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Sealife Experience 
18th-Mar-2009 02:29 pm
I must confess all these images were captured by the SO. It's a little too hard to take happy snaps when your stomach is in violent revolt against the bobbing of the ocean, so I didn't even try. And I'm quite glad I didn't, as I am immensely proud of what he's managed to capture.

That said, the staff of Sealife Experience Tasmania did everything they could to make the two sickies (another guest and myself) as comfortable as possible (including dispensing ginger tablets before the ride like chocolates) throughout the 3 hour boat ride along the Tasman Island, Port Arthur, Cape Hauy, Cape Pillar, The Totem Pole, and The Candle Stick.

And hey, I wasn't that bad. I did enjoy myself for the first hour - until they stopped the boat and it started bobbing like a cork in a bathtub. But enough with the chatter and onward to the show-and-tell.

The coastline is teeming with birdlife!
These Black-faced Cormorants (or shags) are everywhere and don't give a shit if you're there either.
If you see white marbling on the rocks, it's probably just runny bird poo.

Not pictured is the family of three White-Breasted Sea Eagles we saw in the first 5 minutes of the ride.
It almost felt like they were planted there, like in a theme park ride.

And of course, there are some awesome rock formations along the coastline.
Igneous rock, sedimentary rock - you name it, they've got it.

Which makes for some really awesome optical illusions.
At one point, we all thought we were being sucked downhill to be crashed against the monsterous cliffs ahead,
but that was due to the angle the rock was pushing out from the seabed.

Doesn't this look like part of Lord of the Ring's Minas Tirith?

We saw three types of albatrosses and they are all hilarious to watch.
This Black-browed albatross is graceful in the water and happy to bob around beside the boat.

But check out how they have to take off.
This Grey-headed_albatross is so big,
it has to take a running start across the water to get lift off.
Heaven help it if it eats too much and can't fly.

One of our party groaned that he couldn't see a single seal as the boat approached the rocks
and the rest of us were squealing that we could see the seals.
When we finally got close enough, he exclaimed that suddenly all the rocks he saw were seals!

Protected after years of hunting for their pelts, it's difficult to tell the difference between the Australian and New Zealand fur seals.
But they're all so cute! Look at its little ears!
You know how they call seals dogs with fins? Well, they sure smell like wet dog.

We also got lucky and found a seal feeding frenzy.
Some seals had a school of fish herded in a tight ball close to the surface.
The seabirds were picking off any they could catch,
while the seals took their turns having their feast.

All the activity didn't stop this one from showing off with a back flip snort.

And this cheeky bastard of an albatross obviously isn't taking any flack from the seal.
Screw the seal being probably over 5 times itself. (^_^;)

Despite how close this photo looks, we never went onto Tasman Island to see its famed lighthouse.
The Tasman Island lighthouse is one of Australia's highest and most isolated lighthouses.
The guide stressed that in the past, animals would be thrown as close to the island as possible to make their own way onto the island before the flying fox was built.

Also not featured is when the staff stuck an underwater camera to show everyone on deck the colour of the seabed. If the water wasn't so darn cold, diving there would be a treat.

The Sealife Experience only holds 30 passengers, so everyone gets a chance to see everything - the wild life, caves, kelp forests. Our party even got to watch another recreational boat snag in a tuna. And that is a lot of hard work.
19th-Mar-2009 12:16 pm (UTC)
Aw man, I remember walking *around* that lighthouse when I went to Tamania!

Don't think I ever got to see such pretty + amazing wildlife though ;0;
20th-Mar-2009 04:13 am (UTC)
You're nuts! It looks impossible to get up there from the boat we were on.

We were really lucky the crew knew exactly what they were doing, cuz the wildlife was everywhere.
20th-Mar-2009 11:12 pm (UTC)
Ah, we weren't on the sea, we drove to it...unless it's on an island and I'm getting my Tasmanian land marks completely screwed up x_x
23rd-Mar-2009 12:05 am (UTC)
I'm pretty sure the only way to get to that lighthouse is by boat, cuz it is on an island. XDDD
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