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Long-beaked common dolphin

In Plettenberg Bay we are fortunate enough to have three species of dolphins that frequent the area, and one of these is the long-beaked common dolphin Delphinus capensis. As the name may suggest, this species has a long, narrow, pointed beak, while another diagnostic feature is a ‘criss-cross’ figure-of-eight or hourglass shape on the sides READ MORE

Humpback dolphin

The Indo-Pacific humpback dolphin Sousa chinensis is a resident species along our coastline, and is the iconic species of the Plettenberg Bay Hope Spot (www.sst.org.za/hope-spots/plett-hope-spot). The Indo-Pacific humpback dolphin is a widespread and highly variable species. Humpback dolphins range from the east coast of Africa, northern Indian Ocean, along the southern coast of the Middle READ MORE

The missing “lynx”

There have been increasing reports of lynx being spotted on Robberg Nature Reserve, however, these animals are not lynx but caracals Caracal caracal. Caracals are a robustly built cat characterized by their long pointed ears with black tufted tips. It is these tufted ears which are a shared characteristic between species of the genus Caracal READ MORE

Fishing for science

The perilous state of many fish stocks worldwide is well known, as well as the data deficient status of many fish species, and the people who are have noticed a change over time, excluding the commercial fishing vessels, are the recreational and subsistence fishermen. It was recognized by Rudy van der Elst that such fishermen READ MORE

Panda’s of the sea – Orcas

We had a fantastic week last week with some special visitors making their way past Plettenberg Bay, and only one boat full of passengers were lucky enough to see them! I am talking about a pod of 7 orcas, or killer whales, which were sighted roughly 4 nautical miles from the coast – what an READ MORE

Floating sea foam

No one likes to arrive at the beach to find a layer of sea foam on the shoreline, in the waves, or further out behind the breakers – especially if it is a disconcerting brown or yellow colour! Foams, however, are global in their presence in the aquatic natural environment including on streams, rivers, lakes, READ MORE

Fish are friends not food

Water covers 71% of the worlds surface, and 97% of that water is in the oceans. Oceans, while appearing infinitely large, are not an infinite resource. Oceans provide many important services and functions, most of which people may be unaware of, such as: nutrient recycling, primary production, provide shelter to many marine species, provide food READ MORE

Swift, spirited seals

It is surely now widespread knowledge that at the base of Robberg Peninsula on the protected bay side there is a very large breeding colony of cape fur seals Arctocephalus pusillus pusillus. They are a charming species, whose antics in the water and on land can keep me entertained for hours, despite being noisy and READ MORE