A number of well-publicised shark encounters this year, including that of Australian pro-surfer Mick Fanning, have been fuelling public fear of the elusive great white in South Africa.

A great white shark.

A great white shark. Image by Lwp Kommunikáció / CC BY 2.0

However, according to statistics released by Gregg Oelofse who is head of environmental policy and strategy for Cape Town, shark attacks are not increasing in South Africa. Over the past three decades there has been a zero percent increase in attacks, with an average of 6.9 encounters a year. In a separate report, the Dyer Island Conservation Trust revealed that the great white population is half of what it was in the 1990s. Read more: new24.com