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Solution

Research Dives.

Our survey results between January 2018 and October 2019 showed that snagged fishing tackle from recreational fishing does pose a Ghost Fishing threat to inshore reef fish.

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Watch a video from the Strandloper Project

 

 

Recovered tackle

 

Strandloper Project Play list.

If you have just learnt about the Strandloper Project and want to find out more, watch this play list of videos of our research since January 2018.

 

 
     
 

Strandloper Project Hike
Finding a solution for recreational fishing pollution

 

Gericke's PointExpedition 2020.

Following on from the success of the first expedition between Blombos and Wilderness in May 2019, the Strandloper Project is in the process of planning their second expedition in October 2020.

This time the expedition will be approximately 185km from Nature's Valley to Wilderness.

 

Different Pace and Focused Objectives.

One of the difficulties during our 2019 expedition was the limited time available for intertidal surveys due to the long daily distances that we were required to hike. In the 2020 Expedition we will target shorter distances which will allow for more time in the water.

 

We will again utilize our Cyber Tracker App which we developed for recording both plastic pollution, fishing debris and stranded marine animals.

 

Recreational Line Fishing.

 

While attention and research is focused on commercial fishing activities, little research has been conducted on the contribution that snagged recreational shoreline fishing tackle makes to ghost fishing, reef degradation and entanglements.
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Route Planning

Expedition Route.

Our group of hikers will explore approximately 185km of coastline between Nature's Valley and Wilderness in the Garden Route

 

Realistic Itinerary.

Over the 11 days planned for the 2020 expedition, we aim to cover between 10 and 15km per day and include one rest day to allow greater focus on the marine surveys for snagged recreational fishing tackle.

 

With the extra time available each day, we will also introduce some BRUV (baited underwater remote video) surveys along the route to get an idea of fish species at selected locations and to develop a baseline database for future environmental studies.

 

Its all in the name.

The name Strandloper Project was chosen to represent the early human origins in the Southern Cape. Archeological evidence indicates that early Homo sapiens lived and foraged from the inter tidal zone along the shifting coastline of the region from 164,000 years ago.

It is proposed that the rapid development of early human cognitive thought developed in the Southern Cape as a result of the high phospholipid content of their marine diet.

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Cleaning up with data

Mapping Trash Distribution.

For locals that take regular beach hikes in the Garden Route, it has become apparent that certain types of plastic pollution washes up at specific locations on the shoreline.

By mapping the location of various categories of plastic found on the hike we were able to link it to possible sources.

Municipal Engagement.

Using our collected data, the Strandloper Project has been able to supply local interest groups with information to pressure, in particular, the George Municipality to better manage both the Skaapkop and Meulins Rivers.

While the situation impacting the poor condition of these two rivers has not been satisfactorily resolved, collective pressure is being applied to that end.

Baseline Survey.

Plastic pollution and fishing debris were documented using our Dirty Dozen transect, Bottle Transect and Incidental Sighting app in Cybertracker. Surveyed items were classed in various categories including size, colour and original use and recorded with GPS location.

 

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Awareness Campaign

Public Awareness.

One of the main reasons to conduct the hike survey was to document the plastic pollution and fishing debris along the route.

However knowing the rate of pollution is useless unless the information is made available to the public and authorities.

Social Media.

We will again provide daily FaceBook video updates on our progress and finding each morning of the expedition.

To complement our FaceBook updates, we will post on Instagram and you can follow our posts by searching for the #StrandloperProject2020.

School Participation.

With the global social ramifications of the impact of the current COVID-19 pandemic, at this stage we are hesitant to include school group participation in our 2020 expedition. We will however re-evaluate the situation as we get closer to the departure date.

Live Tracking.

For our 2020 expedition, we will be carrying a Spot Tracker so that our progress will be able to followed live.

 

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