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Southern Right Whale

marine life of Namibia

Introduction: There is a northern right whale and a southern right whale (Eubalaena australis). They are very similar in appearance but do not mix. They got their name from early whalers who considered them to be the 'right' whales to hunt because they float when dead. As they came close to shore and were easily approachable and yielded large amounts of valuable whalebone and oil, the name stuck throughout the world's whaling industry.

Southern right whale occur in pairs or small groups and possible courtship behaviour includes aerial displays of leaping almost clear of the water (breaching) and beating the surface of the water with their tail flukes, called lobtailing. They are an inquisitive animal and will often approach boats, a feature on a cruise from either Swakopmund, Walvis Bay and Sandwich Harbour. It is not a deep diver as its principal food source - small krill - are found on the upper reaches of the ocean.

Distribution: Rare, but southern right whales appear off the coast of Namibia from the months of June and November and tend to head to sheltered bays.

Diet: They are a specialist feeder on plankton and small crustaceans.

Colouring: A dark grey body, with whitish patches.

Breeding: A single calf is born after a gestation period of 11-12 months. Calves suckle from the mother for at least 6 months, with an inter-calving interval of around 3 years.

Size: Maximum length of 15-17m and a weight of some 50-63t. Calves are around 5-6m in length.

Marine Life | Namibia

  • Namibia Marine Life: Southern Right Whale
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Beach Lodge

Top location, right on the beach. This is a very popular accommodation choice - and rightly so.

Desert Breeze Lodge

Slightly outide town on the banks of the Swakop River and overlooking the dunes of the Namib Desert. Excellent for those wanting a desert setting near the convenience of town

Swakopmund Sands Hotel

Close to the main beach and Swakopmund aquarium, also boasts a heated swimming pool

Hotel Pension Rapmund

Very centrally located with a quaint German atmosphere.

Sea Side Hotel & Spa

A new hotel and spa complex situated north of town in the suburb of Mile 4

The Stiltz

Absolutely unique! Built on stilts into the Swakop River - many units offer great views. Feels more like a traditional country lodge rather than an establishment in a busy tourist town.

Accommodation in Namibia