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Bass Fishing

The Most Adventurous Inland Gamefish

Bass were first introduced to waters in South Africa in 1927 when 47 Largemouth Bass fingerlings were imported to the country (45 survived the ocean voyage). Smallmouth Bass were introduced 10 years later, 29 survivors of an original shipment of 55 fingerlings landed in Cape Town on 22 October 1937, their descendants have thrived and expanded. For Bass fishing fans this is great news with some world class Bass angling to be had throughout the country. They are currently fished on a 'catch and release' basis. One of the biggest small-mouth bass ever caught weighed in at 3.23 kilograms.

In South Africa, bass fishing is an absorbing pastime that keeps anglers guessing, and coming back for more. How does one outwit this wily, adaptable creature? Found in rivers, ponds, lakes, dams and even ditches, small-mouthed and large-mouthed bass provide never-ending entertainment – and great eating.

DID YOU KNOW? - Several bass weighing more than 6kgs have been caught in South African waters.

Bass fishing is probably the most piscatorial fun you can have with your clothes on. That's because this good-eating fish is clever and quite able to survive anywhere there's water, including a roadside ditch. You'll find them in clear streams, muddy pools, dams and lakes – when it gets hot, they'll dive deep or hunt down a piece of shade to skulk in.

Bass are probably the most adaptable gamefish around, so they will snack on a fingerling, a frog, a lizard or a minnow, which makes baiting interesting. In fact, hanging around a fishing store and listening to bass fishermen probably sounds – to the rank outsider – like a couple of astronomers discussing white dwarves in outer space.

Silicone skirts on spinnerbaits, lures that look like worms, lizards and baitfish. Crank baits made from balsa wood and flashy neon inline spinners – local bass fishing has followed the American trend and become a whole outdoor lifestyle.

Keep in mind that your gear has to be as adaptable as the bass himself. Eventually, however, you just have to out-think him in the water.