Yellowtail fish at the 2 Oceans Aquarium. Febuary 3 2009. Photo by Michael Walker

Fishermen and surfers at Muizenberg beach in Cape Town are at loggerheads over nets being cast in a swimming area, it was reported on Friday.

According to the Cape Times the fishermen, who had permits, cast their treknets at Surfer's Corner this week to catch a school of yellowtail that had entered False Bay.

All beaches in the bay were on high shark alert on Thursday as the fish could attract predators.

“Surfers and other beachgoers are extremely angry. It was so close to a surfer who almost got hit by the ropes,” Surf Shack surfing school owner David Chudleigh told the newspaper.

“Ten years ago, Muizenberg was a dump, but surfing has helped improve the area dramatically. Fishermen are now having a greater impact on the beach.”

Fisherman Jeff Patty said their permit allowed them to fish for yellowtail in that area.

“This is a tradition for us. We can trek, but we are also considerate. If the beach is crowded like it was on Human Rights Day we stay away.”

Fishermen said they always gave advance notice of their activities to authorities. - Sapa