Dassen Island Nature Reserve

This is one of the latest Ramsar wetlands in South Africa that we have not visited yet. A more complete report will be posted once we have visited the wetland.

Designation date: 29 March 2019

The island of 212 hectares lies 11km offshore on the west coast close to the town of Yzerfontein in the Western Cape, approximately 55km north-west of Cape Town. The boundaries for the Ramsar wetland includes a further 525 ha sea surrounding the island.

The reserve is managed by Cape Nature while the lighthouse on the island is managed by Transnet.

It supports 10 of the 15 seabird species endemic to southern Africa and provides a safe haven to numerous Palearctic and sub-Antarctic migrants. Dassen Island Nature Reserve is recognised by BirdLife International as one of 103 Globally Important Bird and Biodiversity Areas due to the role it plays in providing habitat for significant numbers of resident and migratory seabird and shorebird species.