Canberra author and historian, Joy McCann, has just released a book about the Southern Ocean and late last month she visited Jervis Bay Maritime Museum to share her knowledge with an intimate audience. Also known as the Antarctic Ocean, there is little known about the Southern Ocean compared to the world’s other four oceans – Pacific, Atlantic, Indian and Arctic. Wild Sea attempts to unravel the mysteries of the Southern Ocean and explain its role as a marker of climate change while also being a cracking read.

Ghost Ships, Ice Storms & Penguins

Wild Sea brings together a range of sources – captain’s journals, whalers’ logbooks, explorers’ letters, scientific reports and the author’s own voyage to the Southern Ocean – to create a book that both informs the reader and asks them to question the future of our planet.

With a reputation as a wild and unforgiving place where giant waves, thick fogs and icy winds torment sailors, the Southern Ocean is actually an incredibly beautiful and endlessly fascinating place. Joy McCann has voyaged to the Southern Ocean and witnessed incredible sights including:

“setting foot on the beach of South Georgia, surrounded by 400,000 king penguins and elephant seals all in mating mode.”

In sharp contrast, early accounts from whalers and explorers talk about the slaughter of penguins for fuel and boot polish.

The Southern ocean flows entirely around the earth, hugging the coastlines of South America, South Africa, Australia and New Zealand: a vast topic to tackle and make it accessible to a general audience.