This Northern Royal Albatross, Diomedea sanfordi, skims along the top of the water during a dolphin watching tour with Encounter Kaikoura, off the East Coast of the South Island of New Zealand. These beautiful birds have a very large wing span, beautiful coloring, and it's always a treat to see other animals when you are on a certain tour besides only one animal.
The Northern Royal Albatross, which some scientists think is actually the same as the Southern Royal Albatross, but others disagree, is a large seabird as it spends the majority of its time out at sea looking for food. They feed on fish, carrion, and mainly squid, as that is 85 percent of their diet.
They can grow to about 115cm long, weigh about 8 kilograms, and have a wing span as long as 305 centimetres. As previously mentioned, they spend most of their time at sea, and they only come to land to nest and breed. They are found only around the New Zealand islands, so travelers that come to this area of the world always want to catch sight of one of these birds. They are considered endangered birds, and an early 1990's estimate put the numbers at 17,000, but as this is an old number it is not known how many of them there are today.
Northern Royal, Diomedea sanfordi, Albatross during a dolphin watching tour with Encounter Kaikoura, Kaikoura, Canterbury, East Coast, South Island, New Zealand.
I photographed this photo with the digital SLR camera model Canon EOS-1Ds Mark II, aperture of f/5.6, exposure time of 1/160 sec. on ISO 100, as always I used a original Canon Lens, the focus lenght for this picture was 200mm.
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