The excellent weather and warm sea during the past holiday season saw holiday makers flocking to the beaches of the South Peninsula. “It has been a busy festive season for the Spotters, not in terms of sharks but definitely in terms of people,“ reported Sarah Titley Manager of the Shark Spotters programme. The beaches were pretty full over the holidays, especially the “big days” of boxing day and new years day. Spotters recorded a total of 16 sightings between 10 Dec and 10 Jan. (Muizenberg x 6, St James x 5, Glencairn x 1, Fish Hoek x 4). Most of the people I have spoken to say that they swam in False Bay more often this season than they have for very many years and have enjoyed relaxed bathing conditions although they don’t venture out into deeper water. (Eds comment)
“In terms of people’s responsiveness and awareness, I think overall it has been very positive. The spotters say that they spent a lot of time conversing with the public, and there seemed to have been a high level of interest in the program from the public, not only to find out when the last sighting was, but also just general interest in how the program operates and the people behind it, and of course about sharks and their behaviour! This is very encouraging as the more interest people have about the program and sharks, the more we are able to educate them to make them aware of the risks and so reduce the potential encounters with sharks along our beaches.” People also need to be told about the importance of sharks in our ecosystem.
Note that now that the school holidays are over, the Shark Spotters will only be operating in Glencairn and Clovelly at weekends and on public holidays until Easter.
Shark Spotting Operating Times
Permanent Beaches (365 days a year):
Muizenberg: 8am – 6pm
St James/Kalk Bay: 8am – 6pm
Fish Hoek: 8am – 6pm (7am – 6.45pm in summer)
The Hoek, Noordhoek: 9am – 5pm
Temporary Beaches (from Oct – April only on Weekends, Public Holidays and School Holidays)
Clovelly: 10.30am – 5pm
Glencairn: 8am – 6pm
Don’t miss the Shark Spotters comedy legends starring Barry Hilton & Mike King – 11 Feb
These two international comedians and friends, will perform together on stage in a no-holds barred comedy show at Fish Hoek High School on 11 February 2012, as part of the Comedy Legends in the Valley series in aid of Shark Spotters. Tickets are R100 pre booked or R120 on the door. Bookings: Call 0781744244, email firstname.lastname@example.org or go to AP Jones, Fish Hoek Main Road.