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Thread: Fly Fishing for Spotted Grunter

  1. #11
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    Hi guys,

    This is a dumb question, but I dont have too much experience fishing in Salt(aside from chucking plugs for leeries - also ma limited success), nothing when it comes to grunter, but does anyone have any pictures of how it looks when a Grunter is tailing or blowing up sand/mud etc.

    I have watched a video of Henkie Altena on Youtube, but to me for all intents and purposes he might has well have been blind casting.

    I never know the telltale signs to look for in Salt water, I have walked tha banks of the breede a few times and have seen the holes in the prawn banks that these grunter can blow, just never able to spot anything when the tides start to shift, I am sure experience does play a role in these things, but what are the signs you guys look for when sight fishing to Salt water fish.
    "I wasn't born a fisherman, but I will damn well die a fisherman" - Anon.

  2. #12
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    Double Post
    Last edited by Uli@84; 25-03-15 at 10:37 AM. Reason: Double Post
    "I wasn't born a fisherman, but I will damn well die a fisherman" - Anon.

  3. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Winelands Fly Fishing View Post
    Had spent 10 days there in Feb. Also got a 4-5kg Steenbras at the mouth on 8lb line, one hell of a fight. The mudbank at Stables looked good, always some grunter in that vicinity.
    Hi Phillip,

    Thanks,I have had some great fishing in Front of stables but will give those spots you suggested a go.

    Cheers,
    Matt
    The closer one gets to realizing his destiny, the more that destiny becomes his true reason for being! Paulo Coelho

  4. Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Uli@84 View Post
    Hi guys,

    This is a dumb question, but I dont have too much experience fishing in Salt(aside from chucking plugs for leeries - also ma limited success), nothing when it comes to grunter, but does anyone have any pictures of how it looks when a Grunter is tailing or blowing up sand/mud etc.

    I have watched a video of Henkie Altena on Youtube, but to me for all intents and purposes he might has well have been blind casting.

    I never know the telltale signs to look for in Salt water, I have walked tha banks of the breede a few times and have seen the holes in the prawn banks that these grunter can blow, just never able to spot anything when the tides start to shift, I am sure experience does play a role in these things, but what are the signs you guys look for when sight fishing to Salt water fish.
    Hi Ulrich,

    Depending on the water depth you will see the tail sticking out or not. The fish slaps its tail and this can last from 1 second to maybe up to 5 seconds. Quite often you can hear it, weather conditions permitting. In slightly deeper water it will looks like a patch of bulging/bubbling water and in deep water only a mud cloud will be visible.

    It is important to stand dead still in this vicinity, rather walk on the shore if possible to get closer. Best time to witness this on mud banks is in the region of two hours before low tide, up to the low tide, in my experience. Look for areas where the bank slope and meets a drop off.


    Tel +27 21 855 2646 Web - www.winelandsflyfishing.co.za
    E-mail info@winelandsflyfishing.co.za

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  5. #15
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    Thanks for this thread Phil, Grunt on fly has been a long term pursuit I have yet to crack. What I normally do it park a boat on the flat, in about a metre of water. I then wait for the muddy boils to appear around me and cast at them. To be honest, i am not sure what to expect. I am not even to sure if that is the correct technique. I have tried leaving the fly static, to a slow strip, but never had a touch. . . .
    Check out some of my FF pics - http://www.flickr.com/photos/30562135@N07/

  6. #16
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    I have had limited success at Little Brak for the time I have put in - stay 5 minutes away and choose what I think are favourable tides co-inciding with low light periods. However I caught my biggest Grunter in bright sunlight at 15h00 casting to a tailing fish and turned out to be 70cms. Took the fly off the surface as have most that I have caught between the N2 and the Train bridge. Upstream, I catch on Merkin Crab type flies crept along the bottom as the water is fairly discoloured. Sometimes they almost rip the rod out of your hand when they take. However the best tide has been an hour or so before high and again when it retreats. Springs put the fish deep into the grass area and they often follow the surface fly for a long time, sometimes taking but usually turning away. Tried a floating deer hair crab but have had no luck with this method.This fly is articulated and the front is white or light grey deer hair and the hook has just two feather points with cut out a la claws and some palmered white hackle - so it floats hook down in the water. The Leeries also nail this pattern.
    But it is a serious learning curve and there are not numbers of fish to target in my local water and they are very skittish in knee deep water. I usually only fish during the week as boat traffic and cast netter disturb the flats over weekends.

    Very frustrating but enjoyable all the same and I have learnt to appreciate each catch.

    If you are fishing Sedgefield, then Ian Kitching is the man to contact as he sight fishes a very simple pattern from his SUP's and he really catches plenty of Grunter.

    Robin

  7. Default

    Quote Originally Posted by JadeDsantos View Post
    Thanks for this thread Phil, Grunt on fly has been a long term pursuit I have yet to crack. What I normally do it park a boat on the flat, in about a metre of water. I then wait for the muddy boils to appear around me and cast at them. To be honest, i am not sure what to expect. I am not even to sure if that is the correct technique. I have tried leaving the fly static, to a slow strip, but never had a touch. . . .
    Hi Jade,

    Henkie fishes mostly of a supfisher, which is probably a great platform, since it gives you more height to see, moves quietly and is relatively small. As mentioned before, what I believe is happening during a receding tide - this relates probably more to mudbanks, just because the food forms are different compared to a sand bank. Keep in mind, there are many other scenarios and areas when the grunter are feeding during certain times of the tide. Here I refer to a falling tide.

    - The tidal flow two hours before low, starts to slow down.
    - There is still sufficient water on the bank to allow for the fish to move onto the bank.
    - Better times will be when this water stays there for longer, in other words, more around neap tides.
    - The grunter blows and if nothing pops up which the fish can see and eat straight away, the fish moves to deeper water.
    - In the event of prawns being blown from their holes, these prawns will now float/swim on the surface and follow the the tide draining off the flat, in other words these prawns will float to deeper water.
    - The grunter and other grunters will patrol the flat, mainly looking up for prawns. I have seen this on many occassions, these fish are very aware of what is floating.
    - As mentioned before, I have seen a stunned mud goby floating on top, blown out by a grunter, this can also explain the success with topwater lures, like the skitterwalk. The lure is retrieved very slow with pauses in between.
    - When there are many fish competing on a flat the retrieve can probably be a bit quicker. I have heard of grunter really smashing the lure/fly. The grunter takes I had was more the fish sucking the fly in.
    - The takes I had at the Breede was on a slow, steady figure of eight retrieve, with an occassional twitch. Also just leaving the prawn occasionally to follow the natural flow of the tide into deeper water.
    - A friend who farms on the Breede employs a steady, slow roly poly retrieve.


    It just makes sense to me that the fish will tail when the tide is slower, otherwise the food will move out of the area to quickly with a stronger current. It is also easier for the fish to maintain its body position when tailing. I have a spot at Stilbay where the fishing for grunter is great on a receding tide and the current is really pumping. This is two hours after high tide to two hours before low tide. What I believe happens at this spot is that all the prawns and other food, many dead but still fresh, flushes through here and the grunter waits in the channel. A spot I will still try with a sinking line and then just a dead drift/odd twitch.
    Last edited by Winelands Fly Fishing; 25-03-15 at 04:26 PM.


    Tel +27 21 855 2646 Web - www.winelandsflyfishing.co.za
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  8. Default

    Quote Originally Posted by white death View Post
    I have had limited success at Little Brak for the time I have put in - stay 5 minutes away and choose what I think are favourable tides co-inciding with low light periods. However I caught my biggest Grunter in bright sunlight at 15h00 casting to a tailing fish and turned out to be 70cms. Took the fly off the surface as have most that I have caught between the N2 and the Train bridge. Upstream, I catch on Merkin Crab type flies crept along the bottom as the water is fairly discoloured. Sometimes they almost rip the rod out of your hand when they take. However the best tide has been an hour or so before high and again when it retreats. Springs put the fish deep into the grass area and they often follow the surface fly for a long time, sometimes taking but usually turning away. Tried a floating deer hair crab but have had no luck with this method.This fly is articulated and the front is white or light grey deer hair and the hook has just two feather points with cut out a la claws and some palmered white hackle - so it floats hook down in the water. The Leeries also nail this pattern.
    But it is a serious learning curve and there are not numbers of fish to target in my local water and they are very skittish in knee deep water. I usually only fish during the week as boat traffic and cast netter disturb the flats over weekends.

    Very frustrating but enjoyable all the same and I have learnt to appreciate each catch.

    If you are fishing Sedgefield, then Ian Kitching is the man to contact as he sight fishes a very simple pattern from his SUP's and he really catches plenty of Grunter.

    Robin
    Hi Robin,

    Mentioning the state of the high tide in your post, hour before to hour after, again I think that is because there is less tidal movement. However there are lots more water to deal with. Sandbanks I believe is also more pushing tide/high tide spots and have had very good bait fishing on sand banks at this stage. Not that the fish are not on the mud banks.

    A friend fishes only crabs (bait) when the full tide reach the marshes/grass on the mudbanks, maybe this will be the are to target with an appropriate pattern. Thank you for your input, guess there is still so much to really figure out and understand.


    Tel +27 21 855 2646 Web - www.winelandsflyfishing.co.za
    E-mail info@winelandsflyfishing.co.za

    Shop - Trips - Tuition - Custom Flies

  9. #19
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    Thanks a million Philip,

    But if I can expand on my stupid questions with one more, it would be much appreciated.

    I have attached a picture of a bay from Witsand that you would probably know as well, I have simply attached it for example sake so that I can make sure my bearings are correct.

    In my pictures the red arrows would refer to drop-offs as you mentioned??(Once again I apologise, I did not grow up fishing so trying to figure things out as I go along).

    Secondly the black marked area tends to be about Waist high on a normal high tide(Not spring or neap), would this be the type of area you would consider in the right circumstances(Mud flat etc) when you are targeting grunter?

    Example.jpg
    "I wasn't born a fisherman, but I will damn well die a fisherman" - Anon.

  10. Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Uli@84 View Post
    Thanks a million Philip,

    But if I can expand on my stupid questions with one more, it would be much appreciated.

    I have attached a picture of a bay from Witsand that you would probably know as well, I have simply attached it for example sake so that I can make sure my bearings are correct.

    In my pictures the red arrows would refer to drop-offs as you mentioned??(Once again I apologise, I did not grow up fishing so trying to figure things out as I go along).

    Secondly the black marked area tends to be about Waist high on a normal high tide(Not spring or neap), would this be the type of area you would consider in the right circumstances(Mud flat etc) when you are targeting grunter?

    Example.jpg
    Hi Uli,

    That is a sandy bay, with not much food. Better Leerie spot. I will see what I can find on google earth and explain.


    Tel +27 21 855 2646 Web - www.winelandsflyfishing.co.za
    E-mail info@winelandsflyfishing.co.za

    Shop - Trips - Tuition - Custom Flies

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