With schools being in full swing and the morning traffic being chaos, it pays to get out early and fish. This means you beat traffic and get to see the sun come up. Not a bad way to start the day…
Please see the ASFN newsflash for a look at what’s going on (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7HPeQhvG-3Y).
With this time of year being favourable for fishing far north and this often going hands in hand with wading, safety is of utmost importance. When it comes to wading, I cannot stress how important it is to make sure you only wade when it is safe to do so. This means only wading in pairs, only wading when the water is slow enough and only wade when the rip current is not running too fast. Stay safe and fish hard. (NSRI :: Emergency please call 112 from your cell or Craig Lambinon 082 380 3800).
The offshore scene has been buzzing with reports of couta that are finally making an appearance. The rough seas have however limited the number of days the guys have been able to launch.
The big game anglers are getting ready for the upcoming marlin competition and with the amount of marlin coming out at the moment, I think we are going to see quite a few fish caught.
The northern section of KwaZulu-Natal has been producing some very fine catches for the skiboaters and paddle-ski guys alike. Reports have come in of catches of billfish (mainly sailfish), couta, lots of tuna and Dorado. The bottom fishermen have been quiet in terms of reports which either means the fishing is very good or very bad. The reports that have come in have not been spectacular with only various reds accounting for the days catches.
The game-fishermen have been enjoying most of the luck with the species mentioned above. Trolled lures have proven the better of the fish and the purple and black Rattler has outshone the rest of the lures while for the kona-style lures, the red and black versions have done very well for the sailfish.
There have been a few videos of some “interesting” launches doing the rounds. Please make sure you make yourself familiar with the area and the method of launching for the site you are choosing. Also, speak to the locals and watch how they launch and what lines they take out. These simple things can mean the difference between a great day or an embarrassing or life-threatening one.
In terms of the fishing: Reports have been slow with last weeks rough conditions and big seas. Bait has been difficult to come by but has often meant the difference between catching and watching.
The Dorado have been fancying a small live mozzie while the tuna have enjoyed the bigger mozzie with the large eye (butter mozzie). A large number of marlin have also been reported off the Durban coast and many tales have come in of the one that got away. The tuna are still feeding ferociously and catching these fish has been a matter of either putting the time in trolling or finding the dolphins.
The south has had the worst of the seas and the lack of a harbour/sheltered launch means that not many guys have been able to launch. Bait has also been difficult to get but the old sea dogs are still getting their fair share of mackerel and mozzies, with redeyes eluding all.
Billfish and Dorado have rewarded the guys travelling to the deeper waters. The edges of currents and water temperature have been the most successful. The inshore fishermen have been loaded with tuna and the occasional couta while the further south has seen some wahoo.
Rock and surf:
It’s that time of year again!
With the first round of the KwaZulu-Natal Coastal Angling Union having taken place this last weekend, the anticipation for a good round was very high. The weather and conditions lined up perfectly and most clubs registered favourable results. The preliminary results have shown that over 15 tons of fish came out on the north coast of KZN. Well done to all clubs and especially to Old Boys Angling Club for putting over 3 tons on the board with an average weight of over 50kg per fish.
Banks! Need I say more?
The competitive anglers showed that the diamond skates and sandsharks are around. As mentioned above, the banks produced over 15 tons of fish on the weekend (this is not the final weight)! This shows how productive this area can be when the weather conditions line up. Remember that you are wanting north east winds and hot weather, the hotter the better. On that note, also make sure to pack enough hydration for the days fishing. With fighting the big fish and the heat you can very easily cramp up or succumb to heat stroke. Also make sure to wear protective clothing to prevent sun exposure. This is a better route than sunscreen as your hands will not be full of lotion when making the baits (the scent can put fish off).
The “Basin” has been fishing extremely well over the last week, this may be a result of it being the only fishable spot along the coast or the fish moving in much like the anglers to take shelter. Nonetheless we will not complain. Mackerel has been the king of baits for this region with a small mackerel head wrapped with cutlets proving to be the better of many fish. The catches coming out have been dominated by two main species, the diamond ray (fish ranging from 30 to 80kgs) and the giant sandsharks (ranging from 20 to 40kgs). Please see the following videos and check out our YouTube page for information on these and many more species. Diamond (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LWIbHspBjLU) and Sandshark (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HGhTNaEW1T4).
The south has been very quiet. Very few reports have come through to us and the ones that have, have not included much. There are still bronze bream around and the usual methods described in previous reports and the following videos still hold true (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=drNzIL1Sp64).
The inedible side has been fairly still but some anglers have been fortunate enough to catch a few diamond rays, giant sandsharks and grey sharks. With the shad and grey sharks in the area, it is advisable to use a wire bite trace to avoid losing a good fish. If you do choose to fish straight nylon, make sure to check your hook snoot integrity before casting.
Shongweni has been picking up lately with anglers reporting good catches of above-average carp. These have been fish in the 12kg+ range. These fish have been favouring the sweeter flavours with honey being particularly effective. Floaties and dough have been doing all the work with flavours such as banana, pineapple, tutti frutti and most sweet and fruity flavours for the conventional anglers. The specimen guys have also been doing rather with many reports of carp over 10kg coming out from the margins and open water. Tiger nuts have been the baits of choice as the barbel wont the leave the boilies alone as per usual. Particle mix feed has been the feed of choice, this includes tiger nuts, giant maize, corn, hemp seed, chick peas, wheat and a couple of other odds and ends. A standard hair rig and combi rig are what the guys are using in terms of traces. All the baits are critically balanced with pop up corn and maize.
Hazelmere has been extremely productive once again the past weekend with reports of very large quantities of small bass being caught. Top water has proven to be one of the more effective methods first thing in the morning. The strike pro poppers and thai sticks had a lot of activity early mornings when the water was calm and flat. A lot of the fish being caught are being caught in foot water considering movement and noise is minimal. The bass are pushing right up against the bank so less noise and movement will result is more fish earlier in mornings. The Zoom 4” dead ringer worm in the watermelon seed colour and the black Zoom C-tail took over a bit later in the morning when the bass moved to deeper water. A slow to medium dragging action was the preferred action for theses worms. It would be best to rig your soft bait of choice weedless due to the amount of water grass and thick algae in the water.
Watermelon red has been the colour that has produced the catches, with junebug being a close second. Reports have shown that the mojo rig or weightless flukes in these colours have been working very well, especially when worked slowly around some underwater structure such as the ridge in the middle of the dam. Spinner baits with a slow retrieve in the slightly deeper water has also been producing some decent fish. Drop shot in the shallower and deeper water has also been getting quite a few bites from the smaller fish.
Jan from the Fish Eagle in PMB had this to say
The summer heat wave is still around, but being ameliorated somewhat by infrequent rainstorms. There has been rain up in the catchments, and the rivers are running, albeit with some colour at this stage. Spring Grove Dam is now hovering just over the 70% mark, having been used to feed Midmar Dam which is now sitting at over 80% … while Albert Falls languishes at 20%.
Warm water temps have resulted in the closure of some of the Midlands trout stillwaters; herewith some tips for summer trout fishing courtesy of the Natal Fly Fishers Club (NFFC) :
- Use a thermometer and know your upper limits: 21deg.C for trout.
- Don’t take a knife to a gun fight: tippet up to get the fish in as fast as possible for a quick release.
- Use a big net to hold the fish freely while recovering and keep ‘em wet.
- Don’t handle the fish unnecessarily.
- Timing is everything: a rainstorm can reduce water temps drastically, so fish the day after.
- Target other species: yellowfish, bass, carp, tilapia are the preferred species in the summer months.
- Know when enough is enough: catch a couple early on and call it quits when the heat of the day sets in.
- Go to the beach: there are salties on the bite in the big pond!
Midmar seems to have gone quiet, but lunker bass are still being reported from Albert Falls; soft-plastics in darker colours are pulling the fish.
The scaly’s (Natal Yellowfish) are also on the move, and a great alternative quarry for the river anglers looking to get their running water fix. With the rivers having some colour, drifting flies in mid-water under an indicator won’t be as effective as fishing flies on the bottom; mono-nymphing a tandem rig consisting of a heavily-weighted “control fly” with a lightly-weighted or even unweighted trailer fly is the order of the day.
The warm water also has the small- and largemouth yellows of Sterkfontein on the move and some good fish are being reported there on a variety of patterns – from the usual large hoppers and beetles in black / brown / purple, to small dries like parachutes and emergers, and also suspended nymph patterns if fishing to scum lines.
The Kingfisher Fishing channel features new content every Monday to Friday at 10h00. Fresh content on Product, Baits, Methods & Fishing as well as the popular SPLASH giving back to fishing courtesy DAIWA & The Kingfisher. GOTO: www.YouTube.com/TheKingfisherFishing
Herewith the shows for this week: Monday 15 Jan 2018 – NEWSFLASH – Latest catches. Tuesday 16 Jan 2018 – BAIT – When to slide a whole yellowtail and how to rig it. Wednesday 17 Jan 2018 – CASTING – Starting with a Multiplier Part 1. Thursday 18 Jan 2018 – SPECIES – This week’s species covered by Mike Dyer. Friday 19 Jan 2018 – TRACES with Ray Thompson.
The Kingfisher’s trading hours are Monday, Wednesday to Friday 8:00 to 17:00, Tuesday 8:30 to 17:00, and Saturday 8:00 to 13:00. Please send any info about fishing, fish caught or competitions in your area to firstname.lastname@example.org.