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These sharks are usually grey and some may have scattered dark spots. Sometimes attaining a length

of 1.7m and weighing up to 25kg, they are found close inshore – up to 350m – feeding over the sandy bottom.

Mustelus mustelus is a benthic species that feeds mainly on crabs, crayfish, prawns and other bony fish, and is found in the Mediterranean, West Africa to Namibia and around our coast to Durban.

My preference with the trace is to make a bite trace (using 150mm 90lb nylon-coated wire joined to the hook) although this is not necessary as the houndshark’s teeth are round and blunted. To me, this practice has two benefits: protecting me against other sharks that may take the bait and also being a safeguard against the hound working through the monofilament during the fight.

These sharks will take most of the bait types they happen to come across and will often catch the unsuspecting fisherman by surprise in a one-sided battle. The best time to fish for these sharks is during the summer months, and they put up a tremendous fight.

The SADSAA record stands at 25.4kg. Although good eating, they are little sought after in South Africa as a table fish and are mainly targeted by the competitive angler.