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2010 South African Sardine Run


Submitted by admin on 2010-07-02

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The 2010 sardine run got off to a bit of a late start this year, word is that the sardine are very slow this year. On the 28th of June the shoal was said to have been in the East London area along the east coast, heading steadily northward up the coast. On the 1st of July the large shoals of sardines were seen along the Transkei coastline. The sardine run usually occurs around the middle of June, and fluctuates in intensity from year to year.

One of the problems for some of the KwaZulu Natal residents or those currently near Durban and surrounding areas is that the water is rather warm at present, which causes the sardines to remain further from shore than they would in the case of colder water conditions. Some of the local fishermen were talking about a possible swing in wind direction before the weekend arrives which could bring the sardines a bit closer to the shore.

The good news however is that, for those of you who have not yet experienced the legendary South African sardine run, you may still have a chance to. The sardines are expected to continue their sluggish run up the east coast over the next few days. Though the distance you will need to travel from shore to see the sardines will depend on the weather conditions, more specifically the water temperature.

Scuba Diving Article - South African Sardine Run
South African Sardine Run
Photo by Jason Heller

As can be expected the sardine run also brings with it, larger more dangerous sea creatures. Large fish such as shad, geelbek, dolphins and others prey on the sardines and follow them up along the coast, this lures with it larger sharks who can find a meal in the form of the shad and other predatory fish which follow the sardines. Over the past week this has caused numerous beach closures along the Eastern Cape coastline as sharks were spotted in the area. One of the most anticipated sightings of the sardine run for non-fishermen is the increased presence of dolphins

The sardine run is an event which is followed by fishermen and scuba divers alike, both in the hopes of spotting this annual underwater festival. The sardine run is so large that it can be followed by helicopters and airplanes in the sky.

So for those of you whom are reading this in South Africa, you still have a chance to catch this years run!

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