Sighting of 2?m crocodile raises concern for Dusi canoeists

2009-11-05 00:00

ORGANISERS of the Dusi Canoe Marathon have raised concern about safety following the sighting of a two-metre crocodile near the Blue Lagoon finish area in Durban.

The spokesman for the Natal Canoe Club, Ray de Vries, said the crocodiles are the greatest concern for the January 2010 event.

“We usually have concerns like hyacinth [a weed that grows on top of the water], water quality and quantity this time of the year, but the greatest challenge at this moment is that there have been a number of sightings of crocodiles in the actual Umgeni River.”

He said the latest sighting was made by paddlers about 800 metres from Blue Lagoon on Tuesday.

“… members of the organising committee will be going to the river [today] to try and get a photograph of the reptile. We know that there are crocodiles at Pump House Weir about eight kilometres from the end, but we never thought that we would find them so close to the finish in Durban,” he said.

Organisers warned of crocodiles four years ago, but they were on the upper Umgeni near Albert Falls. It would seem that the reptiles have made their way down the river.

“Ezemvelo have been notified and we hope that they will lay traps to catch this crocodile and others on the route” De Vries said. He also expressed concern for the crocodiles’ welfare in an industrial area.

Jeff Gaisford of Ezemvelo said he will take the matter up with his conservation colleagues once he receives the report.

Paddlers who see any crocodiles are urged to report the sightings to the organisers of the organising committee at

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