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Mozambique light tackle mayhem – April 2020

Mozambique light tackle mayhem – April 2020

Although there is no official lockdown in Mozambique, we are pretty much in self-quarantine and only going out for essential stuff like food, groceries, etc., but… with flat weather, sun shining, fish biting and in dire need for some fillets for the freezer and a breath of fresh ocean air, it became critical to get out there for some Mozambique light tackle mayhem!

Along with young Duarte, Morgan from Big Blue and Diogo Martins we got out a couple hours to enjoy some light tackle game fishing and, what a day it turned out to be.

A day which clearly epitomizes the quality and diversity of the fishing around the Bazaruto Archipelago and Mozambique´s light tackle potential.


We headed out at 6am and fifteen minutes later where on the bait spot.

We caught & released many dozen carapau of all kinds, sardines, some small kingies and other critters.

Obviously keeping a few of the best baits for livies.

This on its own was great fun, and little Duarte was the bait master, overfishing us all.

Not only catching the most but, the best and biggest baits…

Mozambique light tackle. Early morning bait catching session. The little guy in the foreground showing the old ballies how it’s done!
Early start…

After about 45 mins of this we headed south for about an hour.

Going through the washing machine with the outgoing tide was interesting.

But, once out there in deeper water the sea was clear and flat calm.

Before we got to the first spot we spotted birds, bait and dolphins working an area.

On our first two casts, we got some jube jube´s which we rigged.

Slow trolling the small live baits we carried on spinning and got a number of nice size bonitos on the spoon´s and GT ice creams.

It was good fun but seeing we were not picking up any cuda, probably because of all those dolphins around, we picked up and carried on south.


Shortly later we got on the backline.

Put some carapau out and started casting the 1 and 1 ½ once GT ice creams.

And soon we were getting stuck into some yellowspot trevally´s.

One after the other with some nice size bonnies in the mix.

Great fun as both these species give a great account of themselves on the light spinning tackle.

At times when one of us hooked up, the all school would show up beneath the boat.

We were only in between 7 to 12 meters of water.

Drop a bucktail and hookup again!

Light tackle at its best.

In the middle of all of this, we had a scruffy looking Sailfish (with its sail all teared up & marks on its dark tatty looking body) appear in 8 meters of depth, right by the transom and within meters from the baits but vanish without a sniff.

As fun as the light tackle was, we were not, once again, picking up any cuda (kind mackerel) on the baits and decided to move further south.

On the way to Bluer pastures…

On the way, we saw many schools of jube jube´s and bonnies and stopped here and there so little Duarte could catch a few more on the light spinning rods. This was early morning, but and not counting all the baitfish he had caught, he had already released more gamefish than any other fishing day.

The boy does have to endure, which he does with great patience, many Marlin fishing days!

This time he was into the thick of it and there was much more to come!

The Mozambique light tackle fishing was absolutely chaotic on Bazaruto´s backline in the early morning.
Diogo, about to release yet another, light spinning tackle caught, yellow spotted Trevally…
On the money…

Once we got to the reef where we stayed for most of the day it was initially quiet.

But, as the tide started pushing into the high, the bait started coming up and so did the gamefish.

There was as many jube jube´s as we wanted to get.

Live bait was readily available and not a problem.

It went wild, both, on the baits and the light spinning tackle!

Within the next few hours we caught / released 7 good cuda between 8 to 12 kg´s, a good size wahoo, dorado, and then a multitude of other species on the light stuff.

We lost a good GT on the jig after we had beaten him off the reef, just to have him chafe through the light leader.

We had a cuda taken by a huge grouper on the gaff.

Lots of other nice one´s taking our baits and we lost, broke off and come undone on may other fish.

We had to deal with a few sharks and released two of them which broke our arms on the 30 pound sticks we were using on the livies.

Purposefully broke off the other ones ASAP.

Diogo caught a really nice cuda on the spoon. Gave him a proper rev. Probably the best fish of the day.

Little Duarte just kept racking them up, a grin he could hardly contain on his little face!

Light tackle Mayhem…again!

The bite was still on, but it was time to leave as we wanted to go pass a couple other pinnacles on the way back.

The first two where dead but upon getting on the third it fired up again.

This time it was light tackle delight…once again.

At a stage, it was cast for cast.

We had lots of bonnies, garfish, trevally´s but most of all nice size Rainbow runners that are just awesome to catch on the light spinning outfits.

Everyone´s was sunburned, dehydrated and with arms and wrists aching from the non-stop action.

It literally hardly ever stopped during the day and now at the end it went crazy!

In the middle of it we saw a sailfish jumping right next to us and trolled some skip baits around to no avail.

Back to the top of the pinnacle and a few more game fish on the light spinning tackle.

Little Duarte racks some more fish and species to his already impressive repertoire…. yes, it’s a very proud Daddy!

Nothing beats fishing with your boy!

Except you don’t get much of a chance to bring one in 🙂

At 7 years, the boy never stopped for the day and, if he had no spinning rod he would just get the jigging rod with the bucktail and go down…drift after drift!

Get in there boy!!!

At 7 years of age little Duarte does and feels more comfortable using the light spinning rods from which he released many fish for the day. However, not one to shy from a challenge here he is tackling the 30 pound outfits we were using on the live baits with a respectable cuda (king mackerel) at the other end…

After a non-stop action day, we still, once again, found some more insane Mozambique light tackle spinning mayhem on the way home. There were a number of species on the pinnacle later afternoon but the rainbow runners, some of which of very respectable sizes, where tearing it apart!
On the way home…with a cold one!
The sun was getting low, it was time to go and everyone was keen for a nice cold one and enjoy the ride home.

What an insane day…we lost count on the number of game fish we caught / released but must have been close or over 40 and that´s of course, not counting the jube jube´s and baitfish!

All in flat calm sunny weather.

Thanks for an awesome day Morgan & Diogo.

Getting out of this self-imposed quarantine was sobering in so many way´s.

These are strange, sad and difficult times.

A day which really makes one appreciate what’s out there and what we missing, day after day.

For many more important reasons just hope things come back to some sort of normality soon.

But, for one, I just want to get out there as much and as soon as possible.

To all of you out there, be good, be safe and all the best,

Duarte A. M. Rato

Sportfishing Charters @ Vilankulos & Bazaruto Archipelago

Email:  dudas7mares@gmail.com

FB:                   MarlinMoz Sportfishing          &         fishbazaruto.com

Skype:              duarteamrato

Phone: + 258 84 639 0466



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