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Sharks Off Nsw Coast Sparks Beach Closures


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Sharks off NSW coast sparks beach closures

Recent heavy rainfalls in coastal areas in NSW are believed to be responsible for a number of hammerhead shark sightings.

Beaches in Sydney's north and south of Wollongong were closed today after Aerial Shark Patrol officers spotted a number of hammerheads near patrolled swimming zones.

The patrol spotted 16 hammerhead sharks just 50 metres off shore at Port Kembla Beach, south of Wollongong, which forced the closure of the beach for most of the day.

Elsewhere, a three-metre-long shark was spotted swimming towards people at South Narrabeen Beach, on Sydney's northern beaches, at 11.30am (AEDT), Aerial Shark Patrol general manager Harry Mitchell said.

The beach was temporarily closed while lifesavers on jet skis worked to urge the shark out to sea.

The recent heavy rainfall has flushed food sources into the ocean, Mr Mitchell said.

"The estuaries are spewing various food sources, like fish and other stuff sharks like to feed on, into the ocean, and that's attracted the hammerheads close to the shore," Mr Mitchell said.

Warmer waters also are attracting sharks to NSW beaches, an event expected to continue well into March, he said.

Aerial patrols will continue over Sydney and Illawarra beaches tomorrow.

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