Fishing has been rather quiet with the weather turning for the worst and sea being on its head creating huge swells making it impossible for the guys to go out. Earlier last week when the weather still allowed our anglers to get onto the water there were few fish still coming out after last week’s Couta frenzy.
Starting up North the Sodwana and Maphelane area has been slightly more successful with reports of Couta, decent Tuna and a few Snoek all coming out on strip baits, live baits and occasionally on hard plastics. The guys getting the bigger Tuna are predominantly popping for them. The Snoek coming out on artificial baits have been picking up the Kingfisher Bonnie spoon and very small Rattlers and the Strike Pro Magic Minnows.
St Lucia hasn’t been too productive with not many fish coming out the past week, the only reports have been of a few Kob and Snoek that have been around, the Snoek have been coming out on bullet spoons and small plugs. The Kob on the other hand, have been coming out on paddle tails and live baits in the evenings. When fishing for Kob with paddle tails, the bigger paddle tails are preferred due to the Kobs large mouth and its aggression to eat big baits. Any 6 inch paddle tails in colours White, Chartreuse and Pearl are the colours generally used as they look very realistic in the water.
The Umdloti area has been unusually quiet with very few fish coming out, but earlier last week there still a few small shoal size Couta being caught on down rigged Mackerel and Wala Wala. When fishing with Wala Wala a lot of the guys tend to use a longer trace due to the bait quite a bit longer than your standard baits.
Our local water had some action earlier in the week with some big Tuna up to 30kg that came out near the Barge on live baits.
The guys targeting Snoek are trawling small Rapalas and Strike Pro Magic Minnows. They are also casting/trawling small spoons such as the Halco Twisty and Clark spoons. There have also been a few smaller edible species being caught on the back line such as Blacktail, Stumpies and the occasional Kob. Traces used for these species are conventional 3 way traces using a 2-6 oz. sinker and a hook from size 4 for the Blacktail up until an 8/0 for the Kob.
Moving South towards Umkomaas, fishing hasn’t been too bad with a few Dagga coming out on live bait and whole Chokka. A few Sailfish have been landed in the area on live Bonnie as well as a few Wahoo and smaller Couta that have been taking the guys’ lures.
The fishing from Shelly Beach to Port Edward hasn’t been too bad with reports of a few fish coming out namely Couta, Garrick and Dagga Salmon. The fish have all been coming out on live bait and big Rapala’s. There have also been reports of a few decent Kingies that been around harassing the guys spinning for Couta and Garrick.
Rock and Surf:
Starting off at Kosi Bay, a decent amount of edibles have been caught such as Stumpies, Three Spot Pompano, Bonefish, Snapper Salmon and Kob. Bait being used for these fish predominantly consists of Chokka and Sardine combos as well as live bait. The guys spinning in the vicinity have also been getting some very nice size Kingies as well as some decent Springer on bullet spoons and 3 inch paddle tails in neutral colours.
From Cape Vidal to Richards Bay the fishing has been rather quiet on the surf with not too many reports of fish coming out apart from the few edibles and the occasional Raggie pup making its appearance.
The Richards Bay harbour seems to be the spot to fish the past while with quite a few Diamond Rays coming out and some big Kob! The anglers catching these beauties have been sliding out whole Chokka’s and whole Mackerel. The spinning in this area has also been doing very well with a lot of Kingies and Sand Gurnards coming out.
Over to Ballito, fishing hasn’t been spectacular with not much action this side as only a handful of fish has been coming out. Grey Sharks have been coming out in the deeper water as well as a few edibles such as Stumpies on Chokka /Prawn bait and the occasional Kob on paddle tails early mornings and white Chokka baits in the evenings.
Umdloti has been rather quiet with only a few small in-edibles being caught in the evenings, some of the anglers have been swimming these out for a big Grey Sharks or a Zambezi Shark but not much has been happening.
A few of our anglers are still spinning off the rocks for Snoek but have not been very successful. Moving a bit further South to our local water, fishing hasn’t been too bad with quite a few fish coming out before the storms. Some big Honeycomb’s have been caught on our beach front as well as a few Diamond Rays and the odd Duckbill. When specifically targeting Rays it’s not necessary to use coated wire as they will never bite you off, when targeting them, heavy nylon is all you need to use. Nylon with a thickness from 0.80mm to 1.3mm snelled to an 8/0 to 10/0 circle hook is generally used to target these bigger fish.
Toti, Warner Beach, Illovo Beach and Karridene have all been producing a few edible fish ranging from Stumpies and Blacktail to Kob and Garrick. The smaller edibles have been taking Chokka, Prawn and Mussel baits where the bigger edibles have been picking up live bait, whole Chokka, whole Mackerel as well as Chokka blob baits. Fishing for the Kob in the evenings has proven to be most productive with whole Chokka baits, Chokka blob baits and small live baits being most effective.
Umgababa to Scottbourgh hasn’t been too active with very few fish coming out. The occasional Garrick has shown itself off the point in Scottbourgh. Umgababa has produced a few small Sharks on small throw baits intended for Kob and Garrick.
From Shelly Beach to Port Edward the guys have been getting a few Kob, Garrick and the occasional Kingie on spoon. The Kob have been caught on paddle tails early in the mornings, late afternoons and into the evenings. The Garrick on the other hand have been caught on live Shad and occasionally on a plug. Some of the anglers fishing for the slightly heavier in-edible species have been given a run for their money as there have been some rather large Sharks around picking up their big baits and giving them no chance at all.
Fishing in the harbour the week has not been spectacular as the cold weather has scared the fish into hiding, there have however been a few decent Kob and Grunter that have come out in the deeper water and more secluded areas of the harbour. When targeting the Kob in the harbour or any estuary for that matter, guys usually use live bait and Chokka baits. Hooks used are circle hooks ranging from 4/0 to 6/0 for the live baits and standard J-hooks sizing from 2/0to 6/0 for the Chokka baits. When selecting a live bait to use, one must always keep in mind what live bait the Kob predominantly feed on, and like in most estuaries and harbours, its Mullet.
Fishing for Bass this time of year is never easy considering the inconsistent weather conditions, temperatures and air pressure. Creature baits and spinner baits are generally effective if fished correctly in the deeper water. Frogging and jigging also seems to be rather effective the past while with good reports from Hazelmere Dam. Some decent size Bass have been coming out off the side as well as off the boats/canoes, top water has been working rather well off the side too. Lipless crank baits are becoming more popular the past while with more and more guys using them around the structured areas. Swim baits are proving to be very effective this time of year as it’s a big realistic looking baits that moves nice and slowly and can also be fished in deep water considering you’re using one that allows to fish deep water.
Carp fishing always slows down this time of year as the weather is very inconsistent and the pressure plays a very big roll when carp fishing. When the air pressure is very inconsistent the Carp tend to stop feeding for a while until it comes right. Nagle Dam has produced a few decent size Carp earlier in the week on boilies using boilies as feed too. Hook bait size in this dam is usually rather large as the Carp in this don’t play around when they feed and guys use boilies as big as 32mm when targeting Carp as big as the ones in this dam. Be sure to fish a heavier main line, leader as well as hook link. Hazelmere dam has had a few fish the past week as the water level has risen quite a lot allowing our anglers to fish once again. Some of the fish being caught have been picking up small baits namely dough, small floaties and mealies. The flavours that been working very well are Juana, Carmel and Double Trouble.
There have been good reports from Jozini with some decent size Tiger fish coming out mostly on bait as usual. There have also been reports of big Tilapia being caught on worms, small spinners as well as small crank baits and Salmo’s. The trick when fishing for Tiger fish is to trying and get a hook as thin as possible to penetrate their hared pallet but still strong enough to withstand their shear biting force. A lot of anglers like using slightly heavier gauge Bass hooks as they are very effective in terms of strength, the wide gape as well as diameter of the hook. When targeting the bigger Tiger fish the guys using live bait and a circle hook as you don’t need to worry about when to set the hook as a circle hook does all the work it’s when fishing a live bait.
Anglers who have been braving the colder weather have really been coming off well with some decent Trout in most of our dams, there are some smaller Browns and Rainbows coming out in the streams around the Underberg area. These fish are getting very aggressive this time of the year taking smaller Nymphs. For those lucky enough to have a float tube or kick boat getting to the deeper parts of the dams and fishing a fast sinking line with a big wet fly will have the best chance at getting a trophy fish due to the bigger fish laying right on the bottom of the dams, away from the heat and open areas. You can often also find them hiding in the reeds and water grass. Your smaller and more popular dams are usually the most challenging as fish in smaller dams are affected more by any sudden movements, splashing or any noise what so ever and can put the fish off biting for a while. Your more popular dams can be just as challenging as most of the fish have already been caught and know what to look out for when hunting.
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