Fish dying in lagoon at Margate

2012-07-10 00:00

EZEMVELO KZN Wildlife said it is not aware of any contamination in the Margate lagoon even though over 100 dead fish were found in the lagoon last week.

Spokesperson Musa Mntambo said in spite of Margate losing its blue flag status, Hibiscus Coast Municipality still tests the water regularly.

“Reports of the results are sent to us and there has been no cause for concern based on what we have received,” said Mntambo.

Senzo Khumalo, a lifeguard on the beach, said: “On Monday [last week] my colleagues had to remove the dead fish from the water. Most of them where small guppies and mullets.”

Khumalo said that a few dead fish were also found on the banks of the lagoon.

“Again this morning [Sunday] someone found a big dead mullet. I think there is no oxygen in that water, therefore the fishes are dying.”

The lagoon ends in a wall, which is causing the water to stagnate. A dirty whiff pervades the air where the lagoon ends. A thick layer of muck infested with flies has also started to form.

Mntambo said the water is not entirely “stagnant”.

“There is water loss through evaporation. Additionally, there is water input via the Enkongweni River and marine over-wash events into the lagoon.”

He added that estuaries do stay closed for longer times during the winter low-flow periods, and this is what they are observing.

Holiday makers have mixed feelings about the beach.

Natasha Potgieter from Midrand said: “We are enjoying paddling across the lagoon. It’s something different.”

Brakpan tourist Andre Huyser expressed his disappointment at the condition of the beach, saying it was a disgrace.

“It’s filthy. I’ve been coming to Margate for years and I’ll never come back if the beach remains like this,” he said.

First-time visitor Jowanne Roelofse from Bloemfontein said: “This is very bad. It looks terrible. It’s not a place I want to holiday in.

“I have children who like to run around and play. The area is very restrictive.”

HCM has met with key stakeholders and departments to assess the situation. Spokesperson Simon Soboyisa said that the municipality is trying its best to manage the lagoon. “At this stage the HCM has made a temporary access to the beach on the southern side. Steps have been constructed out of sand bags leading off an existing concrete slab.

“This is only a very temporary solution, but will have to suffice until further progress is made with regards to management plans for the river.

“We understand the consequences this situation may be causing to tourism, but we will continue to address the situation,” he added.

Join the conversation! encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions. publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.