Public warned of potential danger from washed up puffers

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Puffers are poisonous and pose a risk to children and dogs who discover them washed up on the beach.

Authorities in South Africa are warning members of the public to be on the lookout for puffer fish that have been washed up onto the shore.


Visitors to the beach around the KwaZulu-Natal coastline have been asked to ensure that children and pets are kept away from the toxic puffers, which are thought to be washing ashore due to a rapid change in temperature in the region. Children should not be allowed to handle the fish and dogs are particularly at risk as they can be poisoned if they consume the dead puffers, due to the tetrodotoxin these fish contain.

KZN Ezemvelo Wildlife asks that any washed up puffer fish should be buried at a depth of half a metre, to prevent dogs digging them back up. It’s recommended that gloves are used when handling the dead fish to avoid any skin contact.