Posted by: tim ellis | September 27, 2006

Shongololo Dune Express – Thursday 7th September.

A change of bus today as Jenny is taking us to Walvis bay for the Mola Mola boat trip and sand dune excursion. We are on a boat called ‘Gambit’ named after the largest dolphin in captivity, skippered by Cronje. We have barely started before we are joined by a fur seal then visited by pelicans and a cape cormorant. We then sail out past the guano platform (the largest toilet in Namibia , an idea* that made it’s builder a millionaire ) and Russian fishing boats to look for a reported whale – a humpback which we find and observe for a while. We leave the whale to look for dolphin. We quickly find some Heaviside dolphin but they seem uninterested until we are joined by a playful fur seal ‘Sally’ at which point they join us for bow riding.

We land at Pelican Point for lunch – which is oysters, sparkling wine and other assorted bits – and plenty of it. Then we set of for the dunes -first driving (in Land Rovers – Cronje is driving ours) along another seal colony – there are lots of dead seals and premature births – apparently the fish stocks are low which is affecting seal numbers. Once we reach the former border of Walvis bay and Namibia we turn in land and take a real roller coaster ride through the dunes returning via the salt pan and flamingos.

*Bird Guano is worth money, but when the birds were using islands and rocks most of it was wasted. Providing a large platform that remains above the sea means more guano to collect.

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