FISHING REPORT 09TH FEBRUARY ’18 February 7, 2018 by The Kingfisher Yellow diamonds in the sky…Well Rihanna almost got it right. The diamonds are in full force in the north. Check out (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sWjQIeyS-No). The wading banks are firing like a miss-firing AK47, patchy but ferocious. For a video update of what’s happening along the coast, please see the latest ASFN newsflash (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mPkhcveizQ8). Offshore: The offshore reports have been slow to come in along the KwaZulu-Natal coast. This has been as a result of the unsettled sea and mixed up weather. Mother Nature is clearly not watching the weather reports as she seems to be doing things in her own time. Nonetheless there have still been some good fish coming out. North – The north has seen good game fishing. Tuna, dorado, couta, kingfish and billfish have been on the hit list for the guys making the trip up north. Most of these anglers have managed to tick off two or three species a day. Trolling lures (either lipped lures for slower trolling or skirted lures for the faster trolling) has proved to be the best method for finding the fish and covering enough water. Best colours have been the darker red and black and the “fruit salad” combinations for the skirted lures while purple and black lipped lures are working very well. Have a look at some of the new Kona-type lures that have just been unpacked in our Ski boat section when you are next at The Kingfisher in Durban. Central – The central section of the KZN coast has been full up with bait. And this has led to good number of tuna, dorado and couta for the guys targeting them. If you are looking for a new all-purpose offshore rod for the bigger fish, have a look at the new Poseidon Offshore series Tuna Ski. This rod is a 7ft one piece rod that is rated 12-15kg but can punch well above that weight. Successful methods for the central region have undoubtedly been live bait. For the dorado and tuna, a circle hook with a length of fluorocarbon and for the couta, a steel trace with a single hook in the front with a treble at the back. South –The south has been patchy with reports. Aliwal has been producing some very nice game fish, mainly tuna but a few dorado, couta and wahoo have made it on to the catch reports. Darker-coloured lures are proving to be the best. For the skirted lures, red and black is the best choice and remember to put a steel trace on to avoid losing these costly lures to wahoo. With the lipped lures, the purple and black, and the black rattler are proving their worth. With these it is advisable to add wire (for the same reason as above). Although wire reduces your number of bites, it will prevent you from being cleaned out by the taxman. Rock and Surf: The summer fish are here and some of the winter scratching fish are still around for the guys looking for a fish for the pot. North – The north has continued to be the best of the spots to go and target the big bruisers. The target species is the diamond ray (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LWIbHspBjLU) with multiple other species coming out, due to the similar feeding methods and bait preferences of these species. Make sure your tackle is adequate for these fish and take a pair of gloves with for handling them. Although they do not have teeth, the rasping plates can start causing a bit of damage after three or four fish. The standard trace up north is a full metal jacket trace (FMJ) made up of 120lb+ carbon-coated steel. This is finished off with a large circle hook (10/0 Mustad Tuna circle being my preference). For the sinker, a cone sinker is more than adequate. Always use caution when wading in these areas and look for an area where you can get your bait in to the deeper water. Ray’s tip: With Cape Town in a state of drought and KZN having too much rain it is difficult to put yourself in their shoes. If you want to know what it is like, go fish for diamonds up north and only take 1 cold drink or water with you… The importance of good hydration cannot be understated in the heat of the north. Remember to pack at least 2 litres of water (not beer!). Make sure that you regularly take in fluids as this will prevent dehydration and cramps (which can be very dangerous when you are wading). Central – The central coast region has seen both good edible fishing and some spectacular inedible action. The “basin” near Ushaka Marine World has been the best location for the inedibles. Diamond rays and giant sandsharks have been the most common species coming out for the inedible folk. The edible fish have been stumpies and pompano. Best baits for these fish are prawn, chokka and cracker prawns (or a combination of these). Look for working water where the sand is being churned up a little bit. This is prime area for these fish to look for their preferred prey. South – The south has been producing mixed reports of both good and bad fishing days. The bad days have seen anglers going home with no stories of catches while the good days have seen big smiles and long tales. The importance of finding the feeding area cannot be underrated. Make sure you move around looking for the productive spots. Please have a look at our new species videos to put some new species on your bucket list Zambezi shark (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=psa1YEh3620) and large spot pompano (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ScdnxIqgGjY). Freshwater: With summer upon us and the temperature reaching uncomfortable highs, the freshwater scene has started to hot up (excuse the pun). The carp, bass and bluegill are really starting to keep the guys busy. Bass – There have been a lot of smaller fish coming out very close to the side. These smaller fish have been tackling some big lures intended for bigger fish. Some of the successful lures includes most top waters, frogs in all shapes and sizes and weightless soft plastics (flukes being particularly good). The small bass are great fun on ultra light tackle and can provide you with hours of fun in the shallows. An ultra light set-up would be something like a 5ft6 rod (Daiwa Laguna ULFS), a 1000 – 2000 size Daiwa reel (Daiwa Laguna 2000) with 6lb or lighter line (Kingfisher giant abrasion 6lb). This set-up can handle big fish but is light enough to enjoy the fight with the small dinks. Fishing at Hazelmere has been excellent the past few weeks as many fish have been landed from the bank as well the water. Dead ringer 4” worms and c-tail worms have been getting most the bites from the smaller fish throughout the day. Most the fish being caught are not very big so light outfits would be most appropriate. The bigger bass seem to be coming out on hard plastics mostly such as crank baits and jerk baits. Carp – The carp fishing has really started to pick up. The general reports have been of quantity over quality but these feisty summer fish still put up a good fight on the right tackle. Inanda has definitely had the quality side of the scale. This dam has lent itself to specimen angling over the conventional side of things. Anglers feeding an area with a good quality ground feed such as the Supercast SVB feed and then fishing the area intensively with boilies are catching the bigger fish. The 20mm sweet corn boilie from Supercast lends itself well to this type of fishing and with its subtle flavour, can be spiced up with a good soaking in one of the concentrates or dips. Flavours that have been producing at the moment are most of the sweet dips with FX, pineapple and the new banana jam (come in and give this delicious flavour a smell) proving to be the ticket to a good days fishing. Albert Falls has been the place to go if you want to get catch a full keep net of fish. In other words, if you are looking to spend a day at a dam with the family and still catch a good few fish, go to “Albert’s”. Here the average fish has been around 1kg which is great fun on a lighter setup. I would recommend going there with an 8ft spinning rod and putting out a Rietvlei trace with two size 10 Mustad Chinu (or similar) hooks. On to the hooks I would put the small oozers or floaties from Supercast in a fruity/sweet flavour and a small mielie bomb on to the spring or mushroom. Tilapia and Bluegill – Albert Falls also has a very healthy population of tilapia and bluegill, so make sure to throw some close shots out with natural baits. These include bees, worms, bread and insects. You can either target them using a float (the most popular method) or with a small running sinker rig. Remember to use small hooks and to keep an eye on the rod, the action can be intense. A secret bait that works extremely well for all freshwater fish is the humble flying termite (flying ant). Make sure to collect a few of these when they come out again and freeze them in a tub for your next trip. Report just in from Jan in PMB, No fishing going on with the storms of late, but herewith a quick report: Itinerant storms in the greater Midlands are still making their presence felt, and while we are grateful for the precipitation, it isn’t making for great fishing. The rivers are up, running full and dirty, and the Stillwater’s also getting their fair share of runoff making for turbid conditions. Midmar Dam has been on the rise by nearly a precent a day, and is currently sitting at just over 93% and is expected to top later in the week – fingers crossed. Spring Grove Dam is not far behind at nearly 87%, while Mearns is over the 100% mark and spilling over. While Albert Falls has also risen some 2% in the last week or so, the upstream water is great news as when these dams reach capacity, they will start releasing water to Albert Falls. Comp 2 of the KZN Small Craft Bass League takes place on Albert Falls Dam on 17 February, and taking place on 10 March is the very popular New Hanover Prep Farm Dams Bass Competition, now in its 15th year– entry forms are available at The Fish Eagle. The long-term forecast has more rain on the cards for The Midlands over the next week, so one will have to pick your times to get a line in between the wet. Check out The Kingfisher Fishing channel, it 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. The responses from the species videos have been great and have even gone as far as people crediting the videos for their catches. Thank you guys for all the support and keep the pictures and suggestions coming in. 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