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INDIANANGLER

India fishing forum for all the information you require on angling, equipment, locations and trip reports.
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 Post subject: Soft Plastics action
PostPosted: Sat Apr 13, 2019 11:22 am 
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Fishaholic

Joined: Sun May 09, 2010 1:53 pm
Posts: 1342
Location: Sydney, Australia
After chasing tuna (see my article posted yesterday) without success, we decided upon a change of scene and decided to go to the nearby sand flats and try for flathead and bream on soft plastics.

The boat guide knew the area like the back of his hand and manoeuvred the boat through numerous
channels and between sandbars to reach the destination.The water was now very shallow, so he lifted up the main engine and dropped the electric motor, which he operated by remote control to fine tune our drift or to hold us steady in the targeted area.

A switch in the fishing gear was called for ..... so out came the lighter rods (Shimano Jewel 2-4 kilo)
and reels (Stradic 2500 CI4+) provided by the guide, we attached the light braid line to 1/4 oz. jigheads needed because of the fast current. A new brand of soft plastics (Pro Range) was used by the guide to place on the jigheads and we cast away.....!

We cast along the sandy shoreline, drawing the soft plastics parallel to the bank so there would be maximum exposure of the lure to the fish lying in ambush.

The guide was watching and quickly noticed a bad habit I had got into when using soft plastics!
After the initial lift up of the lure after it had touched bottom, I was neglecting to let it drop fully to the bottom after reeling in the slack ..... with the result that the soft plastic was mainly covering the higher water column only.

The target species was flathead, which lie in ambush on the bottom. It was imperative that the soft plastic should be bounced on the bottom for the longest possible time to give maximum exposure to the flathead.

Once I had corrected my technique, things started to fall in place and I quickly hooked up with some
decent sized flathead.

On my last cast, I hooked up and the fish gave strong runs and took a while before we got a look at it.
It turned out to be a magnificent bream, large enough for the guide to take out his camera and take several pictures to place in his portfolio!

It was a very enjoyable session and we had glorious weather, with beautiful sand and crystal clear water. Australia at its best!

Kingfish


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 Post subject: Re: Soft Plastics action
PostPosted: Sat Apr 13, 2019 11:41 am 
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Fishaholic

Joined: Sun May 09, 2010 1:53 pm
Posts: 1342
Location: Sydney, Australia
Flathead and bream on soft plastics


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 Post subject: Re: Soft Plastics action
PostPosted: Sat Apr 13, 2019 11:50 am 
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Fishaholic

Joined: Sun May 09, 2010 1:53 pm
Posts: 1342
Location: Sydney, Australia
Beautiful calm waters, safe enough for a kayaker to go fishing!


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 Post subject: Re: Soft Plastics action
PostPosted: Sat Apr 13, 2019 11:52 am 
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Fishaholic

Joined: Sun May 09, 2010 1:53 pm
Posts: 1342
Location: Sydney, Australia
More flathead....


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 Post subject: Re: Soft Plastics action
PostPosted: Sat Apr 13, 2019 11:55 am 
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Fishaholic

Joined: Sun May 09, 2010 1:53 pm
Posts: 1342
Location: Sydney, Australia
Aptly named fish .... FLAT HEAD... good eating but has dangerous spikes on the fins and sides!


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 Post subject: Re: Soft Plastics action
PostPosted: Sat Apr 13, 2019 11:59 am 
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Fishaholic

Joined: Sun May 09, 2010 1:53 pm
Posts: 1342
Location: Sydney, Australia
More pictures...


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 Post subject: Re: Soft Plastics action
PostPosted: Sat Apr 13, 2019 12:02 pm 
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Fishaholic

Joined: Sun May 09, 2010 1:53 pm
Posts: 1342
Location: Sydney, Australia
There are several types of flathead, this one is the dusky flathead ... darker than the sand flathead.


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 Post subject: Re: Soft Plastics action
PostPosted: Sat Apr 13, 2019 12:05 pm 
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Fishaholic

Joined: Sun May 09, 2010 1:53 pm
Posts: 1342
Location: Sydney, Australia
I was very pleased to land this silver bream after a good tussle ....
a magnificent specimen that is over 20 years old!!! It was photographed and gently released back into the water.


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 Post subject: Re: Soft Plastics action
PostPosted: Sat Apr 13, 2019 12:07 pm 
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Fishaholic

Joined: Sun May 09, 2010 1:53 pm
Posts: 1342
Location: Sydney, Australia
Another angle ...


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 Post subject: Re: Soft Plastics action
PostPosted: Sat Apr 13, 2019 12:12 pm 
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Fishaholic

Joined: Sun May 09, 2010 1:53 pm
Posts: 1342
Location: Sydney, Australia
The bream was caught on a silvery blue curly tail soft plastic.


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 Post subject: Re: Soft Plastics action
PostPosted: Sat Apr 13, 2019 12:14 pm 
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Fishaholic

Joined: Sun May 09, 2010 1:53 pm
Posts: 1342
Location: Sydney, Australia
Here is a closer look....


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 Post subject: Re: Soft Plastics action
PostPosted: Sat Apr 13, 2019 12:19 pm 
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Fishaholic

Joined: Sun May 09, 2010 1:53 pm
Posts: 1342
Location: Sydney, Australia
Some shorebirds.... pelicans, cormorants and terns, a good sign that there are plenty of fish nearby!


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 Post subject: Re: Soft Plastics action
PostPosted: Sat Apr 13, 2019 12:25 pm 
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Fishaholic

Joined: Sun May 09, 2010 1:53 pm
Posts: 1342
Location: Sydney, Australia
This concludes my report until the next time.

Kingfish


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 Post subject: Re: Soft Plastics action
PostPosted: Sat Apr 13, 2019 6:34 pm 
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Enlightened

Joined: Thu Feb 25, 2016 8:06 pm
Posts: 87
Location: Nejar, Udupi, Karnataka
Excellent man,
Keep it up.


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 Post subject: Re: Soft Plastics action
PostPosted: Sat Apr 13, 2019 10:10 pm 
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Fishaholic

Joined: Sun May 09, 2010 1:53 pm
Posts: 1342
Location: Sydney, Australia
Thanks, Abdullah.
Kingfish


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 Post subject: Re: Soft Plastics action
PostPosted: Sun Apr 14, 2019 11:04 am 
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Joined: Fri Apr 09, 2010 10:37 pm
Posts: 43
Lovely write up ...nice to see some fish on soft plastics after ages .


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 Post subject: Re: Soft Plastics action
PostPosted: Sun Apr 14, 2019 12:55 pm 
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Fishaholic

Joined: Sun May 09, 2010 1:53 pm
Posts: 1342
Location: Sydney, Australia
@websinner

Thanks. You are right, not too much mention of soft plastics of late.

Kingfish


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 Post subject: Re: Soft Plastics action
PostPosted: Sun Apr 14, 2019 3:27 pm 
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Fishaholic
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Joined: Thu Jul 13, 2006 4:58 pm
Posts: 3142
Location: Hong Kong
Interesting, I am off to India on the 25th, I just bought a load of jig-heads and soft grubs that I intend to target Bream with.


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 Post subject: Re: Soft Plastics action
PostPosted: Sun Apr 14, 2019 10:03 pm 
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Fishaholic

Joined: Sun May 09, 2010 1:53 pm
Posts: 1342
Location: Sydney, Australia
Bobby,

Good luck on your bream fishing in India!

Looking forward to a report from you.

Regards,
Kingfish


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 Post subject: Re: Soft Plastics action
PostPosted: Mon Apr 15, 2019 11:44 am 
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Fishaholic

Joined: Sat Nov 04, 2006 10:28 pm
Posts: 1092
Location: Bangalore, India
Great report Kingfish! I love shallow water fishing searching for predators in the sand structure.
I haven't done that bouncing a jig head/soft plastic lure in many years due to discarded fishing net on the bottom :(

I think it is about time I posted a report as well. Will do so when I get home tonight.

Cheers!
Maruthu


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 Post subject: Re: Soft Plastics action
PostPosted: Mon Apr 15, 2019 2:04 pm 
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Fishaholic

Joined: Sun May 09, 2010 1:53 pm
Posts: 1342
Location: Sydney, Australia
Thanks, Maruthu.

Not all places have discarded nets at the bottom?

Looking forward keenly to your report ..... please post pictures as well as any video.

Kingfish


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 Post subject: Re: Soft Plastics action
PostPosted: Mon Apr 15, 2019 4:55 pm 
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Fishaholic

Joined: Sat Nov 04, 2006 10:28 pm
Posts: 1092
Location: Bangalore, India
kingfish wrote:
Thanks, Maruthu.

Not all places have discarded nets at the bottom?

Looking forward keenly to your report ..... please post pictures as well as any video.

Kingfish


Kingfish,

There is a rocky area I fish, that pretty much snags everything that goes near the bottom. I will still give it a shot next time though. I made sure I took pictures last time for the report :-)

Maruthu


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 Post subject: Re: Soft Plastics action
PostPosted: Mon Apr 15, 2019 7:18 pm 
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Fishaholic
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Joined: Thu Oct 26, 2006 12:59 pm
Posts: 352
Location: Delaware, US
Kingfish,
Thanks for sharing the report !! I think I have seen similar flathead fish in markets in India, but not the sizes you have posted, smaller ones. Are they good eating?
Nice bream too!!

Regards,
Binu


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 Post subject: Re: Soft Plastics action
PostPosted: Tue Apr 16, 2019 12:42 am 
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Fishaholic

Joined: Sun May 09, 2010 1:53 pm
Posts: 1342
Location: Sydney, Australia
Hello Binu,

Flathead must be common in the waters of Asia and the Australia.
They are extremely good eating and command good prices here in Australia if you order them as fish and chips from the shop.
The very large sized ones are breeder stock females and should be returned to the water.

Bream are eaten also but I did not find them too tasty. They are very slow growing and ,in fact, the one I caught above would be over 20 yrs. old! Best returned back to enjoy its retired life!

With the advent of spring in the Northern Hemisphere, what is on your angling agenda?

Regards,
Kingfish


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 Post subject: Re: Soft Plastics action
PostPosted: Tue Apr 16, 2019 7:32 am 
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Fishaholic
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Joined: Thu Jul 13, 2006 4:58 pm
Posts: 3142
Location: Hong Kong
The Bream that we catch in India are very tasty, both the Black Bream and Yellow Fin. I have not caught any flat head in India but I know they are available down south. They are very rarely seen in the market in Bombay, I understand that they go by the name Daaku (Dacoit) locally...seems apt in someway.

I see plenty of Bream and Flathead in Hong Kong in the fish market. There seems to be a bream fishing cult here in Hong Kong, like there is a carp fishing cult in other places, the fishing shops sell bream bait mixes here, you get various packets of bait commercially produced bait concoctions for catching bream.


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 Post subject: Re: Soft Plastics action
PostPosted: Tue Apr 16, 2019 2:18 pm 
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Fishaholic

Joined: Sun May 09, 2010 1:53 pm
Posts: 1342
Location: Sydney, Australia
Hello Bobby,

Indian cooking can make anything tasty ! The bream that I caught were baked Western style and tasted like cotton !!

I think that the Indian name of "Daaku" is very apt for flathead. They hide well in the sandy bottom and are very difficult to detect, pouncing on the unwary fish passing by.

There is a very strong following for bream fishing in Australia as well, with dedicated equipment and
lures to catch them. There are forums for bream fishing and periodicals, as well.

Kingfish


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 Post subject: Re: Soft Plastics action
PostPosted: Wed Apr 17, 2019 9:25 am 
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Fishaholic
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Joined: Thu Jul 13, 2006 4:58 pm
Posts: 3142
Location: Hong Kong
Hi Kingfish,

I think that in the west, there is a lot of wastage the way the fillet a fish. Besides I think that bones and the skin of the fish impart a lot of taste to the flesh. In Asia among most cultures they cook their fish with skin and bones and it makes a lot of difference to the taste of the end product. The west the prep fish more for convenience than taste.

By the way I have prepared Indian Bream in Lemon, butter and garlic, with a little parsley, it tastes really good. Having said that I did prepare the same dish in France last year using the local bream there, they were not as nice. I honestly believe the fish in India tastes far better than anywhere else, especially the variety we get in Mumbai. I think this is because a lot of boats do not have freezers and carry ice in bins, so they have to bring the fish back and sell them on the same day. It makes a huge difference compared to other places where fish are in the freezer for days/weeks.

Bobby


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 Post subject: Re: Soft Plastics action
PostPosted: Wed Apr 17, 2019 10:00 am 
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Fishaholic

Joined: Sun May 09, 2010 1:53 pm
Posts: 1342
Location: Sydney, Australia
Bobby,

The bream that we cooked was relatively fresh but I do agree that I had taken fillets off it and discarded the skin.

Secondly, it was what we call a silver bream, which would be different from the Indian Black Bream and
Yellowfin.
This may have accounted for its poor taste .... it could certainly have been made more palatable with our Indian spices and deep fried.

I am tempted to catch another one in Sydney at a place where they are prolific and make them in a different manner and report back. Or I may try them when I am next in Goa, if you could give me their Indian name(s)?

Thanks,
Kingfish


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 Post subject: Re: Soft Plastics action
PostPosted: Wed Apr 17, 2019 2:22 pm 
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Fishaholic

Joined: Sat Nov 04, 2006 10:28 pm
Posts: 1092
Location: Bangalore, India
kingfish wrote:
Bobby,

The bream that we cooked was relatively fresh but I do agree that I had taken fillets off it and discarded the skin.

Secondly, it was what we call a silver bream, which would be different from the Indian Black Bream and
Yellowfin.
This may have accounted for its poor taste .... it could certainly have been made more palatable with our Indian spices and deep fried.

I am tempted to catch another one in Sydney at a place where they are prolific and make them in a different manner and report back. Or I may try them when I am next in Goa, if you could give me their Indian name(s)?

Thanks,
Kingfish



I think it also depends on the time of year and where the fish are caught. Even with the same fish and the same place where it is caught, I think it could be different.
I remember I caught a 5 kilo barramundi while I was fishing with Venkat and it was delicious. I think it was a pure salty. A couple of years later, I caught an MJ and a barramundi which was much smaller from the same place and I was with Venkat as well then. We ate both the MJ and the Barra and they both had a muddy flavour. I think these were the fish from the estuary/mangroves and did not taste well at all.

A month ago, Binu caught a Barramundi from a different place and the fish was about 4 kilos and I think was a salty as well. We ate the fish and it was excellent. Must be feeding on crustaceans for the most part, apart from mullet and other baitfish.

Maruthu


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 Post subject: Re: Soft Plastics action
PostPosted: Wed Apr 17, 2019 6:08 pm 
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Fishaholic

Joined: Sun May 09, 2010 1:53 pm
Posts: 1342
Location: Sydney, Australia
Maruthu,

I agree that Barra caught from the rivers take on a muddy flavour .... I never take these home and
release them.

You promised to write a report .... we are all waiting for it!

Regards,
Kingfish


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 Post subject: Re: Soft Plastics action
PostPosted: Wed Apr 17, 2019 11:18 pm 
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Fishaholic

Joined: Sat Nov 04, 2006 10:28 pm
Posts: 1092
Location: Bangalore, India
Will do Kingfish. I'm out of town and will be back in Bangalore on Monday. Will post the report by Tuesday.


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 Post subject: Re: Soft Plastics action
PostPosted: Thu Apr 18, 2019 1:47 am 
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Fishaholic

Joined: Sun May 09, 2010 1:53 pm
Posts: 1342
Location: Sydney, Australia
Very good!

The Forum needs reports of various types and the Moderators should take the lead and write
reports more often and extensively, no matter how mundane the subject matter.

Even a trivial report can start an interesting dialogue which enriches the Forum and adds to the knowledge of the readers.

Kingfish


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 Post subject: Re: Soft Plastics action
PostPosted: Thu Apr 18, 2019 8:15 am 
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Fishaholic
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Joined: Thu Jul 13, 2006 4:58 pm
Posts: 3142
Location: Hong Kong
I agree Marathu, the time of the year, condition of the fish (pre-spawning), the diet and the water quality make a lot of difference. I saw foodie program once where this British Chef caught a grass carp, something they do not really eat in the UK, he then put it into a large fish tank in his garden with a continuous flow of clean fresh stream water. After a few days the prepared and apparently it tasted really good. The people were really surprised that it was a grass carp. He said that if he did not keep the fish in clean flowing water, it would have tasted muddy.

We get farmed Barramundi here, they don't taste good at all. As a rule I try not to consume farmed fish but sometimes just have to...the farmed Pompano and Ravas (not sure but I believe they are) don't taste too bad.


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