This huge expanse of water is nursery ground and home to most of our endemic estuary angling species and must be rated as one of most healthy systems in our country. It is well managed by forums, advisory groups, conservancies and conservation-conscious anglers themselves who all want to see this system thrive in years to come.
These factors, along with the breathtaking beauty and great accommodation available in the area, make the Breede a great choice for the angling tourist. My good friend Abel Alexandre (aka the Godfather) has now semi-retired in this area and raves about this system.
Fish to target here
Found in the estuary, especially in the summer months, the young use the estuary as a nursery area; larger specimens can also be targeted here all the way up to Bobejaanskrans.
Garrick love live bait, mullet being the number-one choice but other small bait species will definitely work. Targeting these fish in the early morning and late afternoon on surface lures when the water glasses off is my favourite time to try for them. They will also readily take dropshot and bucktails.
Possibly the most targeted fish in the Breede – some huge specimens have been landed in this system. Best targeted from September through to about May, they are most prominent in the warmer summer months. Also found great distances upriver, they are best targeted on the pushing tide.
Although the common misconception is that live bait would be most successful, it seems that is only true higher upriver and anglers have more success in the river mouth area with chokka and octopus leg. Sand, mudprawn and bloodworm are also effective, especially for the smaller specimens.Remember that the limit is one per day per angler and the legal size is 60cm.
Spotted grunter (tiger)
Although now commonly caught, they have only become prevalent in the estuary over the past 30 years – perhaps global warming has something to do with these fish making the Breede their home.
They can be targeted on both tides but tend to feed prolifically on the push – they enjoy strong, working water. Tailing fish can often be seen blowing prawn off shallow banks – free-swimming sand and mud prawn, bloodworm and pencil bait are my favourites, but they can also be targeted with sardine belly and will take a dropshot worm and well presented fly as well.
Pignose grunter (white steenbras)
This species has taken a lot of angling and netting pressure, but signs are that things could be improving.
It is an awesome quarry that pulls
like a steam train, so it is best to target it in the deeper channels up
the prawn sandbanks, using natural bait types like sand and mud prawn, pencil
bait, bloodworm and tapeworm.
You may only keep one piggy and it must be over 60cm in length – remember that there are many smaller specimens in the Breede, so please handle and return these fish with the utmost care so that they can survive to grow up and procreate.
Although these are the four main target species, there are many more that one can target here. Shad (elf), blacktail, Cape stumpnose, springer, sharks and rays and many other species may be encountered in the ‘lucky dip’ that is the Breede.