Michael Potts
Wildlife and Landscape Photography

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News & Events: Subantarctic Islands of New Zealand

Monday 22nd February 2016 |

I have recently returned from a fantastic trip to the subantarctic islands of New Zealand. We left Bluff Harbour. South Island on 3rd Febuary 2016 heading for the Snares Islands some 80 kms South. These islands are very closely monitored by the Dept' of Conservation and landings are not permitted. There are good reasons for this, the islands are home to over 1 million Sooty Shearwaters or 'Mutton Birds', thousands of nesting Bullers Albatross, endemic Snares Islands Crested Penguin and Antarctic Terns. The islands are  notoriously difficult  to get close to, often the sea conditions make it impossible to approach safely. Twice before I had failed to get to the Eat coast which is where the best views of Penguins are to be had. This time I was lucky, light winds from the West meant that the East coast was calm and we were able to cruise the rocky coast within 10 metres, this gave fantastic photographic opportunities  especially of the very friendly Penguins, both in the water and on the rocks.

From the Snares we contiued south to the Auckland Islands, the first port of call being Enderby Island. Two years ago i spent a day at Enderby on the way to the Ross Sea and the weather was foul!! wet and windy for the whole day. This time iit's completely different, light winds and blue sky, fantastic. More to come soon.............