The first sailfish of summer, and a most amazing sight

2010-11-20 00:00

WITH weather slowly settling, anglers are now back on the beaches doing what they love. With the shad ban still on, most anglers who fish for edibles are catching some good brusher. The most popular venues of late have been Isipingo ledges and the Doonside stretch where some nice specimens have been landed.

Anglers who have waited patiently for the annual flatfish to arrive need wait no longer as sand sharks and skates have arrived all along our coast. Recent rains have ensured that ginger beer-coloured water is present at most spots. Some big sandies have been caught along the south coast off the deepwater points.

It is the Zululand coast that now comes into its own this time of the year. Big diamond skates and some very big sand sharks move into areas such as Amatikulu and the Port Durnford areas. When conditions are right anglers can expect to have some great fun with these big fish.

The deep water in Durban Bay has been fishing very well. Mike Pereira of The Kingfisher accounted for a few oversize grunter on Saturday morning while fishing from his boat, 2 Grumpy Old Men. Bruce Black and a number of other anglers also managed a few nice size fish in that area over the morning high tide.

Zululand’s Julian Pybus, currently assisting with the World Games, shore angling down in Langebaan, reports that after day one, South Africa men are lying second behind Wales and the ladies’ team are lying sixth.

Mike Laubscher says that Saturday was a special day for the new Nikao Fishing Adventures boat, with its first sailfish landed and some dorado (Mahi Mahi) for added measure. This is also the first sailfish out of Durban this summer . Just another day in Africa, or was it?

Mike left Wilson’s Wharf at 05h00 in a light NE, but the swell was a little large and so they decided to do a fast troll out to the deep. Near the harbour the water surface temp was 23°C. They went out deeper and the water went just above 25°C and was crystal-clear. As the day progressed the sea flattened quite a bit and then the NE started blowing harder. They also saw a lot of humpback whales around. It was not long before the first reel went and they reeled in a foul-hooked garfish, which was not happy and was snapping his long beak when they got him to the boat where he fell off just as they grabbed the leader.

Things then went quiet for a while, and as the sun started shining nicely on to the water a reel screamed again. After a hard, 20-minute fight they managed to land a nice-size queen dorado. The guest who landed it was ecstatic because this was his first dorado ever.

As they started coming back towards the shallows at around 90 metres Mike decided to change to a tuna spread and troll at a slower speed.

He mentioned to his guests that he didn’t think they would get that sailfish, but to try instead for some yellowfin tuna.

As Mike got a little closer in all hell broke loose and five reels started screaming all at once, and there before his eyes Mike saw one of the most amazing sights he has ever witnessed while fishing. Four dorado and one sailfish all jumping in the air at once. Unfortunately as all these fish were jumping at high speed they were also crossing all their lines, and so they focused on the sailfish and ended up losing all the dorado. After a good fight, they landed a nice sailfish. They released him successfully after a quick photo.

They all decided that the sailfish had topped the day. They were all satisfied and so they packed up all the rods and took a fast run back to port. So far this summer season has been awesome for Mike, getting the first dorado for this summer and now also the first sailfish.

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

The boys at The Kingfisher are getting ready for their annual sale of samples, shop-soiled, end-of-range, demo models etc. This sale is planned towards the end of the month. Watch this space for details.

Send any info about fishing, fish caught or competitions in your area to or fax 031 368 4007, attention Mike.

For the latest KZN fishing news presented by OJ, tune into East Coast Radio at 5.40 am Monday to Friday.

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