New Zealand Sea Lion Trust

Organisation page created in the Animals category
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The New Zealand Sea Lion Trust is a volunteer group based in Dunedin who are dedicated to saving this critically endangered marine mammal.

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  Otago Awareness Wildlife Endangered

New Zealand Sea Lion Trust was formed in 2003 to support on-going research on the small but growing population of New Zealand’s only endemic pinniped seal.

NZ Sea Lions are endangered and a ‘nationally critical’ species, the highest threat category in New Zealand – this is the same classification as the kākāpō. Their main threats are competition for food, accidental drowning in trawl fisheries, disease and human disturbance. Despite being fully protected under the Wildlife Act and Marine Mammal Protection Act, NZ sea lions are sometimes harassed and killed deliberately, with several such incidents in Otago and Southland in recent years.

The return of the species to mainland beaches provides an ideal opportunity to study a re-colonising population and educate the public about this most charismatic of New Zealand species.

The bulk of our work focuses on population monitoring, education, public awareness and assisting management and research of this recolonising population.

Our research and monitoring efforts are therefore focused on the Otago and Catlins Coast at this stage.

More about us

To promote the protection and conservation of the endangered New Zealand Sea Lion through research and public education.


The NZ Sea Lion Trust was formed in 2003 after breeding female NZ Sea Lions returned to the Otago coastline. The NZ Sea Lion Trust and The Department of Conservation (DOC) work closely together to conserve the NZ Sea Lions by monitoring females and pups, running community activities, delivering education programmes and supporting scientific research.


Use of funds

Funds raised will be used to buy essential equipment, such as scanners, for the use of our volunteers in monitoring the movements of the individual sea lions.

Latest donations

  • New Zealand Photography Workshops

    New Zealand Photography Workshops 6 days ago



    • New Zealand Sea Lion Trust

      Dear Richard Thank you so much for the generous donation. This will help us to keep our volunteers cars filled up during the next season while they are out spotting and looking after the pups during the summer season. Hope to see you out there again. Thanks once again JohnBurke Treasurer

  • Daniel Healy

    Daniel Healy on 22 May 2019


    Found out about this group via Rachel Mcoubrey's childrens book. Seems like a great organisation.


  • Elisa Chillingworth

    Elisa Chillingworth on 29 Jan 2019


    Great work from the trust run completely by volunteers. Amazing wildlife and coastal marine area needing protection.


    • New Zealand Sea Lion Trust

      Thank you so much Elisa. I will send you a copy of our latest newsletter and put you on our Friends of the Trust list so you can keep up with our activities. It's really great to have your support. Thanks John Burke Treasurer

  • Film New Zealand

    Film New Zealand on 29 Oct 2018



  • Gérard, Joëlle, Camille, Franck

    Gérard, Joëlle, Camille, Franck on 28 Apr 2018



    • New Zealand Sea Lion Trust

      Dear Gérard, Joëlle, Camille & Franck Thank you so much for your generous donation to the Trust. I think we met by the "Pup Pool' the other day and I'm glad you enjoyed the experience so much. It's great when we receive donations out of the blue like this and it really helps. Merci & A bientot John

Who's involved?

New Zealand Sea Lion Trust's avatar
Created by, and paying to a verified bank account of, New Zealand Sea Lion Trust (Charity)

Registered Charity A Registered Charity has legal recognition under the Charities Act 2005.
Tax credit Donations of over $5 are eligible for a New Zealand charitable giving tax credit.
Page Moderated The page has been checked by our team to make sure it complies with our terms and conditions.


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