Sailfish in Madagascar and other stories by FishBazaruto.com
Captain Duarte Rato has a lot to tell us about the Sailfish in Madagascar. He got 105 releases in 10 days! His full report will be coming soon but in the meantime…
Back in Bazaruto waters the fishing has been really good for the usually slower winter months. Here is a video made recently by the boys at Big Blue, highlighting the sailfishing and the annual Sailfish Competition held each year.
Duarte has compiled his latest report and it is available right here…
The Sailfish in Madagascar are really prolific but luckily we also have a good run or two in Southern African waters. April is a good month, and then May through June. Then again in November and December, in Mozambique waters. This also applies to South African sailfish although you really could be surprised by jumping saily anytime really.
We use the MYDO #1 Baitswimmer to make a really versatile and effective sailfish trace. We put a few metres of 300lb nylon trace through rigged on the Mydo. You might have to work the holes open a bit with a bait needle to get the heavy diameter line through. Just tie a uni knot. Then we have wire droppers to the hooks, making sure the back hook sits right in the tail. Use an elastic band to help keep it in place. Also use an elastic band to hold the bait onto the pin and baitswimmer for high speed trolling. You can fit any skirt over the #1 head. Or a duster. Even a small kona will look and swim super.
Then these are dropped from the inside rigger lines and kept real close like a few metres behind the motors. The baits skip wonderfully with a snake-like swimming action. Then when you get a strike and the boat slows, these baits drop in and become swimbaits. Multiple strikes!
FishBazaruto have one slot for Inhaca March 2018 available
Captain Duarte Rato has planned to fish the alarmingly fish full waters off Maputo – Inhaca Island to be exact, in March 2018. And there is one slot available for a crew of lucky anglers hoping to experience action like what is in this video – 7 released billfish in one day!
Click on over to FishBazaruto.com to get in touch with the team. On the site you can also peruse FishBazaruto’s Captain’s Log. A journal kept by Duarte on his fishing trips and tours, since 2012! The sheer amount of fish Duarte gets his clients into, is astounding.
Even this week Duarte has reported a few 400’s and a nice 700, in amongst a bunch of “rats” – as Duarte affectionately refers to any marlin under 300!
With some good weather and great bait action, the late season marlin at Bazaruto put on a great show.
Captain Duarte Rato reports that April is actually a great time to target big blues out the back – especially if the weather holds. This April was decidedly otherwise with it’s weather, but the big boats enabled fishing in the canyons off Maragruque quite comfortable. Bait was plentiful, but the razor gang just kept chopping them to pieces. And so monst of the fish reported were taken on lures.
The recent cyclone and weird weather may have had something to do with things but Bazaruto has been absolutely off the scale. Yellowfin tuna as far as you can see in every direction, with bonito and skipjack filling in any spaces.
And the marlin and sailfish are still around for a fight, it’s been one helluva billfish season up and down our coastline.
Here is a link – Baitball Article – to a contribution Captain Duarte Rato of FishBazaruto, made to a great article that ran in the January issue of Voyages de Peche magazine.
The article, which is about bait balls or where and when large masses of bait come together along with its predators, was put together by Julien Lajournade, had as it´s collaborators Duarte along with well know photographers Jessica Haydahl Richardson (Yellowfin & blue runnes in Cobia Panama), Pat Ford (tarpon and others on mullet at vero beach Florida), Marc Montocchio (great photograph with tarpon and silversides in the Caymans) and Scott Kerrigan (on sailfish and sardines off Isle Mujeres – Mexico).
You can read and see more of Duarte’ss amazing experiences with these bait balls right here…
Bait balls – massive amounts of bait and predators – it is all happening at Bazaruto right now, here is an email I received from Duarte recently…
“Hey mate, hope all good…
As you know after the season I have chilling with the family and finalizing all the bookings for the rest of the year for Bazaruto and Cape Verde. But, after cyclone Dineo (which as you know was much kinder to us here in Vilankulos / Bazaruto than our friends further south in the Inhambane area) we finally have had a spell of absolutely gorgeous weather and my boys at Bazaruto told me about excellent light tackle game fishing. So, yesterday decided to take my boy (that´s Duarte´s oldest son which just turned 4 years and is obsessed with fishing – I hear he prefers to watch fishing videos than cartoons – wonder where he gets it from) out. Man, it was absolutely unbelievable from when we got to V-mile area yesterday morning until midafternoon when we come back was going mental. I think all the churning caused by the cyclone as just moved up all these nutrients and the ocean is alive everywhere you look. Between V mile all the way to the north of the Island at any given time you seeing 5 or more schools of Yellowfin tuna, skipjack and bonnies gorging themselves on tiny oceanic anchovy! It´s all small stuff (what we in season call bait) but great fun on the light tackle. Perfect stuff to target on the light spinning rods.
We had nonstop action from the start and everyone hooked up simultaneously all the time. It looks like a slaughter and we did take a lot of fish out but we released much more and we were all with our freezers empty and brought some fish back for the boys. Funniest thing was Duarte Jnr, who we have now nicknamed gaffman, who at a stage did not want to take any rod but just wanted to gaff the fish, every single one of them…hilarious! And he knows when they really small he was like ´´this one we throw back “! By 10am he was so tired he was falling asleep but kept being woken up by screaming reels and he just could not resist. To let him have a much-deserved nap (he did wake up at 4am), and despite the water being horrible dirty and green I decided to fish for Marlin for a couple hours. We first put a live YFT but that did not last long and we were hooked up to a shark within 20 minutes, which obviously woke him up againJ! I decided to put the lures and head out wide in search of blue water which was not to be seen up to 500 meters out! It was green and we never raised one, did get a decent wahoo for Rafi tough. When we come back early afternoon it was still going wild and the mayhem continued before we decided to call it a day at 3pm. We have a strong SE moving in on Sunday which should push in the blue water and I am sure some fish with a sharp nose with it…there is enough bait to make them come! Until then we will just have fun on the small stuff, back at it tomorrow…
Cheers mate…attached a couple of pics from yesterday. Back at it tomorrow, and the next day!!!””
Some guys have all the luck!
Thank you Duarte…
Dudas Jnr winding the bonnies
In amongst and all around the Bazaruto Baitballs are gamefish
Duarte Jnr looking ready with the gaff off Bazaruto Island
And now this…
After mastering the necessary gaffing skills to be on the boat with his Dad, young Duarte was seen at the helm of his first vessel – a surfboard, at Tofo!
Oh oh, better catch some waves now before he grows up
The new IGFA rules published recently include some long overdue and revolutionary amendments.
The main one to me, is that you are now allowed to tie your top line ie the line class you are fishing, to your backing, no matter what backing! There is a minimum stipulated length of top line required, of…5 m! Yes, five metres!
This means that when you break off on a fish, only the lighter top line will still be attached to it as it swims off. A minimal impediment compared to being stuck dragging 200m plus nylon. A very cool, and commendable change.
It obviously makes for using a lot less line – you can change line classes more efficiently and quickly. So much less waste and line pollution.
Another cool change, is that you are allowed to assist an angler who is fighting a fish – promoting safety. No assistance is allowed in pulling the fish in, but someone can hold on to you when things get crazy rough!
Captain Duarte Rato on a black that went 650lb, needs no assistance on this flat day. But if things get wild, the new IGFA rules allow for your crew mate to hold on to you, and keep you safe and in the boat.