FISHING REPORT 28TH SEPTEMBER ’18

With the fantastic weather we had over the last weekend, not much has been reported for the weekend warriors. Those that have managed to fishing during the week have however experienced some very good catches.

Ray’s tip: Elephants eat peanuts…This is true. A big animal, be it a fish or a mammal, sometimes prefers to eat small food items. This is most apparent when it comes to the world of estuary spinning. The smaller you can go on the lure you are fishing, the better. This is because the fish in the estuary are mainly there to feed on the juveniles of all the different fish species that inhabit the estuary. A small spoon, top water or drop shot will catch more fish than a large popper or 2oz buck tail. You will be surprised what size fish will grab on to a tiny 2 inch paddle tail. So the basics of what this tip is trying to get across is to vary the lures and fishing style to the environment you are fishing. The estuary is not an open beach with pounding surf. It is a sensitive environment that requires a little finesse.

Offshore:

The offshore scene has really started to hot up with the onset of warmer water temperatures and warmer days. This has prompted the summer game fish to start feeding and the chaos that is summer game fish season to begin!

North – The north coast has produced some fine catches over the last week. Most skippers managed to get a few sessions in before the rougher seas and bad weather hit. The biggest news around is the arrival of the first dorado, and some dorado they have been! These early season fish are hungry and put up a great fight. The best way to target them is pitching a live bait at some floating debris. Floating debris/objects can be anything from a log, grass mat to a multi-ton tanker. These objects provide shelter for the small fish in an otherwise baron environment. This in turn attracts predators. Pin your live bait on a 6/0 circle hook and let the fish hook itself. Then sit back and enjoy the acrobatics. These game fish can also be targeted on lures and almost anything goes, as long as it’s pink. Top water lures make the whole show visual, but stick baits, Kona-type lures, drop shots and lipped lures have all caught dorado in the past.

Central – The central zone has also experienced the dorado rush and all the tips and techniques mentioned above apply here. Most of these fish have been on the small side, but they still taste fantastic. These fish have nailed most lures, but the best has been the smaller lipped lures that can be trolled at speed. Another fantastic lure for these speedsters is the older style bullet Kona’s. These lures can be pulled at speed and create a lovely smoke trail in the water. The central zone has also produced the odd couta as well as garrick around the river mouths and harbour entrance.

South – The south has been bait central. This has been the case since the sardines arrived some months ago. If the stocks are looking a little bit low in the bait freezer, the south is the place to go. The south has also been fishing very well for the bottom fishing guys. This has been the case from the guys fishing the backline reefs all the way to the guys dropping baits on electric reels in 100m+ of water. Remember to keep yourself informed about species identifications as there are some protected species that are frequently caught by bottom fishing techniques. Ignorance or lack of knowledge is not a legal excuse, so make sure you know your stuff as the fines can be very severe. In more positive news, there have also been loads of tuna down south with the occasional billfish joining the party. The elusive giant wahoo has also been patrolling Aliwal Shoal and his smaller cousins have found a live bonito to tasty to resist.

Rock and Surf:

The rock and surf guys are tangibly excited with the arrival of the summer inedibles. Most of us have been waiting too many months to let loose with a big bait in to the blue and to get floored by some strong beasty. The season is upon us, so make sure your gear is ready.

North – The north coast is where the action has been most consistent. The areas north and south of the Richard’s Bay harbour have been working the best. These include the Mtunzini banks, Port Durnford and the Casarinas. Big baits with lots of blood and smell are your friends, a long cast is often not. Make sure to read the water where you are fishing (go back and watch the videos of Ray and Mike fishing for diamonds up north) and place your bait in the most likely area. Mackerel and bonito are the best baits up north, but do not neglect adding sardines on to the bait for more scent or a live shark if you want to target the resident zambezi and java sharks.

Central – The central part of the KZN coast has been a mix of catches. There have been some big shad caught and the leader of our shad competition is a 5.3kg beast (beat that!). These bigger shad love a live bait or a whole dead bait. The piers have been producing some lovely edibles for the guys fishing through the night. The rocks at the Umhlanga Lighthouse have been the hotspot along this piece of coast and this area has produced edibles and inedibles, consistently. There have been cracker, stumpies, grey sharks, diamonds, honeycombs and bronze bream to name but a few of the catches. These have all been good sized fish, so the Lighthouse is the place I would focus my energy. Keep a range of fresh baits ready, but if I were limited to just two, it would be chokka and red eye sardine. You can make baits for almost any fish with these two so they are always worth taking with on a trip.

South – Down south the kob have been biting. This has been the case all the way in to the Transkei. A live mullet or shad has been the best bait when specifically targeting the bigger fish, but a chokka bait or a paddle tail will get the job done as well. Kob favour water where they can hang out and wait for the fish to come to them. They prefer deeper water close to river mouths where the discoloured water allows them to sneak up on their prey. The bronze bream have also been feeding well on the south coast and a pink prawn bomb has produced a stronger bite of late than a delicate cracker bait. The summer flatfish are also making an appearance on the south coast and it is not long before the big honeys start feeding well.

Freshwater:

The freshwater side of things has been wild. The bass are feeding very aggressively and the competition catch results are showing the fish are getting bigger and more are being caught. The scaly season is going well and the fly guys are landing some impressive specimens.

Carp – The carp angling has been doing very well of late. You only need to browse the multitude of Facebook pages dedicated to carp fishing to see the fantastic fish that have been coming out over the last week or so. The smaller carp are on a frenzy and most of the waters have enough of these little guys to keep the youngsters busy. Best bait for these and the myriad of other smaller species is an earthworm on a float. The bigger carp are starting to catch on and the amount of effort and time you have to put in to get a bite is drastically less than it was during winter. Albert falls is fishing very well and has produced some great catches for both the specimen and conventional carp fishers. The sweeter flavours are definitely starting to work better, but adding some spice always makes the bait nice. Mix some curry powder in to the bomb and add a sweet dholl dip to it, this gives you the best chance to get the fish to your bait first.

Bass – Bass fishing continues to get better and better as we move further in to the warmer months of the year. The top water action has started to become explosive and the new Kingfisher Reaction plastics frog is really proving its worth. With the uniquely shaped legs, they frog buzzes along the surface and is irresistible to that hungry/angry bucket mouth. When fishing with frogs, you are normally fishing in fairly weedy areas and are required to pull the bass out of pretty nasty cover. For this, I prefer a 4 weave braid such as the Daiwa 4X J-Braid. The 4 weave (instead of 8) is slightly rougher which helps to cut through water vegetation. The rest of the Reaction range has also been doing well and most of the competitions being held over the last few months have seen some good fish landed on these affordable plastics. As the water continues to warm up, the bass fishing will get better and better. Summer here we come!

Fly fishing –  We have changed the normal title from “trout” to “Fly fishing” as the current shift of target species for the fly guys has changed from the beautiful trout to the majestic scaly (Natal yellowfish). This fish are very similar to the mighty smallmouth yellow and tactics are similar. If you don’t have one of these great, sportingly-fighting endemic fish under your belt, we are in a great time of year to get out a put a new species on the list. Targeting them is done in the same manner you would target a smaly, with the exception of dry flies as scalies are not taken as frequently off the top as there more famous cousins. Czech nymphing in the rapids or swinging nymphs in a slower beat of the river is what you want to do. There are many people that guide trips for these great fish and there are also clinics being run most of the time; so pop in to find out more and to get yourself kitted for a scaly adventure. Not to leave the trout out, the trout fishing has been particularly good in the rivers of late but the higher flow rate has meant that you require a bit more weight to get the flies down to the fish (enter tungsten beads).

 

Jan Korrubel  –   “Last weekend’s weather didn’t exactly play ball for the Heritage long weekend – the cold temps and some 25mm plus rain in The Midlands, while most welcome, slowed the fishing right down.

 

The Scaly’s (Natal Yellowfish) had been playing along nicely the week before, but the cold water injection put them off the bite for the weekend.  They are making a reappearance was the water warms up again.  The yellows are still predominantly on sub-surface food (nymphs like PTN, GRHE, Copper John and Zak have been doing the bulk of the business) with only a sporadic showing on dry fly, generally after a run of a couple warm days.

 

With the injection of water, the trout streams have yielded a couple good fish – reports of some brown trout in the 18 inch / 46cm bracket have been reported.  With the heavier flows, larger flies are generally the rule to get the fish to move from the zone of comfort to intercept the prey item.

 

Albert Falls is yet again proving to be the home of big bass – reports of a 5.5kg monster surfaced this week…no word on the successful lure unfortunately… J

 

Dam levels are looking good at this time: Albert Falls sitting at just below 50%, Midmar at 95% and Spring Grove at 78% – with some good summer rains we can expect the waters to be at their best.

 

A slight dip on Saturday, the weather gods of YR are forecasting a stable week ahead, so it’s time to dust off the gear, replace what’s necessary and don’t forget to visit your favourite Kingfisher store for the latest and best in tackle and advice!”  Thanks Jan.

 

A reminder that the Kingfisher Biggest Shad Competition is in the final stages. The heaviest Shad for September will receive a Daiwa BG 5000 Reel filled with Daiwa 8 weave 30lb J Braid, valued at around R3000.00, the second heaviest Shad will receive a 13’6” Kingfisher Coastline 5pce (L, M & H tip) Graphite rod, valued at R2,000.00, and third heaviest Shad will receive a Daiwa Laguna 5000 spinning Reel valued at around R1,000.00. Please note that all Shad (fresh) must be weighed at either, The Kingfisher, 53 Hunter Street, The Kingfisher in Ballito, The Fishing Tackle Shop (The Kingfisher) Warner Beach or Tackle Centre, Old Fort Road, during trading hours. Please remember there is a bag limit of four and the minimum size is 30cm and that the season closes 30th September, re-opens 1st December 2018.

As always, remember to subscribe to our YouTube channel to stay up to date with all our new video releases and to brush up on your species knowledge, tactics and tips/tricks

(https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC8f8U0GjLGWFaEiUjs-n01w/videos).

Tight lines and screaming reels.

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 mike.pereira@kingfisher.co.za