Leopard Seal, Bluff

Discuss natural history subjects not strictly related to birds. Reports of interesting mammal, reptile, and invertebrate sightings are welcome.
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Michael Szabo
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Leopard Seal, Bluff

Postby Michael Szabo » Wed Dec 07, 2022 10:16 am

Yvonne Pickford reports via Facebook a Leopard Seal on a Bluff beach yesterday:
https://scontent.fpmr1-1.fna.fbcdn.net/ ... e=6393ABBE
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Oscar Thomas
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Re: Leopard Seal, Bluff

Postby Oscar Thomas » Wed Dec 07, 2022 4:08 pm

Leopard seals are well and truly a regular visitor to our shores. Whether they have become more numerous in recent years or are just being better reported remains to be seen. The Leopard Seals NZ Facebook reports the following:

Since our most recent #Spotted post, published on the 23rd of October, we have seen leopard seals reported at: New Brighton Beach (Canterbury), Hickory Bay (Canterbury), Aramoana Beach (Otago), Ohope Beach (Bay of Plenty), Oamaru Harbour (Otago), Parakaunui Bay (Southland), Tumbledown Bay (Canterbury), Whiritoa Beach (Waikato), Akaroa Harbour (Canterbury), Coralie Beach (Great Mercury Island), Pauanui Beach (Waikato), Opito Bay (Waikato), All Day Bay (Otago), Moeraki Coast (Otago), Caroline Bay (Canterbury), Long Beach (Otago), Canterbury Wreck, Bay of Islands (Northland), Cannibal Bay (Otago), Taieri Beach (Otago), Homestead Bay, Bay of Islands (Northland), Saint Clair Beach (Otago), Waianakarua River Mouth (Otago), Main Beach, Whangamata (Waikato), Allans Beach (Otago), Willshire Bay (Otago), Putakokota Bay, Bay of Islands (Northland), Southshore Beach (Canterbury), Kenepuru Sounds (Marlborough) and Argyle Beach (Southland).

Over the month of October we saw a total of 63 separate leopard seal sighting events reported to us, while in November we saw a total of 28 leopard seal sighting events reported to us.
(*Note that some of these events will be the same seal as it has moved locations. Whenever a leopard seal was reported multiple times - by different reporters but at the same location - we have counted this as one sighting event).
You can submit your leopard seal sightings to us via our email: info@leopardseals.org. Please remember to include the date, the time and the location of your sighting. Alternatively, if a leopard seal is present or you are concerned about a leopard seal's welfare you can call us 24-7 on our toll free hotline: 0800 LEOPARD (0800 536 7273).
If you encounter a seal on or near a beach, please give it space.
- Always keep dogs on a leash, under control and away from seals.
- Ensure you keep small children at a safe distance and under your control when watching seals.
- Do not get closer than 20 metres.
- Do not get between the seal and the sea.
- Do not touch or feed the seal.

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