"In All Other Respects the Situation is Admirable"

Having landed the day before, 5 January 1911 was spent exploring the company's new home at Cape Evans and off-loading the Terra Nova's stores. Herbert Ponting, the expedition's official photographer - listed amongst the expidition's scientific staff as a "Camera Artist" - had time enough to drag Scott away to a crevasse in a vertical iceberg to take this famous, breathtaking photo. Scott declared that he had "rarely seen anything more beautiful." (Journals, p. 74, Carroll & Graf [1996]). That Ponting was alive to record the scene is miracle enough. Scott describes in great detail a Jaws-like attack by a pod of Orca aimed at Ponting and a few of the company's dogs.

Of course, we have known well that killer whales continually skirt the edge of the floes and that they would undoubtedly snap up anyone who was unfortunate enough to fall into the water; but the facts that they could display such deliberate cunning , that they were able to break ice of such thickness (at least 2 1/2 feet thick), and that they could act in unison, were a revelation to us. It is clear that they are endowed with a singular intelligence, . . .

For more on these fantastic "beasts," see the National Geographic site dedicated to them.