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Fishing licences sold out, record combo sales and dam levels at 12-year high


The country’s post offices sold out of fishing licences; the sales of entry level children’s fishing combos set record levels; and dam water levels have been at a 12-year high.

That has been the scenario in South Africa during the pandemic, according the Eugene Kruger, the Angling International correspondent for the region.

“Over the Christmas period and until the end of January all beaches, dams, rivers and parks were closed. However, the beaches have reopened alongside kayak and boat angling offshore if launched from a proper launch site.

“When fishing was allowed, there was a huge surge in participation,” said Kruger. Big news among anglers is the state of the country’s major dams which are the fullest they have been for 12 years, including Garien (125%), Vanderkloof (main picture, 120%) and Vaal Dam (105%). “Even in the dry Northern Cape, dams and minor rivers are in full spate,” said Kruger.

He added that importers of tackle are still in business, although a number of smaller retailers have not survived the restrictions. All Lion Publications, publisher of leading fishing magazines in the region, has introduced its Tight Lines and Bank Angler publications as bi-monthly print magazines, while monthly digital offerings are growing.

“The survival of the industry and the increase in online sales have been the big industry talking points of late,” Kruger added.

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