Whale Watching near Cape Town, South Africa Welcome to Gansbaai, home of the Marine Big 5.
Trip Summary 30 January 2024:
Leaving Kleinbaai Harbour behind us we faced perfect weather conditions out at sea today. Just a few minutes after heading out we encountered an endangered Indian Ocean Humpback dolphin. After spending some time with the individual with moved on and encountered a pod of Bottlenose dolphins and some Cape fur seals just a bit further into the bay! Guests and crew were especially lucky today as the pod as well as the seals were feeding. At one point we decided to let the dolphins be and head over to the Shark cage diving boats. We stopped by our sister company Marine Dynamics and their vessel Slashfin, where we got a glimpse of our beloved Bronze whaler sharks. Moving on we headed through the Reef system further along the coastline where we spotted a Southern giant petrel as well as a whale spout in the distance. Unfortunately, the Bryde’s whale only came up very briefly. We continued the trip and made our way over to the Island system where Cape fur seals were cooling down in Shark Alley and the pups were playing on Geyser Rock. Once it was time to say goodbye to the seals we headed over to Dyer Island where some of the endangered African Penguins were sunbathing on the island whereas others were taking a swim in one of the natural pools.
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What species did we see today?
Bronze Whaler Shark Giant Petrel Brydes Whale Indian Ocean Humpback Dolphin
Humpback dolphins are an endangered species, with small populations living very close to shore, typically in water less than 25m deep and an average home range of 120km. Their proximity to land makes these animals particularly vulnerable to human influence.
At present there are two recognized species of bottlenose dolphin, and in some cases, both species can be found in the same area. The two species are the common bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus), and the Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphin (T. aduncus). In addition, there is a great deal of variation in colouration, diet and behaviour. The difference between the common bottlenose and Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphin are subtle, but the common bottlenose dolphin generally larger and more robust with a slight darker colouration.
African Penguin Cape fur seal