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Fitness and Photography for Fun - A blog on staying fit by hiking and doing photography by David Mendosa

New Zealand’s West Coast‏

March 4th, 2010 · 2 Comments

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Today I drove 275km down the West Coast of New Zealand from Westport to Franz Josef, which sits between the South Pacific Ocean and the Southern Alps. While the little town of Franz Josef is so crowded with tourists that I chose to bypass the busy restaurants for a quiet meal in the van, the images that I captured today were all from the seal colony just 10 miles south of Westport. This is the only on-shore spot where the Southern Fur Seals bear and raise their pups.

Before even getting to the seals I came across this noteworthy bird indigenous only to these islands. That has to be true because the bird, called a weka, is flightless. Before the arrival of humans here it had no need to fly, having no natural enemies. The only land mammals native to New Zealand are two species of bats that must have flown here or have been blown here.

A Fearless Weka

A Fearless Weka

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None of my photos of the seal colony that I took last night were worth keeping. Today I had the opposite problem. I operate on the assumption that no more than one or two shots of any place is sufficient. But I just couldn’t pare to fewer than these shots.

One Web Fur Seal Pup

One Web Fur Seal Pup

Mama Raises Flappers, Looks Away

Mama Raises Flappers, Looks Away

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Two Seals Look at Each Other

Two Seals Look at Each Other

This Seal Seems to Try to Stand

This Seal Seems to Try to Stand

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These seals sleep a lot, so I’m glad that we can see their eyes some of the time. Aren’t you glad that your bed is softer than these rocks?

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Posted in: New Zealand

2 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Laurie D // Apr 16, 2010 at 12:43 pm

    Did you not stop at “Pancake Rocks?” I found the West Coast to be the best scenery in NZ!

  • 2 David Mendosa // Apr 16, 2010 at 4:33 pm

    Dear Laurie,

    Your message is the first I have heard of Pancake Rocks! You will need to tell me more when we get together.

    Best regards,

    David

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