Kangaroo Island is one of the best spots in Australia to experience the diverse and mesmerising array of wildlife on offer. Set just eight miles from the coast of Adelaide, it promises numerous animal encounters on its pristine shores and throughout the lush rainforests at its centre. A 2 day Kangaroo Island tour gives you the chance to see everything it has to offer.
In the summer months, the island offers cool sea breezes that gently caress empty beaches – but not every beach is isolated and uninhabited. In fact, Seal Bay, one of the island’s most popular beaches, is home to some fascinating residents.
Here, visitors can watch the third largest population of Australian Sea Lions in Australia as they frolic in the sand. Set to the south of the island, near the world-famous natural wonder of Admiral’s Arch, there is also a colony of New Zealand fur seals. Both types of creature have a lengthy and fascinating history on the island and are hilarious to watch as they waddle up the beach and wrestle with friends.
About the Seals
The Seals are stocky, streamline creatures, which range from yellow-brown fur to silver colour, all depending on their gender. They might seem clumsy and slow on land, but their bodies are built for swimming. Reaching up to speeds of around 25mph, using their large flippers and long whiskers to sense quick movements to catch even the fastest fish.
They are social creatures, living together as one large colony, with even subgroups within these. Although they spend majority of their time out in the sea hunting, they rest on coastal shores such as beaches or rocky regions. These land habitats are important to maintain, as females will always return to the same place to give birth to their young, and it anything has happened to this land, the female will not mate for the remainder of their life.
Visiting Seal Bay
The beach at Seal Bay isn’t open to the public, but you can wander around its edges and marvel from a safe distance. Alternatively, designated guides are on hand to take small groups down to the beach itself, where you can get up close and personal with these amazing creatures.
Once on the sands and near the shoreline, look out for the sea lions as they bask in the sun, play in pairs, or huddle up together to share warmth.
You can watch as they make their way from the foaming waves back up the beach, completely oblivious – or uninterested – in their human-shaped visitors.
The type of sea lion that lives here has had a tragic history, having been heavily hunted over the centuries. They were mainly sought after by European settlers, but are now protected by a legislation which came into play in 1964. Despite their strict protection, the Australian sea lion is still listed as “Rare”, and their numbers continue to decline for unknown reasons.
For any nature lover, visiting Seal Bay offers the chance to witness these incredible creatures in their natural habitat. Set against a backdrop of crystal clear waters and powdery sands, viewing the sea lions and seals of Seal Bay is a must-do for anyone visiting Kangaroo Island. While there, you can learn all about their history on the island, their unique behaviour, and what the future holds for them.