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Ningaloo Reef is a fringing coral reef located off the west coast of Australia, approximately 1200 km north of Perth. The reef is 260 km long and is Australia's largest fringing coral reef. In 1987 the reef and surrounding waters were designated as the Ningaloo Marine Park, and while the waters of the park are known for the seasonal feeding concentrations of the whale shark, the area is also visited by a range of whale and dolphin species. Humpback whales who migrate through the Marine Park from May to October each year, dwarf minke whales, orcas, pygmy blue whales, Bryde's whales, Australian humpback dolphins, bottlenose dolphins, spinner dolphins and southern right whales.
cape range national park
The national park surrounding Sal Salis is a place of rugged limestone ranges, breathtaking deep canyons and 50km of pristine beaches. It covers some 50,581 hectares and its northern boundary is just 40km from Exmouth. Wildlife is abundant with a variety of birds, emus, euros and red kangaroos commonly sighted. Cape Range offers a variety of attractions and activities for visitors interested in the natural environment.
Eons ago the range was an isolated island and as a result there are several species of plants and animals that are endemic to the area, including the red centred variety of the Sturt Desert Pea. Surveys have recorded over 630 species of flowering plants on the peninsula - a surprisingly high number for an arid limestone area.
Over 700 caves are catalogued in the Ranges and it is likely that many remain undiscovered. There are numerous gorges that provide a haven for wildlife and contain rare and unusual flora. A beautiful array of wildflowers can be seen in late winter including Sturt Desert Peas and the beautiful Bird Flower.
Exmouth Gulf lies between North West Cape and the main coastline of Western Australia, it is a rich marine environment and a nursery for humpback whales, dugong and turtles. The mangrove systems on the eastern margins are areas of high primary productivity feeding and restocking both the Gulf and the famed nearby Ningaloo Reef. The Gulf sustains one of Western Australia's largest prawn fisheries, managed by the Kailis Fishing Group, which operates under license from the Western Australian Government.