With the amount of excited anglers at the water’s edge over the last week, it is no wonder there have been so many reports of good catches all around the Natal Coast. Holiday makers are making memories and locals who are enjoying their long awaited holidays are making the most of the good fishing. Happy Holidays and a Merry Christmas to those celebrating, enjoy the rest of the holidays.
Rock n Surf:
On the northern side of our coastline, in the Kosi Bay region and towards Sodwana, good reports have been received throughout the week of Kingfish being caught on live baits as well as plugs. Some excellent Blue Fin Kingies being landed on plug as well as dropshot in the shallows. The outfit of choice here has been the Latest Exceler Saltwater series 10’6″, three piece paired with a Daiwa Exceler 4000HA reel. There have also been plenty of Bonefish throughout the week, which have taken smaller baits in the shallows and off the sand banks. A few Lucky anglers have managed to land these on spoons whilst targeting Kingfish or Wave Garrick. Anglers who have used these as bait have managed to catch the odd GT or Shark.
Some lovely Sharks have been taken on the larger baits in the Maphelane area, particularly around the river mouth.
At Cape Vidal off the ledges, anglers have caught some nice Raggies at night on big bloody baits. Whole Mackerel slide baits have also been effective, as well as Yellowtail cutlets or heads. Spinning enthusiasts have reaped the benefits of long hours in the sun, catching a good few Snoek and Kingfish on spoons, which have been fished fast on the surface along colour lines, rips or drop offs. With the rains coming down in most areas, the fresh water has brought the Snoek in and has turned them on the bite for the first time in a few months.
The north side of Richards Bay produced a good number of flatfish, with Honeycombs being the main target species. Along with the Honeycombs, a few Sand Sharks and Blackfin Sharks were landed too.
On the south side of Richards Bay, anglers saw a few Diamonds, Browns and Sandies.
Further down, at Zinkwazi and Blythedale, the fish were not as abundant as the weeks before and due to holiday time restrictions, fewer anglers had lines in the water. For those who managed to fish during the evenings, the larger Honeycombs and Sharks were caught, proving to be excellent fun on the grinder outfits in the 12’6″ range.
At Ballito, the Sand Sharks were on the bite and anglers also saw some Honeycombs and Diamonds in the evenings. A few small Stumpies were landed during the night with smaller throw baits. The usual spots at Ballito and Sheffield produced a few Snoek over the last week, thanks to a few new spoons released on the market. These being the Anchovy spoon, The Kingfisher Bonnie Spoon and the new Chase Mackerel imitation spoon.
It is nice to see a high volume of anglers spinning from the Blue Lagoon north banks in the mornings, catching Shad and Kingfish of decent size. For anglers getting into spinning and are looking for a cost effective outfit, be sure to take a look at the range of Poseidon Power Angler rods, which are available in a 3pce option for easy storage in any vehicle. These rods matched with a Daiwa Laguna in a size 4000 will have enough power to stop even the most stubborn fish. There were good reports of huge flatfish sighted off the piers, which are have recently been caught by a few anglers using the Saltiga Dogfight. Anglers who have targeted them have managed to land some beautiful Honeycombs up to 100kgs. Of course, bigger bloody baits are the way forward when targeting these fish, with care taken to use the freshest bait possible.
If it is edible fish that you are after, then be sure to make your way down to Ushaka to target some of the many Stumpies and Grunter which have been in the area. Red Eye and Chokka baits or Sea Lice have been deadly. Closer to the North Pier, on the extreme low tide the Stumpies have had a good run on Sea Lice and heavier tackle. Mustad Kendal round 3/0 has been doing the damage, with the Mustad Tarpon 4/0 used for the larger, more aggressive fish which may open a smaller hook. On the Bluff, the water has been a few degrees warmer than around Durban and the fish seem to be more active. Plenty of smaller Black Tip Kingies around, as well as Bonefish and Stumpnose. Anglers fishing around the South Pier have had a huge increase in catches of Kingfish and other smaller Game fish such as Snoek and even Bonito.
Toti has produced some very nice Shad recently, mainly on the weekend when there has been more bait in the water. Many of the anglers have been targeting the many Stumpnose which have been present in these waters lately, which has led to the capture of a variety of good sized edibles such as Grunter, Stumpies, small Kob and Pompano.
Umkomaas River is flowing strong and the amount of fish being landed in the area is impressive. Grunter, Kob, Stumpies and a variety of inedibles from Brown Rays to Zambezi Sharks. In the moving water, bigger baits are a must.
Scottborough Point is fishing well at the moment as well, if the tides are fished correctly. There have been good Kingies and Sea Pike off the point on smaller spoons and Kingies off the pool on spoon or McArthy dropshot.
Umdoni Point has had some good fishing in the mornings, producing good Bonefish and smaller edibles.
The Port Shepstone area has been quite apart from some smaller Kingfish which have been landed.
Far south, Hole In The Wall is the spot to be with fish being landed left, right and center. Plenty of Grunter and other edibles around during the mornings and evenings. Mpolomo is also having a good run of Sharks on Sarda Sarda baits and whole Chokka slide baits. Bonito and Yellowtail have also been impressive baits, being held responsible for a few of the larger fish being caught recently.
A relatively quiet week has passed in the bay, with most of the attention going the way of the surf angling. In the morning, a few anglers have congregated along the piers and off the banks to target the Pick Handle Barracuda and small Kingfish with fair success. The banks towards Wilsons Wharf have been far more productive and have seen a wide variety of fish too. For anglers using bait, most of the fish have been coming out along the center banks on the southern side closer to the mangroves where a few different species such as Perch, Grunter, Rock Salmon and Stumpnose have been caught. Surprisingly, there have been a number of Grunter caught on artificials in the Bay recently, which is unusual and can be considered lucky. Surface poppers and diving baits such as the Maria Fake Baits and Strike Pro Arch Minnows. Many of these lures need hook replacements soon after they have been used a few times, as do all lures, for the reason that the small trebles which they are supplied with tend to rust or bend if not looked after sufficiently. A simple solution for this is to replace all treble hooks with the Mustad Kaiju inline hooks which are available all the way down to a size 8 which is ideal for smaller lures such as the 5cm dive baits. These hooks do not rust nearly as fast as standard hooks, they are stronger and also have a much higher catch rate. For surface lures, the back hook can be bent open ever so slightly to ensure the point is sitting proud, which will increase the chances of hooking into a less aggressive fish as they hit the lure.
North – Massive shoals of Dorado and Tuna have flocked to the upper North Coast and have attracted all the fishermen and women too. With hauls of up to 20 fish per boat, things are definitely heating up and have been ideal conditions for happy charter clients and holiday makers. Wahoo and Sailfish have been plentiful in the deeper water and both have been coming out on live Bonito and even strip baits on Konas. It is relatively important to fit steel trace to the Konas as the Wahoo will make short work of a standard mono trace. A faster trawl will almost always get a bite faster than an equivalent bait trawled at a slower pace.
Down at Maphelane, the Couta have been on the loose and have seen a massive participation of anglers who have been successful on anything from Japanese Mackerel to Sardines, Mackerel and Bonito.
Cape Vidal has been on fire and has had many a happy angler beach with a hatch full of fish, mainly Dorado and Tuna. The Paddle Ski anglers have had a field day out there with almost all of them filling their hatches. Good weather has made fishing easy over the last week and has been so down the entire coast.
Zinkwazi has yet again proven one of our coasts best spots, producing good sized Couta and also some lovely Tuna up to 35kgs.
Local / South Coast –
Durban has seen a load of fish ranging from Snoek to Tuna and seemingly millions of Dorado. Further south there have been masses of Dorado and Tuna off Rocky Bay and Toti, which seem to have been moving further south by the day.
Port Edward has been a phenomenal Yellowtail spot over the last week and with the good weather coming up, will surely keep up the good reports. Fish of 20kgs have not been uncommon and have been coming out in good numbers on bottom rigs with live baits used. Make sure to fish with good quality hooks such as Mustad Hoodlums will do a great job.
The past two weeks have definitely slowed down on the Basing front, having had minimal reports from various anglers fishing around Natal. Farm dams have fished very well, which indicated that the main dams have felt the pressure from boats and anglers over this festive season. Inanda Dam is fishing better than most other dams in Natal, with numbers and with size. The river section has produced most good sized fish and the areas around Cabbage Patch have been responsible for most catches or 300-700g fish. A few larger fish were caught on the McArthy frogs, fished relatively fast. Those who are patient enough have seen good results on spinner baits fished in the shallows and off drop off, having to make multiple casts at structure in order to entice the bite. This is a tedious process but effective in the heat of the day.
Shongweni has fished slow but consistent, producing fish between 500g and 1kg. The water is extremely green on the upper water column, which means that a heavier weighted bait has been far more productive as it penetrates the low visibility level and gets to the fish who have been seeking shade under the top layer.
With the amount of baits in the water recently, it is no wonder the reposts have been flying in. All of our dams are fishing well, as well as most river systems too. Anglers using conventional tackle have landed dozens of Carp between 3-8kgs from the day sites at Nagle and Midmar as well. Apart from the conventional tackle, specimen anglers have racked up some points with a number of large fish on tiger nuts and bigger boilies.
Midmar showed us once again why anglers keep going back for more, with fish between 17 and 19kgs on tiger nuts during the evenings. Again, it is important to try and secure a site which is quiet and has less water activities during the day, as the larger Carp do tend to stay away from human activity. Albert Falls has had a high concentration of Carp at the river section and although dry, the expectation of water and food remains fresh in their minds. Most baits presented in these areas have produced the goods and the size of these fish is impressive with a few coming in at over 10kgs.
The Kingfisher’s trading hours are Monday to Friday 8:00 to 17:00, Tuesday 8:30 to 17:00 and Saturday 8:00 to 13:00.
SUNDAYS & PUBLIC HOLIDAYS FOR THE FESTIVE SEASON: Sunday the 27th December: 8:00 – 13:00.
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