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Hermanus in South Africa is also known as the best whale watching spot in the world.

Southern Right Whales are easily distinguished from the other 2 baleen whales ( Humpback & Bryde’s whales ) by three distinct characteristics:

  • V-shaped blow,
  • Callosities on their heads
  • The lack of a dorsal fin on their broad backs.

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They visit the South African Coast from June- December.

QUICK FACTS: SOUTHERN RIGHT WHALES

  • Southern Right Whales can reach a maximum length of 15-17 meters and can weigh 50 – 60 tons.
  • They have broad black tails and slightly square flippers.
  • The callosities on the jaws and are wart-like bumps are called a bonnet and are home to specialized whale lice and barnacles.
  • Mating groups are often associated with increased activity, with the female rolling over and slapping her flippers on the surface, trying to avoid the males.
  • As many as 6-10 males might be trying to mate with one female

whale body

They were named “Right Whale” because they were the perceived as “right” whale to hunt.

  • They were slow swimmers
  • They floated when dead These whales are very curious and will approach the boat- an easy target to harpoon
  • The provide large amount of oil (from the blubber)

SOUTHER RIGHT WHALES 101 - CLICK HERE

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