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Wednesday, April 1, 2015
THE "FISH THE EXOTIC" CHRISTMAS CATCH REPORT
With December being Christmas month I still think of home and the beauty of a white Christmas . Being surrounded by amazing scenery here at EFT though really does help to forget the snow that's for sure :).
There are always so many amazing photo opportunities here , between both the scenery and the wild life. Not to mention of course some great catch photo opportunities
As we are in the middle of high season we have been very busy welcoming lots of customers but never too busy to add more fish. I have been looking for some more Catla Carp for some time now and was happy to come across these healthy specimens.
I am always on the look out for more Jau Catfish and was happy to take possession of this shipment with some truly stunning fish.. These fish grow in excess of 100lbs so who knows what the future holds especially when stocking them already at this size .
My Christmas present to myself was this huge Mekong catfish weighed at 134 kg . The fish was fat but nowhere near as fat as our current resident Mekongs . We expect this fish to be 150kg + once he gets adjusted to his new home and starts to feed ..
We were very careful to spray the fish with an iodine type spray as it had some typical bangs and scrapes after being netted and after its long journey .
The long journey didn't tire him out though as he was so happy to be in his new home he made an early exit while we were trying to get some more photos
We weren't just stocking fish in December but also catching . There were as usual some awesome fish caught this month with 538 fish caught and over 30 different exotic species I must admit that as the lake filled with anglers our catch rates did drop slightly from quieter months with an average for December of just over 5 fish per angler day compared with other months of rates over 9 per angler day ...
We welcomed some new faces and also some return customers .. A new angler to EFT was Andrew Pearce who caught one of our many Goonch catfish and lots of other new species .. .
Another new species for Andrew was this huge Giant Snakehead . What a fantastic fish . The colours on that fish are really amazing ...
He also landed this Giant Gourami on the float rod using the lum and feeder method.
Not a new species for Andrew but an excellent Siamese Carp non the less.
He rounded out his catch report with a silver coloured Chao Phraya Catfish .
Another first time angler here was Martin "Wade". Like Andrew he also got in on some Giant Snakehead action .
Martin caught loads of species including this Asian Redtail Catfish.
He loves Carp fishing in his native Belgium and was happy to land this chunky Siamese
Martin also managed more than a few Pacu
It wasn't just normal Pacu for Martin as he landed this unusual Albino version.
Time for more catfish photos with a Ripsaw or Niger Catfish. Most people think these fish are ugly. They sure aren't beautiful but I think they make a very interesting and different fish photo
There were more than a few Amazon Redtails on martins catch report .
Martin is a huge River Monsters fan ,so much so that he has changed his second name to "Wade" .Well on facebook anyway :).. Even Jeremy wade would be jealous at some of Martin's catches including this not so common Wallagoo Attu .
Another exotic catfish to highlight on Martins's catch report was this Goonch Catfish .. Martin was very happy to cross this fish off his wish list . He told me excitedly "Where else can you catch so many difficult to catch species in one beautiful lake " ?? ..Of course , it was a rhetorical question..:)
Last but not least of Martin's Catfish was his biggest catfish species of the trip this Giant Mekong catfish. Even an experienced angler like Martin had his work cut out for him as it took him almost 90 minutes to land this huge River Monster .. Unless you have caught lots of these big fish you might be inclined to take our advise on how to fight them as we do have a few tricks up our sleeve to help you land them as quickly and as safely as possible..
With many species caught already there was just no way Martin could leave without at least one Arapaima
Martin was saying he missed Christmas in Europe a little but that all ended when a cheerful visitor from the cold arrived
For those of you not familiar with his antics this is Jan Ibsen a return customer from Denmark . Jan hadn't even finished explaining why he had brought the Santa costume when his rod screamed off with his first Arapaima .. He couldn't wait to get into character and email his friends this photo as they didn't even know he had left home..
It wasn't just Arapaima for Jan as he also landed yet another Giant Snakehead. We hope Santa will return soon or maybe just Jan as yet another fun character :)
Another Danish Jan also joined us for some Exotic Fishing ... Jan Bekker Neilsen visited us for the first time and caught some excellent quality fish including this Asian Redtail Catfish
He also landed some nice Amazon Redtails .
I think Jan's favorite fish was this monster Alligator Gar which he caught on a large piece of chicken
The Siamese Carp were also on the feed in December as this day ticket angler found out .
The same angler also managed a nice Goonch Catfish .. This is definitely one fish you want to keep your fingers away from its mouth during photos .
Another toothy Goonch for yet another day ticket angler . Where else can you catch Goonch Catfish on a day ticket with the opportunity of another 60 fish species ??
The Goonch just kept coming in December with yet another day ticket angler landing this rare fish .
The same angler landed another strong catfish with this Asian Redtail
His next fish really gave him a run for his money
After yet another tough fight with a few acrobatic jumps and several fierce head shakes he happily got his photo with his first Arapaima
His friend also got in on the Arapaima action .
It wasnt just Arapaima for this group as there were also some other toothy fish species landed .
Yet another Alligator Gar for this happy angler
This jumbo Pacu also has teeth but thankfully it is supposed to be a vegetarian . This particular fish was caught on chicken though so best to error on the side of caution:)...
The same angler was even more happy with his first Arapaima catch.
Yet another nice Arapaima for this day ticket angler
Another new customer Lee Serridge from England dropped into see us as part of his tour of Asia .. Lee started his catch list off small with this Mrigal.
His next fish was a Thai species the spotted featherback
Lee managed to catch a ripsaw which as you can see looks like it has eaten so much that its skin is stretched .
Lee was looking to catch an Amazon Redtail and we didn't disappoint with this chunky specimen.
The Tiger Shovelnose is definitely one of our most beautiful fish ,even if this one looks like it has a bit of a deformed head :)
Lee finished the day on a high with a very nice Siamese
Our good friend Nick was visiting us with another regular , Mark from Kathu ,Phuket . They were both looking to catch Arapaima but Nick did the next best thing and caught an Alligator Gar the same size as a small Arapaima :) . Not as big as the monster fish from Texas but probably one of the bigger gars caught in Thailand so far..
Most guests we meet are a pleasure but this couple are like family to us .We were happy to see Colin and Georgina again and even more so when they arrived with their friends Paul and Gill ..Paul and Gill had worked through a few problems to get to Thailand but soon relaxed and chilled out and were enjoying EFT.
While Colin and Paul were busy fishing Georgina and Gill were busy with our new cooking classes . They were our first guest to try the class which is no surprise as it was Gill who asked the question "do you have a cooking classes"? .. I responded with "its on my to do list but what the hell why don't we start now" After a few words with our 2 chefs I found out that one of them had been doing cooking classes for years at a top hotel so we were all set.
The delicous food Georgina prepared gave Colin the energy he needed to land this colourful Arapaima
Gill and Goergina thoroughly enjoyed the classes so we have now added them to our website and they are available for all guests . A standard cooking class includes;- learning to prepare 2 dishes which are portioned for 2 people , an ingredients list and basic recipe on how to prepare all of our class offered items at home and also a certificate of completion .
It seems like Gills food had the same effect as Paul was also into an Arapaima after his cooking class lunch
Paul was also into more Arapaima action catching this fish on the float with Lum ..
Paul got some great fish and some nice photos
Unfortunately there were also some handling issues and great blooper shots
The antics continued with the Siamese Carp as well.
Paul was all smiles though being the great sport that he is ..
Hard work paid off for Paul with his fish of the trip being a monster Mekong Catfish .. Some quick suggestions regarding running the bank by his guide.. YT:)... did help save the day , but full credit to nimble Paul as he was up and down the lake and battled this monster like a true pro .
It was a real pleasure to fish with Paul and also to enjoy his company along with that of Gill , Colin and Georgina.. When i have customers like this here I really think I have one of the best jobs in the world
Another customer who was a pleasure to meet was Dominik Rotter from Austria .. Dominik is a professional football player who plays for Austrian team First Vienna FC ..Dominik came for a day ticket and after a slow start to the day his patience paid off with a late day Arapaima .. He had such a great time we saw him return for 3 more days before he had to return home..Such is the draw of Exotic Fishing Thailand
No wonder he loved it after some of the great fish he caught .. Here he is with a stocky Asian Redtail
he also managed quite few chunky Amazon Redtails during his visits
Dominik really likes his Carp fishing at home but has never caught anything this size before .
Dominik like most of our customers had a great time and we hope to see him back here in the coming year .
Lee O Connell and Nicola Shorter came for a short visit and made easy work of our Siamese carp with some decent fish
Lee also made east work of our delicious Mountain Burgers :)
A new species for Lee was this Wallagoo Attu . Great to see this lovely couple again and hope they drop by next year ..
A huge Chao Phraya catfish for this day ticket angler . These fish have amazing growth rates . Our biggest stocked fish was 30kg with some recently caught fish like this one now topping 50kg ..
It was a pleasure to meet Eddie Grey and his lovely wife Lynne . The fishing was challenging during Eddie's visit but he still managed a new species Albino Sawai Catfish
Eddie also caught one of our Arapaima so it definitely wasn't all bad . We hope he will return to chase some of our big Carp next year .
Wilson Chee and his Family visited us from Singapore for their first time at EFT. Such nice people . I was so surprised to find that they had brought us a bottle of wine from Singapore .. What a kind gesture. I was speechless , especially when by luck it was one of my favorites :). ...Both father and daughter are avid anglers as they also fish in Singapore ..They started their catch report with some nice Amazon Redtails
Their Catfish success continued with a beautiful tiger shovelnose
They also landed one of our more rare catfish species with this Wallagoo Attu
Wilson's daughter is not only an experienced angler landing Redtail after Redtail like a pro , but also a knowledgeable bird enthusiast . The whole family were so into their birds in fact that we opened the resort early on their second day so they could do some early birding .. They saw several Eagles which are quite common here seen soaring over the lake . They also spotted several kinds of Kingfishers , Fly catchers and lots of others which I am not yet familiar with .
Kevin and his Partner from South Africa visited also for the first time racking up some serious statistics...They managed 19 fish between them of 7 different species including 3 Alligator Gar
Both anglers were very competitive continuously joking about who was getting the net run ..This was one of 3 Asian Redtails for the day
We dont get many anglers from South Africa but the ones we do get are usually good anglers , very relaxed and also love their beer . This couple were no different challenging another lake record statistic with 39 beers consumed is one day . Even i couldn't keep up :).
Being native to South Africa the last fish they expected to catch was a Vundu Catfish .. Funny how Murphy's law is always at work ..
Their favorite fish for the day was this Siamese Carp as they were really impressed by the fight pound for pound ..
2 avid carp anglers Jay Payne and Peter Upperton joined us for a few days and caught some great fish including Chao Phraya Catfish , Amazon Redtails , Soldier River barb and of course Siamese Carp
The Siamese are so strong and not easy to hold on to resulting in occasional blooper pics
Peter also had 3 Siamese Carp of varied sizes.
Peter won the side bet between the 2 for the best blooper shot, no competition .Both fishermen really do care about fish care and if they hadn't listened and taken the precaution to step back from the swim when lifting these agile fish there could have been some fish issues .. Thanks for listening lads. I wish everyone did the same !!!!:)
We were happy to greet a lot of Russian guests in December .Russians get a lot of bad press in Phuket but I can happily say we have had no issues with our guests and are happy to welcome them here . Russians generally love to fish together and especially like to take pics with each other's fish as seen here with this Amazon Redtail
These anglers were busy catching some nice catfish species including this awesome Wallagoo Attu
As with most anglers it is all about the Arapaima . Everyone was in the water for the first Arapaima . I think I am going to need a wide angle lens soon :)
The second Arapaima and time for a group night shot.
That concludes the fishing photos for December .. If you would like to see your photo in our catch reports then please email us your photos from future visits or post them on Facebook and tag us ..We do our best to get customer photos but its a big lake and difficult to be everywhere at the same time.
We also completed some final details in the fish park to put the finishing touches to the tanks and salas .. There are now signs on each tank giving interesting information about each species including the world record size and maximum size stocked at EFT
The Giant Snakehead tank is a must see with a huge Snakehead on display along with several other species in the same sala ....
We have many display salas for many different species including Amazon , African and Thai species along with other Asian fish such as Goonch and Wallagoo Leeri .
Visitors tell us that the most exciting part of the park are our feeding ponds
We have 3 main feeding ponds for feeding Amazon Catfish , Arapiama and also our "SHARK POND" for feeding Chao Phraya Catfish .. Our advice especially for the Arapama pond is to not stand too close or you might get wet :)
We would like to thank all who joined us in December for some more great fishing here at Exotic Fishing Thailand.. If you would like more information on how you can catch some absolutely amazing fish, you can simply 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 ..
As the antics from some online agents continued in December please with them blocking us from several facebook sites remember to be careful and to book with us directly or simply give us a call at +66 883799377. Our catch report photos show we are definitely open and our fish are anything but small :).. We are conveniently located here in Southern Thailand just one hour from Phuket and Krabi airports and only 1 hour from Khao Lak and Ao Nang . Hope to see you soon ....