Fishing allowed along with hunting and game drives in Level 3 – department

Picture: Supplied

Fishing, hunting as well as self-drive visits to game reserves and national parks are permitted under lockdown Level 3, the Department of Environment, Forestry and Fisheries said on Monday.

“All fishing, including recreational fishing, is permitted with the exception of charter fishing,” Environment, Forestry and Fisheries Minister Barbara Creecy confirmed in a statement.

“Fishers must ensure that they have a valid permit. All regulations relating to social distancing, health protocols, movement and the prohibition of groups and gatherings apply.”

According to the department, wildlife auctions can take place online, while live auctions comprising a maximum of 50 people are permitted should online auctions not be possible.

Subsistence hunting for food with the necessary permits would be allowed.

Self-drive excursions in public and private game reserves are permitted, the department said, while SANParks will publish a list of access-controlled parks that will be opened to visitors in the coming days.

In KwaZulu-Natal, the iSimangaliso Wetland Park on Monday started preparing for reopening.

Once compliance requirements are met and the facility has been declared safe for visitors, seven days’ notice will be given for its reopening for self-drive excursions.

“While we understand that many nature lovers are keen to get back to our national parks and game reserves, it would be prudent to wait until the relevant authorities are comfortable with their state of preparedness to welcome visitors,” Creecy said.

“All the usual protocols with regard to social distancing, hand-sanitising and wearing of masks will apply at all times.”

The import and export of live or dead plant or animal specimens or products will be allowed subject to directions issued by the Minister of Trade, Industry and Competition, the department said.

The recycling sector is now also allowed to operate.

According to the statement, more details on the directions that will be published this week in the Government Gazette.

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