Established in 2004, the Shark Spotters programme trains and employs local people to look out for sharks in the waters around Cape Town from mountain vantage points.
As well as improving beach safety for surfers and swimmers and providing emergency assistance in the event of a shark bite incident, it creates positive PR for sharks, contributes to research by collecting data on the behaviour and movements of the local white shark population, and advocates non-lethal methods to protect both sharks and humans.
The programme has proved to be a pioneering example of how people and sharks can co-exist.
In addition to funding, the Save Our Seas Foundation contributes organisational support to the Shark Spotters programme and plays a strong role in helping to educate the public about sharks and shark safety.
False Bay is home to one of the world’s largest white shark populations and a growing human community. This creates a number of challenges for both people and sharks. Alison is finding out how these apex predators shape the bay and what would happen if they disappeared.