Catching Red Romans and other reef species

in False bay on artificial lure

Target Species

The species you can target with regular success on the deeper reefs in False Bay include Red Roman, Red Steenbras, Carpenter, Brown Hottentot, Blue Hottentot, Panga, Klipvis and Shysharks. However, there is always a chance where you can get surprised by the rare fish species like a Silver Kob, Geelbek, Santer and many more.  

Areas to Target

When fishing for the above-mentioned species you will need to look for rocky outcrops and structure in the water depth from about 5 to 25 meters. The shallower you can fish the better, as some of the lures used are extremely light and sink slow. To find a reef you will require a Fish Finder/Echo that scans the bottom of the ocean. Or alternatively you will need to drop your anchor and drift a while till your anchor gets snagged on a reef.

Lures to use

The best lure I have fished with is the Salty the shrimp from Westin fishing in the dark brown colour and more natural colour. It is 18 grams and 8cm long and comes with an extra body if the one gets worn out. They are a bit tougher than your normal plastic lures.

Another favourite lure also from Westin is the Coco the crab, as I have caught Bass and reef species on it and is so realistic looking. It is 6 grams and 2 – 3cm big, so I use this lure on shallower reefs as it sinks slower than other lures.

I have also caught some fish on normal bucktail jigs in 1/2oz to 1oz size and even small paddle tails between 3 and 4 inches, but it can get expensive with the soft plastics.

The best action is to slowly bounce your lure off the bottom and to let it drop down again, repeating this action should get you a hit in no time if the conditions and area you are fishing  are correct.

Conditions to fish

Because you are fishing with light lures and not a big 3 – 5 oz sinker dropping it to the bottom, the preferred weather would need to be calm and clean water conditions. As long as your anchor holds and you are on a nice reef you can still get fish even in rougher water.

Tackle to use

The tackle I use includes a Shimano Crucial 7’2 medium heavy spinning rod paired with a Shimano Sustain 5000Fg with 25lb braid. A Pro Hunter Black Mafia 7’3 medium rod paired with a Penn Puirsuit III 4000 reel and 20lb braid. Any bass type of rod is perfect for this type of fishing and even light jigging and ultra-light setups can be used  with braid from 8 – 30 lb.

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