[Editor’s Note: The drones will keep an eye on Fish Hoek and Muizenberg, with future plans including expanding to other beaches.]
This post originally appeared on http://www.enca.com/south-africa/drones-to-monitor-the-capes-shark-activity.
CAPE TOWN – The City of Cape Town is looking to the skies to spot sharks this festive season in an effort to make its two busiest beaches that much safer.
Authorities will fly hi-tech drones to spot sharks at the most popular beaches, Fish Hoek and Muizenberg.
A live feed of the visuals will be shared with shark-spotters, who can warn swimmers about possible sightings.
The drones will help spotters react faster to imminent danger, while reducing the number of false reports.
While there are shark nets in place, the drone visuals will be fed live via an iPad to shark spotters on the beach.
There are plans to expand the project to other beaches in the city.
Alex Fourie from tech company WeFix said: “The guys were already doing a great job but now when they see something in the water they can send a drone out to see what it is. Is it seaweed, is it a shark or a dolphin?By doing that the amount of false shark sightings are minimised.”
Seferino Gelderblom is a spotter who is training to become a licensed drone operator.
“From my point of view it definitely makes the job easier, it helps the shark researches in South Africa to identify what type of shark species we see,” he said.