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News: Fishing

SA Sailfish Captain’s Tips on Fishing Natal Snoek

WATCH: National angler and sailfish team captain George Breedt talks rods, line classes, IGFA rules, strip bait, traces and skirts when fishing Natal Snoek

Rods, line classes, strip bait, skirts and traces. National (SADSAA) angler and Team SA sailfish captain George Breedt shares his ultimate pro tips for fishing Natal Snoek. 

Watch: 3 Videos of this snoek derby champion’s remarkable insights and then discover what is Natal Snoek anyway, how’s it different from regular Cape Snoek and when’s the best time to catch it.

 

WATCH 1: GEORGE BREEDT ON RODS, REELS AND RULES WHEN FISHING NATAL SNOEK

George Breedt part 1

Part 1: George Breedt SADSAA angler talking and demonstrating natal snoek traces…George has won numerous snoek derbies in St Lucia, and is also the SADSAA sailfish captain

Posted by South African Deep Sea Angling Association on Thursday, 2 April 2020

 

In this video

  • George shares insights into IGFA regulations for Natal Snoek fishing
  • He talks line classes and explains his preference for “fishing light”
  • He shows his rod and reel drag presets and intros strip bait and traces

 

WATCH 2: PREPARING STRIP BAIT AND SKIRT FOR NATAL SNOEK TRACE

George Breedt part 2

Part 2: George Breedt SADSAA angler talking and demonstrating natal snoek traces…George has won numerous snoek derbies in St Lucia, and is also the SADSAA sailfish captain

Posted by South African Deep Sea Angling Association on Thursday, 2 April 2020

In video 2

  • George shows how he prepares his hook and strip bait section + what bait he uses
  • He talks wire classes and shows practical tips on winding and tying the trace
  • He shows the best way to secure the strip bait for fishing
  • He adds the ideal boat speed for fishing Natal Snoek: 6–7.5km/h is 3.2–4 knots

 

WATCH 3: DETAILED ROD AND LINE + WHERE TO FISH THE SNOEK

George Breedt part 3

Part 3: George Breedt SADSAA angler talking and demonstrating natal snoek traces…George has won numerous snoek derbies in St Lucia, and is also the SADSAA sailfish captain

Posted by South African Deep Sea Angling Association on Thursday, 2 April 2020

 

In video 3

  • George goes into more detail on his rod and gear, including non-IGFA braid
  • He shares how to look for the snoek in Natal waters
  • And he gives some bait alternatives + and old-school spoon tip you have to see

 

ABOUT GEORGE BREEDT

For all his modesty, George is one of the top anglers in SA right now, and definitely an authority on game fishing. He’s a SADSAA angler and captain of the SA sailfish team. Not to mention he’s pretty handy at targetting bottom fish too.

Apart from that, George has won his fair share of snoek derbies along the Natal coast, and you’ll most likely find him at his home base at St Lucia Ski-Boat Club.

St Lucia Ski Boat Club, 12 x 12 Species Fishing Competition, 12 x 12 species boat fishing competition st lucia by Nauti-Tech Suzuki

WHAT IS NATAL SNOEK ANYWAY?

If you don’t know, Natal Snoek is the colloquial name for the Queen Mackerel (Scomberomorus plurilineatus), commonly found along the east coast of SA all the way up to Mozambique, Seychelles and Madagascar. Although it’s related to the Cape Snoek (Thyrsites atun, part of the Snake Mackerel sub-family knows as baracouta – which is itself different from the famous pacific baracuda) the Natal Snoek is a different species in a different subfamily from its popular Cape cousins.

They’re all from the same larger Scrombidae “family” of fish classification, though, and part of the same order (Scombriformes) of fish as tuna and bonito.

Sometimes also known (outside of SA) as the Kanadi kingfish or spotted mackerel, the Natal Snoek is usually found at depths of 50–200 metres (although they’ll come closer to the surface to feed) and they prey on smaller fish species, and even squid or shrimp – although fish bait is often best for catching them.

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NATAL SNOEK SEASON: BEST TIME TO CATCH

There’s no real season for Natal Snoek, you can catch it all year round. However, anglers warn that there seem to be much fewer catches reported during August, September and into October (but that could also be because fewer people launch in that time due to the wintery weather).

Some anglers maintain that July is the best time to catch Natal Snoek. Others say that the weather conditions just make it more pleasant to target them in April and May instead.

One tip is that they seem to be very active when the water is slightly greener, and especially when there’s a north-easterly wind blowing (with a note of poor catches when it’s a westerly breeze). And, as George mentions in his videos, around St Lucia, the guys fish for Natal Snoek beyond the break line, watching closely for baitfish scattering, indicating that there’s a snoek stirring them up down there.

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Thanks so much, George! It’s awesome to get tips like these.

ABOUT THESE #NAUTITIPS

This fishing tips video is courtesy of the South African Deep Sea Angling Association (SADSAA) who, during March and April 2020 invited anglers from around the country to share their angling video tips. We’ll be releasing more every week. But you can also go and see the originals when you follow and share SADSAA’s Facebook page.

Check out the entire collection of awesome video fishing tips.

Also check out the video on tying the ideal nail knot for game fish lures, game fish captain Shane Dennis’s tips for making a couta trace, billfish champ Henk du Plessis on how to rig halfbeak for sailfish and rigging skip bait for marlin.

Plus: See the full story on recreational fishing in lockdown. And get the inside track on how to choose an outboard for your boat. See all the ski-boat clubs in Natal.

 

THE PURSUIT OF AWESOME

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Plus: Deep sea, ski-boat, river or cabin cruisers: See all our custom-built new boats. And discover everything we’ve repowered, refitted, refurbed and all new launches + their motors, all under our collective of boats.

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