FISHING REPORT 9TH AUGUST ’19 August 7, 2019 by The Kingfisher With some perfect weather and idyllic sea conditions, the last week has seen lots of fishing and plenty fish. Let’s hope it holds up for the weekend…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: Brusher. Brusher are a patience species… Brusher are a reef/ledge species that really enjoys the rough water in and around the shallows. Their teeth are designed for crushing hard organisms such as crabs and their bodies and tails are designed for operating in the powerful, shallow surf. The best traces are the simplest ones when it comes to these fish. Use a very strong nylon hook snoot and a sharp, stout hook. Have a look at the ASFN YouTube channel for the preferred traces and baits. Look for the brusher in the white-water around the shallow ledges and keep your drag locked as an inch of line will see the brusher take a few feet. Offshore: The offshore fishing has been a bit slow but there have been fish. Tuna, daga, geelbek and the odd amberjack. North: The north coast has seen the snoek action. Places near river mouths where the early morning low tides bring some lovely riptides, attract the snoek. These rips congregate the baitfish and make them easy picking for the snoek. These river mouths are best fished using fillet baits or small lipped lures trolled in and around the backline and on the edges of the rips. If possible, throw a small spoon as well. Keep your eyes peeled for surface action as the snoek generally announce their presence with some splashing our jumping. The north coast has also seen its share of tuna. The best bites have come to the guys throwing poppers around the dolphins and the bait spots. This surface bite is addictive and will have the knees shaking. The most consistent bite has however come to the livebait. Central: The central section of KZN has seen a lot of bottom fishing action. The wrecks and reefs off of Durban have been full of geelbek and daga as well as tuna on the trap sticks. The lucky few have also managed a few amberjack off the reefs which have given a good account of themselves once hooked. Much like the north coast, the tuna have consistently eaten the live baits put out, but the better bites (and bigger fish) have come on the poppers. Tackle for this type of fishing boils down to a decent 7-81/2ft rod with a quality grinder and 50-80lb braid. This will allow you to put the heat on the fish and get them in before the taxman takes his share. South: The south coast has continued to produce a lot of bottom fish for both the charters and commercials. The rockcod have been the bulk of the closer inshore reefs while the further offshore trips have yielded plenty of reds and geelbek. The KP is the only reel you need for this type of fishing and braid is only essential if you are fishing in the deeper areas. Live baits are the way to go if you are fishing for the bigger bottom fish, otherwise sardine and squid are all you need in your bait box. The gamefish have been scarce on the south coast and only the boats travelling deep have managed a few tuna. Fast trolling lures has been the most efficient way to catch these fish as you can cover a lot of water while still targeting them. Rock and Surf: The rock and surf fishing is kicking off in a big way. The winter gamefish have been on the bite and the summer back-breakers are starting to make an appearance. North: The north coast has seen plenty of kob around the river mouths. The guys fishing through the night have made sin with these kob. Please stay within your limits on these fish and put back the fish that you are not going to keep. The authorities have been checking permits and catches regularly. Live bait and chokka have been the two best baits for these fish and medium tackle will suffice for these fish. The north coast has also seen the arrival of some of the summer brutes. These fish will have you wondering when last you checked your backing… Central: The central coast has seen more shad than they know what to do with. All of the usual spots are producing fish throughout the day. If you are uncertain of where to fish, look for the parking lots that are full, that is where the shad are. Spinning with spoons and lures is the quickest way to get your 4 fish limit and to have the most fun. Changing the treble hooks to singles will also help you lose less fish and makes taking the fish off much easier (and safer). Flapping fish and treble hooks are a recipe for a trip to the hospital. If the spoons are not getting you the bites then a change to a drift sardine will quickly have the fish on the bite. South: The south coast has started to produce a lot of summer fish. The past week saw Facebook light up with photos of early summer fish. Sandies, honeycombs, blue rays and grey sharks have all been coming out on the south coast. Get your hands on some fresh bait and you should see yourself in to a screaming drag. Further south the guys have been tucking in to the garrick and the kob. The abundance of shad and smaller baitfish have seen the live bait wells and buckets full, this means the slides have been flying out. Fishing a circle hook will give you a better hook set as well as allowing you to release the fish once you reach your limit (or before). Freshwater: The freshwater fishing has been going well for all facets. The carp are feeding well and the bass are attacking baitfish. The trout fishing is still on a high and the slightly warmer conditions are getting them more active. 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). Bass: The bass are starting to clue in on baitfish. Switching over in some dams to spinnerbaits and crankbaits can produce the bite when the fish start feeding a bit more actively. Colours are not often the most important and action is generally a better thing to focus on. Cranks should be either natural (if they are focussed on a particular species) or high attract (if they are chasing but not eating). Spinnerbaits can all be white or white and chartreuse. The dams in KZN are all producing fish and some, like Inanda are producing some real trophy fish. Keep an eye on the pressure systems and get in during the changes and you should see some good action. If the weather turns cold, slow down. The fish are still there so you just need them to want to eat. Either annoy them or tempt them. Loud and in their face or subtle and tasty. Bright or bulky baits fished in to the structure close to the bass or a small worm fished on a finesse rig. Carp: The carp fishing has been very good for both the specimen and conventional anglers. The KZN dams are producing some real quality fish with Inanda leading the charge and Shongweni close behind. The specimen anglers have had the best luck fishing critically balanced tigernuts and boilies over a bed of feed. The flavours have varied from angler to angler and fishing accurately to the bait has been much more important than the bait used. The conventional guys have been getting good results on most of the sweeter flavours with banana and honey being the most popular. This fished singularly or together on a plain bomb has brought some good fish to the net. Much like the bass, keep an eye on the pressure systems and work our when the best time is to fish your water by the activity you see. Trout: This report for Jan at the Kingfisher in PMB. The weather is starting to warm up in KZN but the winter water is still cold enough to keep the trout happy. The warmer spells have made the insects hatch in their thousands which has made the dry fly gurus jump for joy. A delicately placed dry in amongst a group of feeding fish is excitement on a whole new level. The rest of the stillwater fishing has been dominated by egg patterns and streamers with the occasional nymph fish. Paparoaches, zonkers and baitfish imitations have been the pick of the crop for most of the fishing. Using a quality line that will keep you near the bottom will get you more bites. Figure out if they want it slow or fast by fiddling with the retrieve speed. They are hungry, so get out there! August brings its usual dusty gusts, and a lot of the Midlands veld has been burned off. While we had just a mere dampening of the surface by a recent frontal system, it hasn’t rained for some months and the majestic ‘Berg is obscured by the haze of the wind blowing up the burnt ash. That being said, winter may yet provide a sting in the tail…good snow has been recorded as late as mid-September, so here’s hoping. And it’s only 3 weeks, give or take a day or so, till the opening of the Trout River Season…but hey, who’s counting! Till then, the still waters are the place to be in The Midlands, and some good size fish are being brought to hand. Not a numbers game by any stretch, but good size. The weekend before saw Leg 3 of the TOPS Corporate Challenge, the winning fish of 60cm being caught by visiting lady angler and veteran TCC campaigner, Louise Steenkamp, which helped secure the team 1st place. They, along with the other finalist teams from the Legs, will be back to fish it out in The TCC Finals, which takes place in 2 weeks time. The fish are around, and quite evident as they cruise the shallows and margins over the shale beds looking to complete their winter nuptial duties. And while you can easily spot them in the icy, crystal clear waters, they too can see you and either ignore you (and any offerings that you throw at them), or scare off at the slightest movement. It’s been suggested that one should ignore these cruising fish, as they have only 1 thing on their mind, and to cast out as far as you can to the fringes of the beds where some fish might be taking a break from the nuptial chase and might be tempted into having a snack on a fly. It’s also been suggested that the best way to target these fish, is from a float tube, casting towards the shallow areas and shale beds from a little way off the bank, rather than fish from the edge. Give these methods a go and let me know which is the better! Reports from the TCC indicate that attractor patterns were working (e.g. bright orange egg pattern), along with smaller flies (e.g. nymph or San Juan Worm). Alternatively, fish something large and flashy, enough to make a trout feel threatened and have a go in aggression. Last weekend saw Event 7 in the Joey’s Towing Tournament Trail taking place on Albert Falls Dam. Local angler Kirk van Reeuwyk took 2nd biggest fish with a solid fish of 3.3kg. Event 8 take place next month on Midmar Dam. It’s been Game On with the winter yellowfish of late – with some really good fish being reported. Small (#16) nymphs (e.g. PTN / GRHE) are currently doing the business, the weighted Hot-spot PTN especially. 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