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Overview
RRaggy Charters is the only licensed boat-based whale watching company in Port Elizabeth, South Africa offering clients a personalised ocean experience where you’ll have the opportunity to see whales, dolphins, seals, sharks, penguins and other seabirds in Algoa Bay. We are dedicated to providing an educational and personal experience with the marine life found in our bay, and we thrive to show are guests as much wildlife as possible during our cruises, whilst educating them on the marine environment and its vital need for conservation. Raggy Charters was established in 1997 in order to fund the Baywatch Marine Conservation Project, which is dedicated to marine conservation and research in Algoa Bay. During the cruise we take guests to St Croix Island, which is home to the largest breeding colony of African penguins in the world. These endangered birds have rapidly declined, as our population alone lost 70% of their numbers in 7 years. It is along this route that we have the best chance of finding all the other exciting marine creatures that frequent our bay. Between June and January we find the ‘gentle giants’ humpback and Southern right whales. Both species travel thousands of kilometres to use the safe and warm shores of Africa as their breeding grounds. Humpback whales are well known for their acrobatic breaches and they never fail to amaze here in Algoa Bay as we see thousands of them passing by. Southern right whales prefer the shallower waters and seem to really enjoy getting close up and personal with our guests as they lazily roll and dive around the boat. We are lucky to boast some of the best bottlenose dolphin sightings in the world as 30,000 individuals use our bay every year, and their numbers are only increasing as we constantly see babies amongst the often 400-strong pods. We are now the Bottlenose Dolphin Capital of the World and have a 100% success rate in sightings since the beginning of 2016. Between February and June each year we get to witness the incredible sardine run which creates feeding frenzies with thousands of common dolphins launching through the waves trying to herd the fish in to a ball, with Cape gannets, and other seabirds, dive-bombing the shoal. Penguins, seals, sharks and game fish help themselves to the feast and then bryde’s & minke whales wait until the end to finish the school off, as they lunge through the water, mouth open wide, engulfing anything in their path. Our bay is also home to 250,000 Cape gannets breeding on Bird Island, and 6000 Cape fur seals at Black Rocks. We see humpback dolphins mostly in the summer months, and it is during this time the surface is covered with the tiny fins of baby hammerhead sharks. During the winter months, apart from the migratory whales, we also find albatrosses, petrels, terns and other pelagic bird species! There really is something for everyone in Algoa Bay!
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