Southern royal albatross (Diomedea epomophora)
Ninety nine percent of the world’s population breeds on the Campbell Island, with the remaining population breeding on the Auckland Islands.The Campbell Island population is approximately 7,855 breeding pairs. Young birds leave New Zealand waters and fly circumpolar through the Pacific, Indian and Atlantic Oceans, before returning to New Zealand waters to breed as adults when 6-12 years old. Heaviest species of albatross weighing up to 10 kilograms.
Southern royals can be seen off the Kaikoura Coast throughout the year, generally singularly, although up to 3 or more birds may be seen around fishing boats. Generally an offshore species seen more than 3 miles off the coast, although they may be seen close to shore during storms.