FISHING REPORT 28TH JUNE ’19 June 26, 2019 by The Kingfisher The Kingfisher is having their Annual Birthday Sale on the 28th and the 29th June only, get a massive 20% discount on all products (Excluding bait and items that are already on sale). This offer is valid in all of our branches: Tackle Centre, Old Fort Road, Durban Pietermaritzburg, 105 Victoria Road Warner Beach, 2 Coral Sands, Ashwell Road Kloof, 6 Village Road Ballito, The Circle Shopping Centre Durban, 53 Hunter Street. The anticipation of the “annual” sardine run is palpable. With reports looking good and the weather playing along, we could see some action in the weeks to come. Please remember to leave the areas that you fish in a better condition than when you got there. Take a few moments to pick up some litter and take it to the nearest bin. 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). Ray’s tip: The anti-tangle sleeve. The humble Korda anti-tangle sleeve has been around for some time now with little attention from the rock and surf scene. The specimen carp anglers have raved about the abilities of these great products to prevent rig tangles. Ever since using them for scratching, it is impossible to go back… The sleeves work by sitting over the swivel and forcing the hook and sinker snoots apart. This prevents the trace twisting up and requiring you to cut and re-tie. The sleeves come in a host of colours to suit any situation and deserve a spot in your box. Offshore: The charter boats have been fully booked for the past few weeks. The bottomfishing has been very kind to these guys and some great fish have been landed. The hunt for the couta continues… North – The north coast has seen many visitors looking for better fishing. The gamefish have definitely been more prolific up north and most trips have ended with smiles. Live bait has been the key to success for all the species up north (excluding the snoek). The garrick have been loose around the river mouths and offer the ski boat guys a new target species. Trolling a live mackerel or shad behind the backline on a 6/0 circle hook will quickly get you a result. One can also throw some smaller spoons for the snoek in the early mornings. Central – The central section of the KZN coast has been full of bait. Mackerel have been the main culprits but there have been some redeyes mixed in (sardines, not skippers). These mackerel have not been harassed by any gamefish and one can only assume that the fish are saving their appetites for the upcoming sardine run… Reaction bites have been the main method of success. By this I mean faster lures trolled with aggressive actions. The shallower lipped Rattler range is perfect for this job and has put many fish on the boat. Brighter colours are the best bet at a vicious take. South – “Sardines! Oh no wait, just redeyes” This has been the theme for the conversations with most of the fishermen down south. The pilot shoals of sardines are moving up, but they are mixed with a few other species of baitfish. So far, netting has not taken place yet, but it is looking tasty for the next week or two. The south coast has seen limited gamefish action over the past week and most of the guys targeting couta and tuna have been left wanting. The few tuna that have made it to the gaff have been caught on faster trolled lures such as high-speed lipped lures and Kona-type lures. News from Mtunzini: “Most of the catches over the weekend were river bream we a few small grunter and stumpies, the lagoon seems to be hording its fish or they are on a go slow. The other night while we were asleep our Parks Board officers went patrolling on the lagoon, they lifted 10 gill nets with a total length of 845m regrettably 263 fish perished with the main species being mullet all the dead fish are accounted for and handed in to the croc farm. It is important that we the public assist the parks board both by reporting sighting of Gill Nets but also if you can donate fuel or cash in order for more patrols to be carried out, this is a war that conservation must win but not let it be their battle alone every bit helps as they say. Friday and Saturday were the main 2 fishing days with Sunday been a bit of a blow out yet the guys that braved the wind managed some spinner sharks, pompano and small kob. On Saturday morning on the main beach, Sakkie bagged a 3.4kg shad, the morning session saw nice size snapper kob and some pompano’s but very few spinners however that changed in the afternoon with more spinners been caught. Mtunzini Rock and Surf Club had their first outing of the new league season, the format was postal so they fished home waters with some of the team fished north of the old ramp and the rest fished Port Dunford areas and the time chosen was 4pm to midnight. Species caught were milkies, sinners, lessor sand shark, fish tale barbell, kob 52cm and 94cm and shad of 57 and 49cm. Fishing was slow and not the start they were looking for. There are reports of snoek being caught and some boats caught big numbers particularly in the Richards Bay area. In our bay some nice catches of kob, slinger and rockcod were made, which makes us think next weekend we will see a lot of Richards Bay boats down here fishing their bottom comp. We are running a Spinner competition on the 13 July, fishing from 6am to 6 pm, you can fish for the whole 12 hours or for as long as you would like. Spinners feed around the banks and will take any fishy bait i.e. sard, mackerel and bonnies etc. Entry fee is R15.00 per angler which goes towards the meat hamper to be handed out on Sunday morning at 10am. The Honorary Officers for the Siyayi Park are having a Golf Day on the 13th of July 2019 to do some fund raising to support the good work they do. At the shop we are collecting donations to hand in at the golf day, the money will be used to buy fuel for extra anti-poaching patrols your support will be gratefully received”. Thanks Nic Maitland from Mtunzini Fishing Shop for this report. Rock and Surf: The rock and surf angling scene has cooled down a bit with the weather but there is still plenty to catch! North – The north coast has been producing a lot of edibles over the past few weeks. The ledges and gullies along most of the north coast are the best spots to try. There have been a large number of rockcod caught, catface and yellowbelly. These fish love hiding in their homes during the day but will come out to feed at night. The structure you are fishing will require stout tackle and circle hooks to avoid getting stuck. Bait varies from person to person but chokka is the best all-around choice. Central – The section of coast along the Durban beachfront has seen quite a bit of shad action of late. With the sardine shortage the bait of choice has changed to Japanese mackerel. This is a very economical bait that means you can get two or three decent sized baits out of one baitfish. These bigger baits can sometimes be the difference between hooking the bigger shad or weeding through the undersized babies. The Umgeni River mouth has been producing some lovely garrick and is definitely the place to go if you are wanting to target these fish. South – Much like the central coast, there have been garrick at all the major spots along the south coast. This is great news! Remember that these fish get hammered every year by guys keeping too many fish, so please release as make as possible. Garrick are best targeted with a live bait fished close to the shore. Live bait type is not the most important part, but location is. Use a circle hook through the top lip of the baitfish or bridled through the eyes and you will quickly see more solid hookups. 6/0 Mustad tuna circle is the hook of choice. The south coast has seen some early signs of sardine action and a few big sharks have already been hooked… Freshwater: The colder months are fantastic for the freshwater facets and this is clearly visible on any of the Facebook pages or WhatsApp groups. Photos and videos of monster carp, big bass and huge trout are filling the media galleries. Bass – Midmar Dam has been producing some amazing fish over the last few months. This is a challenging water that a lot of people choose not to fish but it can be a very rewarding dam. Once you figure out the pattern and retrieve speed, you could see yourself attached to a new SA bass record! The best bet for these fish is a weightless fluke in June bug or green-pumpkin. Fish these slowly with a jerk-pause action and get ready for an explosion. The other dams in KZN are still fishing in summer mode so most of the summer techniques will work. Keep a good stock of soft plastics and crankbaits at the ready and you will not go home without success. Carp – The specimen fishing is going particularly well as we move towards the winter months. The bigger carp are starting to make an appearance and the weigh slings are getting difficult to lift. The Korda Goo range is your friend at this time of year and can really make the difference between a blank session and a smash hit. The attraction that these bottles of magic liquid add to the bait needs to be seen to be believed. The berry flavours along with the almond and pineapple need to be in every specimen box. Inanda and Shongweni are both producing big fish at the moment for the specimen and conventional anglers. We are moving away from the bait and wait time of year and more towards a singles approach. Make sure your hook bait is the most attractive thing in the water (in terms of colour and scent) and you are in good stead. Trout – The time of the Stillwater is upon us. The fish are feisty in their pre-spawn mode and they are tearing off in to the backing at a rate of knots. It is a time of transition and you need to make sure you have the egg and blob flies in the box in case the fish switch to spawn mode and are only interested in orange. There are a host of egg patterns out there so look some up and get tying. The current approach has favoured bigger flies such as paparoach and zonker patterns. Keep the colours natural and stick to olive if you only have one choice. News from Jan at The Kingfisher in PMB – “The Winter Solstice has just passed, so we are officially on our way to SUMMER…! That being said, it’s still pretty much the middle of winter and the fishing is somewhat on the slow side as can be expected from the recent bout of frigid temperatures… For those putting the time on the water, there are always some great fish to be found – the Boston Fly Fishing Festival held on the waters of the Dargle Valley and Boston over the weekend before last yielded 30 trout over 50cm / 19.5inches and 5 fish over 60cm / 23.5inches … the biggest fish coming in at 62cm / 24.5inches and the average size of qualifying fish being 41cm / 16inches. Last weekend saw Leg 2 of the Corporate Trophy Challenge, held on the waters around Nottingham Road and lower Kamberg Valley, where some 264 trout were recorded. Along with a record number of 50cm / 19.5inch fish brought to book, the biggest two fish recorded came in at 61cm / 24inches and 59cm / 23inches … both caught by the same angler … and no, we don’t know what fly was used! While the cooler (cold!) water temperatures of winter has an impact on the fishing, not only from a decrease in availability of food but also because the trout have other things on their mind as they go through the motions of spawning, it must be remembered that they MUST still feed. The natural behaviour of prey items on the trout list will lead them to seek shelter, and logic will tell the angler to concentrate their efforts around such areas…namely weed beds. This info, when combined with spawning behaviour, will put trout in the shallows or along the margins. Also, larger prey items are as abundant as in summer, so anglers tend to favour the smaller flies (or at least a combination of large and small, thereby offering the fish a range to choose from). Incoming reports indicate that there have been hatches coming off, notably mayfly and midge along with some caddis – again, a clear indication to fish smaller flies. For the fly angler looking for a tussle, carp are a highly underrated target. With the recent hatches, Albert Falls Dam has been providing some great sport on the dry fly as the carp mop up rafts of midge pupa and shucks off the surface. Definitely on the slow, but for those in the know, winter is when the big (ger) bass and Natal Yellowfish (Scalies) come out to play for those prepared to put in the time on the water. There have been a few good bass of 2kg+ coming out of Albert Falls Dam, and the lower reaches of the Umkomaas, Bushman’s and Tugela Rivers are where the yellows are to be found. Don’t forget The Kingfisher annual Birthday Sale this weekend – see y’all in the shop for the best tackle and advice!” Thanks Jan. Tight lines and screaming reel. 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