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PostPosted: Thu May 29, 2008 2:19 pm 
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Location: Mumbai
I recently moved to Mumbai and by good fortune rather than design I ended up leasing an apartment in Powai. Taking a Walk round Powai Lake I could see big fish moving on the surface and I just had to try my luck. I lived in Thailand for several years and caught many big Mekong catfish and Siamese carp – so I thought Powai couldn’t be that different or difficult. I was so wrong on both accounts! Float fishing seemed to be the preferred tactic but for me, groundbaiting with cake and masala only resulted in bumps on the line and no real bites – I reckon my groundbait masked the smell of the hookbait. I reverted to a bolt-rig and method fishing but the Powai fish are shy feeders and don’t bolt so the bites didn’t register on the bite alarm. Four outings and no fish. Time for a rethink and time to contact Professor Powai – our very own AnglerAli.

Ali explained that his approach is simplicity itself. Experience has taught him that the fish are very wary of lines and eject baits before the bite is even detected so my usual hair-rig on a size 8+ hook was the first change. Light tackle and lines seems to be the key so I settled on a hook length of virtually undetectable soft braid on to a size 12 light gauge hook with a flattened barb. Ali lightens his business end even more with size 14 hooks. The next step was to critically balance the float. Ali uses split-shot so the tip is finely balanced and by placing a swivel close to the hook any fish lifting the bait will clearly show as a lift bite or slide away. That’s all there is to it – simple.

For bait we settled on a paste of rice atta and coconut milk – I added some freeze dried fish food but the raw paste would probably have worked just as well. Small fish were showing so we didn’t disturb them by groundbaiting – we just measured the depth with a plumb weight and set the hooks to just trail on the bottom. It didn’t take the fish long to find the hook bait and we were registering tentative bites in no time. There was no way to tell whether the bites were from large or small fish – the behavior of the float was identical. We pulled in a few small nuisance fish but time after time the float would twitch then slide down but the strike didn’t make contact. Ali recommended an adjustment to my hook and I turned the hook point out by 20 degrees. This adjustment seemed to be the answer to the phantom bites and when my float twitched and then disappeared again, this time there was something more solid on the end. The small hook and the absence of a barb were no disadvantage and after a brief panic as the fish wrapped itself around the mooring I landed a nice hybrid – my first Powai carp. It wasn’t a monster by any means but landing a lip-hooked fish on small hooks and light tackle was a real buzz. Flat barb hooks come out easily and barely leave a visible mark so the fish was photographed and returned with the minimum of distress.

Image
[IMG]http://img225.imageshack.us/img225/1519/img2531aa6.9274

Things went quiet for an hour as the fish moved back into the swim and then Ali was into another hybrid. It slipped the hook just as it was about to be netted. A bit of care is needed in netting a fish on a tiny size 14 hook and the guy with the net was a bit too clumsy – sorry mate!

Rajat appeared with some welcome refreshments and we settled in for the late afternoon. Rajat used the same tactics and was soon into a decent sized catfish. He lost another unseen fish a few minutes later.

We had a good days fishing and I think it went to show that less is more when it comes to fishing for shy feeding fish. Small hooks, light lines, critically balanced floats and keeping it simple – sometimes you need a day with somebody like Ali to remind you just what it is all about.

[URL=http://imageshack.us]Image

[URL=http://g.imageshack.us/g.php?h=259&i=img2533wc2.jpg][IMG]http://img259.imageshack.us/img259/4582/img2533w


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PostPosted: Thu May 29, 2008 2:46 pm 
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Fishaholic
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Joined: Mon Jul 23, 2007 5:01 pm
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Location: Kuwait.
great one granta
and congrats for the first Powai carp....

one question
how was the float critically balanced?

and no doubt Ali bhai is a great teacher.....


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PostPosted: Thu May 29, 2008 3:10 pm 
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Congrats Granta... the hybrid is of a decent size.. well done.


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PostPosted: Thu May 29, 2008 3:28 pm 
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That's a nice report Granta. Keep at it mate!

Bops


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PostPosted: Thu May 29, 2008 3:41 pm 
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Joined: Mon Jul 03, 2006 5:40 pm
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Location: Mumbai
Welcome to Powai, Granta.


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PostPosted: Fri May 30, 2008 12:56 am 
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Thanks for the comments guys.

Hozefa, getting the float critically balanced is just adjusting the weight until the lead is just less than the buoyancy of the float. The float is almost neutrally buoyant so a fish sliding the float under will barely feel it. If you fish a standard peacock quill and there is more than 2cm showing then the fish will feel that pull. The float needs to be balanced until there is hardly any buoyancy above the water surface. Some floats have reduced diameter inserts at the top so the float is virtually neutrally buoyant with up to 2cm showing. Overweighting the float with lead close to the hook will get the float low in the water but the fish will feel the lead on the bottom as it picks up the bait. Its just a case of maximising the time before the fish ejects the bait. The trick is to get your rig as close to neutral buoyancy as possible. Split shot in small diameters is ideal but it is hard to come by in Mumbai.

If you get it right the fish will take the hook bait and not feel any pull from the float and you get a slide away take - or the fish might lift the bait until the swivel on the hook length is picked up and you get a lift take. Taking the time and care to get the float balanced and the depth accurately plumbed increases the sensitivity of the float by orders of magnitude.

Granta


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PostPosted: Sun Jun 01, 2008 5:18 pm 
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Joined: Mon Jul 23, 2007 5:01 pm
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Location: Kuwait.
That is indeed helpful.....
thanks alot for the information.
and i realized that i was wrong as i was putting very less weight and float used to be of bigger size.
and i guess thats why i never felt most of the bites :(

one more question now.
is there going to be any difffernce in this technique if im doing shore fishing?


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PostPosted: Mon Jun 02, 2008 12:17 pm 
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Hi Allan,
Thank you man. It was a plasure to fish with you. I sincearly wish that you catch many more and even bigger fishes in Powai.

For all of you here is a link I would like you all to read. :lol:


http://www.carpanglersgroup.com/articleStanGeidel.html

Regards,

Ali..


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PostPosted: Mon Jun 02, 2008 2:04 pm 
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Thanks Ali, always a pleasure fishing with you.

Hozefa, shore fishing with a float might be very different . I haven’t done any shore fishing like that but if it is like fishing for big catfish in freshwater using a float then the float is normally very buoyant so it helps set the hook when the fish runs. A bolt rig using a float instead of lead. I’d be interested to hear how shore fishermen set up their rigs.

Back on the lake and following up on the previous post however :- Last Saturday, 31 May we met up again to fish Powai Lake using the same simple tactics. It was a pretty full machan with Ali, Freddie, Yvette, Rajat, Rhaid and me. Keeping it simple, Ali groundbaited at the beginning of the session and there was no chutney in the mix – only cake and soil. We added no further groundbait after this but loose fed the occasional hook bait sized free offering to keep the fish interested.

Bread and rice atta with coconut milk were the main choices of hook bait. A little personal touch was added to offer a little variety to the buffet – Rajat added fermented coconut to his bread and I added some food colouring to my atta. The bites were pretty consistent all day and I lost count of the number of fish we caught and returned.

Image
[IMG]http://img229.imageshack.u

My best was this hybrid which was around the 6 kilo mark. I balanced the float so it was low in the water for sensitivity and set the depth so the hookbait was just touching the bottom. The bite showed as a lift of no more than half a centimeter – I’d have missed it if I hadn’t set the float low in the water. I missed a couple of similar bites by striking too early or too late but I judged this one just right. There was plenty of advice on hand and I played the fish as gently as possible – just as well because the small hook was only just holding in the top lip. It was an unmarked fish in great condition so the photo was taken and the fish was released back after it had recovered.

[URL=http://imageshack.us]Image


Lots of other fish taken but here is a notable one. This was Yvette’s first catch. Freddie was on hand with encouragement and advice making it a family effort.

Image


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PostPosted: Mon Jun 02, 2008 3:14 pm 
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Hi Allan.. congrats for the PB hybrid at Powai..

And also to Mrs. Divecha for the first catch.

Santosh :-)


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PostPosted: Mon Jun 02, 2008 6:09 pm 
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Location: Just outside New Delhi
Dam this place is turning popular. I believe they have marked it on Google earth. hahahahahahaahah

Congrats! Everyone on the fine show. And the great fish.

I am there tomorrow. Yippppeeeeeee!


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PostPosted: Tue Jun 03, 2008 2:02 pm 
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Mahaseerken wrote:
I believe they have marked it on Google earth.


Ken... On Wikimapia, you will find not only the lake but also the machans marked !!! :D
Best of luck on your first visit to powai


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 Post subject: powai lake
PostPosted: Tue Jun 03, 2008 11:03 pm 
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Joined: Thu Nov 23, 2006 3:04 am
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Location: BRISTOL. UK
Hi Granta,
good going. Will have to meet up with you on my next trip in Nov. Henry


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PostPosted: Wed Jun 04, 2008 9:22 am 
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Location: rawalpindi, pakistan
Great going Granta.

About the hybrid, looks like a cross between a Rahu and a Catla ( Theila in Pakistan) to me. Never seen one before. Is this a natural occurance or done by the fisheries????


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PostPosted: Wed Jun 04, 2008 1:01 pm 
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shaphan wrote:
Great going Granta.

About the hybrid, looks like a cross between a Rahu and a Catla ( Theila in Pakistan) to me. Never seen one before. Is this a natural occurance or done by the fisheries????


Hi,
It is a cross between Rohu and Catla known as F1 Hybrid and it can only be hatched in fisheries.

The best part of this fish is that some time it shows the acrobatic streak of Rohu and fly through the air while hooked. Imagine a 15 K.g. fish, with the power of Catla and Rohu combined together flying through the air. Believe me, it is something to experience.

Regards,

Ali


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PostPosted: Wed Jun 04, 2008 4:02 pm 
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Location: rawalpindi, pakistan
ALi,

Thanx for the info mate. I just confirmed from one of my friends that we also have this hybrid in Pakistan as well, in Mangla Dam built on the Jehlum river. Its called a black Rahu by the Locals. Its know to be a hell of a fighter.

In Mangla you can hear this fish splashing in the nite when it jumps out of the water and the noise made is similar to a mini explosion, they grow quite big in Mangla Dam but are rearly caught on Rod and no one has a technique of getting to them either.

:?: :cry:


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PostPosted: Sat Jun 21, 2008 3:16 pm 
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Hey allan
good report mate and some good pictures too :lol: :lol:
It was really good to fish with you missing you lately though in Powai lets catch up soon cheers [smilie=coolup.gif] [smilie=coolup.gif]


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PostPosted: Sat Jun 21, 2008 3:34 pm 
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Hi Granta,
good going...kepp it up man


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