Sardine Run / SA Tourism UK

Watch: Chaos of South Africa’s Sardine Run hooks the tourists [video]

It’s exclusively South African and looks utterly incredible.

Sardine Run / SA Tourism UK

A what? Don’t adjust your eyes, you’ve read the headline correctly. South Africa’s annual Sardine Run has become something of a local phenomenon.

Millions of sardines pack themselves together and migrate from the oceans of the Cape to head eastwards towards Durban’s warmer waters. SAPeople report that these travellers can form a shoal that’s up to 15 kilometres long.

What is the Sardine Run?

Just imagine that. A group of sardines that stretches the length of a city’s metropolitan area. It’s certainly captured the imagination of potential visitors, who were blown away by the video South African Tourism UK shared on Facebook.

What the tourist board also reveals is the utter carnage this migration causes. A group of sardines stretching for as long as the eye can see is like food pornography for the ocean’s biggest predators.

Humpback whales, sharks and seals all dive headfirst into their surprise deliveries, causing a mass gathering of creatures you’d usually struggle to see in one place.

However, the madness turns the dial up to 11 when you factor in the seagulls who’ve gotten wise to the migration. Hundreds of birds dramatically fall from the sky in an attempt to pluck themselves an easy and plentiful lunch.

Also watch: Wakeboarders surf with adventurous dolphins

Facebook users commenting underneath the video shared their memories of seeing the spectacle. Needless to say, they were all too happy to recall the run:

Gill Neil: “It’s an amazing sight to see. You should not miss it. Try to see it at least once in your lifetime. They are followed by dolphins, whales, sharks etc and of course the greedy seagulls”.

Susan Archer: “Saw the Sardine Run many times when living in South Africa. The first time was at Kelso Beach, KZN. They call it sardine fever and it sure is amazing.”

Les Davis:Saw the beginning of this nine years ago on the last day of an unforgettable trip. Must have spotted 200-300 dolphins.”

Watch the Sardine Run here