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A Scottish charity and committed polar cruise ship operator join forces to boost vital conservation efforts on the island of South Georgia

July, 2024

A Scottish charity and committed polar cruise ship operator join forces to boost vital conservation efforts on the island of South Georgia

A new partnership between Dundee-based charity the South Georgia Heritage Trust and Poseidon Expeditions will enable those on a trip of a lifetime to Antarctica to help fund vital wildlife and cultural conservation on the island of South Georgia.

Since its founding in 1999, Poseidon Expeditions has taken thousands of intrepid travellers to the most remote corners on earth. Now, Poseidon Expeditions will donate £100 to the South Georgia Heritage Trust every time a new passenger books a cruise featuring South Georgia, which will help fund SGHT’s ongoing conservation work on the island.

The sub-Antarctic island of South Georgia is famed for its iconic wildlife, with scenes of humpback whales, southern elephant seals, seabirds and vast colonies of king penguins often featuring in landmark series such as the BBC’s Frozen Planet, Blue Planet and Planet Earth. It is also synonymous with world-famous explorer Sir Ernest Shackleton, who died on South Georgia in 1922 and is buried in Grytviken Cemetery.

The South Georgia Heritage Trust (SGHT) has been working to conserve South Georgia’s wildlife, landscape and cultural heritage since 2005. The charity delivered the world’s largest rodent eradication project, which against all odds successfully removed invasive rats and mice (accidentally introduced by whalers 200 years ago) which were predating the eggs and chicks of millions of native birds and had almost pushed one species, the South Georgia pipit, to extinction. Since the island was declared rodent-free in May 2018, SGHT has been supporting ongoing efforts by the Government of South Georgia & the South Sandwich Islands to make sure that South Georgia’s 10-15,000 annual visitors don’t inadvertently undo this amazing feat and that South Georgia remains an ecosystem in recovery.

Luke Smith, Director of Development at the South Georgia Heritage Trust said:

“We’ve had unprecedented success in removing the invasive rodents that were decimating South Georgia’s native bird populations, but as a small charity we need as much support as possible for our work to continue and grow. Donations from Poseidon Expeditions will enable us to further protect and preserve the island’s special environment and wildlife for future generations through conservation work.

“This support will also contribute towards scientific research, help run the South Georgia Museum, and deliver major cultural projects on or related to the island, such as saving Shackleton’s heritage at Stromness and a major art installation which will act as a whale memorial at Grytviken. We are extremely grateful for Poseidon Expeditions’ generosity, and we are very much looking forward to working together for the benefit of South Georgia, and all its beauty.”

The company’s chief executive officer, Angelica Vorea, said:

“Poseidon Expeditions has been committed to safe and environmentally responsible exploration of the polar regions since 1999. We are privileged to bring visitors from all over the world to encounter the wonders of South Georgia and the wider Antarctic region. We know how much our guests value the opportunities they have to experience such sights and we are delighted to have teamed up with SGHT in this way so that our company can contribute to their important mission.”

The small British Overseas Territory of South Georgia lies 1,500km east of the Falkland Islands, and is home to the South Georgia Museum which SGHT runs on behalf of the Government of South Georgia & the South Sandwich Islands.

To find out more about the work of SGHT and its ongoing work to protect the wildlife, landscape and cultural heritage of South Georgia visit: www.sght.org, and to find out more about Poseidon Expeditions visit www.poseidonexpeditions.com

About the South Georgia Heritage Trust (SGHT)

About the South Georgia Museum

About Poseidon Expeditions

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