Part of what keeps Antarctica such a pure destination is visitors’ commitment to ensure no invasive or non-native species find their way to the continent. A few microbes, vascular plants, fungi, algae, birds, fish and even some mammals have found their way to the Antarctic and sub-Antarctic regions already, But any and all precautions explorers take before stepping foot on the White Continent help reduce the continued spread of such species.
NO HITCHING A RIDE
Non-native species can cling to articles of clothing like boots and shoes, Velcro®, fleece, pockets, and the hems of pants. They can also stay stuck to backpacks, walking sticks, camera tripods and bags, and other outdoor equipment.
To ensure you don’t bring any unwanted hitchhikers with you to the Seventh Continent, clean your clothes and equipment thoroughly before you leave home. Whatever you plan to bring with you to Antarctica, examine it completely and disinfect it before packing.
ALL ABOARD TO ANTARCTICA
Once you’re on your way on an exciting yacht-style expedition, take care to follow the procedures set forth aboard World Navigator and World Traveller to reduce the risk of spreading non-native species. This is especially important as you sail from one region to the next, as it’s easy to accidentally introduce a new species from one landing to another. Make sure to thoroughly decontaminate your clothing and footwear as instructed.
On shore, careful where you step. If you encounter organic matter and notice it gets on your clothes or shoes, clean it off before leaving the site and heading to the next. Also, when you see what you suspect is a non- native species, report it to your guides to help them keep track and record the information.
RESPECT AND PROTECT
THE WILDLIFE AND ENVIRONMENT
The many animals seen across Antarctica make it an unforgettable destination. It’s important that you only take memories with you and leave as few footprints as possible behind.
FOLLOW THESE TIPS TO MAKE SURE YOU STAY
SAFE AND KEEP THE ANIMALS SAFE AS WELL:
REMAIN AT LEAST 15 FEET AWAY FROM ANIMALS AND WATCH THEIR BEHAVIOR
FOR SIGNS OF DISTURBANCE. IF THEY APPEARED BOTHERED BY YOUR PRESENCE,
BACK AWAY AND RETREAT TO SAFETY.
KEEP NOISE TO A MINIMUM SO AS NOT TO STARTLE OR DISTURB THE WILDLIFE.
WALK SLOW AND PAUSE WITH AMPLE SPACE WHEN NECESSARY, TO LET ANIMALS
PASS AS THEY NEED.
REMAIN AWARE OF YOUR POSITION IN RELATION TO YOUR FELLOW EXPLORERS.
MAKE SURE TO LEAVE OPEN SPACES SO THAT THE WILDLIFE IS NOT SURROUNDED
AND ALWAYS HAS A WAY TO MAKE IT TO THE OCEAN.
LISTEN TO YOUR GUIDES AT ALL TIMES AND HEED THEIR INSTRUCTIONS.
MAKE SURE NOT TO FEED, TOUCH, OR HANDLE ANIMALS, ESPECIALLY WHEN
PHOTOGRAPHING THEM, SO AS NOT TO ALTER THEIR BEHAVIOR. BE EXTRA
CAREFUL IF THEY ARE MOLTING OR BREEDING.
TRY NOT TO DAMAGE PLANTS BY TREADING OVER THEM.
BECOME FAMILIAR WITH PROTECTED AREAS TO KNOW THEIR LIMITATIONS SO YOU
AVOID STEPPING WITHIN THEIR BOUNDS. IN SOME CASES YOU MAY BE ALLOWED
TO STEP INTO DESIGNATED HISTORIC SITES WITH SPECIAL RESTRICTIONS.
TO HELP KEEP ANTARCTICA UNSPOILED, TAKE ANY LITTER OR GARBAGE WITH
YOU BACK TO THE SHIP OR LEAVE IT BEHIND IN YOUR ACCOMMODATIONS.
LEAVE ANY ROCKS, FOSSILS, EGGS, BONES, AND OTHER BIOLOGICAL AND
GEOLOGICAL SPECIMENS WHERE YOU FOUND THEM.
ABSTAIN FROM CARVING INTO OR ADDING GRAFFITI TO ROCKS AND BUILDINGS ON LAND
As responsible global citizens, we set out to lessen our footprint in this pristine destination. We always make the effort to show respect for all, from the ecosystems to the wildlife we encounter. Taking these careful actions helps us keep the environment thriving for today’s explorers and future generations.
Our Explorer Class ships realize the possibilities of environmental stewardship with the latest hybrid power management and propulsion system, maximizing fuel efficiency and consuming as low as one-fifth the fuel compared to conventional cruise-ship systems, reducing our impact on the environment. That’s a win for all. What makes Antarctica so enthralling is its unspoiled beauty. We minimize underwater noise that stresses marine wildlife by using a hydro-jet propulsion system that allows our ships to cruise virtually silent up to five knots for incomparable, up-close encounters while keeping the sensitive ecosystem in mind.
It’s our responsibility to prevent damage to the fragile ecosystems on ocean floors. That’s why we avoid using anchors to maintain ship position by using a GPS-based Dynamic Position System.
It’s important to make the effort to keep waterways clear for a cleaner environment. By building our ships with the latest and most advanced waste management and water treatment plant in the cruise industry, we take the proper steps to control waste on board. That includes storing litter that cannot be repurposed or reclaimed in a dedicated hold until landing, where it will be disposed of responsibly.