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. Tight lines and screaming reels.

The weather has been a proper mix of summer heat and winter chill. Even with the iffy weather, the fishing has still been good.

Top tip. Sharp hooks. A lost art in the modern fisherman’s arsenal. The art of sharpening your own hooks. With the addition of chemically sharpened hooks and modern materials, it has not been necessary. However, getting that Kendal Round to a sharp point with a file or hone is something which gives one great satisfaction. It is always important to have a sharp hook in all facets from carp to marlin. A blunt hook will not set as deep or strongly into the fish’s jaw and can result in lost catches. 

Offshore:

Couta have been the main target along the KZN coast with all the recent competitions. There have been some quality fish caught!

North The north coast has seen a lot of action on the gamefish front. There have been couta, snoek, dorado and tuna as the main catches.

Live bait remains the most successful of all the reported methods. Remember to fish a trap stick when you are catching bait as you never know what is lurking around the baitfish. The sharks have taken their “fair” share but some very impressive fish have been landed. There have been a large number of bigger kingfish around this last week. These hard-fighting gamefish are great fun to catch and release. Unfortunately they fight similarly to a shark so make sure you are certain you hooked a taxman before you break him off. Bigger mackerel and bonito are your best live baits for these gangsters.

Central Durban has also seen some good couta but the tuna have been the main species in terms of weight. The sharks have been a problem so make sure to beef up your tackle so you can pull as hard as possible. 

Much like the north, trolling lipped lures has been a great way to put numbers in the boat. The tuna have jumped on most of the faster trolling lures (lipped or skirted). The purples and pinks have been the top performers. 

The snoek have been around in small numbers around the uMgeni river mouth in the early mornings. Trolling fillets and smaller lipped lures from the mouth to the lighthouse is a great area to target these fish. 

South The south coast has seen much the same as last week with some decent fish in the deep on the trolling lures while the shallows have seen some big couta and a couple of snoek. 

The couta have favoured a bigger bait down rigged on a 4oz sinker. Try get your hands on some bigger mackerel, bonito or the king of the couta baits…the walla walla. 

The snoek have favoured fillet baits and spoons down south. The Umkomaas area has seen some decent fish but no big numbers. Try spin on the backline just after you launch to get the day started properly. 

Rock and surf:

The rock and surf fishing has shifted towards the winter edible season on the central and southern coast while the north coast clings to the last of the summer inedibles.

North – This past week saw some impressive fish caught up north. Most anglers fished for the last of the summer inedibles. There were some decent sandies and honeycombs caught and a few fish unable to be stopped. While targeting these fish, a few lucky anglers managed some massive giant kingfish. These fish are incredible and deserve a safe release (after some brag photos. Specifically targeting these big kingfish is difficult so well done to those that managed to land these beasts.

The north coast is the last spot to effectively target those big summer inedibles, so if you are after long runs and screaming drags then to the north you should go.

Central – The Blue Lagoon area is still fishing well with multiple species being caught this past week. The kob and grunter have been the main targets while the stumpies and shad have played second fiddle. The beaches to the north have fished very well with big shoals of mullet keeping the kob fed and the imminent arrival of the garrick on everyone’s mind.

South – The south coast has seen some amazing edible fishing with most of the river mouths being a great place to target the kob. The floods scoured out most of the river mouths down south. The new mouths are currently very deep and have seen a massive influx of kob in to the rivers hunting the local mullet populations. These fish can be targeted using chokka, sardine or live bait. Those looking for the bigger fish will be best suited to the live bait option. Find a deep hole near the river mouth and slide or throw your live bait there. Bait and wait…

Freshwater:

The freshwater anglers have had a good run this past week with some proper size bass being shown off on social media. The trout fishing is picking up and the carp anglers are doing well for themselves. 

Bass The bass fishing has been amazing in all of the KZN venues. 

The faster moving baits have been putting the numbers in the boat. Crankbaits, spinnerbaits and walking surface baits allow you to cover a lot more water. These faster techniques have allowed anglers to quickly up their numbers before switching to soft plastics to target the bigger fish. 

Midmar has been doing very well for both the boat and bank anglers. The upper reaches of the dam closer to the river mouth have produced the bigger fish. Chartreuse and white spinnerbaits have done some serious damage. Albert Falls and Inanda have both been very consistent with good catches coming from both. The only issue is the ecological disaster of the water hyacinth at Inanda. The giant mats of weed are a real menace to anyone trying to fish there. 

Carp The carp fishing has been great for the conventional anglers. Sweet flavoured baits and a spray of almond on your mielie bomb will keep your drag running and keepnet full on most of the bigger dams. The farm dams and ponds have also produced some good fish this past week with the fruity scents as well as bread seeing the best results. 

The specimen anglers have been quiet over the past few months. There have been some good fish coming out but the patterns have been difficult to predict and the guarantee of success has been missing. Nonetheless, Nagle has been the “secret” venue for those looking for a quieter place to catch a big fish. Although there is plenty of submerged weed so make sure you have a boat to be able to go fetch the fish if it gets stuck. Boilies have been the most successful of the specimen baits. 

Trout The Stillwaters are starting to set up for the spawn. Look for the areas of shale or transition as these will attract the spawning activity. Orange flies and a good set of sunglasses will put you in good stead. Patience is your friend.

News in from Jan Korrubel, The Kingfisher in PMB “The great run of weather continues, and the fishing is right up there as well!  The Midlands is showing off on all fronts, with multiple species showing up to the game … trout, bass, carp, yellows … everybody getting their time in the sun and getting in on some feed action before winter.  Which begs the questions : where exactly is winter?  Social media is popping up with some reminders of proper frosts about this time … but hey, we’ll take it while we can.

As mentioned (predicted?) last week, the good weather and warmer water temperatures to date appeared to be great conditions still for scaly – and there they are.  The Natal Fly Fishers Club beat on the Umkomaas River recently produced good numbers of scaly up to 11 inches / 28cm for local anglers Jason and Tyron McGarry.  Fish in the Umkomaas will also seek out tributaries flowing into the main river, and these have also been producing fish.  While the weather is still warm, a word of warning for anglers that are trekking into the bush, is to check for ticks.  If you find yourself having tick bites, be aware of symptoms that start 5 to 10 days after a tick bite … fever, headache, tiredness and muscle pains.  African tick bite fever is generally mild, but prevention is better than cure, so better not to get it in the first place.

Sticking with the cyprinids – the carp also are reported to be active on the surface at Albert Falls.  The mild weather is producing some spectacular glass-off days, and the carp are up, surface feeding on rafts of midges, reports Tyron McGarry after a recent outing on Alberts. Carp are recognised for their dogged fighting ability, and while they pull hard, softer-tip rods that can withstand sudden runs into the deep and protect your leader/tippet setup, are recommended. 

The trout streams are fine fettle, with the NFFC beats on The Mooi and Bushman’s River giving up some excellent brown trout in the 11-13 inch / 28-33cm and 13-15 inch / 33-38cm classes.  A good fish in the 15-7 inch / 38-43cm class was also reported from The Mooi.  Water temperature is sitting at 13/14deg in the morning and rising to 15/16deg later in the day … fish are happily taking both surface dries (hopper) and sub-surface (nymphs), so the choice is yours.  News from Duane Howell up Underberg way is that the Umzimkulu River is also fishing well for rainbows.  In general, anglers are reporting that the rivers are in great shape, flow and clarity perfect, and the fish are in great shape … if moving water is your game, time to get a line on it before the season closes at month end.

The stillwaters are getting their fair share of attention from the NFFC anglers.  Water temperatures are slow slipping down the scale, currently sitting at around 15/16deg – perfect for fish that feeding up on the smorgasbord available before the winter chill.  There has been a good size range of fish reported … the smallest in the 9-11 inch / 23-28cm bracket, the bulk 13-15 inch / 33-38cm class, and a couple bigger fish in the 15-17 inch / 38-43cm range.  Bigger patterns are doing the work, including the ever-favourite Mrs. Simpson.  As the waters cool, some of the brighter patterns will come into play – a firm winter choice is the Pancora Woolly Bugger with its orange/yellow tail.

Of interest is that the winter stillwater events kick off this weekend with the first leg of the TOPS Corporate Challenge taking place on the waters around the popular Midlands village of Nottingham Road.  We look forward to reporting next week!

The bass waters are also showing off.  Reports of some good fish in the 2+kg range coming from Albert Falls, and also “big” fish from Midmar.  The bass are on the move in search of food – the dropping water temperatures will have them on the feed before winter sets in proper.  And with a mouth that can literally fit a bucket, anything is fair game.  Stick baits, and in particular, large Glide Baits, are the current word from the water … fished deep and slow.

We have mentioned the carp on the surface at Alberts, but the bank anglers are reportedly also doing well with the carp at Midmar.  Strong scents like Perdeby and Duiwelsdrek / Devil’s Claw are your current go to flavours”. Thanks Jan.

For the best in tackle and advice, pop into any of the seven Kingfisher stores, they are open 8am-5pm Mon-Fri, 8am-1pm on Saturdays, Sundays and public holidays.

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The KZN Angler News audio fishing report is South Africa’s first fishing podcast series that focuses on the latest fishing reports of the East Coast. This report is free and available on all major Podcast platforms including Apple Pods, Google Pods, Spotify and Deezer as well as SA’s most popular Facebook Pages.

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

Categories: Reports

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