For those that follow the weather reports it looks like this weekend will have some big seas with 3+ metre waves. Hopefully the weather man is wrong and we can all look forward to some excellent fishing. The silver bullets are still hanging around the Waterfall Bluff area with a very large shoal +/- 20 kilometres sitting off East London. Come on Sards, we are waiting for you.
Kosi Bay This area seems to have a sudden case of lock jaw with very few fish coming out. The three spot Pompano or Wave Garrick caught in foamy water, close to shore seems to be your best bet. 3 and 4 inch Minnows fished on light tackle are working great. Stick to the old saying Bright day – Bright Colour, Dark Day Dark Colour. Maybe it is your lucky day if you can put out a live bait and perhaps land a Kingie.
St Lucia Good News the Mapelane river mouth is open and lots of edible species are now up for grabs. The main species for this time of year; such as Kob, Grunter and Shad have been landed. Soft mushy Redeye baits mixed with Chokka seem to be the meal of the day.
Mapelane / Cape Vidal With a large amount of Shad in the area, we can only hope that the Garrick are there too. Early morning spinning sessions have produced a number of Shad mainly on S-bend Toby Spoons for light tackle enthusiasts. The traditional salt water Shad trace with the bobbing cork also being put to great effect.
Mtunzini / Amatikulu It would seem that the big Shad have moved forth to a happier hunting ground as not many have been reported. As well as this being a good Shad fishing area, this area also produces some lovely Kob when conditions allow. Better conditions are when the water is rough and choppy especially in the late evening. Small throw baits such as Chokka and Prawn combinations work very well and a live Mullet is excellent bait for targeting larger specimens. The smaller fish, fished on 2.0 4.0 fish and the larger fish on 6.0/7.0.
Richards Bay The harbour seems to be the best area to fish currently. There have been a few Milkies off the pier. This platform gives both novice and expert Drop shot enthusiasts a means of targeting various Kingfish species in the 1 2 kilo range. There are a few Sea Pike around so if you get bitten off, maybe add on a bit of steel wire to prevent the one that got away stories.
Salt Rock / Ballito This area seems to have woken up in the winter months. There are a few Grey Sharks for both throw bait and slide bait anglers. These caught mainly in the late afternoon into early evening time periods. For the guys who love spinning with artificial lures and bullet spoons there have been Snoek caught off most of the points, predominately early morning just after sunrise. These spoons must be thrown a long distance and retrieved with a fast action. For traditional tackle anglers, there are some Kingfish and Stumpies in the gullies. There are also Garrick in the area as well, and a Spear-fisherman was lucky enough to shoot 2 over the weekend.
Umhloti / Umhlanga Grey Sharks have been coming out although sporadically on the low tide. Fresh Mackeral either as cutlets or Mackeral head baits are producing better bites. Small Shad have also started to appear, which means there could be some Garrick too. The reef area has produced a few Stumpies and a number of lost traces.
Durban The new pier near the Casino as well as the old Snake Park pier have had a large number of small Red Fish and juvenile Black tail as well as some small Grunter these fish can be fantastic to target on light tackle. The beachfront area being protected, especially from a Southwest wind, and keeping in mind the big waves predicted for the weekend – might be a good spot for the die-hard anglers.
Toti / Winkle Garrick, Garrick, Garrick and more Garrick. Majority of the fish are small (below the 70cm legal size). There are a few bigger sized fish around, so when your reel starts peeling line, hopefully it will be a good fish. There are Shad although mostly undersize, with a few stretching the 30cm limit.
Umkomaas / Scottborough This area is also swimming with Shad, although very few are size. A single Sardine fillet or small drift bait seem to be doing the trick for these smaller fish. Juvenile Grunter have also been hooked, mainly on small Redeye head as bait.
Margate As with most of the coast the Shad are there along with larger shoals of Garrick. The Bronze Bream also now have moved in. These fish can be targeted on ultra-light and light tackle with the ever popular Prawn and Chokka bait combinations. The Chokka blob bait is also a good bet. Shad also mainly being caught on Spoon and hastily hooked to target the Garrick.
Port Edward – Terry Nel from Port Edward Last week: The sardines seem to have disappeared off the coast around the Waterfall Bluff area. This phenomenon has been common in the past and one could put it to the fact that the continental shelf runs very close to the shore in many parts of the Transkei coast and the deep water temperatures are favourable for the shoals of sardines moving up. However, small shoals have been sighted further up the coast. Expected cold fronts have not occurred yet and normally a big cold front becomes the ‘curtain raiser’ for the run. Awaited game fish are around although not many in this area. Kob have been eating well as have Hound Sharks and there have been plenty of bigger shad on the bite just south of the Port Edward area. The estuary fishing has been quiet and many river mouths are blind to the sea at the moment. Thanks to Terry Nel from Tacklenet, Port Edward for this report.
Transkei There are some small pockets of Sardines in the Waterfall Bluff vicinity. The Port St Johns area is producing plenty of Garrick and lots of Kob. The McCarthy 6 inch Paddle tail in Orco and Goldfish are very popular colours. Early morning sessions with Plugs have landed a number of Garrick as well as live Shad if you can catch them. Brazen Head has some nice size Shad, predominately on Spoon and drift baits. Hole-in-the-Wall is producing some Kob, some Shad and an occasional big Shark; most of the Sharks are amongst the Sardines which are deeper out.
Cape Vidal Tuna and Couta seem to be the main species for this area. Live Maasbunker being the easiest, available bait is performing well. The sun-up sessions seem to have these fish feeding more readily.
Richards Bay / Mapelane True to form for this time of year, there are still big Couta in the area. Whole Sardines trolled at medium speed can get these crocs to get your reel screaming.
Blythdale / Umhloti Large Snoek hooked mainly on strip baits and smaller Halco lures are up for grabs. There are a few Gentlemen in Brown Coats doing the auditing here.
Durban The taxman is rampant and many live baits put out for Couta and Snoek having landed up being Grey Sharks and smaller Hammers. Shad are in abundance and plenty of Sabikis have been shredded. For boats with night rating Geelbek and Daga seem to be congregating on most of the wrecks. Live Mackeral in the early mornings are producing a few Couta, although these fish have to be fought hard and boated quickly in order not to be taxed.
Toti / Winkle There are still some Kingfish for drop shot and spinning. There are a few Bonnies still around as well as Maasbunker and Redeye for live baits.
Umkomaas Snoek seem to still be around, caught mainly on Maasbunker and live Shad. A few Queen Fish have also been boated. These fish weighing in in the 3 6 kilogram range.
Shelly beach With plenty of bait still available in this area bigger Tuna and croc Couta are still around. Although not as easy to come by as in previous months, perseverance can pay off.
Zinkwazi / Tinley Manor Not many fish have been landed in this area, although those landed have been beautiful fish. Mainly Couta and a few Snoek.
Salt Rock / Umhloti Along this stretch the Snoek and Couta are still around, although on some days seem to have a severe case of lock jaw, Paddlers have seen fish, yet for some reason they will not touch what is offered to them. Live baits are still your best bet should this fail, back up plans such as buck tail jigs and drop shotting can still be great fun targeting smaller Kingies and bottom fish.
Durban Small Shad have become a pest as many strip baits are literally stripped by large shoals as soon as they are put out. An idea is possibly to fish 1 strip bait/live bait and an artificial in tandem to better your chances at a hook up.
Toti / Winkelspruit Not many fish have been reported in this area and it seems the live bait is deeper out. With a number of Garrick in this area Spoons and Plugs casted from behind backline and reeled back have produced a few Garrick and like the shore Anglers these fish are not all making size. Targeting fish this way can be great fun, especially before work and allowing you to avoid the bait fish smell at the boardroom story.
Umkomaas The Snoek are still here and will readily take on a Maasbunker and live Mackeral on the troll. The Couta seem to prefer larger baits such as bigger Mackeral and Bonito. Like most venues the early morning sessions are most productive especially just after sunrise.
Durban Bay For Anglers fishing in the deeper water, you will be rewarded with bigger Grunter in the 3+ kg range. Slightly shallower Snapper Salmon can be targeted and these fish on light tackle can give a good account of themselves. The drop shot enthusiasts fishing on the water can target Kingies and on top water lures fished near Pelican Island, Mike the Sea Pike is patrolling the area. Be sure when targeting the Sea Pike to use some wire or a mornings outing could becoming a costly affair. For guys fishing from the bank there are fewer fish, however, targeting small Perch, Black tail and Kingfish on light tackle can be rewarding to both experienced and novice anglers. Due to the location; parking is safe and the surrounding vista is something to behold. Where else can you target fish in the heart of the CBD?
Fly-fishing Fishing has been good of late with fish feeding well. Although the fish are not yet spawning – this should happen soon. Recent snow on the Lesotho Mountains has created excellent conditions for dry fly fishing. The Royal Wolff DDD and Grasshopper imitations in mainly brown and black patterns would be my first choice, maybe second to a flask of coffee to chase the chill away. As winter sets in, we can hope for better fishing, although colder conditions.
Bass Surface lures fished at Inanda, Midmar and Albert Falls have all been producing fish. Soft baits fished on a slow retrieve yielded a 1.5 kilo fish at Shongweni recently. The flukes and c-tail worms fished weightless seem to be doing the trick.
Carp Midmar Dam seems to have small fish although on a more regular basis. More natural scents such as fruits and almond are working well, and with most Carp expeditions to this area, the quieter the area the better the fishing. Inanda Dam is a bit quieter although the fish area slightly bigger. Soon this area should be the hotspot with larger specimens during the colder winter months.
Tiger Fishing Like most fresh water species predominantly smaller specimens are being caught at the moment. Late afternoons when the water has warmed up a bit seem to be most productive; especially if a North Easterly wind is blowing. Most productive bait still seems to be the Sardine fillet on a slow troll and for the late afternoon session the Silver Tiga-waka spoon retrieved on a slow to medium crank speed. Jozini Dam has a fair amount of water so best to fish shallower areas where the water temperature can rise during the day.
Unlucky number 13, definitely suites the Stonefish (also known as the Reef Stone fish or the Rock fish). This 13 spined-devil in disguise can mimic a rock and it is the most venomous fish in the world. Thought to only be a salt water fish, it is interesting to know that it is also quite comfortable in estuarine as well as fresh water rivers. Although highly venomous its flesh is readily eaten in Japan as Sashimi. And the largest ever to be recorded was a whopping 51cms.
For the latest KZN fishing news presented by O.J., tune into East Coast Radio at 5.40am Monday – Friday. Any info about fishing, fish caught or competitions in your area please send to firstname.lastname@example.org or fax 031- 368 4007.
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