Tuesday, August 12, 2008

A note on Garrick(leervis)

I got this pic recently from Louis Heunis - he got this 7 kg garrick on a trip to the Transkei which is well known for garrick.

Garrick is a classified in the red list as per SASSI (http://www.wwf.org.za/sassi/database/index.html

Species Information
Other Names | Leervis
Biology | Large predator, annual spawning migration to KZN. Juveniles use estuaries as nursery areas
Habitat | Nearshore waters and estuaries
Distribution | Cape Point to Cape Vidal, also Mediterranean Sea and West Africa
Capture Methods | Recreational shore anglers and spearfishers

Conservation Notes
Recreational species only, and a premier game fish. Vulnerable to estuarine degradation and illegal gillnetting in estuaries.

Conservation notes are very limited here for garrick. My observations are that they are rare in deeper water and much preffer shallow to backline depths. On the odd occasion we get a nice big one in depth of about 15 m, never have I heard of any spearo taking a garrick in deep water - say 20-30 m.
Good local areas for garrick include:
Shark point at Cape St Francis, shallow reefs about the Krom and off the water tower toward Jeffereis Bay. Maitlands and shallow Seaview also produce garrick. Occasionally they occur at Cape Receife in the shallows and in the Algoa Bay. Llewellyn Walters once took a big one of over 20 kg there!
The areas from Kingsbeach to the PE harbour wall also produce garrick with the harbour wall being the best area. The north wall of the PE harbour, the dolosse and North End shallows and wrecks are also productive from time to time when viz permits.
The Coega wall supports garrick too where I have taken one last summer.

Summer and autumn seem to be the months that produce the most but winter can also be productive.

Garrick certainly put up a strong fight and I have found that if one does not keep the line tight they can fight back up the spear and may close get off by shaking the spear. I prefer to fire roast garrick with the yellowtail baste made from apricot jam, butter, soy sauce, vinegar, curry powder and garlick.

The online open is moving - we have some entrants payed up and lots of interest in the comp. I have the electronics set up to keep score online and to post pics of the fish weighed in.
The competition is being publicised by me, Chris Coates(http://coatesman.blogspot.com/), SAUFF newsletter and Freedivers. Thanks for your help guys!

The webpage for the competition is www.freedive.co.za/onlineopen.htm - there you can find a description of the competition and various links of interest.

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