Coast KZN

25 Nov 2019

Cops clamp down on illegal gill net syndicates

Se-Anne Rall (The Mercury, IOL) Picture: Cops and rangers with the items that they found. Picture: supplied

Durban – Seven gill nets, over 2000-meters long collectively, were pulled from the Inanda Dam during a recent operation by members of the SAPS and Metro Police Search and Rescue Units during a recent operation aimed at clamping down on illegal gill net fishing.  Officers, accompanied by rangers, also recovered two cellphones, several knives, a pellet gun during the operation. The items were handed over the Hillcrest SAPS for further investigation.



The operation comes just weeks after several similar nets were pulled from the Beachwood Mangroves at the uMngeni River. Last month, officers, along with KZN Ezemvelo Wildlife officers retrieved nets from inside the Beachwood Mangroves Nature Reserve. According to Northglen News, the nets, often referred to as ‘floating curtains of death’ are set out stationary in the water and capture the fish by entanglement.

The nets could contain anything from 30 to 50 fish, including crabs, shrimp and some bird life. The illegal gill netters have been using the plethora of channels in the reserve to lay their traps. Residents have also claimed to have seen illegal netters operating further up the river.

Police have vowed to continue holding similar-styled operations to root out those targeting rivers. Residents are urged to report any suspicious activity to police.