KURPER
(Sarotherodon mossambicus, Tilapia rendallii and Serranochromis meridianus)
Red-breasted kurper

The kurper is reminiscent of sea shoal fish inthat when feeding freely one is in for a very hectic time. Normally considered a summer feeder it has recently been found that these fish can be caught on spinners in the deeper water during the winter months.

Dependent on the area one can catch the kurper on both natural and paste baits. Where angling pressure is high both types can be used but only natural baits like worms, crickets, flying and red ants will work where angling pressure is low. One of the favourite methods for catching kurper is float fished worms using a light rig and porcupine quill. The distance between the worm and float must be varied to ascertain at what depth the fish are feeding.

Kurper do not favour cold currents and one should seek out the warmer areas.

When using paste baits it is better to fish with a fixed sinker or no sinker, depending on the intensity of the feeding.

Considered a gourmets delight the kurper is much sought after as a table fish. The kurper inhabits the warmer Northern Transvaal waters which are subject to the problem of eutrophication and it is not advisable to eat fish caught in the waters with heavy algae concentrations just before the onset of winter because the flesh is tainted.

The blue and red-breasted kurper are the species most often encountered. The blue kurper is a mouth breeder and the female hatches the eggs and hosts the fry in her mouth when danger threatens. The red-breasted kurper lays its eggs in shallow water and both parents guard the nest.

Also present in some of the kurper waters is hyacinth. It is an offence to transport this noxious weed or to have it in ones possession.

says “Man who interferes with birdlife at waterside shows lack of character”.