The Catlins coast is beautiful. This rare female New Zealand sea lion was basking in the early morning sun at Purakaunui Bay. New Zealand sea lions are one of the rarest seal species in the world. They are majestic and a little terrifying when seen close up. Also known as Hooker’s sea lion or whakahao (male) and kaki (female) in Māori, they are one of the largest animals found in New Zealand.