In New Zealand with my Kiwi :)

Jan 3, 2011

Happy New Year everyone! So far so good down here in Kaikoura, New Zealand 🙂 I will be heading back to Canada in a few days but I wanted to share some more pics and a video with you first!  First…here is a video of the tug-o-war between the kiwi and the blue shark…….

We also got a fantastic look at the lunar eclipse on December 21st.  It rose at sunset IN TOTAL eclipse and then proceeded to blow my mind as the black shadow creeped upward and to the side like a black tuque.

We had a very sad day on December 30th, when we found a severely injured little blue penguin….we tried to rush it to a vet, but it died.  It had very terrible injuries from a boat propellor…Little Blues are the tiniest penguins in the world, but this one was a fighter and so we called him Big Blue.  Another reminder of the heavy footprints that humans leave on the earth….

Lately we have seen heaps of seabirds, dusky dolphins and even Hector’s dolphins.  These little puffing pigs are only found in New Zealand and they are considered quite endangered.  This mother had a very identifyable dorsal fin…..we think she may be a long time resident of the area….

In a few days I head back to Canada….to teach labs, to teach swimming lessons, to take classes, to hug my cat, and the get ready for a wedding in May, and a then a year in the jungles of Madagascar.  Never a dull moment…… 😉

Dec 16, 2010

A marvelous few days chock-FULL of wildlife 🙂 I’m over HERE, in Kaikoura, South Island of New Zealand.  To spend time with my Kiwi, but also because HERE, there are hundreds, sometimes thousands of dusky dolphins that come near shore during the day to rest and socialize.  My research interest revolves around the small groups of mothers and calves.

Sparkling baby dusky dolphin

This is also a fantastic place to see stunning seabirds……many species of albatross, shearwater, and petrel pass through Kaikoura on their wanderings.  This is one of my favourites….a white-capped albatross.

The water around here is SO full of life.  The other day we found a dead dolphin that was being eaten by giant petrels and one slick, 2 metre long, beautiful, and sensationally  iridescent blue shark!!! We watched it circle, chomp, twist and spin/rip pieces off the dolphin, swimming off with bits of intestines dangling from it’s mouth.  It was phenomenally beautiful.  seeing its eyes, its sparkling blue.  Left me feeling like the crew of Life Aquatic when they see the leopard shark.

Blue Shark


7 Responses to In New Zealand with my Kiwi :)

  1. Phil mcNamee and Mary Hanley says:

    Hi Jody,
    We wish you a very Merry Christmas and Happy New Year. Thanks for sharing your wonderful pictures with us. We can see how happy you are and loving the work that you do. Keep them coming…..what a pleasure!
    Phil and Mary

  2. Austin McNamee says:


    Have a Merry Christmas and keep up the Jody Fish Journal updates!

  3. Jillweir says:

    Wonderful video!!! Very sad about the wee penguin. Just wondered if there are signs there warning boaters about the dangers to sealife?

    • No signs to yeild to penguins in this spot…but sounds like a good idea eh? Unfortunately this is a busy spot for both boats and penguins, and because these wee guys are only about 40 cm long they are easy to miss. They also nest and raise chicks on the beaches very close by, so this is an important place for them. Just like when driving cars, people need to slooooooow down and watch where they are driving!

  4. Phil mcNamee and Mary Hanley says:

    Hi Jody,
    Great video (we think)! Thanks for the update…the weather looks great, better than the cold in this part of the world. Beautiful picture of the albatross too. Enjoy your remaining days.
    Phil and Mary

  5. thepatweir says:

    Awesome video Jode, I’m pretty sure the Kiwi has the upper hand though, I would be worried if I were the blue shark. That crazy Kiwi could jump in in the water any second and go after him.

  6. Margaret Wilson says:

    So great to be able to check on what you are doing in this way. Always so interesting! Looking forward to meeting your Kiwi…
    Guess you’re back in Vancouver now… a great year ahead for you :o)

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