Ponta Do Ouro, Southern Mozambique boasts incredible biodiversity both on land and in the ocean. Here you have the chance to view and interact with extraordinary marine animals, such as our resident bottlenose dolphins. When they are social these dolphins willfully choose to interact with us and will leave you with a moment in time that you’ll find hard to forget. Other dolphin species we encounter are the very rare, endangered Indo-pacific Humpback dolphin and the pelagic (open ocean) Spinner dolphin. Dolphin swims occur all year round.
Then the summer months (Dec – May) yield a chance to snorkel with migratory species of whale sharks and on the odd occasion manta rays. During the winter months (July – Nov) we are awed with incredible sightings and surface displays from Humpback Whales who travel thousands of kilometers from the cold arctic waters to give birth to their young in the warm waters of the Mozambique Channel.
The chance of these unique sightings draw marine enthusiasts from around the world, and we take pride in sharing the wonders of this beautiful stretch of coastline with our guests through informative educational briefings and a general love of our oceans. We hope you enjoy the info we’ve put together on these marine animals, and look forward to taking you to see them!
Bottlenose dolphins live in warm and temperate seas worldwide. In Ponta do Ouro, they are the most commonly encountered species out of all marine life inhabiting the bay. Sightings are year round as they are resident in southern Mozambique. Bottlenose dolphins are highly intelligent. This intelligence has driven considerable interaction with humans. It is due to this fact that we owe tremendous thanks to be able to observe, conserve and interact with these dolphins.
The Indo-Pacific Humpback dolphin gets its name from the elongated dorsal fin and humped back appearance which arises from the accumulation of fatty tissue on their backs as they age. Some of them may not have the hump, or it may not be as prominent. Another way in which they differ from other dolphin species is in relation to their mounded forehead and long beaks.
Whale sharks are regarded as the largest fish in the ocean. These slow moving filter feeding sharks grow up to 12m long and weigh up to 13.6 tonnes at full maturity. The whale shark is found in tropical waters and warm waters, living in the open sea with a life span of up to 70 years.
The spinner dolphin is a small dolphin found in off-shore tropical waters around the world. They are famous for their acrobatic displays. They jump high out of the water and spin around like a spinning top. The spinner dolphin has a predominantly dark grey slender body, with darker patches in the tail stock, back and throat. They have a 3-toned colour pattern, and the belly often has a creamy white patch. The beak is long and thin, with a dark tip.
Humpback whales are found in all oceans around the world. Once almost an extinct species due to the whaling industry, their numbers have since increased to around 80 000, after the moratorium was introduced in 1966. Humpback whales are migratory and can travel up to 25 000km per year. They spend their summers in polar waters where they feed, and then in winter migrate toward the equator where warm tropical waters become their breeding grounds.
Southern Right Whale
The southern right whale spends the summer months in the far Southern Ocean feeding, and then migrates north in winter for breeding. During this time, they are mostly found in the sheltered bays of the Cape Coast, and can spend up to five months a year here. They pass their time playing, courting and nursing their newborn calves, often just metres from the shore. They are occasionally spotted in Mozambican waters.