Sea lion makes an appearance at Ballina
LOCAL photographer Tony Partridge did not expect to see a sea lion while on an early morning walk along Patchs Beach at South Ballina this morning.
But the creature seemed more than happy sunbaking and splashing in the shallows of the beach.
Keith Williams from Ballina-based Australian Seabird Rescue said that, from looking at the photos taken by Mr Partridge, it appeared to be a male sea lion about nine months old.
He said it was fairly uncommon, but urged people to stay away from the young animal.
"This is the time of year when young sea lions might get kicked out of their colonies, so this guy is just exploring," Mr Williams said.
"He's obviously enjoying the cold water.
"We've had other ones that have hung around for a month or two. We might see this guy around the area for a while.
"We'll just be keeping an eye on him, but he seems quite healthy."
In the past fur seal pups have been spotted at various spots around the North Coast.
National Parks and Wildlife Service has previously said that seals regularly rest on beaches and rock platforms on the North Coast during the winter.
Australian fur seals and New Zealand fur seals are the most common types.
However the seals should not be approached because they have large, sharp teeth and strong jaws.