Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Brazilian Record Breaking Mozambique Spearfishing Adventure

Christopher Ananiadis - 50kg Ignobilis Kingfish
I recently returned from an epic spearfishing trip to Mozambique with some guys from Brazil. Christopher Ananiadis and his friends Guilherme Azevedo and Alex Talarico came out to dive the untouched waters 'some where' between Xai-Xai and Inhaca Island with me.
Christopher being and ex-South African had been to Mozambique before, but for the other guys this was their first time, so expectations were high. Fortunately everything from weather to the crazy fish, Mozambique did not disappoint.

This trip was very different from previous trips for me as the guys from Brazil are not accustomed to doing the typical 'blue water' type diving looking for game fish with a flasher. And preferred to scout the amazing reef systems for an amazing variety of reef fish. On many occasions there was the, "I saw a strange fish with ......are they good to eat, can we shoot those?"

Guilherme Azevedo - 21.65kg Indian Mirror Fish
The guys got some really good fish with a number of fish even bigger than or near the current IUSA world records. Christopher got 2 Purple Cod (White Blotched Grouper) 14.5kg and 13.3kg both bigger than the current 12.5kg record.
Guilherme got a Indian Mirror Fish of 21.65kg (Indian Thread Fish - Alectis Indica or African Pompano - Alectis Ciliaris) if it is the Alectis Indica it almost doubles the previous world record!!!
Alex got a Pickhandle Barracuda of 14.8kg which was over a 1kg of the current world record. With this fish we were ready with the measuring tape and made sure we had all the details to claim the record.
Christopher Ananiadis - 14.5kg White Blotched Grouper
The highlight has to have been the GT's (Giant Travelly - Ignobilis Kingfish) Two of the spots consistently produced good fish. The one is a small bump far north that comes up to 15m and is a mecca for a huge variety of kingfish species.
The one time Guilherme shot a 30kg GT and I dived down to film it when a massive 50kg fish came in. Christopher managed to get down quick enough and land a good shot. Both had massive tussles with their fish and it is a moment I will remember for ever.
The other GT spot is a different deal altogether. It is a deep reef that only comes up to 45m, but there are fish almost from the surface all the way down. It is insane! To geth to the GT's you have to dive through Rainbow Runners and baitfish, then through the Bludgers, Big eyes and Yellow Tails. Then through the sharks and when you reach 30 m you wil see the schools of GT's. The trick was being able to keep real calm and allow them to come in close. Christopher even hid behind some sharks the one time in order to get a shot in. It is one crazy place.

Christopher on the hunt
 For me tho it was great to dive and chase Christopher around the ocean and taking photos. Even though he has been out of competitive diving for a round a decade he has to be one of the best divers I have dived with. His dive rate is exceptional and he had me asking him to slow down on more than a few occasions. I recon he would give the boys back home a good run for their money ...

Alexandre Talarico - 14.8kg Pickhandle Barracuda (WR pending)
All in all this was a brilliant trip, and the move north turned out to be very rewarding. We did land up traveling long distances, but I guess that is what it takes to find the good fish.

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