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Leo the Leopard Visits Bundeena
Saturday, 11 July 2009
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Bundeena residents woke up Saturday morning to find an unexpected visitor on their doorstep.

The leopard seal nicknamed "Leo" by locals beached itself on Horderns beach. Marks on it's belly had shown it had been attacked by cookie cutter sharks similarly to a beached whale at Bonnie Vale two years ago.

The leopard seal has been making it's way up the coast. It had beached itself in Shell Harbour last weekend and then in Bellami north of Wollongong several days ago and had been spotted at Marley beach in the Royal National Park yesterday.

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NPWS and Wires representatives said that the seal was in a weakened state and they were surprised it had made it this far. The seal was moving at times and seemed to respond to changes in sunshine as it was sunning itself. The seal was small for it's size and had strayed way outside of it's normal territory in the Antarctica waters.

Leopard seals are the top predator on the Antarctica continent with only orcas and sharks as it's only natural enemies. They are not known for attacking humans though a snorkeling biologist was dragged to her death by one in 2003.

Depending on the seal's condition it's expected to head back into the water and continue it's journey. *

* NPWS staff have since confirmed the seal slipped off back into the water overnight.

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For more photos click here



Video - Having a snooze
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