Barbel is definitely one of the strongest fighters we have in our dams and rivers. They can grow massive and specimens of over 40kg have been caught in the Orange River.
Barbel normally spawn after heavy summer rains in shallow weedy water. They seldom feed during spawning and to target them during this time you should have a lot of patients. Barbel hunt in shoals in the most dense, plant invested parts of rivers and dams. When targeting Barbel one must look for rocky points and ledges, trees with branches hanging over the water, weedy banks etc. Barbel lay beneath tree branches were birds nest waiting for anything that might get drop from the nest such as bird droppings, small birds and insects.
There are different methods when it comes to catching barbel.
Firstly by using baits such as fish heads, fish fillets, small birds, web toed frogs (plantannas), crabs, crickets, worms, live bait, and even chicken livers. Secondly by using artifitual baits such as lead heads, flies, spinners, crank baits and surface lures such as poppers. Which ever method you use barbel is great fun to catch and well worth it.