Kayaking with the seals at Walvis Bay

Very close to Walvis Bay, the second largest seal colony in Namibia have found their home at a large strech of sand reaching out into the bay. To visit them, we went out with a small tour in the early morning and drove by 4×4 to Pelican Point – the very end of the sand strech that they call their home. 

 

There we got the Kayaks ready to get closer to the seals. It is safer and less stressful for the seals for us to get closer to them from water than on land because they basically live on land and only get into the water when needed (to cool down or find food). So if you approach them on water they decide whether they want to get close to you and not the other way round.

There was always a lot going on. The seals could be seen in small groups or “families” with one dominant male (along the beaches here there were a lot of these seal families, always a couple of 100 meters appart from each other).

And we were happily paddeling amongst all the seals that were curious enough to come visit us in the water. These were mainly the younger and more playful ones. Notice the young seal swimming alongside and jumping out of the water next to us.

Some of them also playfully “attacked” our paddles by bitting into and holding onto it.

After spending a long time with the seals, we paddled back to the cars and had a light snack there before setting out for the drive back to Walvis Bay.

During the drive and on closer inspection of the seemingly dead environment, which is mainly used to farm salt from ocean water, we saw various bird species and jackals. Our guide explained that the shallow, salty and warm water drives the growth of micro organisms. These then attract birds such as flamingos and these in turn attract jackals hunting for food.

Therefore Walvis Bay has an extremely large flamingo population that can often be seen in the main bay directly next to town.

Definitely a recommendation to do this trip with Pelican Point Kayaking, the guys were very organised, helpful and knew a lot about the area and the wildlife there!

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