Recommended NZ | Guide to Money | Gimme: Competitions - Giveaways

Nelson In Winter - A Seal Of Approval

Read More:
Rebekah Joy
Rebekah Joy

I've always thought Nelson boring in winter. The leaves from the trees that line the town are gone. the trees skeleton bare. People dont go out, the town is dead on a Saturday night. But that all changed when I took my visiting Aussie friends to see the sights. Apart from the obligitory Centre of New Zealand trek and an accidental discovery (who ever knew that Nelson was the site of the first rugby game in NZ?) we discovered a new phenomenon swimming on the shores of the Boulder Bank.

"Look," they cried "seals."

"No, no", I replied with an air of local superiority, "seals don't live in Nelson".

They pointed to a dark object in the water.

"It's a log" I replied all knowing. Dumb tourists.

The log rolled and popped its head up. It was a seal, several of them holding their flippers straight up in the air like synchronized swimmers. Apparently it's a way of cooling off or warming up by allowing the air or sun reach the tiny veins in the flippers and warm or cool the blood.

Turns out Nelson has a resident colony living on the Cut. In winter they can be seen along Rocks Road (if your lucky) and along the entrance of the Boulder Bank just five minutes drive from the city.

If your in the area take some time out to watch them closely and be charmed by their playful behavior. A good pair of binoculars will help, but if your at the Boulder Bank you'll be close enough to see them quite well. In general the seals will be out feeding during the highest tides and resting between tides.

There is an amazing sea kayaking company operating out of Cable Bay that does a trip around the Boulder Bank. One friend reported that an angry seal bit his flipper. Check for more details.

All articles and comments on have been submitted by our community of users. Please notify us if you believe an item on this site breaches our community guidelines.