A city challenge

Yesterday we headed down to the V& A Waterfront to join the iNaturalist city challenge.

The concept behind this brilliant App. is to photograph as many fauna and flora in your city, upload and have the information analyzed by scientists.

Our first stop was the Two Oceans Aquarium, where we photographed the route map and set off to find the hidden life in this busy urban area.

Keeping Hamish from not running was infact the biggest of our challenges. The second was ensuring he didn’t fall into the harbour waters.

Our first stop was the seal observation deck behind the Two Oceans Aquarium.

Here the seals are free to jump up onto the wooden decking and spend the days lazing about soaking up the sun or preening themselves.

Both Hamish and myself were thrilled to be so close to them and we walked the rickety wooden gangway to get closer.

Naturally, the closest we got was observation distance of about half a metre away. We were able to walk right past them.

At the end of the day the Cape Fur Seals are wild animals and while they may look cute and cuddly , they can cause harm.

This truly was the highlight of my day. Not only did the seals allow us to get close at the deck but we were witness to many others along our walk as they swam and lept in the harbour waters.

Then later we got to see a few more resting at the clock tower view point.

The main purpose of our visit was to photograph the fauna and flora and I knew to expect the seal and seagulls.

I’ve seen dolphins in the surf when riding in by MyCity bus and was quite ready for a few pigeons as well.

But was rather surprised when an Egyptian goose just sat on the harbours edge waiting for us to take it’s picture.

We also saw a few comorants and a giant spiders web that I sadly couldn’t photograph as my phone isn’t clear enough.

Aside from the animals that we can see and the beautiful trees and flowers along the V & A Waterfront, there is so much life that exists unseen if you just look for it.

We found barnacle on the bottoms of the boats, limpid on the harbour walls, seaweed and sea anemone growing under the wooden decks near the seals and huge kelp forest areas near the Robben island jetty.

There are moss and grass growing near the waters edges and a multitude of insects hiding in the plants.

I can only imagine the bustling sea life beneath the water.

I also took some time to photograph the plants cultivated to grow around this area. A rich diversity of local flora.

It was an awesome start to the morning and I am officially addicted to iNaturalist.

I already have our next nature outing planned.

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