pointing toward the peregrine falcon as it landed with its prey on a seaside cliff, about six meters beneath me. As bluish-green waves crashed below, the massive bird began tearing apart an invasive dove. To capture the action, I carefully maneuvered into place using balancing techniques that I learned during my years as a rock climber. With my camera and telephoto lens in hand, I leaned over the steep drop-off. Neither of my two photographer friends dared to try for the image, but I found pleasure in the moment.
I’ve been watching this specific individual for a few years now. Its beauty, speed, power, and grace are a constant source of awe along this parcel of Northern California, where it chooses to build its nest year after year. Though the Pacific coastline from Alaska to Mexico is a vital flyway, the bird will stay in the area after the nesting season is over to make sure no other peregrine falcons claim its prime coastal territory.
A huge Antarctic Lake disappeared over the course of just three days in June 2019 after the ice shelf beneath the lake collapsed, reports Ben Turner for Live Science. The fractured ice shelf sent an estimated 21 to 26 billion cubic feet of water into the ocean.
Researchers spotted the vanishing lake while poring over satellite imagery of the region and published their analysis of the event last week in the journal Geophysical Research Letters.
Roland Warner, a glaciologist at the University of Tasmania and lead author of the study, tells Becky Ferreira of Vice that in January 2020 he was monitoring the destruction wrought by last year’s catastrophic wildfires in Australia using satellite imagery when he decided to take a peek farther south.
“Looking down to Antarctica, for a break from watching the destruction, I noticed a spell of several clear days on Amery Ice Shelf and decided to see how the summer surface melt season was progressing,” he tells Vice via email. “The collapsed surface feature caught my eye.”