Just another Dive and a World Record King Mackerel

36.8kg world record King Mackerel , Kevin DalyJust another dive in sunny South Africa. l picked Kevin up at 7.00am and we drove down to Hiberdene,a distance of 100km,south of Durban. The sea looked OK with not too much of a swell running,around 1m,and green. l said to Kevin ` I think we are in for a good dive' as I know some good spots off Hiberdene. Walking north towards the childrens home, we chatted to another diver who had just had his fish eaten and had been chased out the water by a big shark. My level of enthusiasm dropped a degree. On swimming out the viz was fine, 5m, but the water was a very cold 18 c

with a slight N-S current. We tried for snoek and then swam out to a spot Kevin knows in 50foot. The reef was very dead and I was thinking of just getting my bugs at this stage. To warm up I started to swim hard for another reef which has a lot of caves further north. The viz had dropped a bit with lots of suspension but the water had warmed up. I was having trouble locating the spot as one of my marks was hidden in the winter haze. I suddenly heard Kevin screaming loudly inshore from me. My immediate thought was shark, but then I could hear, `big cuda, big cuda.'

Kevin was being towed in a circle going out to sea. As I had recently seen a shark in the area I followed Kevin out. When I eventually saw the cuda it was hard to believe that it was one, as it was so big. We decided to locate my spot and get our bugs. I found it soon after and there was a shoal of geelbek on it. Kevin and I both managing to bag one. We shot a couple of reefies each and got some big bugs before swimming in. The fun and games was carrying the cuda to the car along with the rest of our catch. The cuda weighed 36.8kg which will be a new S.A. record. The old record was 34kg. It is also probably a world record. Not bad for a days dive! From the head stones, ORI estimate the fish to be between 7 and 8 years old.

Safe diving, John.