Mr. Nature: The Leopard Seal

We’ve just got to have drama, don’t we? Antarctic exploration has been rather tame since Admiral Byrd’s time… and you know how that dries up the funding.

Voila! The leopard seal is transformed into a life-threatening menace of Antarctic waters! Fall into that water and you’ll be dead before any leopard seal can find you. Look at all the thermal gear the diver in this video has to carry.

These seals eat penguins. I read a lot of books about Antarctica and none of them featured any hair-raising encounters with leopard seals. But now the New Zealand Dept. of Conservation says otherwise.

Well… “a few attacks”… and one, just one, fatality (“snorkeling in Antarctic waters”). We are not told who, if anyone, witnessed these incidents. But we are told to “stay at least 20 meters away” from any leopard seals we might encounter. I don’t expect to run into any in New Jersey.

Why do I think we’re being taken for a ride? And not by any seals, either.

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