October 02, 2017 Dyer Island Conservation Trust

Since 2009 the Dyer Island Conservation Trust (DICT) has been part of the eco marine tent and this year the team once again played a critical role in educating festival goers about whales, sharks and the endangered African penguin. The Trust’s corporate sponsor, Volkswagen South Africa, also stepped up to highlight marine pollution with a special light display made of recycled materials. The message was that of ‘lighting the way to cleaner beaches.’ The installation is a sneak preview of the larger light Installation coming to Gansbaai this festive season.

While many were fascinated by the lights and inspired to do similar, for some the message fell on deaf ears as many people attending the festival disregarded the many bins supplied by the municipality. This highlighted the need for continued efforts on the part of many in educating the public on the effects pollution has not only on our marine life but on people’s health as well.

Various members of the team also gave educational talks in the whale museum: Alison Towner on white shark / orca interactions; Meredith Thornton on whales; Theanette Staal on the African Penguin and Seabird Sanctuary and Dickie Chivell on his Shark Week filming experiences.

“The highlight for all of us was the interest taken by the children in matching shark fins, hugging Molly the fluffy penguin or learning about whales and shark eggs. It is really rewarding to see some of the young budding biologists who clearly inspired their parents,” said Brenda du Toit, Public Relations of Marine Dynamics that sponsored the space for the Trust.

Special thanks are extended to the eco-marine tent organisers, Jeanette du Toit and Linda Chivell and CapeNature for sponsoring the additional space for DICT.