Wildlife biologists Katy Gavrilchuk and David Gaspard recently embarked on a research expedition to study whale and dolphin species off the east coast of Canada. The pair built themselves an off-grid tiny house to serve as a mobile research base throughout their working adventure.

The aptly-named Big Whale Tiny House measures 8 x 20 ft (2.5 x 6 m) and comprises a total floorspace of 160 sq ft (14.5 sq m).

The build took around five months, though is still not fully complete, and work continues on the interior when Gavrilchuk and Gaspard manage to find some time in their 12-hour work days.

So far, the pair have fitted a kitchenette with fridge, sink, and propane oven. The bathroom includes a composting toilet and shower. A large sleeping loft takes up around half the length of the home, while a smaller second loft is used for storage.

A 250 L (66 US Gallon) water tank satisfies water needs while the tiny house is off-the-grid, and a detachable roof-based solar power array and RV hookup provides electricity. A small wood-burning stove offers heat. If it's too warm, they simply open the windows.

Structurally, the Big Whale Tiny House consists of a double-axle trailer and wooden frame, with pine siding. It's topped by a metal roof and sports a large skylight to boost natural light inside.

Since Gavrilchuk and Gaspard are sponsored by the Atlas Roofing Corporation, they turned to the firm's Energy Shield Pro foam insulation. This is fitted in between the walls and roof and rated at an R-value of 6.5 per inch.

The 670-mile (1,078 km) expedition started in early June and is still ongoing, involving stops in Québec City, Tadoussac, Baie Comeau, and Sept-Îles. So far they have seen over 100 minke whales and 3 humpback whale calves, in addition to a humpback whale first photographed back in 1980. You can follow their updates (in French) on their Facebook page.

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