Sea Lion Group / Falkland
Wolfgang Schippke, DC3MF
two mayor Sea Lion Islands are located about 18 miles southwest of the
south-east end of the Falkland Islands. The West SEA LION ISLAND
(52S26, 59W06) is the pricipal island, about 1 miles long and surrounded
by kelp and some rocks awash. It rises to an elevation of 31 meters, in
its western part. The EAST SEA LION, some smaler, lies 6
miles east of West Island, is 5 cables long and of the same elevation.
A reef, drying and dangerous lies about 6 cables west and another reef,
also dyring about 1 mile south of the west end of East Isl. Between these
islands the group of the Brandy Islets, three in number, is
located, a group of several steep-sided dark coloured rocks, without vergetation.
The islands are covered with grass, and inhabited during the summer month
by 2 families with about 100 sheeps. Landing is possible also in a cove
on West Isl., and also in an small bassin on the south side of East Isl.
The islands are gentile hilly and only 30 to 45 meters high. The beaches
are inhabited by about 1000 penguines and some Sea Lions given the name
of the island group.
The island were first discovered by the both France Fourquet and Poree in 1703 and named as Anican Islands, a name offen used till today for the West Island, and also shown in some maps. In 1750 the islands become a hunting place for sea lions and in 1770 all animales were killed. In 1795 the islands were rediscovered by the British Captain W.Francy with the HMS 'Sea Lion' and named after the ship's name.
In the vicinity and on the beaches of the islands are several wreks located, as the 'Indiana' run on a reef in 1849, or the french merchant-ship 'Antoinette', wreked on the east end of the West Isl. in 1857, when 25 sailors lost here live. During the Falkland Island War between Great Britain and Argentinia, the island was claimbed and hold for 4 weeks by Argentinian troups, errecting a radio base on the islands.