Humpback whale strands near “Paaltjies”

Rudi Bowe

The Namibian Dolphin Project (NDP) reports it found the carcass of a humpback whale on Monday (9 August 2021) on the beach north of the border with Sandwich Harbour, also referred to by locals as “Paaltjies”.

Judging from the condition of the carcass the mammal has been dead for at least a few days. The fact that the carcass was still in the surf zone at the time it was discovered, it was impossible to measure it. However, it was possible to remove skin- and blabber specimens, as well as samples of parasites which existed on the whale’s skin when it was still alive.
Chelsea Kovalcsik from the Namibian Dolphin Project told Namib Times the humpback population is soaring, thanks to conservation efforts. Unfortunately, with the population growing, chances of strandings also increase.
According to Kovalcsik, they spotted three humpback whales in the waters close to Pelican Point on 8 August 2021.
“We saw a very relaxed, resting mother-calf pair, with what seemed to be a very small calf and on the other side of the bay, we saw two feeding humpbacks that gave us quite a show. We also saw about 100 Heavyside dolphins, bow riding and jumping.

Namibia Dolphin Project subsequent to spotting the mother and calf advises tour operators to approach the mammals slowly and not to spend too much time around them in instances where calves are present.


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