January was a super month here at EFT with fantastic weather and lots of happy customers enjoying the Exotic Fishing ,the delicious food and the amazing scenery . If you would like to read some testimonials from our customers then please check our Trip advisor account which has been open for some time now. There are now almost 40 reviews if you are looking for customer feedback on their visits here.
It was a busy month in the kitchen with some more new activities for visiting guests.
I had a new experience personally this month as I got bit by a scorpion .....OUCH!!!. I had gone to the bathroom in the night and got back into bed when I felt something strange on my arm . I swatted at whatever it was and then felt something hit my nose .. At that point I jumped out of bed and turned on the light only to find a small Scorpion on the floor .. My arm and nose both started to feel strange like I had been stung by a bee..
First job was to flush the Scorpion and secondly to Google "scorpion stings in Thailand" :)... After confirming that they are generally nothing more than a Bee sting which lasts for about 3 hours I calmed down and tried to get back to sleep . That was of course after searching the bedroom 5 times to see if it had any friends .. I cant figure out where the scorpion came from other than he might of got in through the bathroom window or through an open door during the day ...Needless to say I check any clothes especially underwear before getting dressed these days ,just in case:)..
Even though we have our custom EFT catch reports it is still very difficult to write these news letters as there are usually names and other information missing .I have now asked that all names be put on the reports by our staff as we check in our guests ...People do however mark down their catches and if anything they miss a few fish out rather than add fish they didn"t catch .. As a result we think our catch reports are quite accurate and if anything are conservative and understate the total number of fish caught .
.We are not sure who caught this huge Giant Featherback and didn't want a photo ,but Lek as always was happy to get in for a photo... Many times customers don't understand the significance of a certain catch of a specific species and aren't interested in a photo ..If you would like a photo but dont want to get into the water then our guides are usually happy to oblige .
This Albino Sawai Catfish was one of 476 fish caught in January by over 100 anglers.. Our catch rate remained at 4+ fish per angler day with 26 different species being caught
There were lots of Russian, Ukrainian and Eastern European guests catching lots of different species throughout the month ..Here is one satisfied Russian customer with a plump Ripsaw catfish
I was helping guide this group and had to go for a swim as a result of not following my own advise .. I was adjusting the line and didn't have the bait runner engaged . The rod shot off the rod pod and into the lake . Having made this mistake several times over the years my Hippo like reflexes instantly kicked in and following a huge belly flop the rod was back in my hands .. I handed the rod to the customer who landed a nice Siamese Carp while I crawled out of the lake with a pulled groin ...:(
As I have mentioned before Russian anglers love a group fish photo even for a not so Giant , Giant Gourami
The next group photo was definitely justified when one angler caught this beautiful Arapaima .
It wasn't just the men catching as the only lady in the group managed this attractive Amazon Redtail.
It is not the best photo but we wanted to show the group effort in landing this huge Mekong with nearly all Russians participating .. The fish was hooked at 630 and the group had to delay their taxi and almost missed the ferry back to their hotel ..
This is one of our many Ripsaw catfish which are so fat that it looks like they have been inflated with air ..
Here is a nice Siamese Carp which was actually hooked twice before it was ready for this photo .. The fish ate the Lum on the float rod before it screamed off and after a line tangle on the spool broke the line.. Someone suggested we try to catch the fish as the float could be seen bobbing here and there around the lake .. I had the bright idea to head out in the bait/paddle boat :)
I could see the float occasionally coming up , but every time I got within casting distance to cast over the dragged line it would submerge . The cat and mouse game continued for some time . I can be very determined at times and there is no way I was going to paddle back to shore empty handed. I decided to just sit in the middle of the lake in the area where the float was bobbing up and down and wait for it to come up close to me .. The strategy paid off and after a few bad casts I finally cast over the trailing line between the float and the fish and managed to secure the line with some primitive knots ..
I still didnt know what kind of fish had broke the line so I was thinking Mekong catfish .. I fought the fish carefully while paddling to the closest swim. I signaled to the angler who had been anxiously watching the goings on .. He ran over and I handed him the rod to continue the fight .. The result was a good sized Siamese carp finally landed and a few laughs from all involved ..
The fun day for these guests from Kazikstan continued when they landed their dream fish with this beautiful Arapaima
They were also very happy with other species like this rare Wallagoo Attu
There are no Spotted Featherbacks in Kazakstan so they were also thrilled to land this Thai species..
Yet another nice Siamese carp for this experienced Carp angler ..
It wasn't long before everyone was back in the lake again for more Arapiama photos
It was great to see the kids getting in on the Siamese action
Our French frend Jean Michelle was busy catching several fish including this Arapaima
Jez wilson paid us a welcome visit and although he didn't catch a lot of fish compared to prior visits he did manage a very rare Jau Catfish .. There are only a few lakes in Thailand which contain Jau and not many of this size, that's for sure ..
This angler only caught quality fish .. Starting out with this huge Giant Featherback
He followed up with a beauty Siamese Carp
He finished his catch report with his target fish this awesome Arapaima
A very nice double header for this pair of happy anglers
A representative of the Italian Shimano Carp team landed several nice Siamese Carp including this beauty .
Another happy customer had some great predator fishing action ,starting out with this Alligator gar
The fish soon got bigger with the arrival of this Arapaima
The highlight of this predator trip was this hard fighting Chao Phraya Catfish of around 40Kg+..
It is always a pleasure to welcome Andrew and Dawn Packman here at EFT . They were showing off some teamwork here fighting this fish.
The fishing was challenging for them but they stuck it out and landed some quality fish like this very nice Tambaqui for Andrew
Next on the list was this huge Pacu
They also landed several beautiful Chao Phraya Catfish.
Andrew also had several nice Siamese but his target fish was a PB Arapaima which had eluded him for most of their holiday
EFT didn't let Andrew down though and he landed his new PB Arapaima on the very last day of fishing ... The key as I tell most anglers is to fish hard all day and you will be rewarded like Andrew was.
We welcomed 3 generations of this family from Australia..Grandpa caught the only Arapaima but everyone was happy to get in on the photos .. We strongly encourage family fishing but cannot take responsibility for large groups of small children without prior arrangements. We suggest a half day if bringing small children as it really is a long day to have them out in the sun . We do have the salas with fans and also our fish park to keep them entertained but please think about the heat when bringing your little ones
We will also be buying some children's rods for catching small fish to help keep small children entertained while their parents fish.
One agent we work with sends their own Russian speaking guide Alex who helps with translation and recently helped land an Arapaima
Landing Arapaima is never as easy as it looks and Alex was in for big surprise
One of his customers also landed a nice Chao Phraya catfish ..
These 2 gentlemen were very happy with their Siamese Carp catch
They had to be more careful with their next fish , an Alligator Gar
Speaking of Alligators it was an absolutely awesome month for those toothy monsters with Neil Robinson's regular customer Ian catching this beautiful fish .
You will notice most customers like to take the tail end and leave the business end to us .. ..
That was not the case with our good friend Vlada from Prague who without a doubt landed the gar of the month . ...
Vlada even wanted a photo himself which we don't normally allow .. This is why we have people sign our liability waiver :).
Vlada had a bag full of funny hats which he was eager to show off in the fish pics.. Santa was happy with his Ripsaw Catfish
Another hat and another species for Vlada with this Piraiba Catfish .. I know I have probably said this before but I really cant wait to see how big our Piraiba Catfish will grow as we are the only fishery in Thailand where they get caught on a regular basis ...
Vlada had a great trip and will be returning next year I am sure.
This happy angler landed yet another Chao Phraya Catfish
The same fisherman also managed a very different species with this Black Shark carp which don't get caught as often as we would like . They are such a beautiful fish in my opinion
Some Danish anglers joined us for a few days and unfortunately the fishing was quite slow for them . They dealt with it like true professionals and managed some Amazon Redtails and this big Ripsaw Catfish for all their hard work ..We hope to see them back again for more species and bigger fish ..
Russian angler Sergey and his son Dimitri had a total blast here at EFT .. Dimitri was a very good little angler playing all his fish with ease.
He had a great time and played and landed several nice fish
Here is Dimitri with a nice Siamese Carp
Next up was this awesome Arapaima which Dimitri landed 100% by himself ..
Father and son both fished hard and even managed a last minute Alligator Gar
This German angler like just about everyone who visits us wanted an Arapaima. He started off strong with a nice Amazon Redtail early in the day .
He had to wait until the very last hour but patience paid off with this excellent fish
These Danish anglers were very fortunate with Arapaima catching 2 at the same time
When this happens we always get individual pics before we go for the double photo..
The Arapaima double header is fast becoming our Exotic Fishing Thailand signature pic.
This angler was just a little nervous to handle one of our Alligator Gar ..
This German angler visiting from Khao Lak started his day with a few Amazon Redtails
It didn't take long though before he found what he came for with this nice Arapaima
Justin Harrison was visiting us from South Korea where he is busy teaching . Justin was full of interesting stories which captivated any willing audience . Justin was very happy to catch this Siamese Carp.
Justin was very excited to say the least and eagerly emailed all his fish photos to his dad in the USA. We are hoping he will also bring his dad next time ...
This Albino Pacu also put a smile on Justin's face ..
What a great photo of Justin with an awesome Niger/Ripsaw Catfish .
Justin caught lots of Redtails and even named himself "Redtail Slayer" on a few catch reports .. He did unfortunately lose a few Arapaima though , which was one species which eluded him this trip .
You don't catch every fish which bites or is even hooked , but it is important to stay focused and work hard until the final whistle blow if you are going to catch the fish of your dreams .Very often I see anglers get down on them selves after losing a fish which was no fault of theirs. Personally I fish every minute to the best of my ability from start to finish so then i can always say I did my best for that particular day ..
Paul Shemming and Marie Channer are a super nice English couple travelling through Asia who fortunately decided to visit us on the recommendation of our friends Paul and Gill. Paul is an avid angler and Marie is no slouch herself giving him a run for his money when she took a turn at the rods..
They both caught their share of Amazon Redtails and other Exotic Catfish
There was also a good mix of other species in their catch reports including this beautiful Albino Pacu
Paul's main target species was of course the Arapaima..It didnt take long for him to cross them off his species list ..
Paul caught them in many sizes and on different baits.
This beautifully coloured fish was his largest Arapaima weighing well over 100 kilo
Paul matched the lake record for the most Arapiama caught in one day with 5 fish landed .. There are now 3 people tied with 5 per day record ...
This was actually a combined record as without Marie's last minute monster they would have finished with only 4 fish .. Marie had just reeled in her chicken bait and I noticed there was a lot of skin hanging from the chicken which could maybe mask the hook .. I pulled it off and threw it in the lake just 5 meters out and heard something inhale it as soon as it hit the water .. I grabbed the rod and tossed the chicken in the same spot and handed the rod to Marie .. As soon as she had a hold of it the line took off and gave her a start . Paul and I got all the rods out of the way and Marie did a great job to land her first monster Arapaima.
5 Arapaima in one day was great angling by this fishing duo who we are hoping to see back at EFT at some point in their tour of Asia..
This Japanese angler guided by Neil Robinson was really putting his back into fighting this monster Arapaima on the fly . This is why we insist on 12 or preferably 14 weight fly rods .
I was seriously concerned at first that he would never get this fish in , but he fought it like a pro and gradually wore the fish down.
The fish also did its share of wearing down and brought the angler to his knees :)
It all ended well with a great fish landed by a very skilled angler and a great photo followed by a successful release.
Matt Glenday was visiting us for the first time .. Matt caught a great selection of fish including this awesome Tiger Shovelnose Catfish which is always one of my favorite fish
Another amazing Catfish for Matt was the ever popular and photogenic Ripsaw Catfish :).
He was having great success with Exotic Catfish and also caught a Wallagoo Attu which is a rare fish native to Thailand . EFT remains one of the only fisheries in Thailand where you can catch these fish on a fairly regular basis with approximately 10 fish coming out per month ...
More catfish for Matt with this big fat Amazon Redtail.
Fortunately it wasn't only about the catfish with Mark landing this stunning Siamese Carp ..
Another good friend Neil Campbell from nearby Rawai came to see us and was busy teasing our Arapaima .
Neil who is a skilled Big game fisherman didn't have the full cooperation of this particular fish as it skillfully shook his hook in a vicious head shake just before the net . Many anglers don't dip their rod when an Arapaima jumps but Neil did everything correct yet luck wasn't on his side.
While Neil was busy fighting monster Arapaima his family and friends along with other guests were busy taking one of our Thai cooking classes . This is a new activity getting rave reviews from all participants. All the information is available on our website at www.exoticfishingthailand.com including booking information through our online booking form ..This is a great activity for non fishing partners who have an interest in cooking or just learning something new .
There are a large selection of dishes available to learn which are all highlighted in green on our Mountain View Restaurant menu .. Each participant will learn 2 dishes during our standard cooking lesson . They will also receive a list of ingredients and cooking instructions for all the dishes along with an EFT Certificate of Participation .
We get a lot of Scandanavian customers throughout the year . This Finish Angler landed this huge Arapaima as part of a 4 Arapaima total for him and his friend in the first 2 hours of a half day ticket.
This Polish angler was also busy catching Arapaima.
Our friend Vam was also back but only got photos of new species having caught a lot on his prior visits . He couldn't resist a photo with this strong fighting Piraiba Catfish .
As many of you know I am always on the look out for interesting Exotic fish or big fish of a specific species . I couldn't resist when this huge Asian Redtail came available . . I just cant wait to see a lucky anglers eyes pop out when he brings this fish to the net probably expecting an Arapaima as it will surely give an awesome fight .
I also bought yet another Arapaima obviously for its colours
When shipping fish I always like to safely maximize the capacity of each truck . These Bony Lipped Barbs most of which are over the current world record helped to fill up these trucks
There was fortunateley also room for more of one of my favorite Carp species the Black Shark Minnow
We would like to thank all our customers who visited us this month .. We hope you caught the fish of your dreams and had a fun time doing it .
That's all for our lengthy January catch report from here in Phang Nga. We hope you enjoyed all our exotic fish pics and remember to please send your photos if you want to be in our catch report . We do our best to take and post as many pics as we can .
If you are interested to book the fishing trip of your life and "Fish The Exotic" you can reach us through our website at www.exoticfishingthailand.com or by email at email@example.com.. We can also be reached by phone at +66 883799377...This is a Thai number so please understand that we are GMT + 7hours :).