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Leopard seal fell in love with this photographer!

The Photographer

Paul Nicklen is a wildlife and nature photojournalist specializing in the Arctic and Antarctica with an emphasis on climate change.
Paul Nicklen is a wildlife and nature photojournalist specializing in the Arctic and Antarctica with an emphasis on climate change.

The Assignment

Once he was assigned to Antarctica to photograph Leopard Seals.
Once he was assigned to Antarctica to photograph Leopard Seals.

Leopard seal

Leopard seal is an active predator and is the second largest seal in Antarctica. In Pauls own words “When you get in the water with a wild animal, you're essentially giving yourself to that animal because, as humans, we're quite helpless and vulnerable in the water. You're at the seal's mercy. You're at the predator's mercy.”
Leopard seal is an active predator and is the second largest seal in Antarctica. In Pauls own words “When you get in the water with a wild animal, you’re essentially giving yourself to that animal because, as humans, we’re quite helpless and vulnerable in the water. You’re at the seal’s mercy. You’re at the predator’s mercy.”

Biggest seal

Seeing this seal, Paul said to himself "Bloody Hell! That's the biggest leopard seal I've ever seen!" He jumped into the waters to photograph it.
Seeing this seal, Paul said to himself “Bloody Hell! That’s the biggest leopard seal I’ve ever seen!” He jumped into the waters to photograph it.

Approaching predator

When he jumped and swam towards the seal, it was catching a penguin. Seeing Paul, the seal right away dropped the penguin and moved towards him.
When he jumped and swam towards the seal, it was catching a penguin. Seeing Paul, the seal right away dropped the penguin and moved towards him.

This is the end!

She opened her mouth and Paul thought it was going to be his end.
She opened her mouth and Paul thought it was going to be his end.

Threatening?

She opened her mouth, took his head and camera in her mouth and did this threat display.
She opened her mouth, took his head and camera in her mouth and did this threat display.

You are so cute!

Suddenly, she went off and caught a live penguin and showed it to Paul.
Suddenly, she went off and caught a live penguin and showed it to Paul.

What are you doing?

She looked amazed and frustrated to see that Paul is not eating anything that she offered.
She looked amazed and frustrated to see that Paul is not eating anything that she offered.

You, poor animal!

She thought Paul was a useless predator in her ocean and started to feed him by bringing first weak and then dead penguins.
She thought Paul was a useless predator in her ocean and started to feed him by bringing first weak and then dead penguins.

This is how you do it!

Then she showed Paul, how to eat penguins and offered him partially consumed ones.
Then she showed Paul, how to eat penguins and offered him partially consumed ones.

Just taste it!

She then started to take penguins and pushed them into his camera. It must have thought that camera was his mouth.
She then started to take penguins and pushed them into his camera. It must have thought that camera was his mouth.

Watch the video

What do you think?

Written by Josin Tharian

Assistant Professor of Zoology by profession.

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