Discovered by the Belgian Antarctic explorer Adrien de Gerlache, Cuverville Island got its name from J.M.A. Cavelier de Cuverville (1834–1912), who was a vice admiral of the French Navy.
Cuverville Island is well-known for its great variety of wildlife and massive population of Gentoo penguins. It is estimated that there are 7,000 breeding pairs on the island, hence it being identified as an 'Important Bird Area'. As well as these comical creatures, the Island is also home to several species of Antarctic seal, as well as an array of Antarctic birds, notably shags and Southern Giant petrels.
A rocky dome dominates most of this small island, as well as the large patches of lichen and deep moss growing on the rocks, the only botanical species that can be found on the surface of Antarctica.