“Seals, Penguins and Sharks were great. Lots of birds. No whales or dolphins. Nice crew. Thanks.”- Daniel & Kirsten
The conditions for the sea today were predicted to be a bit windy but, we actually experienced very pleasant conditions on the trip with just enough sea spray to fully indulge our senses. It was a trip in which birds were plentiful, with the greatest show being the African Penguins.
Shortly after we had departed from Kleinbaai harbour, we came across two rafts of African Penguins, with a total of 12 beautiful birds around the boat. These little creatures are quite awkward on land and so it is always nice to see them in the water where they are able to showcase just how agile they actually are. In general, when one sees the African Penguin in these numbers, they tend to be very relaxed and today was no exception. After watching them for a short while, we cruised along the shallows, were we spotted a many Cape Cormorants sitting on the water before making our way towards the Shark Cage Diving Vessels.
Here, we managed to spot a relatively small Great White Shark swimming away from one of the operators. Great White Sharks get their name from their Beautiful white Belly which we are sometimes lucky enough to see from the boat. On top, the colour of a Great white can range from a dark grey to almost a goldish brown. The shark we saw today definitely had more of a coppery brown colouration to him which is not something we see every day.
After viewing this apex predator, we spotted a Parasitic Jaeger – otherwise known as an Arctic Skua-. These birds are notorious for badgering gulls and other seabird species until they regurgitate their food, providing a meal for the cheeky Skua. We watched for a while before we decided to move on with our tour.
On our way towards Dyer Island, we picked up a piece of Sea Bamboo which a few of our clients decided to sample. Once we reached the island, we stopped for a bit for Karli to explain a little bit about the history and the birdlife on this ecologically important island. Dyer Island is home to 27 different bird species including the endangered Cape Cormorants and African Penguins.
Following this, we spent some time with the Cape Fur seals before heading behind Geyser Rock to see if there was anything exciting in the open ocean. As some Cape Gannets flew by, we spotted a Sun Antarctic Skua, which come up to join us during the winter months, marking a change of seasons. We then made our way back to the harbour, stopping only to have a good look at Danger Point Lighthouse before returning to shore.
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