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Sunday, November 30, 2008

KFC - Another Exciting Visit To A Kelong (3) At Tuas

Early this morning, we again embarked on another recce trip to Tuas area, in our endeavor to cover all the available kelongs in the vicinity. This time, LH joined us. My tiny car was squeezed in terms of space and I had to find alternative to my large sized icebox that I usually put on the car seat. I had the good luck to be able to get a medium sized icebox that fit perfectly inside my limited boot. With that in place, my car certainly have more seating space for future kelong trip.

Breakfast stop at Gelang Patah

Going to the Jetty to load up

Monkeys here eat out of a bowl

Free carpark

Gone fishing

I took the woodlands checkpoint route and we again went to the comfy 777 coffee shop that was in Gelang Patah main town. After a good breakfast, we drove down south to the Jetty to meet up the boatman we had met previously. though we were due to only arrive at 8.30am, he was already waiting at the Jetty at 8am. We boarded up the boat and off we went. Our destination this time round was Kelong Limat. This time round, we used the bigger boat which meant that the speed was slower. Nevertheless, it was quite a fast paced and breezy ride to our fishing adventure.

Wah, looks big

We finally at the "Blue roof" Kelong

Plenty of space

Got a fierce dog in each of these "houses" at each corner of the Kelong

Viewing/Feeding holes on the ground

The other 2 sides of the Kelong blocked by Structure like this

Reaching there, we were greeted by loud barkings. But very strangely, we don't see the dogs. We were to discover that the dogs were actually caged up in wooden house on the four corners of the Kelong. Their duty was to raise the alarm when someone gets near. From our first impression, the Kelong was rather big. In fact, I would say that it would almost match the ones in Sibu. Walking around, we saw big holes on the ground, which gave a view of the fishes that the Kelong keeps in its keep-nets. The fishes were farmed and fed to grow till they were big enough for the market. Peering down the hole, there were plenty of fishes indeed. Some of the fishes are in sizes 30-40 kg. We were very tempted to drop our lines there.

View from the other side

The Kitchen

We were the first to reach the Kelong, but another big group came and then the Kelong became rather crowded. One thing about this Kelong was that only 2 sides are fishable. The side facing Tuas and PTP were blocked by the Kelong stilts and netting area. Therefore, even though the Kelong has a large platform, the fishing area wasn't quite ideal, especially when the group is more than 10. Yet another group came later in the afternoon, and it was getting too crowded to fish properly w/o crossing others lines. Floating was also tricky as there were limited angles to cast.

Wah, string of 4 Orkars

Rare catch of a small flathead

The others in the Kelong came with a bag of live prawns but I think it didn't survive the trip and most died. Nevertheless they were using prawn meat and in the beginning was having good catches of OrKar (whitefish). One even came up in a string of 4. I was so impressed as I haven't got the good chance to catch any Orkar yet.

Please wear helmet. Fishing can be dangerous

Fishing makes people happy

My girl got a Scat

Todaks here not that big

After setting up, LH was first to get a string of Tambans. The bait fishes were plentiful due to the upcoming tide at around 1pm. ZW and I quickly used some of the Tambans for bigger fish. And the reactions were fast indeed. There were a few misses and ZW got his line cut off, and mine later as well. Very soon, ZW was adding a Todak to his record. However, floating was difficult as the current was drifting down, and would cross all the other people's lines.

Early stage of the fight


LH borrowed my Queen to bluff wife

Queen that paid a visit

I got lucky and my Green Arrow took a nice bent, with my bells going ballistic. I was rigged with a Tamban at kind of mid water as the weight couldn't reach the bottom due to the strong current. The fish fought hard, and everyone crowded around to see. As I was fighting the fish to the surface, LH tried to use the net in preparation to scoop it up. Soon it surfaced and we see a there-about 1 Kg Queenie. Another lady in the Kelong kept saying it was a whitefish. (trevally).

I had a hard time hanging on

This fellow fought very hard

After 20 mins later, my green arrow had another sharp bow and I got something good again on the end of the line. This time round, the Kelong uncle came with the net and excitedly gave all sorts of guess what the fish was. This fish fought alot harder and I was having difficulty to control it. Furthermore, it went to the other side of the Kelong and I had to carefully maneuver my line over the "dog" house. One instance, it gave a 20-30 sec continuous run and my arm was tiring out. I inched the fish bit by bit in, always mindful that I was only on just 10lb fireline. Finally when it broke surface, it was yet another Queen fish to my surprise. It was slightly bigger, my guess would put it at about 1.5kg.

This time, it's Queenfish porridge.

With 2 Queenies to my record, the trip was already quite worth it. We cooked one of the Queenie for lunch and shared it with the other group. ZW continued to get 2 more todaks despite them being more difficult to hit over here than in Sibu. We tried to help LH get a Todak, but by the time we startd, the Tambans suddenly became scarce and we were hampered by limited baits. Seeing the sudden drop in action, I decided to try out luring.

Great luring work by ZW

To my surprise, I got a tug but didn't connect. My guess was probably a todak. ZW joined me and he too got some bites. The hit rate was quite good and it encouraged use to continue to lure. And bingo, ZW's lure suddenly connected to a good one. From a distance, we saw a Todak thrashing and doing acrobatic jumps. I videoed it, but he soon lost it. But a short while again, another connection and this time, he successfully got the Todak up on a deck. I was elated as I had not achieved that before! This luring student of mine can go down the mountain already :)

Looked small here due to the height. But was really huge

After that excitement, the afternoon then became very quiet. Todaks were still around, but the current wasn't favourable to do another floats. All our Tambans catches were depleted and I went on to catch glass fishes as bait. Still effective, but only for floating. However again, current was not in our favor.

Heading back home

Hello!? Stock market go down??

Around 5pm, we decided to pack as the action was diminishing due to the low tide. Another group would be coming for the night and we didn't want to add to the crowd. From what we hear, bait fishes would not be around at night. However, there were possibilities of biggies at night.

Sea birds positioning themselves for their dinner

A good trip, but unfortunately couldn't get LH to experience catching Todaks. A great run of 2 Queens consecutively. It had been long time since I have gotten such a strong fight even though the fishes weren't that big. Definitely another feather on the cap for ZW on lure. We discussed with the boatman about the next Kelong and would be probably head for another the next round.

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Las montaƱas said...

wow.. didn't know there are kelongs in tuas. It is good to see pics like these now with the monsoon dumping its load down on us.

nafishnafish said...

Yes. I think this place isn't much affected by the monsoon, no choppy waters except for the rain part.