Scarborough shark sightings on the up, but swimmers unaffected

Scarborough shark sightings on the up, but swimmers unaffected

SCARBORO Surf Life Saving Club president says swimmers have not been affected by at least 15 shark sightings and detections recorded at Scarborough over the past 30 days.

According to the State Government’s Shark Smart statistics, there have been about 32 sightings and 24 detections between Mettam’s Pool and Cottesloe in the last 30 days.

Scarborough Beach was closed on January 3 after two tiger sharks were detected 1.5km offshore.

Floreat and City Beach were also closed on January 3 due to shark sightings.

Scarboro Surf Life Saving Club president Alan Carville said the summer had been relatively quiet in terms of shark sightings.

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“As expected in the last three years, the sharks have actually dropped off,” he said.

City of Perth SLSC president Stephen Carrick said the club had not been greatly affected by the increase in shark detection this summer.

“With our new facilities, membership has increased and we have not had any of our nipper sessions on Sundays disrupted, the alarms have been mainly midweek,” he said.

“City Beach is also part of the Clever Buoy test for shark detection, so detections have increased.

“One Carnival has been cancelled and training affected on a couple of occasions but this is recognised by surf lifesaving competitors as just being a part of the environment they are in.”

City of Stirling recreation and leisure services acting manager Simone Pastor said there have been 26 shark detections and eight beach closures in the past 30 days at Scarborough, Trigg and Brighton.

“It should be noted that a number of these detections have been in excess of 1.5kms offshore and during the night – City of Stirling policy is that beaches are closed if any shark is detected within 800m of the shore,” she said.

Ms Pastor said swimmers should always swim between the red and yellow flags.

“The City’s beaches are the only beaches in the metro area that are patrolled by full-time professional lifeguards and beach inspectors,” she said.

“The volunteer lifesaving service through Scarboro and Trigg Surf Life Saving Club’s also patrol on weekends and public holidays during the peak beach season.”

Ms Pastor said the City was considered for the State Government’s Clever Buoy detection trial last year and were keen to participate in any shark mitigation strategies.

Meanwhile, a 660m-long shark barrier was installed at Sorrento Beach in December 2016.

Sorrento Surf Lifesaving Club president Rob Doherty said the barrier provided safety for swimmers and he recommended it for other beaches.

FACT BOX

Mettam’s Pool – 1 unknown shark sighting

Trigg – 2 unknown shark sightings, 1 tiger shark sighting, 4 tiger sharks detected, 1 white shark detected

Scarborough – 5 unknown shark sightings, 1 tiger shark sighting, 2 hammerhead shark sightings, 5 tiger sharks detected, 2 white sharks detected

Floreat – 1 tiger shark caught and released, 2 tiger shark sightings, 5 unknown shark sightings, 1 hammerhead shark sighting

City Beach- 2 unknown shark sightings, 2 tiger shark sightings, 1 hammerhead shark sighting, 1 tiger shark detected, 1 white shark detected

Swanbourne – 1 hammerhead shark sighting, 3 tiger sharks detected, 1 white shark detected

North Cottesloe – 3 tiger sharks detected, 1 white shark detected

Cottesloe – 1 tiger shark detected, 1 white shark detected, 6 unknown shark sightings