Summer is finally here in full force and if you’re anything like us, you’ve already dusted off your rods and reels in preparation for the lazy fishing days that are to come. Whether you’re a river fishing, dam fishing or surf fishing kind of person – we have the best South African summer fishing tips for you!
Summer brings with it extremely hot days and when it gets hot, like us land dwellers, the fish look for shade. While you won’t have this problem as a surf angler, keep it in mind when casting a line at rivers, lakes and dams. If you’re trying to hook a trophy in the mid-day sun, cast close to jetties and piers for a better chance of landing the big one! If you prefer to fish off of a boat, keep in mind that if your boat’s shade is the only shade around – chances are that’s where the fish will be hiding!
You know the saying: If your bait ain’t right, the fish won’t bite. Here are some popular fish caught during the South African summer months – and the bait used to hook them:
For most other salt water species of fish, squid seems to be the preferred bait of choice. Have a look at this guide on correctly preparing and hooking your bait.
As mentioned before, the sun plays an important role in how eager the fish are to take your bait, so timing your fishing expeditions is important. Casting a line between 11am and 4pm is not recommended, as this is the hottest time of the day and fish will swim to deeper, cooler water. Early to mid-morning is a good time, but the BEST time for fishing is late afternoon moving into the evening. This is when the fish rise closer to the water surface and are ripe for the picking! If you happen to hook a keeper during the day, act quickly when taking a photograph and releasing.
Fishing speed refers to the speed at which you reel your bait in after the cast. In warmer water, practising a faster reeling speed is recommended – fish will be perky and in the mood for a chase. In colder water, fish tend the be more lethargic, so a slower reel speed should be practised to match the slower movement speed of your target. Be sure to check the temperature of the water before casting your line.
Done with fishing from the shore or jetty, and looking to get closer to the action? Bass boats are a good choice for fishing, designed specifically for the job, but suited to smaller-scale fisherman who don’t venture into the open ocean, or who fish on dams. If you’re on the hunt for game fish and explore further out, check out a Deep Sea Cat.
Need advice on the right boat for your fishing expedition? Pop into Natal Power Boats…