Early last week the fishing started off somewhat quiet with not many fish being reported all along the coastline, and then all hell broke loose on Friday. It seemed to be that the fish had gone on an early weekend and with near perfect conditions, some lucky Anglers really got stuck in, especially in the afternoon and evening sessions. This month sees the start of the Big Shad Competition; remember to bring your catches in so that they can be weighed at the Kingfisher, or the Tackle Shop in Warner Beach or Tackle Centre in Old Fort Road. A Daiwa SL50 Reel for first place, second place is a Poseidon Deep Blue 5-6 Graphite Rod and a Daiwa Opus Plus is the third prize.
Rock and Surf
Kosi Bay Last week saw some more Black fins being caught, although the edible fish were conspicuous by their absence. With not too much of winter left, hopefully fishing will improve for the next school holidays.
St Lucia/Cape Vidal Anglers targeting edible fish were pleasantly surprised when on Friday evening a fair number of Kob in the 3 7 kilo range were caught in front of the river mouth.
Mapelane/Richards Bay Both areas have been consistent in producing Shad, although not many Anglers are brave enough to carry all their kit to further destinations along the beach. For a lucky Angler who did, he was rewarded with a of Garrick just over 10 kilos on a Shad live-bait. This fish was slid out on a Saltwater Garrick Slide trace and was taken on the surface while the Angler slid the bait out.
Ballito Saw some excellent fishing on Friday night, although the majority were Shad, some Spinner Sharks and a few Stumpies were also caught, all in the dark.
Umhloti Once again another Friday evening popular spot, although the action here also lasted into Saturday morning. Small Spinner Sharks, lots of Shad and the odd Grey Shark were also in the mix. Saturday morning saw bigger Shad and at one stage every cast was an on. Most of these fish were slightly under size with their bigger brothers mixed in the crowd.
Umhlanga Umhlanga Lighthouse also came to the party fully dressed on Friday night. Here too Shad were abundant, a Stumpnose of just over 2 kilos and a few Grey Sharks kept the night time Anglers on their toes.
Virginia/Umgeni North Bank Virginia on Thursday evening had a quick run of Shad, the majority of these fish under size. Friday afternoon saw things hot up with a lot more Shad and a small Grey round about 5 kilos. Umgeni North Bank saw some Garrick get dropped on live baits and some juvenile Shad in the early morning and late evening.
Blue Lagoon A lovely Shad of just over 2 kilos was caught here on a live Mullet intended for a Garrick. Not much other fish were reported.
Durban Piers/Beachfront The Pier fishing has definitely picked up, small Grunter, juvenile Skates, lots of Shad and Milk Sharks seem to be the order of the day. The beachfront although being fished due to ease of parking and not having to carry kit has been fishing fairly well with good catches of smaller Shad with the odd big Shad in-between, whilst smaller species such as Maasbunker and Redfish also being plentiful.
Bluff The Bluff was boiling on Friday and kept up the tempo right through to Sunday when the big winds put a stop to things but plenty of Shad were still being caught. Just goes to show you cant judge fishing just on poor weather.
Toti Had some good action with two Garrick coming out as well as a large number of Shad. In the evenings be sure to put wire on as the bigger Shad and the odd Grey Shark have started moving in.
Winkelspruit Had its fair share of wonders over the weekend, some nice Garrick on Friday and Saturday morning with Shad and a few nice Blacktail all hanging around the rocks near the swimming pool. The bad conditions on Sunday afternoon kept most but the hardy at bay, but fortune does favour the brave, with a nice Garrick of just over 10 kilos being caught off the beach off on a live Shad.
Karadeen Light tackle spinning enthusiasts took full advantage of the good weather and by travelling light were able to walk great distances on the beach; this paid off with a Queen fish on the Kingfisher Bullet Spoon, some Shad and an on/off with a Garrick also on a Kingfisher Silver Bullet Spoon.
Umkomaas North Bank saw Snapper Salmon and Kob on Friday and Saturday and during the week reports were received of some better size Kob also being landed.
Scottburgh Friday saw Scottburgh being very quiet with only a small Grey Shark being caught and two Hammerhead Sharks. Saturday saw conditions pick up with two more Hammerhead Sharks, some nice size Shad and a couple of Milkies all coming to the party.
Port Shepstone The locals are still landing a few Kob, mostly on bait with the odd light spinning tackle anglers catching on Paddle tails, the fish seem not as plentiful but a definite spot to put some time in.
Port Edward – The big fish are there and the Shad are going ballistic, according to Terry Net from Tacklenet. This past week, the rocky points here in Port Edward have been a hive of activity and much is the “live bait brigade” on Splash Rock again, with rods out and in holders waiting their turn to ‘go down’ into a big fish. Big fish have certainly been here and the Garrick are on the bite, anglers yielding a number of these sporting game fish. A pleasant surprise awaited Mike Beisner when he landed a 9,7kg Pignose Grunter using redeye sardine as bait. Kob also are being caught and one fish weighed in at 22kg. Sardine shoals have not appeared but there is a definite a presence of them in the water.
Transkei Depending on the area you travel to, this area is blowing hot and cold. Previous good catches of Kob seem to have slowed down as these fish have started moving up river. Good size Shad have been caught whilst the heavy tackle Anglers have been putting slide baits out and not catching the big one. Hopefully with this cooler weather we have had and cooler water temperature the Sardines will move up the coast at the rate of knots to try and recover the 2013 Sardine Run.
Ski-boat and Paddle-Ski
A bit of a slow start to the week, probably giving Paddlers and Skippers a chance to relax before the big long weekend fishing. Fish came on the bite early Friday morning and it seemed to be a start to Saturdays Super Show. Weather conditions played their part, although Sunday was a bit of a blowout for Paddlers and Skippers with the waves getting on the large side.
North Reports of good catches of Natal Snoek on the North coast, these fish are between 2 5 kilos, with the odd bigger brother exceeding the 5 kilo mark. The Saltwater Snoek fillet trace has been put to good use. The Geelbek and Daga have started to come out, although not so great in numbers as the water is still a little too warm. The water temperature in the 16-19 degree range is perfect to get these fish on the bite.
Central Friday morning saw a fair number of boats and Paddlers targeting fish at Umhloti, as well as Umgeni River Mouth. There were some good catches off Umgeni of Snoek whilst further North at Umhlanga a nice Garrick was caught using a Shad live bait by a lucky Paddler.
South Garrick are starting to come out on the backline but mainly on live baits. Shad and Mackerel have been working particularly well. Whilst the bottom fishing in this area has still been good, a very fast retrieve must be used in order to ensure the fish are not taxed before they reach the boat.
Where have the big Grunter gone? Seems to be the popular question for both Bank and Ski-boat Anglers fishing this stretch of water. Many Anglers although putting in the time caught juvenile Grunter mixed with Sand Gurnetts, small Shad and a handful of Perch. It seems the bigger Grunter seemed to have moved off as the majority of the fish are undersize.
Bass The typical winter baits matched to the colour of the water have enticed a few fish, yet the bite is very sluggish indeed and Anglers must ensure accurate casting and a helpful tip is to get a map of the dam and see what the structure etc. is like, in order to target fish in this area.
Carp During the winter months it seems the Anglers mind the cold more than the fish do, but you will generally find that you will catch bigger fish during colder months. For the conventional Anglers stick to smaller baits with Does and single floaties, especially cinnamon and garlic flavours.
Fly-fishing Reports received are that it is almost as if the whole of the Midlands Trout area sees fish still feeding on the summer big fly and streamer patterns. Fish are being taken on Woolley Buggers and big Dragon patterns all across the Berg. Some fish however have been taken on 14/16 egg patterns, although there hasnt seemed to be a winter feeding pattern which is great news for amateur Anglers. A few of the Zwartberg dams which havent fished well over the past couple of years seem to have come alive with some big fish landing up in the net.
When targeting Grunter a running sinker trace is most popular. This rig has the main line running through a hole in the sinker. The line is attached to a swivel, which acts as a stopper. A leader to the hook is tied to the other end of the swivel. The idea is that the fish will pick up the bait and run, and feel no resistance because the sinker is stationary while the line runs through it.
A reminder to all that this month sees the start of The Kingfisher Biggest Shad Competition. All fish must be weighed in at The Kingfisher, The Tackle Centre or The Fishing Tackle Shop during normal shop hours. Remember that as always no frozen fish may be entered. The heaviest Shad for each month (August and September) will receive a Daiwa SL 50SHK Reel, valued at R1395.00 second heaviest shad will receive a 13 6 Kingfisher Poseidon Deep Blue 3pc Graphite Rod, valued at R998.00 and third heaviest shad will receive a Daiwa Opus Plus 6000 Reel valued at R740.00. Please remember there is a bag limit of four and the minimum size is 30cm.
ASFN Season 2 premiers on Monday nights on Super Sport 8 at 19h30 be sure not to miss it, there will also be six rebroadcasts during the week.
For the latest KZN fishing news presented by O.J., tune into East Coast Radio at 5:40am Monday – Friday.
The Kingfishers trading hours are: Mon, Wed, Thu & Fri 8:00am 5:00pm Tue 8:30am 5:00pm. Sat 8:00am 1:00pm.