Monday, April 23, 2007

Fishing ground spoilt by netters

Last weekend (21 april 2007) Navin and myself decided to do some fishing at a jetty in Pulau Indah. We had been here a few times and the catch was so-so. Nothing great to shout about but the location and potential of the fishing ground was quite promising. We always dreamt of getting a barramundi, mangroove jack or maybe some kurau or senangin. During our past trips there, we would not get quality fish, but the odd gelama would give us great fun on light tackle.

The day began quite early for us. Navin came over to my place and we proceeded towards Port Klang to get our bait. Navin found a place where we could buy live prawn to be used as bait. The prawns cost us RM 30.00 per kilo, and we took about 0.5 kg of the live prawns. After getting our supply of live bait, we then proceeded to drive towards Pulau Indah.

We we overjoyed when we arrived at the jetty to find no one fishing from there. After quickly unloading our stuff, we quickly started to set up our tackle. Navin did a quick scan on the river and what he say quickly put a damper on our fishing plan. Right in front of us, someone had laid out a very very long drift net. The net was spread right across the the jetty. No way that any fish could come beyond the nets. We were at a loss as our casting distance was within the area of where the nets has been laid. We were dissapointed with the actions that these irresponsible people. Of all the place for them to spread their net, they had to lay it right across the jetty.

Afther that discovery, both of us lost the mood to fish. Looks like greed has reared its ugly head. Of all the place to place their net, they had to place it right in front of us. Wh can't they place it somewhere else. Only they can answer this question.

We left the place at about 12.30pm without any catch. Even those pesky gelama which we could easily get were missing this time. Below are some pictures taken during the fishing trip.

:::... The pond where we bought the live prawns from ...:::

:::... Traditional method perhaps ...:::

:::... You can see that the pond is abundant with prawns. See them jumping all over the place ...:::

:::... Weighing the prawns ...:::

:::... The spot where we fished from. If u see properly, you can see the buoy marking the position of the net ...:::

:::... Beautiful place spoilt by greedy and irresponsible people ...:::

:::... Boats available for hire, unsure about the rates though ...:::

:::... Out of casting distance, who knows a mama barramundi might be hanging out there ...:::

Fish Dread Phantom Red

This article is take from the Power Pro Website. The link to this article can be found here.

Behavior of light and principles of vision behind PowerPro’s newest color.
phan·tom - n. & adj. Something elusive; an illusion; a ghost or an apparition.

Fishing has become a pursuit of science as much as skill and the color of line can be the key to an angler’s success. For years, lure companies have emphasized the influence of lure colors. But where those companies use an understanding of the Beer-Lambert Law to make the lures more visible to the fish, Innovative Textiles is using it to make a braided fishing line nearly invisible.

According to company president, Konrad Krauland, “I’ve often heard it said that the colors and finishes on lures are designed to catch fishermen. But PowerPro’s Phantom Red Line is designed to catch fish. Next to our product statement rounder, smoother, thinner, stronger, we can now add nearly invisible in water.”

To understand the benefit of Phantom Red, one must understand the behavior of light as it penetrates the water, because line colors do not look the same underwater as they do in air. As line descends below the surface, water absorbs the wavelengths of light selectively, one by one, as depth increases. Red is the first color to disappear, at a depth of 15 feet (which is why underwater photographers often use red filters to restore red colors in their pictures).

While many factors such as total light intensity, water clarity and time of day or year can alter the depth to which colors are visible, one thing is constant: PowerPro’s commitment to the serious angler. “We have always prided ourselves on being the performance leader in the braided line market,” says Krauland. “From our additions of PowerPro Ice Line, Downrigger Replacement Cable and Hollow Core to our line up, Phantom Red continues our commitment to not only meet, but also exceed our customer’s expectations.” Right in line with the other PowerPro colors of Moss Green, Hi-Vis Yellow and White, Phantom Red is manufactured with
enhanced body technology, fortifying it with the same incredible sensitivity, strength and abrasion resistance.

Amazingly, most fish can see in color, even distinguish complementary colors and up to 24 spectral hues with many species possessing color vision similar to that of man. But Phantom Red gives fish a false perception of reality and its appearance becomes a mere apparition. So whether you’re fishing it in the green tinged waters of the Pacific or blue ocean waters of the Caribbean, you’ll see red, but the fish will see nothing.... And what they can’t see will catch them!


With that in mind, I purchased a 150 yard spool of 20lb Power Pro Phantom Red braided line. I intend to spool it onto my Shimano Slade 2500FB reel which I mainly use for casting. Here are some pictures taken of the spool that that I bought.

:::... The Packing ...:::

:::... The Spool ...:::

:::... Phantom Red ...:::

:::... Comes with a guide on the best knots to use ...:::

:::... Loaded onto my Shimano Slade 2500FB ...:::

:::... Looks good when loaded onto my reel ...:::

:::... Depth Color Chart (taken from Power Pro Website) ...:::

Friday, April 20, 2007

Jigging for Dummies

Saltwater Fishing with a Jig
Somewhere along the way one of the most versatile fishing lures ever devised received the name "jig". Probably either because the molds they are made from or the mechanism used to hold them while they are being tied, are called jigs. Either way the term has come to mean a particular style of fishing with a particular type of lure - fishing with a jig.

Types of Jigs
ucktail jigs, nylon jigs, mylar jigs, feathered jigs - they come in all sizes and shapes, and each is designed to imitate a baitfish of some sort. And for fish catching ability, these lures, cast for cast, out fish all other lures.

Jigs work in any depth of water, but generally, the deeper you fish, the heavier the jig.

Deep Jigging
Any time the water is deeper than 100 feet, the jig fishing that is done is called deep jigging. It requires some stamina and a strong back, because it takes a lot of upward motion from your rod to move the jig effectively on the bottom. This is not a place for subtle twitches and jig movements. In water this deep, the line stretch factor removes any possibility for subtleness. What we are looking for here are fast upwards jerks of the rod to get the lure to move up and down in some type of pattern.

Fishing Method
The fishing method here is rather simple. First, find a ledge, a hump, a wreck, or some natural bottom that is holding fish.
On a no wind and no current day, the fishing will be tough. The jig has to move across an area to be effective. Moving up and down in one place is not natural and only draws the smaller fish to attack your strip bait.

Wind and Current
Of course, there are days when the wind and current are too strong, particularly if the wind is in one direction and the current is in another. On these days, it seems that even 5 pounds of weight won't get you to the bottom! But on those perfect days, when the wind is enough for seas to run over two feet and under five feet, and the current is in the same direction, you can load the boat on a good location.

The technique
The idea is to drift over bottom, across the wreck, or parallel along the ledge and give the jig some good up and down motion. Sharp upward jerks produce a less erratic movement of the bait because of line stretch, so jerk as hard as you can. Allow the jig to drop back, but keep in touch with it - "feel" the jig going back down. If you loose the feel of the jig on the drop back, it is likely to be a fish. If you allow the jig to drop back with slack line, the leader will often wrap around and foul the jig.

Keep Moving
When you drift over and beyond the area, reel up and move back up current. Drop down to the bottom, crank up about three or four turns, and drift it again. Unless you have dropped a good marker over the spot or have a good GPS mapping unit, it is virtually impossible to take the same drift every time. Every drift will cover a different part of the structure, so don't be alarmed if you don't pick a fish up on every drift.

Sensing a Bite
"And how do you know when you have a bite", someone just asked. Well, let me just say this. Make sure you are holding that rod with a good grip! These bottom fish don't mess around nibbling. Strikes are strong, sudden and vicious. You may be on the upswing of your "jig" and find your rod suddenly pinned to the rail of the boat.

Tighten that Drag
And because you are over structure, these fish head right for the nearest hole or ledge when they strike. For that reason, we fish with drags almost completely shut down and it becomes a matter of who is stronger - you or the fish! Once we have "winched" the fish away from the structure, we can carefully adjust the drag and fight him to the surface. About half way up, the fight is over, though, because from that depth, the fish's air bladder can not compensate fast enough and it's expansion pops the fish to the surface like a balloon.

Bottom Line
Deep jigging is an art, the biggest part of which is locating the right bottom, and then jigging it the right way. It is also "meat" fishing. This is not catch and release territory, and on a 8/0 jig hook, you won't catch any little fish. So my advice is to practice some conservation. Fish the day inshore or offshore trolling and catch and release all you want. Then come back to the ledge or good bottom and catch one or two for dinner. Leave the rest for later trips!

:::... Some of the jigs of various weight in my collection ...:::

:::... More jigs ...:::

:::... Accessories associated with jigging ...:::

::: Close up on the jigs ...:::

Thursday, April 19, 2007

ATC VX Max Saltwater Rod Series

Latest addition to my family of rods. I decided to get myself a boat rod for my bottom fishing. According to Uncle Bob from Tightlines Sportfishing, this rod can also be used for jigging. I was initialy undecided on the length of the rod. There were two models on display, 5 ft 6 in. and 5 ft rod. After consulting Uncle Bob, he recommended the 5 foot rod as it gave more leverage when doing bottom fishing.

Specs of the rod

Model : VXM 501 SH
Rod Lengh : 5 ft
Section : 1 piece
Line Class (Mono) : 20 - 50 (lb)
Line Class (PE) : 3 - 5
Jig Weight : 250 grams

:::... Comes with a rod bag for rod protection ...:::

ATC VX Max Saltwater Rod ...:::

:::... Beautiful and elegant ...:::

:::... VX Max Saltwater Series Rod ...:::

:::... Model VXM 501 SH, 5 ft length, 20-50lb line class ...:::

:::... Fuji Reel Seat ...:::

:::... ATC, Crafted to Perfection ...:::

:::... Fuji Alconite Guide System ...:::

:::.. Fuji Alconite Guide : Lighter, stronger & greater durability for maximum performance ...:::

:::... Neat workmanship ...:::

:::... I like the workmanship of the rod ...:::

:::... 6 Fuji Guides all lined up ...:::

:::.. The butt ...:::