The Upside (and Downside) of Sea Lions

(Puerto Villamil, Isla Isabela, Galapagos)

We’ve decided sea lions are the puppy dogs of the ocean. It’s probably been said before, and if it hasn’t it should have. They are constantly at play, have the patent puppy dog eyes, and would have no qualms with chewing your shoe if you left it out. Actually, their chosen form of innocent annoyance is to lay themselves out on your deck wherever they please. A seemingly harmless act until you get close enough to smell one – yet another dog resemblance.

Looking at the boats around the anchorage you see varying takes on each crew’s SLDS – Sea Lion Defence System. Many use their unused fenders to block off the easy boarding spots. Some stack up coolers and buckets. When we returned from our trip to Santa Cruz, Roger had had to increase our SLDS efforts by tying off our furling line in an Entrapment style of lattice lazer beams over the steps hoping to slow down the sea lion advance.

When we’re on the boat we’re pretty lax at setting the defences. In fact, I enjoy having these guys to hang out with. Yes, they might fart and burp and moan, but they’re just so gosh darn fun.

That is until last night. Last night I felt like the crusty old lady living beside the young, fun-loving, party kids. Our bedroom is located just on the other side of the starboard back steps, and those back steps are where the sea lions took it upon themselves to throw a little shindig. There was the thumping of many of them going up and down the stairs. There was barks and roars and belches and groans, all obviously conducive to the good time they were having. More than once I had to elbow Greg to go tell them to keep it down. One more time and I was calling the cops.

When the sun rose in the morning though, I was out into the cockpit looking for my morning greeting from our backyard full of Galapagos foster dogs.

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Good morning water dog.

 

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Getting this close to penguins in the wild is such a cool thing.

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Out for a paddle with our penguin friends.

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Sunbathing on their rock.

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The similarities are endless…

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