Jan Mayen: Northern Fulmars

Jan Mayen hosts some of the world’s largest colonies of northern fulmar, an Arctic bird that is a relative to albatrosses. Outside of breeding months, northern fulmars are pelagic, meaning they live entirely at sea, feeding in fish by diving to several meters in search of fish, squid, shrimp, and alike. Northern fulmars are magnificent in flight, often following ships, and can get speeds up to 47 kph. There are about 30 mln of them worldwide around the Arctic, and the birds live up to 40 years. At Jan Mayen, they surrounded the ship when at anchor and followed us for a long time as we navigated past the volcanic island – standing on the top deck you can get awesome shots of the birds approaching flying side by side, literally within a hand’s reach.