Giant Australian Cuttlefish
Contributed by Natalie & Steve of Curious Campers
Giant cuttlefish will appeal to anyone who appreciates all that is weird and wonderful in nature. When tens of thousands of Giant Australian Cuttlefish arrive to breed near Whyalla it is a unique wildlife spotting experience. The season runs from June to the end of August.
Up to half a meter in length, the cuttlefish are fascinating to watch. They can propel themselves forwards and backward. As they swim, their bodies pulse with iridescent colors. They are masters of disguise and you can see them change color to match their environment right in front of you.
Whyalla is 400 km north of South Australia’s capital Adelaide. Road conditions between Adelaide and Whyalla are excellent although lookout for big trucks. There is also a bus service between the two cities.
Stony Point, 20 km from Whyalla, is the best place to see the cuttlefish. One of the great things about this experience is how accessible it is. You can wade into waist-deep water, look down and see them.
You can dive or snorkel at the site. Water depth is generally less the 5 meters. Snorkellers will see cuttlefish in just a couple of meters of water. Stony Point has a big carpark, toilet, and change facilities. There is a chain rail into the water which is handy if you are juggling diving gear and a camera.
The main issue for this experience is the cold. This is a winter activity and the water temperature is around 12 degrees Celsius. You’ll need a thick wetsuit or drysuit, boots, gloves, and hood. The longest we stayed in the water was 45 minutes.
Don’t be put off, the cold is part of the adventure, and seeing the cuttlefish is an experience you will never forget.