Captain's Blog


Dogtooth Tuna Lazarus banks Pemba Mozambique

A Dogtooth Tuna is an incredibly strong open water fish, that lives deep, and this is probably why it is rated amongst spearfishing aficionados as the ultimate fish to hunt. You got to hurt it at best, or really you got to spine it to stop it. It’s a difficult fish to get.

Silver fish lodge runs tours around the best spots to spearfish in Mozambique. We offer different packages depending on the experience and ability of the spearo. Lazarus banks is a difficult hunt, where you are expected to bring a minimum 1.3m roller (min 8mm spear), or bigger, and get down to 30m, or deeper. You need to be experienced and a better than average diver to get this job done.

This fish will test you. We have run a few tours to the banks, and mostly were disappointed. This is not because we didn’t get chances, but rather that we didn’t appreciate the task at hand and weren’t properly prepared…. You got to treat this like a final exam. You need to be in good condition, have the right equipment, be patient, and have the right mindset. This fish won’t come to you, you need to go to it, and with a current winds at up to 4 knots……., and then you always have the weather to worry about as St Lazarus Banks is 70 miles NE of Pemba, with no sight of land…. you are vulnerable to the elements.

Darryl Hiscock (from Port Elizabeth, South Africa) once again,brought a group of 5 including himself to attempt just this. We could only get 4 days,5 nights, space is limited (6 divers, max) even though we booked in February. We arrived at Pemba airport on the 14th October. There are 10 weeks, and usually the group that has just been there, reserves again for next year. The season is between October and the end of November, just like the Giant Marlin hunt off Bazaruto island each year.

We had two days flat sea conditions, and then the wind came. That produces a difficult night sleeping out offshore because even though you are anchored, the sea is not flat and the 50ft cat slams when the wind is up. You dive from 05h30 until lunch time, then get out for about and hour, then back to it until 16h00.

Because of the current, we get dropped off in 200m of water and then drift onto the ledge which comes up to 20m, then evens out and goes gradually up to 10m. The doggies are on the wall, between 40m and 25m.

We chum a lot, which doesn’t bring in the doggies, but they are curious and when you shoot other fish, like the wahoo, yellowfin tuna and even GT’s, then they come up to look. At that stage your gun has gone off, and then she’s gone……. Hopefully, your dive buddy still has a loaded gun!

We, once again, had a few chances, with fish between 30 and 40 kgs, and were either reefed, or just pulled spears. There were fish up to 80 kgs, which we didn’t even attempt…. Last trip, last year we also shot at five, and didn’t get one out.

If you are a good spearo, and up to a challenge, then you need to come on the next tour. Accommodation is on a liveaboard, which is comfortable and well set out for diving. Food is good, and there is a tender to help with the bigger groups.

October and November 2019, the season is already open, and getting filled.

Line fishermen are also welcome. Be prepared to jig and pop until you drop. Bring 200# braid for the doggies, with serious stopping power, or else you will lose your tackle, and your pride……

June 2019 we already have two spearfishing groups that have reserved for Pantaloon, Fogo island, Quelimane. This is as good, if not better, than St Lazarus, because there is more reef/shoal. At this stage we have another three weeks available from the 15th June 2019. Speak to me to come on this EPIC adventure. Groups of 3-4 at a time on FV Bounty- 6 nights. Fly in to Quelimane via lam.co.mz Known for Marlin, Sailfish, GT’s, Dogtooth Tuna.

Line fishermen, we will be fully rigged, with 6 x 50-pound outfits, and 6 x 80-pound rods/reels. Bring your jigging/ popping rods along.


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