A Trip to Albatross, Hunter & Three Hummock Islands

Sunrise over Three Hummock Island

We stayed on the island for two nights and were rewarded with spectacular sunrises. As the sun rose over Three Hummock Island the Albatross took off and slowly circled overhead.

Shy Albatross hovering in the wind, Albatross Island

In 1996 the wind turned easterly overnight. This was bad for leaving the island, but excellent for watching the Albatross. They hovered in the air currents forced up over the island.

Close up, Shy Albatross

At times it would have been quite easy to reach out and touch birds hovering close by. The Albatross would frequently circle round and hang effortlessly in the air currents. It reminded me of surfers having fun on waves.

Shy Albatross flying

As the day progressed, we still sat enthralled by the never ending procession of birds soaring and gliding by. We ran out of film long before the birds got tired of us. I have some magnificent video footage of the Albatross.

Evening flight, Albatross Island

Towards evening the setting sun's warm colours illuminated the hundreds of birds still circling over our heads.

Young Shy Albatross chick

The young chicks do not resemble their handsome parents at all. If you get to close to them, they have a nasty habit of regurgitating their fishy food over your legs.

Sunset light on a Shy Albatross

The setting sun turned the Albatross into birds of gold.

Sunrise over Hunter Island

It was hard to leave the island, even after we had run out of film. This is not agood place to stay as a party of naturalists found out in 1893. They were isolated on the island for ten days, by the weather.

Strong easterlies on albatross Island

We awoke early next morning, hoping the weather had moderated. To begin with, we thought we would have to stay for another day.

Laurie leaving Albatross Island

Fortunately, as the tide changed, the sea conditions moderated enough for us to give it a go. We watched for the pattern of big waves but even so Laurie had some difficulty getting off last.

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