Tuesday, September 04, 2007

Photos From Otago Peninsula

In an earlier post, I wrote about the great trip offered to the Otago Peninsula by Elm Wildlife Tours. Elm is located in Dunedin, and it is really a wonderful trip, allowing only a small number of visitors to the area each day.

Here are some pictures of the yellow eyed penguins and the sea lions we saw that day. It is an excellent chance to see the wildlife up close in their natural habitat.

The yellow eyed penguins swam up to the coast as we stood watching. We never moved from that spot, and they just walked right up to where we stood. The first walked close enough that we could've touched him.

It is actually fairly rare to see 2 yellow eyed penguins together, as they are private animals. We were lucky to see 2 males that day, and further up the hill, their mates were waiting for them. Some travelers, I understand, are not even lucky enough to see 1 penguin up close, but we saw 2 at very close range, and 2 more up the hill. It was really an exciting sighting for us. Even our guide said he could not remember when he had seen one as close up as we saw this guy, and he makes that trip every single day.

The sea lions are animals we had to stay a bit further away from. They are not agressive, but can be quite playful. As big as they are, they can cause harm very quickly without ever intending to.

These are big, big animals. Very impressive to see them, and quite intimidating.

The Otago Peninsula is a great place to visit for any animal lover. It's a place I really enjoyed being, and wouldn't mind seeing again one day.

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