Mysterious sardines make their way to KZN. Picture: Ugu South Coast Tourism.

The 2019 Sardine Run has finally reached the shores of KwaZulu-Natal over the weekend, and everyone is over the moon. Greg Thomspon, acting head of operations at the KZN Sharks Board, said the sardines made their appearance in the  Amanzimtoti area this weekend. 

He said sardine netting took place between Toti main beach and Pipeline beach, and around 1500 crates filled. The General Manager of the Blue Marlin Hotel in Scottburgh, Philip Schalkwyk, said swimming at some eThekwini beaches remained prohibited for a few days, and nets removed between Ansteys beach on the Bluff and Umgababa. 

“The anticipation continues to build each year, typically around the start of July when batches of sardines pass up the South Coast and the bird, shark and whale action reaches its pinnacle. 

“The Blue Marlin Hotel’s garden is an ideal lookout point,” he said. 

Here are some tips to experience the Sardine Run: 

●    Keep up to date with the latest reports by checking the Natal Sharks Board official website and Facebook page.

●    If you are looking to do some diving, be sure to book in advance through a reputable dive centre with experienced instructors.  

●    The winter months also mark the arrival of humpback whales. Although unrelated to the run, the whale and dolphin encounters should provide ample distraction while you wait for more sardine shoals to arrive.

●    Bathers need to be cautious as shark nets are typically removed from most beaches, and swimming is often prohibited on most beaches during this time.