A sardine observation flight, which was conducted on Thursday, revealed that the fish may be on their way. KwaZulu-Natal Sharks Board acting head of operations Greg Thompson said there was activity on the Eastern Cape coastline.
Sardines could soon appear in KZN
This is an indication that the fish could appear soon, however, they are unpredictable. Thompson said as they got closer to Mbotyi, the first signs of sardine-related activity were found.
Approximately 600 common dolphins were spread out in small groups.
“When we got to Mbotyi, we started seeing the first signs of sardine-related activity with about 600 common dolphin spread out in small groups all the way through to Poenskop, just north of Port St Johns. Here we came across a moderate to fresh off-shore cross-wind that made it extremely difficult to spot activity,”said Thompson.
Water visibility, which was bad, slowly began to improve north of Port St Johns. As they got closer to Umngazana, sardine-related activity began to increase. There were also a number of common and bottlenose dolphins.
“Then off Rame Head we had in excess of 15 shoals of sardines all accompanied by dolphin. The activity continued off Hluleka, where we had scattered pockets as well as two very large shoals of sardines with shark activity. Here there was a huge pod of about 1,000 common dolphin feeding. This activity stretched from the backline to as far as you could see off-shore,”said Thompson.
Various indications show that the school could be in KZN anytime soon
Thompson told TimesLIVE that these indications were a positive sign that sardines are moving from the Eastern Cape towards KZN. Speaking about the cold front this weekend, Thompson said it is very well-timed.
“A cold front can often enhance the movements of the shoals and cause them to move inshore and north at a rapid pace,”he said.
Generally, sardines leave the cold waters off Cape Point and head to KZN during winter – especially in June or July.
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