Courtship in birds is visual and auditory: they display and sing. Here a yellow-eyed penguin is displaying the sky-point which is "giddaye, gorgeous, wassup??" in penguin language (with a Kiwi accent of course!). The other one is busy preening - one wonders if s/he noticed?
And here it is: the juvenile yellow-eyed penguin acting like a grown-up among all these adults, on his way home after fishing looking fat and gorgeous!
It's always a pleasure to watch the yellow-eyed penguins returning from sea - and even more so when there is a juvenile among them. They are the hope for the future, the ones that succeeded in learning to catch fish, next ones to start breeding and make more penguins - we so need them: it does not look good for these guys.
The beach is frequented by the New Zealand fur seal pups who inevitably encounter a young yellow-eyed penguin - well not that young: here a juvenile is eyeing up the seal pup to see if it should be worried. Hardly, the pup is easily intimidated by a penguin and knows to keep away!
Our penguin spy-cams do pick up strange things: here it got the perfect moment of a yellow-eyed penguin poohing downhill from the box in the middle of the night! Good shot.....
The yellow-eyed penguins not only share the beach with Spotted shags but also with New Zealand fur seals: here a big male is lying near the entrance into the colony and the penguins pick their way carefully around him to get home. Although the penguins are afraid of the seals, the seals are not interested in the penguins whilst on land.
Our Spotted shags are in full breeding plumage and busy collecting nesting material: here one has landed on the beach near the yellow-eyed penguin landing and found a great bit of seaweed to take back to the nest.
Over winter when the juveniles start to hang out in our colonies they get to know the locals and some of them make them feel welcome by allo-preening - aka snogging. If it's a female juvenile she can start breeding in a year's time and so striking up a 'friendship' with a youngster may just work out later for pairing up and making chicks!