Sharks have been seen sunbathing in the calm tepid waters off Ruakaka, in Northland.

Surf lifesavers patrolling beaches said barring a couple of shark sightings it was a largely uneventful Waitangi Weekend around the country.

Allan Mundy, national life saving services and education manager at Surf Life Saving New Zealand, said it had been a relatively quiet weekend.

He said there were a couple of successful rescues on west coast beaches but it was largely uneventful for those on watch and the public appeared to be following safety advice such as swimming between the flags.


One of the more exciting events of the weekend included a couple of shark sightings along the east coast of Northland.

"This time of the year, with a small swell, beautiful swimming conditions and lovely sunny skies you see a lot more animals."

While there were a few concerned members of the public who called in the sightings, he said these sharks weren't any trouble.

"We often get a lot of bronze whalers and blue sharks; they are predominantly just coming to sunbathe - that's essentially what they are doing.

"Some young sharks surf the waves, they are having as much fun as everyone else."
Mundy said lifeguards did go and check the sightings, but believed none of this weekend's sharks were a threat to anyone's safety.

"They generally feed well out at sea."

Overall Mundy said the lifeguards were happy with how things had gone in the waters this weekend - though he had no firm numbers of rescues available today.

He encouraged the public to continue to swim safely, swim between the flags and stay within their limits.

Mundy also urged parents to stay close to their young ones.

"I think the one other thing is, with kids one of the things we are starting to notice is there are still too many mums and dads sitting up in the sand dunes with toddlers swimming in the water."

He said for children up to the ages of 8 and 9 it was best if parents swam right next to them in the water.