FOW  March/April News Letter 2009

Hi Fellow Fisher folk,

Apologies for a long delay in sending out a newsletter. Apart from running my own business I have been actively involved in matters piscatorial. The most recent was the South African Fly fishing Protea Trials.

These trials were held in still waters in the Nottingham Road area and were unusual in that senior anglers were paired with juniors and development ladies on the inflatable boats. The ladies and juniors learnt a lot from their senior partners but at the same time some of the seniors were impressed with the prowess shown by some of their partners.

Having been active in competitive angling events for about forty years the ladies certainly added a bit of class to the event.

Unfortunately one of the seniors was caught cheating and the jury made up from 3 different Provinces (one from his own Province) imposed a 2 year banning. The angler has the right to appeal and even have legal representation. Innocent until proven guilty is common law and SAFFA was bound not to publish any details for obvious legal reasons.  Somehow word got out and was passed onto a fly-fishing chat column and a storm was created on what I rate as a first class chat column.  My advice to those who took up the cudgels against SAFFA are "if you are not a member of a Province affiliated to SAFFA "is mind your own business" To those who are members of SAFFA read your Constitution as well as the regulations governing the awarding of Protea colures.

The outbreaks of Cholera in Zim should be a lesson to our powers at be and it is high time that they got competent people in to stop the pumping of shit into all our rivers.  Hats off to Carte Blanche for exposing what is only the tip of the disaster staring the country in the face.

I have a DVD about a bug called Cryptosporidium and I wish I new how to show it on the website but I do not have the technical knowledge (The website is done as a labour of love) Look it up on Google. If this bug enters our water systems we can have big problems. Not only from a health point of view but this bug is resistant to chlorine and most disinfectants.
It is deadly to the young, elderly and HIV persons ---there is no cure.

Most rivers are running very strongly and there are a lot of semi- submerged tree trunks. Boaters take care.

The grass carp are growing very fast in Vaal dam and providing excellent sport not only for the bait but fly anglers as well.
Before I have the supporters of the NEMBA regulations taking out a contract on me I suggest they do some homework. Vaal dam level drops during winter and there is no grass for these fish to feed on. Maybe an examination of their winter stomach content will indicate that these fish are feeding on the ever increasing amount of algae in the dam.

A warning to all anglers, the banks of green algae in the dam are turning into the highly toxic blue algae. Dogs that have a highly developed sense of smell will not even drink this water, even where there is no algae.  The authorities are wrestling with what to do with Hartebeespoort dam. Just imagine when the same thing happens in the Vaaldam in the not too distant future.

Rhodes Park situated in Langerman drive Kensington Johannesburg used to be a popular venue for pensioners and youngsters fishing there. It was a beautiful park and many a married couple used it for their photographic sessions.  Those in the area need to go and take a walk around the place with an army of bodyguards. The Ehurhuleni Municipality should hang its head in shame.  This once pristine park has been completely vandalised. 

Kleinfontein dam in Benoni which was COMPLETELY covered in water hyacinth.  Has been sprayed with a herbicide.  One wonders what happens when all the hyacinth dies and rots on the bottom.  Concerned citizens of Benoni organised work parties to manually remove an infestation of this invasive weed on the Homestead lake Another session was organised but some councillor stopped any further removal of the hyacinth because all the helpers did not have a permit to transport the weed. The Council removed the weed---and I bet they did not have the required permit.
Hyacinth is an invasive plant and it is illegal and a crime to have it on ones property. The water belongs to the country and DWAF are the official custodians of all our water. It seems that the Government is a law unto itself.
KZN have built an incredible facility in the upper reaches of the Drakensburg with the most up to date sewerage purification plant. Trouble is the local tribe headman who cannot read, write or even drive a car has been put in charge of the operation of this plant. Methinks all the operators will fall into the nepotism category.   We have all this legislation but no implementation. What we need is a democracy and not an incompetent dictatorship.  Excuse the bitchiness of this newsletter but I am gatvol that a country with so much potential is ast developing symptoms of the Titanic.

Our minister of Water Despair has stated the the tap water in all the towns in S.A. Is safe to drink. It is time she got one of these all expenses paid trips with her entourage staying in the best facilities and tried the water.  That is provided there is water in the taps. I suggest she takes along a large quantity of Imodium Plus as well as a doctor.   The minister will then realise that her staff are telling her that everything is fine and instead of getting off her butt she should go out and have look see for herself. If this is too much trouble she should try phoning the local newspapers in these towns  --- that is provided her land lines are working.. If not I am sure she gets a State paid cell phone.

SAFFA has selected 8 anglers to participate in the World and Commonwealth competitions and are busy looking for any financial help where every they can get.   It is a young team and every bit of financial help would be appreciated. Unfortunately unlike some of our politicians they are not on the gravy train.   Just send me an e-mail and I will let you have the SAFFA banking account details please add reference Protea donation.

Kind Regards,

Trevor Babich.