FISHING REPORT 11th December ’19.

With Christmas only a few days away, you better have all your tackle presents bought because the fish are hungry! The saltwater side is going well with all facets landing some good catches while the freshwater enthusiasts are languishing in the hot weather.

Ray’s tip: Correct jig heads. Using the correct jig head for the correct application can mean the difference between landing your fish or getting frustrated. There are two aspects to look at, weight and hook size. You want to use as light a weight as you can get away with. The balance is between cast weight and natural presentation. The weight needs to be heavy enough for you to cast it far enough, but light enough that it doesn’t sink your bait like a brick. The hook size is also a balanced affair. You need to have a hook that is big enough to hook the fish and not be hindered by the size of the bait while also being small enough to not look like a giant piece of metal. There is no one correct size so unfortunately you need to match the hook to the bait. Come in to any of the Kingfisher branches and the helpful staff will be able to sort you out.

Offshore:

The waters off Durban have been very bountiful. There have been billfish, dorado and plenty of tuna to keep the guys happy.

North The north coast has been very kind to the anglers travelling up. The areas north of Sodwana have seen some amazing hauls by the ski boat and kayak anglers. Tuna have made up the bulk of the catches but some exciting fish have joined them in the hatches and photo reels. The dorado have been the most sought after of the fish. These fast growing pelagics are a lot of fun to target and are a sustainable fish to harvest. So if you are looking for some fish for the freezer, look no further than the popcorn bream!

Central – The Durban coast has also had its fair share of success. The dorado have also graced the hatches of the Durban boys. The best method for these is undoubtedly a live bait. This can be anything that swims as the dorado are not that selective when it comes to food. My personal choice is to use a 6/0 circle hook like I do for the tuna but the choice of hook is up to you. Durban has had an increase in the baitfish activity in the last week. With the lean months coming up, make sure you stock the freezers with some good quality bait. Remember, if you look after your bait, it will look after you.

SouthThe boys south of the bluff have also been revelling in the arrival of the dorado. Much like their northern brothers, the dorado have been caught on pretty much every method you can think of. Live baits have been the quickest bites but lipped and skirted lures have produced bites. The bottom fishing has slowed down a bit but the die-hards have switched their attention to the amberjacks. These beasts can level most men, so bring your best knots and strongest tackle to the fight.

News from Mtunzini – Lots of action been happening all week to the lagoon, a variety of fish have been caught mainly small ones but fun none the less, it is springs this weekend so morning sessions will be the best time. Remember the slipway is 2 hrs. behind the sea so you should have incoming water till mid-morning.

While fishing was slow this due to the fact most anglers melt in the rain and get blown away in the wind we tend not to fish in those conditions which hopefully will pass us soon, the sea is also on its head at the, so not great. The Ski boat guys need some help from the shore anglers fishing to the right of the main beach, if you see a boat waiting to come in and kids are playing in the surf please ask them to move away and give them the thumbs up, it is very difficult to spot them from the backline due to the wave action as once they committed they got to come in. We are actually fishing in the launch site and we are lucky there is no friction between the 2 groups unlike other places, please keep it like this, if need be, reel in your line for a few minutes. Thanks Nic Maitland fromMtunzini Fishing Shop for this report.

Rock and Surf:

The summer fish are around and most of the anglers have opened their summer accounts. Sandies and honeycombs have been the main targets but there have been plenty of other back-breakers that have latched on to the baits.

NorthThe north coast has, and always will be, the center of the summer action. If you are looking for a new inedible personal best then you have to go north. The banks, Tugela or Sodwana are the pick of the spots, but anywhere with some deeper water and some colour in the water should see you in to a giant. Remember that these fish like a big bait so you do not want to faff around with cutlet baits. Get your hands on a bonito, flap it and throw. Wait for some north east wind to blow and you are in for some good fishing.

CentralThe Durban area has not been a bad choice for the anglers looking for the bigger summer fish. In fact the action has been pretty wild along the entire KZN coastline. The anglers looking for edibles will have the best chance at a bigger shad along the Virginia to Blue Lagoon stretch. Throwing a whole drift bait will be the best chance at one of these giants. The anglers after flatfish will be best suited to fish the beaches north of Blue Lagoon. Look for the deeper water and put your bait out as far as you can. There have been some real tackle-busters around so make sure your knots and back are in good nick.

SouthThe south coast has seen much the same action as the central zone. The area south of Warner’s has seen some amazing action for the drone anglers. These guys have been stuck in to the local honeycombs and thorn tails. These fish require patience and strong tackle so be prepared for a long fight. The beaches further south have seen some inedible action in the form of brown skates, sandies and a host of smaller sharks. The guys hoping for edibles are best suited to the gullies and ledges for the bronze bream or the bays where the shad are full up.

Freshwater:

The summer heat is here in full force and the freshwater fish are all in the summer mode. The bass are feeding well while the carp are shoaling and hungry. Just a word of caution, there is a big move around the removal of gillnets in all of our waters. This illegal practice needs to be stopped as soon as possible. Unfortunately the people that put these nets out are starting to retaliate against the people removing them. Please alert the authorities to the locations of any nets you find.

Carp – The specimen anglers are on a go slow at the moment. The summer months bring with them the smaller fish that quickly level a feeding area. These smaller fish are great fun on lighter tackle and can make for some exciting action. The conventional anglers are in their element at the moment as one can fill a keep net up quite quickly with these smaller fish. The flavours of choice are the sweeter and fruitier mixes. Anything with a sweet base or fruit flavour will do well. So whether you prefer mielies or floaties, just make sure they are sweet.

Bass – The bass are feeding very well in all of the KZN dams. Inanda has seen some very good results on lipless cranks lately. The best method for fishing these has been to fish close to the deeper grass beds and see-saw the lure in and out of the grass. This rattle and stop motion drives the bass crazy and will get you the bigger bites. The rest of the dams have also seen good catches for all the bass anglers with many getting new personal best catches. Hazlemere has seen plenty of fish over the 3kg mark, so don’t think this is only a dam for smaller fish. Midmar has seen some giants as well and so has Albert’s. Pick your dam and fish hard, the big boys and girls are waiting!

TroutThe trout are in a bit of a summer slump at the moment. The higher altitude lakes will be the best bet at a Stillwater bite. The lower altitude venues tend to heat up too quickly in the summer and as a result, the fish become lethargic. The river fishing is the right thing at the moment. Get out your 6x tippet and head to the calm bubbling brooks for some beautiful scenery and hungry wild trout. The best bet for this fishing is a floating line and a handful of dry and wet flies. For the dries, stick to basic patterns that imitate mayflies or moths. The wets…just use a gun nymph!

News from Jan Korrubel, The Kingfisher in PMB – As indicated in last week’s report, it would appear that the summer rains have finally arrived.  The Midlands has been on the receiving end of some soft soaking rain – just the kind required for best effect, as opposed to the huge downpours in north causing widespread flooding – fingers crossed that the current pattern continues for a while (looks to be the case, if the Norwegian weather prophets are to be believed) so that the water table can get some input, and then hopefully sometime soon, we can expect some runoff to flush the system and get the rivers flowing again.

For the time being, however, reports from the venturing anglers are that the rivers are still on the low end of the scale, and while there are fish about, not yet the best conditions to be fishing in as they are still pretty much locked into the deeper pools with little flow between.

The widespread rains will also have given The Midlands Stillwater’s some much needed input, and along with the overcast cool weather, greatly assisted in bringing  water temperatures down a bit.  We look forward to getting reports from what’s sure to be a busy time in The Midlands, a favoured haunt for visiting fly anglers.

Dam levels are still unfortunately dropping; current levels are as follows: Mearns 67.6%, Spring Grove 37%, Midmar, 90.8% and Albert Falls 31.7%.

With some reports to good fish coming in, the current low level of Albert Falls Dam appears to be aiding the bass anglers, with Chatter Baits seemingly the flavour of the week.  Albert Falls will play host to the next PMB Bassmasters Triple Skins Bass Challenge on Saturday December 21st..  Registration takes place from 4:30pm on Friday 20 December at the PMB Bassmasters Club grounds. The next bass challenge will take place in February 2020.

While also on the low side, and in-between the windy spells, Sterkfontein has been on fire of late, with some excellent fish being reported. The weather is the one to watch … after a 2-3 day spell of hot weather, and if the wind stays away, the NEXT day is the day to go.  The Good Dr’s Beetle has been performing well.

We look forward to seeing you in your favourite Kingfisher Tackle Store to assist you with the VERY BEST in tackle and advice!

An email that we received from Peter Prince. “With the late rains, many of the local dams may not have been stocked due to low water levels or hot water, or whatever. I know that we were late for these reasons.

We have completed our own stocking now and find ourselves with a few thousand fingerlings which we do not require, so thought I’d let you know in case you hear of anyone looking for trout fingerlings for stocking. They are bigger than usual for stocking -approx. 100mm- but are fit and healthy.

We are looking to get rid of most of them and keep about 1000 to grow out for table fish or for those dams who buy in larger fish to boost their stock of larger fish for 2020 fishing…

If you know of any interest, then please let me know.

My name is Peter Prince and can be contacted on 084 6222274.

The hatchery is in the Upper Dargle and the fingerlings may be collected there, cash with order R3.50 per fish. The order needs to be 200 plus to make it worthwhile. (Catching. bagging, oxygen sealing etc.)

Hope this might be useful to the fly-fishing fraternity!!” Thanks Peter, hope this helps.

The latest series of Hier Gaan Ons Alweer (18) with Petri de Wet premieres on Mondays at 17:30 on kykNet, channel 144. There are also a number of repeats during the week, Tuesday at 09:30, Wednesday at 10:00, Thursday at 02:00 & 10:30, Friday at 14:30 and Saturday at 17:30. Series 18 runs for three months, ending on the 30th December 2019. As most of you know, Petri and his guests cover various angling styles (fresh and salt water) in and around Southern Africa.

The Kingfisher’s trading hours are Monday to Friday 8:00 to 17:00, Saturdays 8:00 to 13:00. A reminder that all branches will be open for trading all Sundays in December and Monday 16th, 8:00 to 13:00. Tuesday the 24th and the 31st 8:00 to 15:00. We will be closed on the 25th and the 26th December. Tight lines and screaming reels.

Go to www.facebook.com/thekingfisherdaiwa and “Like” us on Facebook to catch reviews, videos, fishing reports, great promotions and lots more.

Please send any info about fishing, fish caught or competitions in your area to mike.pereira@kingfisher.co.za.

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