I’m proud to announce that SA BASS has just secured a license agreement with FLW in America. For those who are not familiar with FLW; the organisation is named after the legendary founder of Ranger Boats, Forrest L. Wood. It is the world’s largest tournament-fishing organization, offering bass and walleye anglers across the globe a chance to compete and win millions of dollars. For more information see our press release I in this issue.
Apart from this great news… it is that time of the year again; the spawn is upon us. Last year’s surviving fingerlings are bigger and that 2.3kg bass you caught might now be a 3.1kg. Also, a new SA Record is definitely swimming out there somewhere for a lucky angler to catch.
We are all going to do our best to be that angler, or at least get as close to it as we can. But I want to implore the readers to be gentle about it and accountable. Catch as many bass as you want but release them all unharmed. Treat them properly by lip landing the fish and support the bellies with your other hand when taking pictures. Using a lip-grip is ‘n big no-no just as mishandling the fish.
If you find that the bass keep swallowing the hook don’t just carry on fishing; change your hook because gut hooking the bass causes more damage than you think. By changing your fishing method you might even be able to upgrade to bigger fish.
I love catching bass and hate it when I have a gut hook that needs to be removed. Luckily I have learned how to safely remove a gut hook which is something I think every angler should do.
Workshops have popped around the country to help anglers catch more bass but we really should have some workshops on how to preserve our fish stocks. There are so many anglers with so much info to share that we can stop making excuses for losing bass due to these types of injuries.
Without trying to sound like I’m preaching I just need to ask our readers and also every other angler, even those not buying the magazine, to be careful with the fish we all love to catch. It really is heartbreaking when I see dead fish and those “hook and cookers” raping the shallows during spawn. Unfortunately we cannot take the law in our own hands so rather educate them why it is important to catchand-release.
Enjoy the new season and preserve our bass as much as possible. Happy fishing! Bennie Wiese / Editor