Trek Netting along South Peninsula

Trek netters rowing boat waiting on the beach

Trek netters rowing boat waiting on the beach

“Trek netting” as the locals call it, is done by means of a beach-seine net which is deployed from a row boat. This form of fishing is predominately practiced during our summer months at well known “trek netting” beaches.

It is a traditional form of artisan fishing in the local community and some members of the “trek netters” have been intertwined in it for generations. It is very much a historical part of “Capetonion” culture.

Men will begin their fishing day early before the sun has risen, bringing their boat onto the beach in anticipation for a productive and successful day ahead. Whilst they sit on the beach waiting and watching, they will only leave the shore if signaled to by a “spotter” that sits high up against the mountain side or an elevated position from the beach, giving him a bird eye view of the shoals of fish in the bay. The “spotter” communicates with a method of flag waving in a particular manner and motion that the fisherman on the beach understand and can see.

Once a shoal has been spotted the men dash to their boat and eagerly row out to sea. Constantly watching the “spotter” and his commands. The success of their catch solely depends on solid communication between the “trek netters” and the “spotter”. Once they are on the shoal, the “spotter” indicates with his luminescent green flag that the men may drop their net. Just as they drop the net, the fishermen furiously row back to the shore in order to close the two ends of the net off, thus trapping the fish inside.

Trek netters pulling in the net

Trek netters pulling in the net

Everyone helps to get the net in as quickly as possible

Everyone helps to get the net in as quickly as possible

All by catch is released into the sea, the most common by catch being crabs, however rays, skates, small sharks and other marine life may also get trapped in the net. All of which is released as the net is brought up onto the shore. The entire team pulls the net onto the beach and within minutes the shoal can be seen in the waves. Crowds of people come down to watch the “pulling of the nets” which is often what it is referred to when listening to conversations on the beach. Children especially love this event as they get to see the many sea creatures which they have only seen/learnt about in textbooks, I know when I was younger I was one of this children that was first in line to see what was being brought up.

Fresh Yellowtail

Fresh Yellowtail

In this instance a shoal of Yellowtail was brought up in this net with a few crabs. About 60-100 fish in total averaging 7kg.  People are able to buy  fish straight from the trek netters themselves, however it mostly gets taken away to be sold to local fisheries.

It is a must see experience to do in Cape Town. I always grateful to be a local and experience this event so often and so close to home. Despite there being methods and ways that I may disagree with,  it is never the less a  truly unique event to witness. I am sure as time progresses, technology develops us and as our population continues to soar, I think in time this will like with many traditional ways become a thing of the past.

Fi 🙂

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Mopane Worms down South

Mopane Worm

Mopane Worm

At a friends house recently whilst exploring our mountainside we came across a bush covered in vibrantly coloured caterpillars, however they were all on one bush on the mountainside, no where else! Catching our attention we decided to photograph a couple so that we could later try and identify them.

We subsequently found out that they are in fact… the legendary Mopane Worm! We were all shocked to find such an iconic species of worm so far down South away from Mopane Veld.

This simple finding illustrates to us that you just never know what you may find on an idle walk right here on our door step.

Trying to be brave ...

Trying to be brave …

Monsters live amongst us ... roughly 10-12cm

Monsters live amongst us … roughly 12cm

A worm in the hand ...

A worm in the hand …

Comfortable ?

Comfortable ?

Fi 🙂

Finally I have qualified as a BLS Practitioner (Basic Life Support)

This is something I have always wanted to do, however I have never had the opportunity or time to schedule it in. However the end of my shark season at Seal Island ended early & I decided this would be a perfect time to do this wonderful course. I chose to do it at Ambutek in Milnerton, it is a small college with a great team of lecturers who are all well equipped with knowledge and passion for the industry.  The course was run over five weeks comprising of theory and practical sessions, ending off with 3 days of examinations!

I thoroughly enjoyed my time at Ambutek and cannot believe the five weeks have flown by already! I stayed with a friend closer to the college so that I would not have to commute through the  2 hours of traffic back home each evening which was a lifesaver! I learnt huge amounts of information and more importantly I left with the knowledge and confidence of being able to treat and stabilize a patient in the public should I come across a situation where it was needed.

I came third highest in my class of 24 students. Getting 95% for theory, 93% for my oral, 100% for patient simulations and 100% for practical skills. Never in my life have I achieved such high marks. My marks clearly reflect the immense amount of enjoyed I had for the information learnt. It has empowered me more than I am able to describe.

Delighted with my results!

Delighted with my results!

Myself with Mishqah and the class captain ...

Myself with Mishqah and the class captain …

I definitely will be looking into doing further courses, to enrich myself with such great and powerful knowledge that is forever useful to me.

Some of the students in my class, with lecturers Mishqah & Clint (centre of photo)

Some of the students in my class, with lecturers Mishqah & Clint (centre of photo)

A big thank you to Clint Cronning & Mishqah Williams for being such awesome lecturer’s making each lecture fun whilst still learning and absorbing the new information given.

Fi 🙂