Uruguay launches the whale watching season

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Uruguay launches the whale watching season
Source: MINTUR
August 31, 2022

The country continues to redouble efforts for the development of responsible whale watching tourism, as well as everything that has to do with ocean tourism


The coasts of the South Atlantic Ocean are part of the migratory route of the Southern Right Whale. During the summer they feed on tons of krill in areas near Antarctica (the Malvinas and South Georgia Islands) and then begin their migration to Península Valdés (Argentina), Maldonado and Rocha (Uruguay) in search of warm and calm waters. until reaching Imbituba, Ferrugem (Santa Catalina, Brazil).

Between July and October of each year you can witness a miracle of nature: the Southern Right Whale, which visits us on the coasts of Maldonado and Rocha. I discovered this sighting route with more than 55 million years of evolution and follow it responsibly!

The Minister of Tourism, Tabaré Viera celebrated this activity that has been promoted for 20 years from the Ministry. He recalled the importance of caring for and respecting marine life in all its extension, and in this sense, the organization works jointly with all the institutions that have an influence on these issues.

These beautiful animals that these days are reaching the coasts of Rocha and Maldonado, which nature gives us and conscientiously forces us to conserve, offers us and enables us to continue working. The ministry supports this investment, that two observatories have been built and it is planned to continue building along the coast," Viera remarked, for his part, about the 2022 whale season. "These cetaceans are a great natural wealth to be preserved in first term and a resource from the tourist point of view", he valued.

Being able to observe their courtship and reproduction cycle, in a respectful manner and at a safe distance of 300 meters, appreciate their characteristic “V”-shaped blow of the right whales, since they arrive at the Uruguayan coast to socialize, mate and sometimes, giving birth and nursing their calves is a treasure that is kept forever. With the company of local specialized guides and following the current regulations for the protection of marine mammals (Law No. 19,128 and decrees No. 261/002 and No. 238/998) you can appreciate every detail: the birds that flutter over the cetaceans, to in some distraction, catch some fish or sea lice, among other foods.

There are 90 species of cetaceans today, including whales (baleen cetaceans) and dolphins (toothed cetaceans). Cetaceans evolved from land animals, ancestral carnivores, that adapted to marine life about 55 million years ago.

The longevity of the Right whale is still unknown, but it is presumed that it could be between 50 and 70 years.

Uruguay, unlike other countries, meets the natural conditions to spot them from the coast. The best places to see them are: Playa Hermosa, Cerro San Antonio, Punta Colorada, Punta Negra, Punta del Chileno, Playa Mansa in Punta del Este between stops 23 and 40, the José Ignacio lighthouse, La Paloma, La Pedrera, Santa Teresa, Cerro Verde and Cabo Polonio.

President Luis Lacalle Pou participated in the activity, as well as the Mayor of Rocha, Alejo Umpierrez, the Director of Tourism of Rocha, Federico Zerbino, the Acting General Director of Tourism of the Municipality of Maldonado, Melina Bentancur, the General Director of the Secretary of the Ministry of Tourism, Ignacio Curbelo, the Director of Aquatic Resources of the MGAP, Jaime Coronel and the Mayor of La Paloma, Sergio Muñiz.

In addition, a group of schoolchildren from School 56 of La Paloma, showed the work they have been doing together with the photographer Leandro Borba regarding the conservation and care of the Southern Right Whale.

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