FISHING REPORT 3 September ’21 September 1, 2021 by The Kingfisher The Kingfisher’s trading hours are Monday to Friday 8:00 to 17:00, Saturdays 8:00 to 13:00. We are pleased to inform our customers that we will be open on Sundays from 8:00 to 13:00. The cold weather and unhappy sea have made for difficult fishing but there have been some highlights from the past week. Into the ninth month of the year we go. Top tip: Grey sharks, also called dusky, are a fantastic species to target for those wanting to get in to world of inedible angling. Couple of key things to consider when going after grey sharks. Grey sharks feed best at night so this is obviously the best time to target them. They prefer a fleshy bait but have a strong love for chokka baits as well. The two main things to put in your bait to increase your chance are floatation and glow in the dark additives. Offshore: The sea has been a bit grumpy but the fishing has been stable once you get your sea legs. The bottom fishing has kept the charters happy while the skis have done well with the snoek. North – The north coast has seen a lot of fishing ski action. The guys have been doing very well with the snoek on the early mornings. Trolling lipped lures on the backline has been the most effective way of catching these queens. Remember that these are great fun to target on the lighter tackle so consider using a 10kg setup for these fish. The north has thrown a few couta and tuna for those going out deeper with bigger lipped lures or live baits. Central – The Durban coast has mainly seen bottom fishing action although some decent tuna have been landed on both poppers and live baits. These have mainly been taken on the bait marks as well as number one. The bottom fishing has seen some giant bottom fish caught in the last couple of weeks. The coppers and poenskop have been the main targets for those looking for trophy size catches. These are very old fish that deserve their release. The geelbek and daga are around and have been keeping the fish hatches nice and full. South – There have also been geelbek and daga on the decks of the south coast boats. Sardine and squid are best baits for those looking to multi-target bottom fish but if you are after the bigger boys then a live bait is a much better option. In terms of gamefish action, Aliwal has been the only truly consistent place to go to target the ocean speedsters. Getting a nice and energetic bonito out will almost guarantee attention from one of the wahoo in the area. Rock and surf: The shore based angling has been a bit slow with the prevailing weather conditions but the gaps in the storms/winds have seen some good action. North – The north coast has seen some brilliant spinning action. Finding the remaining pockets of sardines and spinning around them has seen some great action. There have been many species around these shoals but the snoek, garrick and kingfish species have been the main catches. The rest of the north coast has seen edible fishing action along the many beaches. Stumpies have been feeding well on the sandbank edges. Central – The beachfront has also seen some good stumpy action. The edges of the sandbanks where there is some churning white water is a great place to target these fish. Baits of choice have been crabs or prawn baits. Using chokka as a base will give you more fishing time. The shad have been keeping the scoreboard ticking over in the tough conditions with plenty of fish being caught, mainly on bait. Anglers that have managed to get bigger baits out have landed some good inedibles which is a good sign for the arrival of the summer season and the giants that come with it. South – The lower south coast has kept itself busy with shad. Most of the deeper points and adjacent bays are great places to target these fish. Look for the crowds and you will know where the shad are feeding. Drift baits are the most effective at the moment but you need to be conscious of the sea conditions to avoid losing tackle. The south coast has seen good scratching for the bream species in the numerous gullies and off the ledges. There have also been consistent garrick catches for those spinning or fishing with live baits. Freshwater: The summer season is almost here and the fish are responding to the increases in the temperatures. The storms have played around with the pressures which have been detrimental to catch rates… Bass – The bass have been feeding best on minnow imitations. Jerkbaits have done well in most of the KZN waters. The choice is yours whether you fish the hard plastic jerks or the soft plastics. If you are fishing in open water with little structure to snag on, then the hard plastics are the way to go. If there is grass or weed in the water you are fishing, a soft plastic jerk bait will be the bait of choice. Most of the KZN dams have seen some decent bass taken on the past week. The changes in pressures have been the most determining factor for success. High pressures generally mean poor fishing but if you switch to a more finesse approach, you can still have a great day on the water. Trout – The trout fishing has been fantastic. The recent snows have made for easy convincing of the better halves to make a trip to the berg. The snowmelt has filled the rivers up nicely and dropped the temperature fast. The trout in these streams and rivers are very good at adapting and will find the most productive area to lay in wait for a morsel. The Stillwater’s are still producing good numbers and sizes. The deeper areas have been the most successful when fishing a bigger streamer on a sinking line. Consider a zonker fished on a type 3 sinking line. Carp – The carp fishing is slowing down in terms of sizes but the number are steadily increasing. The bigger fish do not seem to enjoy feeding in the warmer weather, possibly trying to get their summer bodies ready for bikini season… Much like the other fish, the atmospheric pressure is often the most important factor to consider when picking when to fish. A dropping barometer is a sign of changing weather and is a good time to go wet a line. The specimen anglers will do well keeping their feeding area baited with an assortment of particles in varying sizes. This will not only keep the carp interested in the area, it will also stop the smaller fish from cleaning up the area moments after you stock it up. News from our Jan, The Kingfisher in PMB – “The past weekend’s proverbial winter “Sting In The Tail” brought about some mixed fortunes of the fishing front for those that braved the conditions. Some were “forced” to be out due to an event, but others went out voluntarily … and it would seem that the latter group fared better than the former! … Which I strongly suspect boiled down to a case of “I want to be here” as opposed to “I don’t really want to be here…” J Headline news is of course the re-Opening of the trout streams this week – with 2 snowfalls and melt over the last 2 weeks, there will have been some excellent runoff and rivers should be in excellent condition. Was surprised at how fast the snow actually melted, so hopefully that’s a sign that river temps will be on the up also, and not the frigid 6 degrees of last year’s Opening Day where the fish were definitely still in bed. As previously mentioned, I will be out and about on my annual Opening Day pilgrimage. The Stillwater trout scene continues to be “peculiar” – some waters have already warmed up to the mid-teens, and while one would expect that the “trout larder” would start becoming active, natural patterns don’t yet seem to be on the menu. Anglers are reporting fish still taking winter-style attractor patterns (e.g. fritz buggers / blobs) and small flies (e.g. buzzers and nymphs). This past weekend saw some very brave anglers out on the waters in and around Nottingham Road in the last qualifying leg of the TOPS Corporate Challenge – nearly 200 fish were logged, including a 64cm / 25 inch rainbow trout – in abysmal conditions: howling wind on Friday and icy cold and snow on Saturday – kudos to those anglers sticking it out and making it through to The Finals which take place in 3 weeks’ time. While the weekend’s foul weather kept most anglers inside, local angler Tiaan Odendaal made the most of the quiet water and lucked into a solid bucket mouth of 5.6kg at Midmar Dam … Congrats on a superb fish. As for the lure used to get the eat from this monster … well, you’ll have to ask Tiaan I am afraid! The Tugela is still reporting some excellent winter Natal Yellowfish, aka scaly or “freshwater Bonefish” as they are popularly referred to. Dam levels are still looking good for this time of year: Albert Falls 49%, Midmar 93%, Spring Grove 83%, Mearns 80% and Wagondrift 92%”. Thanks Jan. Tight lines and screaming reels. 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. 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