Just a Little Further

Life in the Bay – Lüderitzbucht, Namibia

We’ve been calling the town Lüderitz, but in actuality, it’s called Lüderitzbucht (German for Luderitz Bay) and the locals are called “Buchters”. Even the local monthly newspaper is called the Buchter News. Life aboard Nine of Cups, moored in the bay, has been pleasant and interesting. There are no other cruiser/liveaboards here, but there are several boats moored around us.

boats all around

We’ve met Andy who works on his trimaran everyday and Heiko, the captain of Zeepard, the local harbor tour boat. Otherwise, the yacht anchorage is pretty quiet. Many of the moored boats look abandoned and forlorn.

abondoned and forlorn

We’re well aware of any ship or boat movements, day or night, because we can both hear and feel the vibration of the ship’s engines/props through the water. Then, of course, we can also feel the wake from the tugs that assist the larger ships tie-up at the wharf or the skiffs that zip by us at 10 knots. For instance, Ocean Africa’s Frontier, a 480′ container ship, arrived early this morning and we woke to find her making a tug-assisted 180º turn just off our port. The vibration about knocked us out of our bunks and the wake from the working tugs did the rest. Luckily, ship traffic here is fairly light and watching the tugs maneuver the big ships is pretty interesting.

frontier turning

Bird life in the bay is prolific. Most unoccupied boats have some sort of mechanism to keep the birds off since they land and poop on anything with a flat surface, not to mention in-flight bombs. There are two types of gulls … big kelp gulls and smaller Hartlaub gulls; several species of cormorants, some of which we’ve never seen before, like reed cormorants; and at low tide, greater flamingos.

birds in the bay

And here’s a new collective noun for you … a water dance of black-necked grebes works its way around the bay and floats out by the boat quite regularly.

a water dance of grebes

Heaviside’s dolphins (aka Haviside’s dolphins) and Cape fur seals are regular visitors in the bay. Whales have been spotted as close in as the yacht anchorage, but we haven’t seen any to date. Unfortunately, Namibia still condones the annual “culling” of seals on a regular basis.

heaviside dolphins

Photo credit: Ryan Reisigner

 

Just sitting in the warmth of the sun in the cockpit is a pleasant experience … sipping sundowners, watching the birds and genuinely enjoying life in the bay.

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