November was another great month here at Exotic Fishing Thailand full of great customers , great catches and most importantly some excellent children's charity events
November was charity month with fishing and giving going hand in hand .EFT supported the Phuket International Fishing Tournament for the second year running . We also held the very first Exotic Fishing Thailand fishing tournament in support of Make A Wish Children's Charity .
We had both old friends and new friends joining us this month . My good friend Paul was visiting once again along with our new French friends Franck and Denis to name a few..
There were 104 angler days fished with an amazing 822 fish landed, making our average a wopping 8 fish per angler day ..I actually had to total the catch reports twice as I really couldn't believe how many fish came out ,especially the Amazon Redtails with over 250 for the month ..
Not only was there a huge number of fish caught in November but there was also lots of species .There were a grand total of 31 different species caught this month . Our catch report is as follows;- 10 African Walking Catfish to 25lbs, 42 Alligator Gar to 65 lbs, 26 Albino Pacu to 15 lbs, ..264 Amazon Redtails to 64 lbs,.. 71 Arapaima to 320lbs,.. 3 Arawana to 9lbs,..75 Asian Redtails to 34lbs, 1 Black eared Catfish to 12lbs . 9 Chao Phraya Catfish to 56lbs,..6 Chinese Black Carp to 22 lbs,.. 6 Giant Featherbacks to 11lbs, 4 Giant Gourami to 8 lbs,..44 Giant Snakehead to 18lbs.. 4 Giant Stingrays to 1.2m .. 16 Goonch to 26lbs , 6 Hovens Carp to 7lbs... 5 Mekong Catfish to 170lbs. 3 Mrigal to 13lbs, 65 Pacu to 26lbs ,..8 Piraiba Catfish to 18lbs,. 16 Redtail/Tiger Cross Catfish to 16lbs,. 36 Ripsaw/Niger Catfish to 18lbs, 5 Rohu to 16lbs .68 Siamese Carp to 58lbs,. 3 Soldier River Barb to 7lbs.. 10 Spotted Featherback to 7 lbs. 12 Tambaqui to 17lbs,..21 Tiger Shovelnose Catfish to 22lbs,. 4 Vundu Catfish to 14 lbs,..15 Wallagoo Attu to 22 lbs, 13 Wallagoo Leeri to 18lbs .
Arapaima continue to be the stars of the show here at EFT with every customer wanting to catch one .. Our average for November is around 0.7 per customer . It would be great if everyone caught one but that's unfortunately not the case as some catch more than one and some are not as lucky .
Franck and Denis joined us for the first time from France and although they don't speak English very well and my French is almost non existent we had a lot of fun and successfully communicated to make their trip one to remember ...
I must take a minute to again thank Franck for the lovely bottle of Champagne he brought for us . I was completely shocked and taken back by how nice both him and Denis were to bring such a great surprise. We did manage save it for a special occasion as Boom and I shared it over the Christmas period :):) Thanks again ..
It wasn't long into their first day before Franck was into his first fish with his first Giant Snakehead .. A great Thai fish to start the trip .
Denis followed up not long after with another native Thai fish , this Giant Freshwater Stingray . We already have a limited number of these amazing fish but will not add more as we feel their survival rate when taken from the wild is not very good due to them living in brackish water and not converting easily .
We would also like to state that we in no way promote Stingray fishing in the wild although I must admit that I did try it once before I found out what is involved .We will be posting on this subject further once our catch reports are up to date , BUT in the meantime if you are considering fishing for Stingrays in the wild ask a few questions before you decide if it is ethically what you would consider sport fishing ...
The main target for Franck was of course Le Grand Arapaima .. Franck caught the first Arapaima of the trip which was this 50kg + specimen
Denis followed up with an almost identical fish to even the score :).
Denis was just as happy with one of our Alligator Gar ..
Franck stuck with his target fish landing several more Arapaima during his visit
Rob and Frank Blok returned to EFT this time bringing their better halves .. This didnt make a difference in their competitive nature in fact it might have made it worst . All kidding aside :) they do like to pull each others leg about who has caught the most or biggest fish .. Rob caught several Amazon Redtails with this being the biggest this trip
Frank caught another new species this trip with this Wallagoo Leeri.. We have these fish to over 60 Kg so this is really just a baby but a prize catch at that as they are not very common .
Now Frank has caught some nice Ripsaw Catfish before but he was happy to handle this tricky customer for another nice Ripsaw pic.
Rob seems to have a knack for catching our Arapaima and this visit was no different .
As we mentioned earlier in the stats there were 71 Arapaima out this month . EFT is by far the best option in Southern Thailand for a day ticket opportunity to catch one of these awesome fish .
As a comparison one water in central Phuket still advertises Arapaima on their website but to our knowledge they haven't caught or seen one in over 3 years . At other venues we hear that Arapaima are mostly caught in certain swims which are reportedly primarily offered to preferred guests or those staying for longer periods .
You will notice in some photos that we have oxygen in the Arapaima cages . When we catch an any of our Arapaima , Mekong Catfish or any other fish which might look stressed we use the oxygen to help them recover before we release them . Since we started this we haven't lost one Arapaima or Mekong which has been netted .
We have also changed our fish handling rules although you wouldn't see that by looking at some of the photos .. We DO NOT lift Arapaima out of the water especially the big ones ..I think our Thai guides are still having trouble with this one but they will catch on soon I am sure :).
I remember this particular fish as it was caught at 6;59 pm and hooked by yours truly .. After a difficult day for this PIST angler and after more than a few beers I think he was quite content to just chill out .
We are never happy at EFT until we maximize everyone's catch. After a last minute bait up with some extra chicken it didnt take long before I connected and thrust the rod into the anglers hands . He responded with a big smile and did a great job to land the fish safely
Hanni who was also part of the PIST group of anglers landed the best fish of the day with another nice Arapaima
This Danish angler from Krabi area was all smiles with this beautiful fish ..
This father and son team were also very happy with another awesome Arapaima . Nothing like a big fish with great colours to boot.
I can see from the photo that this fish was caught around 3pm to 3;30 as the shadow from the mountains is just starting to move across the lake .. We are very fortunate that the whole lake is shaded by 4pm and the temperature feels like it drops by 10 C.. The shade often triggers some early evening action as was the case with this fish .
Yet another Arapaima for these happy day ticket anglers.
This Monster Arapaima is well over the 100kg mark and without question made this anglers day ..
This fish was also a monster and looking at the facial expressions was giving everyone a bit of a fright in the net
Some anglers like this one are fortunate enough to catch more than one Arapaima in one day .
Some big Amazon Redtails also made the same Aussie angler's catch report
He also landed a nice Asian Redtail
I cant believe that this is the only Pacu photo I have for the whole report as there were over 60 caught this month..I think that most people who have fished in Thailand have caught Pacu before and don't bother to get in the water for a photo ..
As if 2 Arapaima and several other species wasn't enough for a great day, The good fortune continued when an Alligator Gar also came to the net.
This angler also landed a Gar . There were an amazing 40+ gar caught in November ranging from 10 to 65 lbs
A nice Siamese helped to fill out the same gentlemen's catch report
Another one of the many Siamese caught this month ..These fish sure are piling on the weight..
It is always a pleasure when Peter Lyons drops by for a visit . Unless you are our fish of course as he usually catches more than his fair share .. This trip was no different as he caught this monster Alligator gar .. The true monster Gar come from USA but for Thailand we have some of the biggest around.
Henrik Moller joined Peter for this visit and took some stunning photos of both our fish and the breathtaking scenery . This photo is of some old guy playing a tiddler at sunset .. :):) Just checking to see if you really read the Blog Peter Lyons :):)
Henrik was not just visiting to take photos he was also busy catching some nice Siamese Carp :). I assume Peter took this cracking pic.
Henrik's target pic was or course an Arapaima which he landed late in the day .. Henrik has promised to return and we are excited to see what pics he will take on his next visit ..
Yours truly actually got an afternoon off and managed a few memorable fish . I was very happy with this Chinese Black Carp.
I also got the float going and landed a decent Mekong ... They are still one of my favorite fighting fish of all species
This day ticket angler landed a really fat Ripsaw
He also managed a nice Asian Redtail along with several other species
Jorgen and Carsten from Denmark arrived one afternoon with intentions of fishing the next day .. When they saw a huge Arapaima being landed across the lake they quickly changed their plans and started fishing . It wasn't long before Jorgen landed this very nice redtail
Jorgen also caught this tricky to hold Ripsaw Catfish .
Next up was this beautiful Giant Snakehead ..
Joe and Carsten finally got what they came for with this nice Arapaima ..
We had some Russian group tours this month with most anglers very eager to catch ...Yes you guessed it ...Arapaima . This angler however was instead brought to his knees by this freight train Mekong Catfish. This fish gave him way more fight than he would have got from any Arapaima.
As with most of our happy Russian guests it is all about the photos . This picture definitely made for one memorable family photo.
My good friend Paul arrived a few days before the Make a Wish Charity Tournament for some fun fishing and a little practice. He landed quite a few nice fish including this Piraiba Catfish on a fish bait.
He also landed this nice Wallagoo Attu on a float rod with lum ....
Some nice Siamese also found their way onto his catch report with Paul landing this one with about 20 restaurant guests watching ...No pressure Paul lol....
Martin was a new customer to EFT and started his catch report with this nice Tambaqui
Martin was joined by his good friend Chris who took a liking to this Wallagoo Attu
Chris also gave the thumbs up on this Ripsaw Catfish ..
This was one of many Amazon Redtails caught by Martin and Chris
A nice Siamese for Martin with Chris having a laugh :)
Here's Martin with this toothy Alligator Gar
Chris caught his fair share of fish but we unfortunately only got a few photos. This one with a nice Spotted Featherback .
He also posed for this nice Siamese with Lek's assistance
After catching all sorts of exotic species and also losing a few Martin finally landed his target fish.
Chris really enjoyed his time with us even with all the rain . :):)
Julias Simonelli was visiting with his brother Isaac from the Phuket Gazzette when he caught this Alligator Gar
Isaac Simonelli was also busy catching some predators with this Wallagoo Attu and also a nice Goonch . Sorry no photo of the Goonch as i cant seem to download it from our Trip Advisor account photos .. This reminds to mention that if you are still not convinced to come fish with us after you read our blog you can also read comments from our fishing guests on Trip Advisor under Exotic Fishing Thailand
This Arapaima is a new PB for Matt Leete and won him the best photo in our Make a Wish Charity Fishing Tournament . Matt won as he received the most likes of any fish photo posted from the days catches.
Matt had some stiff competition especially from Peter Garret who was the runner up getting loads of likes for this entertaining fish pic:).
Neil landed this nice Arapaima to put him in the lead at that point of the tournament
Steven Dixon was also making a late charge at the winner board with a very nice Amazon redtail.
As the song goes "The Winner takes it all" . This was definitely the case as Paul landed this last minute fish to win both prizes.
He was the first person to have his name added to our trophy for most fish . The life like trophies were manufactured by Marine Life Phuket .. The fish were molded from real fish which we supplied from our Aquariums.
Paul also very happy to have his name etched his name on the Most Species trophy . It really couldn't happen to a better person .
Paul has been a great friend and as always was very supportive of my sometimes off the wall ideas . Without his encouragement and support EFT really might not have become a reality . It was not easy to make a huge decision to build EFT but with Paul reminding me of all my other accomplishments it gave the confidence to fulfill my goal .
I am sure Paul will be back in 2015 but so will runner up for most fish Neil Campbell . Neil has already told me that Scotland will be going for it all again next year .
There was a 3 way tie for most species so we had to make more framed trophies . Our First prizes were free days fishing at EFT but we managed to get some free hats from our fishing line sponsor Redwing Tackle in Toronto Canada . Redwing supply us with their new SABRE TOOTH Spectra braided line. This product really holds up well in the sun and has landed 1000's of fish here at EFT already ...
We will have more time to organize for next year so hopefully our list of Tournament sponsors will grow ..There will be more info available for the 2015 event very soon .
Boom and her team of Poo and Tuk our resident chefs put on a great complimentary spread for the hungry anglers.. So good in fact I heard a few competitors saying they were coming back next year just for the food .
The best way to measure the success of the event was in the fact that we raised 63,000 baht for the Make A Wish Charity . I was happy to donate this on behalf of all involved. Congrats to all entrants and a big thank you from Make A Wish....
Our Make A Wish Charity event wasn't the only fishing tournament happening in November as the PIST Phuket International Sportfishing Tournament was also having its 2014 10th anniversary event .. This is a great event with most prize winners also donating their winnings to a local children's charity
Exotic Fishing Thailand were happy to be sponsors of PIST for the second year running .
EFT donated prizes for the biggest fish of 2 different species categories.. After this years successful event we have already committed to sponsor next years event ..
We would like to thank all who joined us in November for some more great fishing here at the Exotic Fishing Thailand.. If you would like more information how you can catch some absolutely amazing fish, you can contact us by email at email@example.com or through our website at www.exoticfishingthailand.com. We are getting lots of interest for the 2015 season and even into 2016 so make sure to book early ..
A word of WARNING when booking online . Be careful to only book with Exotic Fishing Thailand DIRECTLY as we have heard several recent stories of customers who were trying to book with us and were steered elsewhere by overseas agents ..These crafty keyboard warriors use several tactics. They sometimes say that we are fully booked or even say that we are not open for whatever reason . The best story I have heard was that we actually don't exist as we weren't at that time on Google earth..LMAO... .Its people like these who haven't invested a penny here in the Thai fishing industry that give Fishing in Thailand a bad name.
We would also like apologize for the lack of photos this month .Unfortunately about one weeks photos were lost when our lake camera suspiciously grew legs :( .I was also a little laxed in emailing people to ask for pics .Generally if people dont send us pics we assume they are not interested to have them included in the report ..
For future visits if anyone has memorable pics of their visit they would like to share here then please send them to us preferably through email at firstname.lastname@example.org or through drop box.:)..
December , January and February catch reports are all in process so I will be caught up to date real soon .