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Oceanographer seals

David Griffin

18 May, 2017

 We recently added the tracks of our well-equipped seals to our archive of high-res satellite imagery (chlorophyll, SST and surface current). A 2014 trip by a male New Zealand Fur Seal from Montague Island to Jervis Bay – the long way - is particularly intriguing. The image at right shows the final 2 days of his trip around a warm-core, low surface chlorophyll eddy of the East Australian Current. His voyage started on 8 September and if you step through the images it’s hard not to think he has the imagery in front of him, or that he is laying on his back and just drifting with the current, occasionally diving down to 100m to  check the stratification. Is the edge of the eddy better fishing? Does he like the warm water? Can he sense his drift velocity? Do seals talk all day about ocean currents, fishing, or both? [more]