Monthly Spearfishing Report June 2010

Conditions

Settled conditions both sea and weather wise. A number of weak southerly fronts coming up from the Cape helping to maintain the calm seas and good diving water. Visibility on both the north and south coast with the lower south coast having the best conditions. Water temperatures fairly warm and certainly nothing below 20 celsius anywhere along the coast for most of the month.

 Fishwise

Good catches taken by divers on the lower south coast of mostly bottom fish with the odd gamefish landed. Cuda still being landed on the north coast with Umdloti producing the odd good fish. Chris West taking an 18kg cuda from Len’s Lump on a shore dive. Quite a long swim for an old bullet like Chris who is just about to leave his fifties behind so well done mate. Good catches being taken out on Deep Scottburgh with a number of cuda taken in this area. Sharks a problem courtesy of the shark feeders so watch out if you are diving in poor visibility. The garrick run starting to show some promise towards the end of the month with Ifafa being the pick of the spots. Natal snoek or queen mackerel being taken by divers on the north coast and some good fish coming out on the south coast too.

Diet and diving

With everyone’s body working differently it is worthwhile taking the time to find out what foods work best for you when diving. I have found that potatoes whether sweet or normal are good for my bottom time when compared to rice the night before a dive. Something in bananas effects my breath-hold capabilities adversely and I cannot take deep inhales if I eat a banana when diving. I do not believe in energy supplements to keep you going and prefer my body to let me know when it has had enough. I eat oats and honey mostly for breakfast which seems to give me plenty of energy for diving but have also eaten nothing and still been ok.

The Great Dunga Challenge

Eric Allard and Nigel from Tanzania and Kenya respectively have challenged Andrew Henwood and myself to a Dunga competition in Tanzanian waters diving out on Latham Banks. It is set to take place in December and dogtooth tuna will be the top scoring gamefish. Will have a full story with the results up on the site in late December.

Sardine News

The natal coast sardine runs became unpredictable as far back as the mid nineteen thirties. The unpredictable runs was put down to a change from many years of settled weather to westerly winds causing strong inshore currents which were thought to wash the sardines out to sea. We now know this to be incorrect with the westerly winds raising the inshore sea temperatures to above a level suitable for the sardine migration onto the Natal coast. The pilchard or sardines are mainly found off the West coast and this resource collapsed in the seventies due to over fishing. In 1968 catches peaked at 1.4 million tons but by 1970 catches had halved. The oceans are so complex that to determine any one reason for poor sardine runs is impossible. But the sea temperature plays a vitally important role for the Natal sardine run with big shoals migrating onto the Transkei coast but ending there if sea temperatures are too warm on our coast.

Shark Feeding

I wonder why people would assume that you can bait sharks into an unnatural relationship with man when every other land form of baiting wild animals is banned. Any baiting or feeding of land based wild animals is banned because it always leads to the baited animals becoming a danger to humans and ultimately having to be put down. Why should sharks be any different?

Safe diving, john little.