‘Still a good chance’ for more sardine action

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The KZN Sharks Board conducted a sardine patrol flight on Friday through to the Hole in the Wall in the Eastern Cape.

KZN Sharks Board acting head of operations Greg Thompson reported, “There were shoals of sardines sighted close to the backline at the Pennington Ski Boat Club, Bazely and Glenmore beach.

“There were also numerous scattered pockets of sardines/baitfish on a deeper line, in the Port Edward area early this morning.

“Throughout the Eastern Cape there were large numbers of dolphins and gannets seen, but there were no visible signs of sardines or concentrated activity.

“The reports we have received from a dive boat operating in the Port Saint John’s area, is that they are experiencing very good bait balls on most outings with an abundance of sharks and other predators. These bait balls consist of mainly mixed baitfish and not actual sardines.

“Since the weekend of the 4th of July, the sardine activity on the South Coast region has been pretty quiet in comparison to the bumper action we have experienced over the past four weeks.

“The only confirmed nettings were in the Pennington area on Monday, where about 50 crates were netted and at Ramsgate on Thursday, where approximately 70 crates were netted.

“There was a confirmed netting at the Pennington Ski Boat Club today, Friday the 10th, at 13h00.

“There is a possibility that the lull in activity is due to the weather and sea conditions which have not been ideal for sardine activity and netting. There is still a good chance that we may see some action once this predicted cold front for the weekend has moved through.

“Due to the restrictions imposed by the COVID-19 National lockdown and in accordance with Lockdown Legislation and Regulations, all shark safety gear was removed on the 24th of March.

“We have not been given a date as to when the beaches will be opened. Only then will we plan the installation of shark safety gear.”

Photo by Justin Klusener

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