Monthly Spearfishing Report August 2004

Monthly Report – August 2004

Settled Weather

Considering that August used to be one of the windier months along the KwaZulu-Natal coast, the relatively calm august that we have had once again illustrates the fact of the changing weather patterns that are taking place Globally. The odd front coming up from the Cape during the month, but no big blows, with some hot sunny days heralding the start of the summer months.

Fish News

There has been plenty of fish action along the Natal coast with diveable water on both the north and south coast for much of the month. The Zinkwazi stretch had some very clean water during the month and spearos hunting just south of the Tugela River mouth found some very good fish. These reefs are undiveable for years at a stretch and offer some superb spearing when they do come clean. The Hibberdene stretch had some excellent visibility during the month and some good bags of bottoms were landed in the favourable conditions. There have been a lot more kob landed this season as opposed to the previous couple of seasons, and some monster fish over 40kgs have been landed by the odd lucky spearo. The garrick are there one day and then gone the next in what seems like similar if not better conditions, but if they were predictable there would be no challenge to it. Some early season silver steenbras (cracker or brusher) have been landed with the main run starting at the end of September. The large shoal of pignose grunter (white steenbras) that have been frequenting the deep reef at Umzumbe for the past 20 years, are still teasing spearos who hunt there. A very hard fish to approach.

Professor J.L.B Smith’s View of Spearing

Professor Smith was a very respected Scientist and was very knowledgeable about fish matters in the Worlds Oceans. Here is his view on spearfishing. It is instinctive for man to hunt and one way to satisfy this need is to catch fish. This, while a substitute for hunting, lacked the spice of danger, and it is at least partly this lack that has led to the new sport of the underwater chase, which opens up a new world and greater thrills, especially for the young and adventurous, but which is attractive to all ages and both sexes. To see and stalk and kill almost hand to hand is a greater thrill than to merely lure the unwary fish to one`s hooks.

Vidal and Sodwana

Some good gamefish came out at Sodwana Bay at the start of the month with some big cuda landed. Cap Vidal has been solidly booked out by the shad fishermen with the run in full swing and some great fishing to be had. This has meant that most spearos have had no luck with accommodation and the big cuda sneaking past this part of the coast have benefited.

Mozambique News

A number of windy days during the month up at Barra, but some good fish landed when suitable conditions were found. One of the lodges in the Inhambane area is holding a spearfishing competition in October with a R15000 first prize on offer. Details will be up on the site soon.

Boats Attacked

Two instances off Park Rynie, where Ski-boaters fishing at night have had a great white shark attack their boat, makes one think. All the struggling fish must attract the shark to the area and if blood is leaking off the back of the boat, an over eager shark might mistake the boat for food.

Billing Scuba Divers

There is some likelihood that scuba divers might have to pay a fee to go about their underwater gatherings in the future. Should this happen there will certainly be plenty more money to help with the management of sensitive areas. We will keep you posted on this.

Safe diving, John.