Police arrest man for surfing too close to whale

A southern suburbs man was arrested this morning after allegedly kitesurfing too close to whales.

At 10.15am On Saturday 3 July police were called to the Esplanade, Christies Beach following several reports of a man kitesurfing close to a whale and her calf.

Patrols spoke to witnesses, who provided photographs and a good description of the kitesurfer. It was also reported that a similar incident had occurred on Friday 2 July.

Following an investigation, a 32-year-old man from Old Reynella was arrested and charged with two counts of molestation of protected animal and fail to keep prescribed distance from protected animal.

The man has been bailed to appear in the Christies Beach Magistrates Court on 2 August.

Whales and dolphins are protected by law in South Australia under the National Parks and Wildlife Act 1972.

Respect marine mammals and help keep them safe. Always keep at least 100m away from a whale, or 50m from a dolphin. Special restrictions apply when a calf is present.

Never feed or harass marine mammals, it is illegal and it harms the animal.

If you find a sick or stranded marine mammal (including whales, seals, sea lions and dolphins) please contact your local National Parks and Wildlife Service office or marine wildlife rescue organisation. For more information on what to do and who to call, visit the National Parks and Wildlife Service South Australia website.

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