Cruising for dolphins in Mandurah

The Mandurah Dolphin Island Adventure tour takes you on a 1.5-hour cruise through the Mandurah Canals into the Dawesville Cut and out into the Peel-Harvey Estuary to see Indo-Pacific Bottlenose Dolphins. Dolphin sightings are guaranteed on this cruise, meaning that if dolphins are not seen, you’ll receive a free cruise. However, dolphin sightings are very likely.

We didn’t even have to wait to see our first dolphins, a pair of dolphins next to the boat’s docking space. Once admiring these friendly creatures we headed to Dawesville Cut, a man-made channel between the Peel-Harvey Estuary and the Indian Ocean. There is an entire community of dolphins that live around the Cut, many of them have braved shark attacks or sadly been entangled and injured in fishing line.

We saw about five dolphins swimming about in the water and playing with each other in one section and more in other areas. There was a dolphin with most of his dorsal fin missing named ‘John Edwards’, his fin bitten off by the sharks that plague Dawesville Cut. He is usually seen with his mates, other dolphins called ‘Jack Daniels’ and ‘Jim Beam’.

Here’s a short clip of our day:

Video by Leo Paoliello of @captured_moments42, John Paoliello and Dianne Bortoletto

Upon leaving the Dawesville Cut, we went into the Peel-Harvey Estuary and were told about the important Mandurah wetlands that attracts bird life including the migratory Red-Necked stints, which can be seen from October to March as they fly from North Asia to Mandurah yearly. Whilst travelling, our guide pointed out the artificial osprey nests that tower above the trees. The nests were built to house ospreys, as the trees they were previously nesting in were cleared for residential development.

When cruising through the estuary we encountered ‘Nicky’, one of the oldest of the Mandurah dolphins. She is a grandmother dolphin as her daughter has had a calf.

Our boat then travelled through the rest of the estuary and of the canals at a swift pace, and we were back at the dock. Mandurah Cruises Dolphin Island Adventure tour is a must if you want to experience the vast wildlife of Mandurah.

There is a possibility of seeing whales as the boat travels through the Leeuwin current, a passage that whales travel through as they migrate to and from Antarctica. Even though we didn’t see whales, we saw loads of dolphins in their natural habitat.

Guest blog post by Matt Paoliello (14yo Year 9 student), Travelletto’s nephew 

Did you know….that Mandurah is an island?

dolphin swimming

Fact File

Mandurah Cruises

Book online or call (+61) 08 9581 1242

Mandurah Cruises boat

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