Cape Town agrees to more shark spotters

2012-04-25 09:28

Cape Town - The City of Cape Town has agreed to implement a shark spotting programme at Kogel Bay where a bodyboarder was killed last week, it was reported on Wednesday.

Environmental policy head Gregg Oelofse told the Cape Times a meeting would take place on Thursday to discuss the logistics.

"We will try to implement the programme as soon as possible. There is also the process of identifying and training shark spotters."

Kogel Bay surfers and bodyboarders, many Boland Surfing Association members, voted in favour of a Shark Spotters programme at a meeting on Monday evening.

The meeting followed the death of David Lilienfeld, 20, on Thursday afternoon.

Lilienfeld, an SA bodyboarding team member, was at a popular surfing area, Caves, in Kogel Bay with his brother around noon when a great white shark attacked him.

Shark Spotters were already in place at six Cape beaches, costing over a R1m a year, with funding coming largely from the city and donations.

  • pmarqua - 2012-04-25 09:54

    The shark cage divers should pay for the Shark Spotters 100%, not us, they are ones profiting on a massive scale over the un-natural interaction with a wild animal.

      Nikki Bodenstein - 2012-04-26 23:28


  • pmarqua - 2012-04-25 10:14

    wow.. one person already disliked my idea, must be a greedy cage diver.

      jpstrauss - 2012-04-25 11:14

      Shark cage diving isn't even really dangerous. It's for posers who are too scared to wrestle a crocodile or go bungee jumping.

  • Forceptor - 2012-04-25 10:44

    There is absolutely nothing wrong with cage diving. It provides a great opportunity to interact with and learn more about these creatures. It's the same principle as a game drive in the Kruger Park. However, the cage dive operators need to bait the sharks much further away from the beaches. That's the only problem here.

      pmarqua - 2012-04-25 10:53

      cool, i am dragging a dead goat behind my car next time i am in kruger.. no wait, if i do that, i will get arrested...

      jpstrauss - 2012-04-25 11:18

      What can you possibly learn from that experience that you can't learn for much cheaper at an aquarium? At least be honest and say you're after the thrill. For instance, I won't drive like a maniac in a race car because i want to learn more about the stress tolerance of mild steel; I do it because it's exhilerating. The best part is that people seldom get attacked by a wild Opel Superboss.

      Nikki Bodenstein - 2012-04-26 23:27

      They can go drop their cages at seal island

      jpstrauss - 2012-04-29 19:32

      Nikki actually has a legitimately good idea.

  • lynsey.rimbault - 2012-04-25 10:55

    I think that the increase in shark attacks in in the western and eastern Cape in recent years probably has a lot to do with the depleted fish stocks all over the world. There is less for sharks to eat, so they are coming closer to the shore. So many of the world's environmental and social problems would be reduced if people were to adopt a vegetarian diet.

      Nikki Bodenstein - 2012-04-26 23:26

      Or we could not over fish and pollute the oceans...

  • ErnaJacobs - 2012-04-25 10:57

    Perhaps they could sommer use the sharkspotters to spot twolegged-groundbased sharks. Equip each sharkspotter with a paintball gun to mark offenders.

      pmarqua - 2012-04-25 11:09

      We have that, they are called the Mountain Men and they rock!

  • Adil Smit - 2012-04-25 11:11

    The Australian study clearly shows that chumming increases the time a shark will stay in an area, now South African authorities need to act on that.

      Nikki Bodenstein - 2012-04-26 23:20

      Better shut down all those shark cage diving groups too then, they chum too!

      Nikki Bodenstein - 2012-04-26 23:25

      No doubt. Humans need to stop messing up natures balance!

  • davesub - 2012-04-25 11:15

    Lack of human logic never ceases to amuse me .... Sharks have been in the ocean for millions of years - then along comes mankind with his powerful brain and decides that he too wants to play in the ocean. Mankind is aware that there are creatures within the ocean that are dangerous to him but decides nevertheless to play in the ocean with the knowledge that one of many predators may decide to attack him. The number of people being attacked by sharks is climbing as mankind becomes more adventurous and capable of getting closer to these creatures and when this does happen, the world is shocked! My question to mankind - you choose to leave the safety of land (your own environment) and venture into the ocean (the sharks environment) where you are incapable of breathing or seeing and with the potential of being attacked every time you do so - why is there such an outcry every time a human is attacked??? 5 shark attacks worldwide every year but 50 vehicle deaths in your country every day - you should be more concerned about driving to the beach than swimming in the ocean ....

      jpstrauss - 2012-04-25 11:21

      More people die every year from vending machines falling on them than shark attacks.

      Adil Smit - 2012-04-25 11:25

      In which country do you live, Dave?

      Nikki Bodenstein - 2012-04-26 23:24

      I agree. If you swim in the ocean, u run the risk of being bitten or eaten by a shark. But people always think it won't happen to them.

  • Bianca-Anne - 2012-04-25 12:11

    JPStrauss - you right - thril seekers will do anything and sometimes they do dangerous things. At least you have a dry, but funny humor about it. Pmarqua - also agree those profits of Shark cage diving should pay for the Shark Spotters. I do support the argument that the chums might have had an influence. But ever watch people at Cape Town beaches ... the Shark alert goes off and ten minutes later everyone is back in the water ... really! It is true - Sharks are in their natural habitat, even though I hate them.

      Nikki Bodenstein - 2012-04-26 23:30

      So true. I wouldn't swim in a river with crocodiles, much less the ocean. That's why we have pools!

  • bluzulu - 2012-04-25 12:15

    How does one justify this Tax expenditure? International or National surfing Tournaments ...this could be applied however for just a HOBBY. What next Cyclist, Skydivers or any other Extracurricular activities should have safety officials paid in part by Taxes to oversee the dangers. All whom enjoy the oceans must be aware of the dangers before entering for any reason, fun or work.

      schalk.mattheys - 2012-04-26 10:20

      Let’s put this in the right perspective, the shark spotter was suggested as a direct result of the body boarder being killed by a shark. But the decision to implement the shark spotting program is greatly beneficial to far more people than only the surfers. Kogel Bay forms part of a nature reserve and is also a beautiful holiday resort. Hundreds of (non-surfing) people use the camping facilities every week, providing revenue for Cape Town municipality, generating more tourism and jobs. Shark spotting also allows for an early warning system that does not harm any sea life, unlike the shark net system implemented in KZN’s beaches. This is not a program to benefit only a few practicing "just a HOBBY." It’s WILL benefit EVERYONE who frequents Kogel Bay, NOT only surfers.

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