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Penguin burrows are often fenced to protect sheep from injury.
Penguin guarding burrow.

Carcass Island ( ) is one of the Falkland Islandsmarker, lying north west of West Falklandmarker and south east of the Jason Islands.


The island's grim sounding name comes from the ship HMS Carcass, which surveyed the island in 1766. Its accompanying vessel, HMS Jason, gave its name to the nearby Jason Islands, and its captain, John McBride, gave his name to MacBride Headmarker.

It is currently run as a sheep farm by Rob McGill. Its small settlement, lying on Port Pattersonmarker on the south west coast, is also known for its gardens, and has a small shop/grocery. It has been settled continuously for over a hundred years.

Carcass Island was considered as one of the potential sites for a British amphibious landing during the Falklands War; however, the British landings took place on San Carlos Watermarker in the west of East Falklandmarker, on Falkland Soundmarker. The plan would have been for a "stone aircraft carrier". The main objections to this plan were, a) Carcass Island, being in the west of the archipelago was nearest to continental Argentine bases, b) its proximity to the airbase on Pebble Islandmarker, and c) its remoteness from Stanleymarker, as it was furthest from the main objectives, and West Falklandmarker was ultimately bypassed in the war.

There are three listed buildings here, the boathouse, shed, and store.


The highest points of the island are Stanley Hill, and Mount Bing (304 metres). There are also stretches of duneland. Leopard Beach is often used as a landing point.

Wildlife and gardens

The island has no rats or cats, and as a result has a wide variety of birdlife including Black-crowned Night Herons, known in the Falkland Islands as "quarks", as well as seals and penguins. Tussock grass also grows here.

The island contains one of the few substantial stands of trees in the Falklands. There is however, a true wood at Hill Covemarker. None of the species are endemic, but they include such exoticisms as Monterey cypress trees, and New Zealand cabbage palms. The night herons nest within these trees. The gardens also include other introduced plants such as fuchsias, lupins, and dog roses.


  1. Bicheno, Hugh (2006) Razor's Edge: The Unofficial History of the Falklands War. London. Weidenfield & Nicholson. ISBN 978-0-7538-2186-2
  2. Wigglesworth, Angela. (1992) Falkland People. Pub. Peter Owen. ISBN 0-7206-0850-3

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