Our trip to the Ross Sea was supposed to have three stops along
the way at sub-Antarctic islands belonging to New Zealand--Snares,
Enderby, and Campbell Islands. However, due to weather problems
we only stopped at Enderby, one of the Auckland Islands.
Enderby Island has a large number of Hooker Seals which weigh up
to 1500 pounds. Because they were approaching mating season, we
were warned that the seals might prove aggressive, which they were.
We were advised that when charged by the seals, we should stand
our ground, raise our arms to look bigger, and look them straight in
the eye. In the picture below you can see one of the staff raising a
walking stick at one of the seals to keep him at bay.
The "fast group" made an eight mile hike around the island. Except around the cliffs, we were rarely more than a stones
throw from the Hooker seals.
As promised, we were charged by seals on more than one occasion (below right).
Mostly, we had numerous encounters with the Hooker seals. But at one
point we encountered a huge harem of female Hookers (below).
For the vegetation and birds of Enerby
Island, please click the first link below.