African Journal of Marine Science

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Short Communication

A near mass stranding of cetaceans in St Helena Bay, South Africa

PB Best, D Reeb


A group of 70 false killer whales Pseudorca crassidens and 124 bottlenose dolphins Tursiops sp., and a separate group of 13 Risso’s dolphins Grampus griseus, assembled close inshore off a known mass-stranding site in St Helena Bay, South Africa, in October 2003. However, only a single Risso’s dolphin attempted to strand and 13 bottlenose dolphins had to be shepherded out of the shallows the next day, the remainder leaving of their own accord. This is considered to be the first near-stranding phenomenon recorded for the region.

Keywords: bottlenose dolphin; false killer whale; mass stranding; Risso’s dolphin; South Africa; St Helena Bay

African Journal of Marine Science 2010, 32(1): 163–166
AJOL African Journals Online