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Come and catch Gold here at Exotic Fishing Thailand
Come and catch Gold here at Exotic Fishing Thailand
Welcome to our latest Exotic Fishing Thailand newsletter. I would like to wish everyone good health in these unusual times. It's been a while since our last newsletter but i was waiting for some positive news to give people something to look forward to. The Thai government have approved that Phuket province will open to tourism July 1st 2021 for vaccinated tourists with no quarantine. After 7 days those same tourists can then travel freely throughout Thailand. Phang Nga and some other provinces will open October 1st 2021 for tourists to visit without the 7 day stop in Phuket. This is based on a large number of Phuket residents being vaccinated before that date . I am sure there will be many details to follow but at least this is great news for now :).Finally some light at the end of the tunnel.
Who would think that its already been 1 year since our last overseas customers Martin and Shirley Hobs left our resort for the airport. I'm sure Martin didnt think he would have to wait this long for a chance at an even bigger Freshwater Stingray. We look forward to welcome you both back in November.
Boom, Michelle and I would also like to take a minute to thank all our customers, family and friends for their ongoing support. You really get to see who your real friends are in difficult times. Whether it's a phone call or message just to see how we are doing or amazing customers paying for future bookings without even specifying dates,it is all very much appreciated. I think we have all been through challenging times in our lives and this is one shared experience we will all never forget. Thailand has done an amazing job in controlling the spread of Covid as they took a very strong approach right from the begining. Life has been back to normal for some time here with the exception of not having any income of course. This last year has been a strong reminder that family comes first and its been great enjoying some simple yet fun activities.
Even for a well established business like ours it has not been easy over the last year but here we are with some light at the end of the tunnel.WE have just been informed that our staff will be vaccintaed April 7th :). Some November dates are close to full so if you are thinking of booking remember you can always change dates later so dont miss out.
As a family we have tried to visit some of the local attractions close to EFT which we haven't had time to see before. These included Khao Sok national park, James bond island, Samet Nang Shee view point , a rafting trip and some quiet local beaches.
There are many people in Thailand suffering due to losing their Tourism source of income so we have tried to help local charities where possible and also tried to support organizations that help those often forgot like the Elephants. We have loads of bananas on our resort and have made several trips to PEP Phang Nga Elephant Park to help feed the hungry elephants. This is a great organization that would also be happy to greet customers when they return to Phang Nga. 400kilos of bananas doesnt go far with these hungry giants.
We would also like to thank and really appreciate all local and domestic support from customers enjoying reduced prices while the country has been closed. Our discounted prices will obviously end as the country opens but we will never forget those who helped.
Phuket, Phang Nga and Krabi have a close Expat community with many people trying to help each other. For example Terry and his son Josh have visited several times and enjoyed some amazing fishing so when in Krabi we make a point to drop by their beach restaurant Sa-Ing for a sunset drink and a bite to eat. Great food and friendly people.
Peter childs owns a sign company in Phuket and has been very helpful with businesses rebranding to try to survive in difficult times. He also found time to return and catch a beautifully coloured Arapaima along with many other specimens. Thank you for your support Peter I know you are always referring us to new potential customers:).
Other Phuket residents showing their support include Steve Lawrence who vistied us for the first time to catch his first Arapaima.
As always we like to promote childrens fishing and have been rewarded with some family visits during this slow period .
Our good friend Luke Mann has visited several times and has had some truly amazing days on the water .
Luke is a very chilled out angler and when asked doesn't care what he catches. That attitude has served him well as he has caught many differnt species to date with the weird and wonderful Ripsaw catfish being one of his favorties.
This huge Mekong catfish did give him a run for his money though and he told me he's not interested to fight another lol :).
When it comes to special catfish Robert Miller had an extra special hook up with this very rare Jau catfish as his first visit here .
Welcoming ALL nationalities throughtout the years has also paid off recently for us here with quite a few Phuket resident Russian friends supporting us while catching some huge fish.
We did stretch our rules at times with some singing, excess Vodka and even a small BBQ on a swim, but our normal lake rules will prevail once business returns to normal. In the meantime I have a whole new respect for how Russian people try to enjoy life every day :).
I can't write a newsletter without special mention of new records set.
When Jonathan Stanley contacted me to plan his return trip I made him a promise.
That promise was that he would catch over 100 fish in 1 week of fishing . 100 fish in 1 week has only ever happened once before which funnily enough was for an angler who never returned as we wouldnt give him a discount on his next trip.lol. It takes all kinds :).
Jonathan is an experienced angler and knows what Thailand can offer when it comes to quality and numbers of fish.
After fishing many lakes and ponds even he wasnt ready for what happened in 1 week. He landed an astounding 205 fish in 7 days.
This crazy total included 30 Arapaima and 15 different species.
This beautiful Tambaqui was one of his favorites with his most prized catch being a Wallago Leeri which he had been targeting for some time.
I filmed Jonathan as he fought and landed his 200th fish and he was exhausted at that point . Little did he know the lake had one final back destroying surprise with this huge Mekong catfish waiting for his last cast :).Jonathan said he is taking a break from fishing while him and his wife wait for the birth of their new baby but i have a sneaking suspicion we will see him again some day.
Thailand has been trying to promote domestic tourism through several programs. Graham wall and his better half Noom have visited several times through the "We Travel Together " program and enjoyed some amazing catches.
Graham is always searching for new species but there was no keeping the Arapaima and both Amazon and Asian Redtail off his line.
I think his favorite capture was this beautiful Juliens carp. He also managed a few Siamese which he also loves.
The program has just been extended so who knows, Graham may be back as I know there are still a few target species he is after.
Once travel was open within Thailand's provinces we organized a fun event " The Beat The Old Guys Challenge". The old guys were John Pearce , Neil Robinson of Fishing Khao Lak and yours truly.
The event lived up to its name as "Team Fish Scale" [John Harvey ,Kuhn Krit nad Kuhn Oak ] BEAT THE OLD GUYS by putting a beating on the our aging team and winning easily.
Kuhn Krit was the overall winner hands down . Well done Krit. I must admit even I am starting to think that there is more than meets the eye with your Fish Scale product . So much so that it is now availablie on our bait menu :).
Krit was so happy he even kissed a few of his catches.
The old guys had no excuses although local knowledge actually hurt us more than helped. We won the draw for swim choices and based our decisions on our favorite fishing method where we use the float and method feeder combo with Lum/rice powder to attract bait fish and target Arapaima. The event was based on the total length of fish in cm so we thought lots of 2 meter Arapaima would surely secure a win .
On tournament day for whatever reason almost all the baitfish were not feeding and couldn't be found except in the shallow corner where Krit was fishing. Was it the draw of the "fish Scale " or the moon phase etc? We will never know but by the time we figured out what was going on it was too late.
Of course things returned to normal with baitfish feeding everywhere a few days later and have remained so ever since. That's fishing for you.
We definitely deserve a rematch BUT are also ready for new challengers. How about Old guys versus the even Older guys? Yes thats you Graham Wall, David Wilson and recently retired Jules Fernadez. All our swims are wheelchair acessible as are some of our new rooms so no excuses :).
We would like to wish Jules of Jurassic fame good luck in whatever he does next and hope he is taking a well deserved rest after all his hard work building Jurassic Mountian resort into the amazing fishery which it is. I had the pleasure to meet the new owner Mark on a recent visit and we are planning some exciting 2 venue holidays which will be available soon. With other fisheries sadly closing and some fully booked to March 2023 it's a great time to enjoy this 2 premier fisheries package.
While I was at Jurassic I ran into David Wilson who lives close to the lake and fishes there regularly. Dave was very excited to tell me about his new line of floats which he is making and selling. I am always interested in new tackle and presentations. Just one week later a package arrived at EFT and in it some sample floats from Dave. Check out the video I have just finished where I am testing the biggest of these floats. The new 4oz Big boy floats will be on sale at EFT in the future if anybody wants to try them .
I would like to take a minute to thank good friend John Pearce for his help in filming a lot of our videos. He is the guy on the other side of the camera and supports the resort whenever and however he can. He also likes to wet a line or 2 and has probably caught as many if not more Arapaima than I have.
John introduced me to his good friend Bob Grieve who is the producer of the original Rex hunt show. Rex is now starting to film new shows and has already featured Exotic Fishing Thailand several times on his Sunday evening live feed from his You Tube and Facebook channels. We look forward to welcoming Rex here as soon as possible as he is eager to catch some of our amazing Arapaima for his future shows. We are also discussing a "Meet and Fish with Rex" package and will announce dates as soon as details are finalized.
For anyone looking to treat their partners or themsleves on their next visit our Mountainside Bungalows are now 100% finished. I personally guarantee that the Jacuzzis really are relaxing after a long day fishing:).
The Mountainside rooms are a little further from the restaurant than the Mountainview rooms but are very close to the swimming pool with its "Swimquarium" feature.
We feed the fish most days so once we are fully open we will have a set time when we feed them so anyone interested can have a swim and watch the Arapaima inhale their food.
Even with Phuket opening in July we will unfortunately have to cancel our Annual Individual and Team Fishing events for this year and move them to 2022. The Individual event will be held on June 26th and 27th 2022 with June 25th being the practice day. The team event will be held July 3rd and 4th 2022 with July 2nd being the practice day.
We will contact everyone and discuss moving their bookings in the next few weeks. As with any other bookings which have been moved already or need to be moved between now and October 1st 2021 there is no extra charge to move bookings and most dates are available .
As most of our customers already know, Fish Care is very important to our business. We do have our orientation video which reminds everyone upon check in of our rules and all our guides are also educated to the best of my ability about caring for the fish. It would be very rare to find a customer who would intentionaly mistreat a fish so I would just like to stress and personally remind everyone that ALL of our Arapaima and large Catfish must not be lifted out of the water and should be held as demnstrated by John Pearce in the photo above.
If customers really wanted to be extra careful perhaps consider leaving all fish supported in the water for photos and hold them well away from the concrete swims [as shown in the above photo of Adrian and Lek]. I am definitely not enforcing this as a rule but just food for thought. Last year we had a beautiful Siamese carp of around 90 lbs float up dead. The obvious cause of death was a large mark in the middle of its head where it had obviously been accidentally dropped onto the under water conrete steps.
These fish can be very difficult to hold onto and accidents can easily happen. Let's all please work together to help protect some of the rare specimens we are lucky to have swimming in our lake. The fish in this photo was not hurt I am just using the photo as an example to show how much power they have :). With this in mind we have now decided that we will not weigh any fish in the future with the exception of when stocking them, as we dont see the value versus the risk to the fish. Regarding other fisheries who choose to weigh fish that is totally their perogative and frankly not our concern. You will find that our guides are quite accurate and honest when it comes to guessing fish sizes and I am not bad myself so dont be afraid to ask:).
We do have some discounts for group bookings and extended stay bookings along with some incentives for early payment so keep an eye on our Facebook pages for the latest news. We will continue to have frequent updates with lots of fish photos, videos and event information..
Thank you for reading and as usual I promise it wont be as long before the next newsletter :). In the meantime we are enjoying the plentiful flowers and birds while looking forward to the upcoming mango season :).
The best way to reach us to make an inquiry or booking is by email ;- firstname.lastname@example.org or through our website booking form at www.exoticfishingthailand.com