NatuReview 2020

At this time of year, I often post a few blog posts to look back at the past year (if I’m not somewhere in the deep south). This year was a very strange year, a year where a virus disrupted most of the plans we had and kept us at home for most of the year. This was visible in the amount of blog posts, that was much lower as was usual in the previous years. Fortunately I managed to avoid the virus itself and did I still have the possibility to go out to take pictures.

Winter in Northern Norway

For me, the year started as usual, on a ship. Not an expedition cruise ship in Antarctica, but the three mast sailing ship the Rembrandt van Rijn in Northern Norway. Here I spent several weeks sailing around the wintry fjords, looking for whales, northern lights and nice winter experiences with the guests. As the last few trips had Chinese guests on board, we already learned about this virus that was going around in China and we started our search for facial masks (which at that point seemed quite far fetched in the remote parts of Northern Norway). The last trip, we only had few guests as the Chinese group was not allowed to board the ship…

Fireworks are not allowed in the Netherlands this New Years Eve, in Finland we had a different kind.

When I came home, we left straight away for Northern Finland, for a private holiday with family. Beautiful weather, lot’s of snow, very little northern lights (the above picture shows a lot more as we could see with the naked eye) and nice tundra birds. Definitely one of the highlights of the year!

Grey-headed Chickadee in Northern Finland

Back home, things changed rapidly. The Arctic season was cancelled and suddenly I was months at home. When the infection numbers went down, I went for a trip through the southern parts of the Netherlands to find the last missing species of dragonflies for my Dutch list. Usually, I’m hardly at home in summer, so I never had the time. So now I took the opportunity when I got it. With some good planning, I managed to find all seven species I was still missing! The River Clubtail was the last species I found, which was reason for a small celebration.

Freshly emerged River Clubtail

Now this strange year comes to an end. Let’s hope 2021 will be a better one! I already have lot’s of plans for the next year, hopefully more of them come true compared to the last year. Anyway, I’ll take you along again with new blog posts. Thanks all for your interest in my pictures and stories, your likes and comments. Let’s see what the next year will bring!

Cheers, Arjen

Arjen Drost

Arjen is a Polar ecologist, nature photographer and full time expedition guide on expedition cruise ships in both Polar regions. With his pictures and stories he likes to show the beauty of these very fragile and threatened places.

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