New Zealand

5th November - 4th December 2005

Nugget Point

Nugget Point lies about 50km south of Dunedin. About 1km before you reach the point, there is a car park on the right hand side of the road with a path down to a hide overlooking a Yellow-eyed Penguin nesting site in Roaring Bay. The wind had increased enormously on my drive down from Taiaroa Head and by the time I got down to the hide, Roaring Bay was a very appropriate name...These latitudes are not nicknamed the Roaring Forties for nothing! It was quite difficult just standing up in the very strong winds, so the walk down to the hide with my camera was a bit tough but much more sheltered once I was in the hide.

Yellow-eyed Penguin (Megadyptes antipodes)

Yellow-eyed Penguin (Megadyptes antipodes)

The best time for viewing the Penguins is dusk, when they are coming ashore to return to their burrows. I arrived about 3 hours before sunset and had intended staying to wait for the majority of the penguins to come ashore, but the light was very flat and it was so cold with the wind whistling into the hide that after an hour I wimped out, deciding that the views of a solitary penguin sitting on the nearby slope were good enough, and retreated to the warm sanctuary of my car.

Taiaroa Head New Zealand map Stewart Island