It has been 7 days since our first patrol of Rooiels – Kleinmond area and the successes are piling up.
Our first two success stories (https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/poaching-prevention-marine-anti-poaching-unit and https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/poaching-prevention-another-success-story-marine-anti-poaching-unit ) was exciting, but this is just a start.
There was very little opportunity for poachers to access the marine life in the area over the last week as we, along with Sea Watch, DAFF, MCM and SAPS, have been working together to break their habit. We also had some assistance from Mother Nature as the tides were high and not suitable for divers without tanks and proper equipment.
Thursday, 31 August 2017, was a busy day.
Our first point of call was in Betty’s Bay Marine Reserve, where we noticed divers in the ocean. We waited for them to exit from the ocean to take action.
After an hour of observation we were contacted by Sea Watch for support.
We engaged with our support units to manage Bettys Bay Marine Reserve as we left the area to support Sea Watch as the divers noticed in Draadbaai was about to exit the water.
On arrival in Draadbaai, poachers were clearly active and collecting abalone.
In a collaborative approach with Sea Watch, we made our presence known and the poachers were forced to leave the area without any abalone on the day.
On Friday, 1 September 2017, during our first daily patrol, 7 divers were dropped off in Palmiet.
We openly followed and monitored them and within one hour, all the divers left the area without ever getting into the water.
No further activity was reported in the area on the day or the rest of the weekend.
Today, 4 September 2017, we can again report that to our knowledge, no poaching occurred in the area. We spent our day at the entrances of the known poaching areas and two poacher transport vehicles were spotted.
We simply followed them and made our presence known, making it impossible for them to stop and drop the divers to conclude their illegal activity for the day and they simply left.
Our approach is simple, but proven effective. We want to prevent these criminals from getting into the water and save our marine life. Yes, we are successful, but we want to expand our area of cover and ensure that this is a reality for all coastal communities.
We are currently stretched in our 24/7 operation, but making it work. We can use your assistance to ensure our mission to eliminate poachers from Overstrand is a reality now, and maintained in the future.
You can assist us by volunteering your time and forming part of our response unit, being our eyes and ears and flag any suspicious activity to our response unit and/or make a donation to help us expand our reach in your community.
For any further information or to sign up to assist please utilise our information below:
Response Team: 060 907 2325
Donate directly into our Non-Profit bank account
Bank Name: Standard Bank
Account Name: Marine Anti Poaching Unit
Account Type: Current Account
Account Number: 082 192 073
Branch Code: 051 001
SWIFT Code: SBZAZAJJ