Fishing the past week has been exceptional on and offshore with great catches of shore game as well as some very exciting fish offshore. The weather has not been too bad for fishing as most anglers have gotten to the water to fish without any worries of too much of a swell or wash.
Starting up North – The Sodwana and Maphelane area has been quite successful with reports of big Couta, very big Tuna and loads of Snoek. The guys getting the bigger Tuna are predominantly popping for them or dropping large live baits quite deep for them. The Snoek coming out on artificial baits have been picking up the Kingfisher Bonnie spoon, Halco Twisty spoons and very small Rattlers. There have also been a few Dorado coming out that the guys have been hooking into trawling small Kona’s and throwing surface lures.
Zinkwazi – The bottom fishing has been rather productive with many reports of big Dagga coming out. This area has also been very productive as many big Couta have been coming out from the guys on the Paddle Skis.
Umdloti has also been very productive with lots of Couta coming out on live Bonnies and Mackerel. There has been a report or two of Sailfish hook ups on Kona’s being dragged around. The guys fishing bottoms have also had their hands full with many species of bottom fish coming out. The Dagga has been picking up on small live baits, whole Mackerel/Sardine and whole Chokka baits.
Our local waters are still producing some decent fish as very big Tuna in excess of 30kg have been coming out near the Barge on live baits and big Halco poppers. 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. Guys trawling for the bigger species have been quite successful with reports of big Couta coming out. The guys fishing bottom have been extremely successful as many big Dagga and Geelbek have been coming out around the wrecks and reefs. There have also been quite a few Geelbek coming out just outside the harbour mouth.
Moving South the fishing has been picking up quite nicely the past week. A few game fish have been landed in the area on live Bonnies and bigger Kona’s and with the Sardines well on their way, the fishing will be getting quite exciting in the next few weeks. The bottom fishing has also started to pick up the past few weeks.
Aliwal Shoal has produced quite a few fish as Wahoo are taking guy’s lures and live baits as well the odd Couta picking up on big spoons and live baits. Lots of Tuna have also started coming out in the area on hard plastics and live bait.
Shelly Beach to Port Shepstone has been doing extremely well as many big Tuna have been coming out as well as quite a few big Couta. Most of the bigger fish have been coming out in the deeper water on live bait. The guys trawling bigger Halco’s and Rattlers have also had their fair share of decent fish. The Bottom fishing in the area has also been rather productive with reports of nice Dagga and Geelbek coming out.
Rock and Surf:
Kosi Bay has seen quite a few edible fish the past week as there have been quite a few Stumpies, Rockcod, Bonefish and Pompano being caught. The Stumpies, Bonefish and Pompano seem to have quite a liking in the Sealice baits as well as the small well-presented Chokka baits. The Rockcod have been taken on small live baits and small Chokka baits.
Cape Vidal has been just as successful with many reports of decent edibles being caught as well as a few Sharks and Rays being caught. Stumpies, Pompano and many reef species have been targeted and landed the past week on Chokka baits as well as Sealice baits.
Moving over to Richards Bay there has not been a lot happening on the surf and just as much in the harbour. The Rock and Surf guys have put away their heavy equipment and have been quite successful with a few decent edible fish being caught, namely Snoek, Kob, Grunter and Kingies. The guys targeting the non edible fish have also had their hands full as the Diamond Rays proceed to take their big juicy baits.
Tugela mouth has been doing rather well the past week with reports of Kob on paddle tail, 3 Tail Labotes on small live baits and Chokka baits there have also been a few big Grey Sharks on bigger baits dropped with a drone. The guys catching the Kob on paddle tails have been using 6 inch paddle tails in a variety of colours such as Olive Pearl, White, Hot Orange and the list continues, the Kob have been plentiful as well decent in size. There have also been a few Kob coming out on white Chokka baits and live baits in the evenings.
Zinkwazi to Blythdale has been rather quiet the past week with only a few reports of Kob and Grey Sharks. Zinkwazi areas has had a few Grey Sharks in the region of 20kg and is coming out on Mackerel slide baits and live Mullet. Channel Rocks has also produced a few decent Greys as well as a few Kob in the 8 kg region. The Kob that have been landed have been coming out on live baits and well-presented white Chokka baits.
The Ballito area has also had a few decent Greys as well as a few Stumpies come out. The Greys have been coming out Chokka baits, Mackerel flaps, Shad baits as well as live bait. The Stumpies have been picking up whole Muscles, Sealice, Ghost Crabs and Chokka baits, all of which have been caught off the rocks. The guys spinning have also had a bit of success with Snoek early mornings and a few Kob on paddle tails.
In the Virginia to Beachwood area there are reports of some big Shad coming out on live bait and big Mackerel baits. There have also been quite a few decent size Snapper Salmon coming out on Chokka and Sardine combo baits. Snapper Salmon feed very similarly to Kob, so traces would be very similar, just a bit smaller and lighter.
Our local water has not been as productive as the previous weeks with much fewer fish being caught. There are still a handful of Stumpies and Kob being caught off and in between the Piers all the way up to Ushaka. There have also been a few Greys Sharks to the left of Moyo’s Piers that have been harassing the guys trying to catch Shad and Stumpies on Chokka and Sardine baits.
Winklespruit has started to pick up with the numbers of Garrick rising week by week. The Garrick coming out have been on live Karanteen, Mullet and Shad. They are fishing their live baits with a single circle hook and this has been very successful as their circle hook is ending up in the corner of the mouth almost every hook up.
Umgababa to Umkomaas proceeds to be quite active as the past week has produced few Grey Sharks coming out on all baits mostly intended for edible fish. The Garrick have made their appearance here too. Live Shad is the winning bait in this area as big Kingies are also known to come feed on the Shad around here.
Port Shepstone has been very productive the past week as quite a few decent edible fish have been caught especially on live baits. Live Karenteen and live Mullet have been the baits of choice in the evenings and early mornings to catch the Kob, Garrick and Kingies that have been coming out.
Port St Johns has been seeing a lot of active the past week with loads of Garrick, Kob and big Grey Sharks coming out. There has not been many Shad around so the bait fishermen have been desperate enough to put down the big rods and start throwing plugs for the Garrick and paddle tails for the Kob with lots of success.
Fishing in the Durban Harbour has started to pick up with the smaller species of fish coming out on Cracker, small drop shots and small bullet spoons. The Kingies and Torpedo Scads that have been coming out have been taking on small bullet spoons and small jerk minnows. There are reports of big Grunter in the 4-6kg region coming out in the deeper areas of the harbour on fillet baits and Cracker. The Garrick have also started coming out in our harbour on small live baits on light tackle. Generally when fishing for Kob and Garrick in a harbour or estuary guys tend to fish quite heavy for them but that usually leads to being quite unsuccessful. When fishing for Kob or Garrick off the side, you won’t need more than 300m of braid or line which can be achieved with a 2500 to 3000 size reel. A medium to medium heavy action rod in 6ft to 8ft is all that’s needed as you don’t need to cast too far. The Garrick usually come quite close to the banks to feed on the Mullet and the Kob also come in quite close in the evenings when they feed. Fishing off the boat makes all of this much easier; you can also fish much lighter as you have the boat to follow the fish around if he’s a bit bigger than expected.
Carp slow down their feeding in winter as their bodies are very much in tune with the temperature of the water surrounding them which means that the enzymes that control their metabolism, digestion, amounts of swimming and movements done is generally much more restricted in order to save energy. Actually finding winter Carp is one of the major problems in winter and early spring and this is why regular feeding with baits is so important to keep fish visiting spots which makes catching them much easier. Sometimes it is better to keep moving your baits and rigs about and even move spots too until you get some indications that Carp are actually present in your area because they will shoal up and become more concentrated in various areas in winter compared to summer time. The advantage of this fact is that when you find the fish and really get into them it is possible to catch numbers of big wary fish in a short space of time. The biggest fish in a dam can be very vulnerable to capture when the weather turns cold as natural food stocks reduce, and as angling pressure reduces it can change their behaviors and make more mistakes on fishing hook baits! There are times when Carp will seek deeper water, but for a variety of reasons. Initially it may be that they seek warmer water as waters on the surface get suddenly cooled. It might seem strange but water can form layers with pretty significant temperature differences. Water density is an important factor to do with Carp comfort and also temperature and to do with Carp willingness to actually feed more intensively.
Bass fishing in Inanda Dam has been a bit slow on the banks of the dam as there aren’t too many reports of fish being caught. There have however been quite a few fish caught around steep ledges; Bass prefer these areas because they can make extreme depth changes by moving up and down the water column to feed without using much energy. Fishing these areas with grubs rigged with a jig head or with jigs themselves have proven to be most successful. To up your chances of catching on a jig try adding a trailer, a trailer a creature like soft bait that you hook onto your jig such as a Zoom craw. If it is a trophy Bass you’re targeting during the winter, it is important to learn weather patterns. Timing your fishing trips when there is a break in the cold temperatures can help. Fronts can bring relatively warm rain and a barometric pressure change; this can be one of the most productive times to fish. A warming weather trend in conjunction with a barometric change will cause Bass to feed as the bait will migrate to areas with the warmest water.
Tiger fishing proceeds to be rather challenging as not many fish are being caught the past few weeks. The few reports that have come in suggest that fishing is very difficult at the moment but not impossible. Live baits or a fillet of Sardine; have been getting some fish but the water columns and depths need to be explored in order to find where the fish are feeding.
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