Wednesday, 14 May 2014

Rockfish Türkiye!

I have recently been on our first family holiday abroad, as you might gather from the title, we have been to Turkey. To be specific we have been staying in Mahmutlar, Alanya.
Obviously being a family holiday I did not fish a great deal, but I did manage some productive early morning sessions on the Beach outside our hotel, a couple of hours in Alanya Harbour and also on the Piers on the main beach.

For the most part I actually found the open beach far more productive than the man made structure, the beach is a mix of Sandstone and sand. It drops off very quickly and has some nice shelves of rock along the shore.

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Due to the topography I found a simple jig head and lure worked best, just casting out and allowing the drop into the inner shelf resulted in fish instantaneously. With this method I was able to bag up on White Bream.

White Bream

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Now although I did use other lures, I found Berkley Gulp Alive Angleworm to be far more effective and with limited fishing time, that is what I caught most of my fish on and I make no apologies for that!

I soon realised that I would go through a lot of lures here too, as everything wants to bite your lures in half and sometimes the fish would strip your lure from the hook in a millisecond! This did wonders for my reaction time, as you often need to strike lightning fast!
The bream were also great little fighters for their size and I just had a lot of fun catching them, in fact I will miss them like crazy.

Using the same swing-fall method I also caught Striped Bream and Mottled Grouper too.

Alanya Fishing

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Both of these species also pull well for their size and I was genuinely surprised they were often so small. The fish were just stunning to look at and I was just so pleased to finally catch some foreign fish.

Alanya Harbour looked like it would offer huge potential, but in truth I found it disappointing compared to the open shore, the water was filthy and there was lots of rubbish floating about. I did find the locals very interesting, there were quite a lot of people fishing, young, old, Male and female, they also predominantly use poles for their fishing and bread as bait. 

Many didn't seem to have much success, though I did witness a few catching small White Bream. I liked the local anglers a great deal and people found my methods and tackle interesting as I did theirs. However I am not being arrogant when I say, I out fished them with light game technique a fair bit at times.
I found it quite amusing when one of the attendants on the harbour looked at my gear and asked me in broken English "you professional fisherman?" To which I replied "no" and he gestured to me to say that I was all mouth and we did laugh!

Here's another small Grouper that I caught in the harbour, (a White Grouper I believe);

Lee Goddard Fishing

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Teeth on that bad boy!
On the way back through the town I spoke to a shop assistant who spoke very good English and he informed me that in the "close weather" bigger fish were more prolific close to shore, I was a little unsure what he meant by this but I think he either meant humid weather, as is similar for our fishing in the UK, or he meant "closed" as in; when all the Tourists have gone and things waterside are quieter, which would also make sense.

Back in Mahmutlar after two and a half days of constant rain(!), I was able to resume my early morning sessions and again fished the open shore for the Bream. I also fished on the piers utilising jig head and dropshot techniques with good success. I mainly caught Bream, I lost a Wrasse specie which I was disappointed about, but I did catch a Pufferfish and a Demoiselle too which pleased me no end.

Light Game Turkey
Fugu anyone?
Bennet's Pufferfish
Torquigener Flavimaculosos (Pufferfish)
Striped Bream
Striped Bream

Lee Goddard Fishing
Lee Goddard Fishing
Saddled Bream
Striped Bream
Light Game Turkiye
White Bream
On the piers I was often joined by Kurdish anglers and also Russians. 
Alanya is predominantly a Russian resort and communicating was often a real problem, but fishing is a universal pastime and etiquette seems to be the same therein. We was able to appreciate each other that way, clapping each other as we caught and inspecting each others rigs. As I said before, Angleworm very often out fished the locals bread. On the last day, I gave a local pole angler the rest of my Angleworm and some of my fish. I honestly would rather release them, but I feel to overcome boundaries and build friendship we must some times learn to do what causes us personal discomfort for a greater good.

I was also able to help one of my Russian fisher-comrades when he caught a nice Rabbitfish, he was about to pick it up when I waved and shouted him to stop. Rabbitfish are poisonous as my good friend Scott found out on his Cretian adventures.

This fish was at least released! The Russians and Kurds do tend to keep everything I found, I did enjoy their company nonetheless though.

Alanya Fishing

I think Rockfishing and/or Light Game has huge potential in Turkey and although I am aware of a group starting near Istanbul, there is huge scope to teach the techniques to the locals. I think the introduction of the cheaper end of the spectrum, where tackle is concerned would be great. I could really see HTO stuff being hugely popular there!

I am off to Menorca for a weeks pure fishing with my good friend and species wizard Scott in October and I hope to add more foreign species to my tally. You should really keep an eye on his blog, at present he is absolutely bagging up in Lanzarote and will no doubt have a series of specie filled posts when he's back, I am certainly looking forward to that!

Well I hope you enjoyed my post, I certainly found the fishing therapeutic and I met some really good people, I shall no doubt return some day.

Tight lines

Gear used:
Rod: Yamaga Blanks Bluecurrent 80
Reel: Shimano Complex Ci4+ 2500HGS F6
Mainline: Gosen Braid 0.4PE
Leader: Toray FC Leader 0.158 + 0.198mm
Lures: Berkley Gulp! Alive Angleworms, Jackall Peke peke, Gulp Fish Fry
Terminal Tackle: Decoy Rocket plus jigheads 1.8g #10 & 8

Sabpolo Wormer hooks #10 & 8
Dropshot weights 2-7g