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
Dyer Island Nature Reserve lies off the south-western Cape
coast, about 10km south-east of Gansbaai. The well known Danger Point
Lighthouse is approximately 13km away.
The Reserve comprises of two islands adjacent to each
other, Dyer and Geyser Islands. The bigger Dyer Island is approximately 20.77ha
in size, while Geyser Island is a rocky outcrop of approximately 3.89ha and
lies about 150m to the southwest of Dyer. The two islands are separated by a
sandy bottom channel known as Shark Alley.
The reserve is managed by Cape Nature.
Dyer Island is considered by Birdlife International to be
one of 103 Globally Important Bird Areas (IBAs) in South Africa. 21 bird
species breed on the island, including endangered seabird species such as the
African penguin, Cape Cormorant and Bank Cormorant. Several species of
shorebird breed on the Island, including African Black Oystercatcher,
White-fronted plover and Kittlitz’s plover.
Geyser Island is one of 48 Cape fur seal colonies within
the Benguela Upwelling Ecosystem.
The marine waters surrounding the Dyer island Nature
Reserve are also inhabited by a number of shark and other fish species, e.g.
endangered Galjoen, as well as whales and dolphins.
Abalone is an abundant and valuable resource in and around
the reserve, and despite the strict control and regulatory measures it is
illegally harvested and over-utilised.
Recreation and tourism opportunities are limited to the
marine section and include boat based tourism, e.g. Whale watching and Shark