News / South Africa / Local News

Judi Davis
2 minute read
24 Jul 2017
11:54 am

Update: Sardine activity continues between Ramsgate and St Michael’s

Judi Davis

Ten nets were brought in at Scottburgh over the weekend and local anglers say shoals have been spotted offshore in some South Coast areas

Margate beach earlier today.

Sardine excitement continues on the Lower South Coast where a number of nettings took place on Monday, reports the South Coast Herald.

Mike Anderson-Reade, head of operations for the KwaZulu-Natal Sharks Board, has been monitoring the situation closely.

Shark safety gear had been removed from all beaches between and including Hibberdene and Port Edward, in spite of the fact that there did not appear to be much predator activity accompanying the shoals, he said.

He reported that there had been numerous shoals of sardines spotted between St Michael’s and Ramsgate. Netting by commercial seine netters had taken place at Ski-Boat Bay in Ramsgate, Ramsgate Main Beach, Margate and St Michael’s on Sea. Some of these nets had been very good hauls, in the region of 120 crates of sardines.

Two small nets of mixed baitfish, which had included sardines, had also been brought in at Umkomaas.

“This activity on the Lower South Coast is currently ongoing and may continue over the next few days,” he said.

Anglers say that when the first nets were brought in on Monday, seine netters were selling their catches at a premium price of between R1 000 and R800 a crate.

Earlier, sardine netters were wrapping up operations in Margate where two nets were brought on Monday.

According to Anderson-Reade, 10 nets were brought in at Scottburgh at the weekend and local anglers said shoals had been spotted offshore in some South Coast areas, South Coast Herald reported.

Anderson-Reade said it was puzzling that the shoals – which seemed to be made up of a mixture of sardines and other bait fish – had not been accompanied by the usual predators like Cape gannets and dolphins.

Margate beach

Shark safety equipment had been removed at Margate beach to prevent unnecessary deaths of sharks and other sea creatures that might be attracted to this area by the recent netting.

“Sharks board had not yet removed any other nets but was monitoring the situation closely,” Anderson-Reade said.

Caxton News Service

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