Inedibles take centre stage

2010-01-23 00:00

INEDIBLE fish still seem to be taking centre stage for the time being as there are some excellent reports of flatfish in local waters. Honeycombe and brown skates make up most of the bags but the annual sand shark run has been a little disappointing as these fish should have entrenched themselves by now and only sketchy reports are coming through. Shad for what it’s worth are nearly a non-entity as anglers who actively target this species are finding it very difficult to even locate them, let alone catch a few.

The only areas that seem to be doing relatively well are the Durban area and during the early morning at the Umkomaas pier. The fish that are coming out at these venues are mostly small and only a few really make the legal size limit. The Transkei is fishing well with favourable reports coming in from the Port St Johns and Hole in The Wall areas. Mostly hammerhead sharks are coming out but there have been some good-size grey and spinner shark activity as well. Anglers fishing these venues at night are getting some small kob and grunter. Fishing in Durban Bay has also picked up with good reports of some fair size grunter and stumpie being caught. A few snoek and the odd kingfish has also come out recently.

On the freshwater scene, the Wartburg Angling Club are hosting their annual barbel competition on March 20 at Albert Falls Dam. There are lots of prizes up for grabs, which include men’s, ladies’ and juniors’ with a first prize being R10 000 for the biggest fish (women are eligible for this prize over and above their first prize of R 1 000). The junior section also has a first prize of R1 200. For more information anglers can contact Gary on 079 692 1478 or Edwin on 082 971 2003.

The Kwazulu-Natal Fly Fishing Association has its new website up and running. The calendar of events and league dates for provincial trials is on it along with registration details and fees. Any anglers interested in participating in this fun league can find more information on www.kznffa.org. Registration is now online for senior men, ladies and juniors. New interested anglers are welcome to try out at the first stillwater event of two sessions to be held on Sunday, January 31. Watch the website for more details on times and venue or contact Linda Gorlei via the website or on 083 631 5301.

Ski boats at the moment are having the best of both worlds as there are plenty of game fish and some good bottom fish around. Boats off Durban are still getting a lot of dorado and the odd yellow fin tuna off the deeper reefs. Closer inshore the couta season seems to have started rather slowly but better figures are coming through on a weekly basis from both north and south coasts. The Aliwal Shoal and Protea Banks have really lived up to their reputations recently as a large variety of fish have been caught at these venues for the past few weeks. Mostly average-size yellow fin keep anglers busy, but dorado, wahoo, couta and the odd sailfish are also being caught. Fishing skis are also in on the action and reports of some good couta and snoek fishing have been coming from the Toti and Scottburgh areas in the south and from the Ballito and Westbrook areas in the north. There are two major fishing competitions coming up for fishing ski and jet ski anglers. The first one is the Umhlanga Challenge, which takes place on March 20-21. This is quite a unique competition in that anglers fish “open boundaries” and can launch anywhere between Zinkwazi in the north and Port Shepstone in the south. The weigh-in will take place at the Umhalanga Ski Boat Club on both days. The second one is the Annual Paindane Species Competition, which is held at the Paindane Resort in Mozambique. This competition runs from May 3 to May 7. For more on both of these competitions anglers can log on to info@stealthkyakfishing.co.za.

Don’t forget to watch the action-packed ESA fishing shows on TV. These shows feature both saltwater and bass fishing and are aired on SuperSport 1. The ESA Saltwater show will be broadcast weekly on Thursdays between 19h30 and 20h30, and the ESA Bass show will air weekly on Tuesdays between 19h00 and 19h30.

The Kingfisher hosts free fishing clinics on their premises once a month. Booking is essential. These clinics are there to help beginners and experienced anglers to see what the sport is all about and how to target certain species of fish.

It also shows anglers what equipment to use and also elaborates on safety. To find out more about these clinics and to book a seat, please phone The Kingfisher’s sales staff on 031 368 3903.

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