A whale carcass washed up on the popular Knysna beach Brenton-On-Sea over the weekend, prompting the local municipality to close off the area to the public and for the National Sea Rescue Institute (NSRI) to release a warning on increased shark activity in the waters.
The Knysna Municipality issued a statement on social media, confirming that the whale’s remains had washed ashore on November 24 2018.
In its statement, the Municipality asks residents to refrain from entering the area.
“Brenton-On-Sea has been closed until further notice. Please note that the Brenton-on-Sea entrance from the Buffalo Bay beach is also closed. We ask residents and visitors not to go to the area,” the statement reads.
The Knysna Municipality, SANParks and Cape Nature are currently working to remove the remains.
“Our Environmental Department together with SANParks and Cape Nature are in the process of removing the carcass. The team is expected to be done in two to three days. The beach remains closed,” said the Knysna Municipality statement.
Knsyan Knews reported in a social media post that initial removal efforts began yesterday, but due to the danger of the rising tide they were postponed for the day.
Potential increase in shark activity
The NSRI Knysna along with the Knysna Municipal authorities issued a safety alert of heightened shark activity near the shore due to the presence of the whale carcass.
NSRI Knysna station commander Jerome Simonis explains the potential of the increase in shark activity.
“Increased in-shore shark activity is expected due to sharks being naturally attracted to the decaying whale carcass.”
Swimming has been prohibited on Brenton-On-Sea and the public is urged to be cautious in the water.
Picture: Facebook/Knysna Municipality