Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Brazilian Spearfisherman Speared in the Head.

Brazilian Emerson de Oliveira Abreu with a spear deep in his skull.

Check this out .. here is a reason to stop shooting reef fish!! This guy smacked a rock and the spear bounced back into his head ..... Rock Cods revenge!!

The spear penetrated his head so deeply that only the tip was showing, reports first said he was accidentally shot by a mate Douglas Martins, who was spearfishing with him at the time. He said that Emerson was conscious and talking after the accident.

Freak ... you dont wish this on anyone!! One serious wake up call ... these guns can do major harm!!



Coatesman's Spearfishing 500th Blog

Well today's Spearfishing Blog marks a mile stone .. this is the 500th post on this site!! The first blob post was on 3rd January 2007 ...gee time flies.
And coming up with helpful current news related info has been a task ... made easier by you guys who constantly keep me up to speed by sending in pics and reports.

Anyway -  I have not posted since last Thursday, partly because there has been little to report. The water was pretty good up and down the coast, but the fish were very quiet. The throngs of snoek kinda disapeared and the elusive late summer croc cuta seemed to evade every one . Well almost! Markus Potgieter found a good fish in the arvo off sheffield, I on the other hand dived almost every day for a week out in the deep and only saw one big squat! And thats while the mates were still scratching the odd snoek in the shallows.

Markus Potgieter with a sneaky 19kg late summer cuta.

The west is blowing now and lets hope it turns things around, I got a report from a mate who fishes up in Zululand and he said this weekend the water was cold and there were no fish around. This is not good news as normally we are a week or two behind them. IE if Sordwana has very clean warm water ...usualy our water will also get warmer and clean ...with the right weather of course.

Any way thats all for now.


Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Spearfishing Update

Well it was another fine day on the coast. The water was quiet nice but the fish have seemed to have taken leave. 
It also appears that the word was out, and or the guys have finally woken up to the fact that the dive was on. This made for a very busy ocean, all the parking lots were full and there were buoys every were.

I have even had some of the regular chaps phone and complain about the unruly behaviour of the boys from town. 

Generally when we see some one on a spot we go somewhere else ....bummer we lost out ...but there are other spots. There is no point in diving on each other. That way no one will get fish.
These guys this morning just totally ignored that fact that there was some one already on a spot. One guy called and said he had 3 guys surround him ....  all with in 10m of him?? I mean what is the point???

Anther favourite by the visitors is to is just down current of you ... in the line of the fish swimming up current. This is down right rude and unethical!

Any way that is my whinge for the morning ....


Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Luck and Spearfishing Big Cuta

North Coast Spearfishing Magic - Morne Muller 19kg Cuta 

There have been some Big Cuta coming out with the guys spearfishing. It kind of feels like typical April already, no shoals just the odd big one here and there.

Morne cashed in yesterday afternoon with a beautiful Big Cuta of 19kg ...also while spearfishing with a reel gun! It stripped all his line and he had a complementary ride towards the horizon.
A fish like this was overdue for him, as he had spent dive after dive going straight out to the deep, and not cashing in on the snoek that have been prolific in the shallows.
So I guess this is the 'pay dirt' for all the hours just looking into the gloom!!

The week ahead looks promising, although while diving Salt Rock this morning there was very little current and there were no snoek or cuta to be seen. A nasty thermo cline pulled in and reduced the vis to 3-4m ..... not all that exciting!!

Will keep an eye out ....

Keen for a Big Cuta!!!


Monday, March 23, 2009

Spearfishing Umdloti

Hardus Bouwer 23.6kg Cuta speared off Umdloti

Hey guys here is that guy who shot that fat bus cuta off Umdloti this weekend while spearfishing. He apparently was using a reel gun!! Check the shot, it must have been exciting.

The river mouth area off Umdloti is renound for spearfishing big cuta.


Weekend Spearfishing and Surfing

The sea was great this weekend, in fact it was hard to choose what to do. The surf was pretty good and so was the dive.

Having not dived for a while, we chose to dive. On Sunday we did not come right, but I managed to get 2 cuta yesterday. We dived up north, the water was ok but no great shakes and only landed up seeing those 2 fish in 4 hours of diving.

The water has gone a little pear shaped at the moment, hopefully the south will improve things.

I also heard some good reports from the south coast with the snoek comeing out at Green point area, and some chap got a bus cuta off Umloti river mouth .... all we need is clean water!!

For those of you wanting to enter the DUC comp .... there are only a few shirts left.
So look sharp!!


Thursday, March 19, 2009

Surf and Spearfishing Report

Well the sea is finally starting to come right. The swell and surf conditions are improving every day and this weekend looks like a cooker for the surfers. The banks are not in the right place , but there is sand and the side wash will sort the banks out sooner than later.

On the dive front the sea is still green, but it was good enough for a bugg grovel in the shallows. The south today might change things for the better ... we will have to see.

On another note today marks the day the 'Big' swell hit our coast 2 years back shreading everything in its way. Our beaches are almost back to normal .... and hopefully this winter will produce some good waves. (long over due)

Anyway ..see you in the surf!!


Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Surfing - Where is the Swell?

Well every one was up and looking for the surf this morning, only to find it small and inconsistent. The Swell was SW and probably missed us :-(
The tides are still fairly high in the morning so the was little hope of it getting much better.

The Swell looks like it will turn from SW to straight South which will mean we should get better swell tomorrow. But the wind looks like it will be blowing so we might just be in the office early again!

Friday is neap tide and there will still be some swell around to surf, Saturday also looks promising with it getting a little lower first thing in the morning.

On the Spearfishing front the sea at home is green!! The south tomorrow might help some more ....but it is just yuck at the moment.
If you are bored go check out the lame comments some guys have left on the post I did on the Tiger Shark that Got Shot.  

Other than that the only other news is that the DUC cutoff for entries is today ... (I think)


Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Tiger Shark Killed by Spearfisherman

In last weeks post "Tiger Shark Shot by Spearfisherman" there is the story of Craig Clasens capture of a Tiger Shark. Go have a look at the amount of comments on the post!! I never though this would create such a huge response.

You dont have to read to far down to see that the view point of the guys out there is seriousl negative, and woven into that is the negative view of spearfishing. This for me is very sad, as we should be everything we can to portray the right picture of what spearfishing is about.
..... maybe I should have not put the picture and Tiger Shark story up in the first place?

Some how we need to start revealing to/ educating  the public about the conservative nature of spearfishing. It just seems every were you go people bitch and moan about what a bunch of 'mindless killers' we are. But they are the same persons that will eat a chicken that was grown in a cage, a cow that has never seen a blade of grass .... or even fish commercially caught by a long liner or using nets!

Anyway what is encouraging is seeing the amount of Spearfisherman adopting good habits and practices. Fewer and fewer guys are pilaging for the extra buck and becoming more and more selective with their catches. The unfortunate thing is the general public will always see it as a blood sport.

As for the the whole Tiger Shark Shooting insident ... well the video does not show him shoot the shark and if the shark was attacking or not. So I wont pass judgment ... it is just sad that it takes us spearo's down with it in a ball of poo!

Here are some less prevoking Tiger Shark and Spearisherman Moments:

the short film .. Shark Soup

Dreaming Of Tiger Sharks ..... one of the best pic's ever!!

Sweet dreams


Monday, March 16, 2009

Spearfishing Cape Vidal -To Love or to Hate It!

With the water at home being so mank, and in desperate need of diving we headed up to Vidal for the weekend.

The conditions and water vis was epic, but it was just very quiet. We dived hard on Saturday and Morne finally got one small cuta for our efforts. It was hard work and I only saw 2 cuta at Deep Oscar at about 30m, and was unable to even get close.

Vidal was living up to our low expectations. As we have had so many trips there that have just been absolutely dead. (We only hear of it cooking) 

To make it worse the Local Parkie ...who now is doing boat patrols is on the war path with Spear fisherman. And we were given a written warning for not having a topman, as we were drifting with the boat using a drogue anchor ... as we have always done (rightly or wrongly)
.... Does this also mean you have to have a topman when we anchor at home?
We were also give a hard time as our Alpha flag was dirty and 'not cleary vissable' ... not that an Alpha flag even applies to Freedivers!!

Another boat was nailed because the topman did not have a skippers ticket!! This now means that every topman must have a skippers ticket. Thats going to exclude the majority of spearo's from boat trips in the future ...

Unfortunately the whole experience has left a bad taste in my mouth, and again the spearo's have been targeted. And when the local Parkie makes a comment like "I am going to start nailing all you Spearfisherman!" you kind of wonder if we are going to have any peace?

The up side of this is that we need to get our act together, get Sauff or some one in the know to get the regulations out to us. etc and not give the authorities a reason to have any problems with us. We need to get wise and know what our rights and boundaries are.

Anyway we almost packed it in and went home on Saturday, but we decided seems we were already there to dive Sunday. Again it was super quiet ...but epic conditions. 
My lightie Braiden did his deepest dive of 9.5m on the sand on Shallow Leven. He chased some Cuta and had an experience of a life time for a little guy.

The trip did end on a highlight tho, we did a drift in the deep and I got a beautiful sailfish. And in 30 plus meter vis it was probably one of my best hunts ever.

Cape Vidal Sailfish - This why we love to Hate the Place!


Friday, March 13, 2009

Tiger Shark Shot by Spearfisherman

Spearfisherman Craig Clasen from the US spears a Tiger Shark.

The first thing that goes through ones mind is this is terrible! How could some one do something like this. The fact remains that nobody will hold back when a couple hundred kilo's of killing machine and a nice set of chompers is harassing you.
Most times the sharks back off ... occasionally they don't, and if you cant get out the water in a hurry well ... it gets ugly!

Here is the story I pulled off the web:

Plunging a knife in again and again, diver Craig Clasen grapples with a 12ft tiger shark to protect a friend.

For two hours he wrestled with the giant, spearing it seven times, even drowning the beast before eventually finishing it off with a knife.

Mr Clasen was hunting yellow fin tuna with fellow fisherman Cameron Kirkconnell, photographer D.J Struntz and film maker Ryan McInnis in the Gulf of Mexico when the encounter took place.

The group were about to leave the deep waters south of the Mississippi River's mouth, when Mr McInnis found himself alone in the company of a tiger shark.

With no time to lose, Mr Clasen grabbed his speargun and swam to his stranded friend, who was being circled by the giant predator.

'I positioned myself between Ryan and the shark and I tried to watch it for a second, hoping it would pass us by,' explained 32-year-old Mr Clasen.

'I noticed that the shark was getting tighter and tighter and just kept trying to get a back angle on us and behaving in an aggressive manner.

'The shark made a roll and looked like it was going to charge us so I just went ahead and took the conservative route and put a shaft through its gills.

'Cameron and I have been around sharks for years and we all have a lot of experience with them but this encounter had a different feel to it.

'Down in my core I really felt the shark was there to feed. I didn't want it to come to that.'

Mr Clasen spent nearly two hours wrestling with the giant 12ft shark, spearing it seven times and even attempting to drown the beast before eventually finishing it off with a long blade knife.

'Once I shot it in the gills I felt a moral obligation to finish the job,' says Mr Clasen.

'I didn't want it to go on any longer than it had to. I shot the fish like I would do any other fish and worked it up closer and did my best to kill it as humanely as possible.

'I speared it in the gills which I knew would kill it and from that I tried to put a shaft into its brain as quickly as possible.

'I shot it six times in the head with a spear and I wasn't having much luck - it was a slow drawn out process.

'Sharks are so resilient and so tough from millions of years of evolution they are just survivors.

'The best way and quickest way to finish the job and kill the shark and recover it was to get a rope around its tail, drag it from the back of the boat and attempt to drown it.

'In the end we had put a knife its skull once I got lose enough to it and use a long blade knife even after trying to drown it.'

Mr Clasen has been free diving and fishing since an early age. Hailing from Mississippi, he was brought up in a fishing family, and is an expert in all fishing disciplines. Despite his experience, Mr Clasen took no pleasure in disposing of the giant shark.

'This was one of the most remorseful moments I have ever had in all of my years in hunting, gathering and fishing,' explains Mr Clasen.

'Personally I never shoot anything or kill anything that I am not going to eat.

'We saved the tail and the head, cut a giant chunk out of it and ate a piece.

'I wasn't there to hunt the shark, it was a defensive move for me and I would do it again. Unfortunately it had to be done and its not something I was proud of. It was a situation that presented itself to us. This was one of those rare instances where we had to protect ourselves.

'I have so much respect for sharks in general. With the amount of time that we spend out there we are exposed to so many potential risks.'

Spearfishing is a form of fishing that has been popular throughout the world for centuries. Considered to be the most selective way of fishing, the amount of fish taken by spearfishermen accounts for just 0.1 per cent of fishing globally.

Today spearfishermen use effective elastic- or pneumatic-powered spearguns and slings to strike the hunted fish using free-diving, snorkelling or scuba-diving techniques.

Regarded by many as two of the world's best free diving spearfishermen, Mr Clasen and Cameron Kirkconnell have come into contact with thousands of sharks.

Watching from the boat, Mr Kirkconnell is sure Mr Clasen the right decision. 'We had been in the water all day and had caught lots of tuna,' he explained.

'But every dive we do is a shark dive and at certain times of the year, especially in Louisiana, we expect to see between 50-100 sharks from 7-12 ft.

'This encounter was so rare though. This shark might have been part of a feeding frenzy and still fired up and thought this was an easy kill.

'Tiger sharks have no problem eating whole sea turtles, 150lb tuna and even dolphins. It wasn't a split second decision on a whim, Mr Clasen has had hundreds of hours of experience.

'There was no doubt that was what needed to be done.'
Story from: Mailonline


Thursday, March 12, 2009

DUC Open Spearfishing Competition

Durban Undersea Club - Open Spearfishing Competition 2009

Hey Guys, on the 28th of March is the DUC Open Spearfishing Competition.
And there are some serious prizes going down ....try R5000 for size!!

There is also a prize for biggest Bugg and more .... only catch is that entries close next week for those who want to score a shirt!!

So get down to Rob Allen or Freedivers and get a form ...or down load here ..DUC Open 2009

Should be good.


Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Speargun Give Away

Hey guys .. 

Coatesman's Spearfishing is giving away a Speargun ...of your choice!!
Go to the Salty Divers Blog and check out how you can score your self a brand new speargun!!

Dont miss out!!


Hey share the love and get your mates involved!!

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Whats going Down

Hey guys,

The surf disapointed us this morning!! We were seriously hoping for cooking waves. The conditions were perfect but the swell was still a little to straight and the banks not lined up the way they need to be.

That said, almost every one was down, climbing over each other for a wave. .... look it was better than being at work early!!!

If you have not heard local stylemaster water man Scott 'The Man' Rutherford has produced offspring in the form of Knox Peter Rutherford. With Juls and Scotty both being surfers there is no doubt that Knox will be carving some stylish lines in years to come.

On the sprearfishing front, dirty water was pushed up the coast from down south and dashed any hopes of the dark blue water out back reaching the shore. There are some east winds predicted and maybe we will get lucky still and score ....before summer has come and gone!!

Thats all


Monday, March 9, 2009

The Surfing and Spearfishing Big Hope.

Well as the monster swell dissipates, the guys are slowly coming out the wood work after bunkering down for week of brown mountains bashing the coast.

The swell backed off enough for us to surf a couple of waves in Ballito, the banks have been given a serious once over and all the banks have shifted. There are still big holes in the banks adjacent to all the points as all the water coming from the north scoured out the sand, and promptly dumped it all in the middle of the bays. Not too bad at least there is a sand bank!

So with the forecast showing 1.7-2m swells from the south for the rest of the week we should get some quality waves. Only thing it is almost going to be to exclusion of us with jobs. As the low tide is getting later and later and those guys who ain't working too hard are going to score!!

The dive might come right, the water has started to clean up and I am sure there will be some spearfishing this week ..just have to watch the swell.

Other wise that's all for now!


Friday, March 6, 2009

Spearfishing - The Weekend Ahead.

Tiffanies trying its best to hold the swell.

Well if you have not seen the sea and want to dive, dont get your hopes up. The swell is pumping, with solid sets straight from the east with 3-6 waves in each set. The forecast shows the swell will be picking up and will peak tomorrow. It will drop slightly on Sunday and will probably disapate on Monday.

The swell is not great for the north coast and most spots ar not working. The only place that is cooking is Durban. The good news is that all along the coast there are signs of the the brown water moving off. And with some southerlies next week we should get some diving in by Tuesday.

Anyway ... thats that!

The Salty Divers are getting together tonight ... more details Salty's Club Night
And we will be doing some breath hold training and techniques. The weather looks like it will good for a braai ...but if it rains just bring a Pizza!

See you later


Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Spearfishing & Freediving

Hey guys,

With the sea on its head and absolutly no hope of diving for another week ...almost I thought I would tease you with some 'eye candy'

Check out this video by Terry Mass ..old time Spearfisherman and Freediver of note.

Also check out this rad pic of a Russian Chick riding a  Beluga Whale

Russian Free diver Julia Petrik riding a Beluga whale ...cool!

Anyway thats that huge swell is pumping our coast for the next 6 days and maybe we will get some surf if it calms down a little.

Friday is Club Nite check out the details : Salty Club Nite

Thats all for now


Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Surf only ..No Dive!

Hey guys,

Well the vis is a big fat zero, and Spearfishing and Bugg diving will take a serious back seat for the next few days  ..... maybe even more!!
The rivers are all pumping mud propperly and if it rains some more we will be deeper in the dwang! (rain is forcast for Wednesday) And the southerlies over the next few days will have no effect on the vis.

The surf looks promising tho, with some moderate southerlies and some strong swell. The tides are also staring to drop in the early morning as we head into Neap tides so there should be a bank some where that will start to work.

Other than that the Cuta and Buggs are safe!


Monday, March 2, 2009

Spearfishing - The Crayfish Get Their Way!

Or should I say get away?!

Just when we thought that for the first time in a couple years, we were going to get some Crays on the opening day of the season. The heavens opened up and the poured down, openining all the rivers and allong with the swell foiled almost all plans for catching some crays.

I managed along with my son to scrounge some on the inside at Boulders, the swell was surging and the vis was 2m ... not the most pleasent dive ever. Braidy managed to get a real nice sized bugg, I was quiet surprised as it was not easy diving especially for a little chap.

Anyway the sea this morning is brown with a some soliud surf coming out of the east. Ballito is littered with reed mats washed down from the Tongaat river, and I cant see any spearfishing happening any time soon.

On a nother note it is Salty Divers Club Nite this Friday and we will be doing Breath hold training! This mini course / tut that we do every year has allways been super successful with almost every one attending bettering their bottom times. So dont miss out!!

Thats all for now.