We had to decide where to hold training camp underwater hunters, to prepare for the European and world championships and other international competitions. Evaluation Criteria for the selection of such a place, we had a few: the relative proximity to Russia, similar hunting terms and conditions of future events and, of course, more - less reasonable prices with civilized living conditions. After a rather lengthy investigations, negotiations, faxes and phone calls the choice fell on Tunisia.
World spear fishing
Mediterranean Sea, which held the majority of European competitions, 4 hour flight, the visa is issued at the airport, less than in Europe, the price level - all of this and rocked the scales in favor of the peaceful North African country, the population, as it turned out, quite calm, accustomed to the long-term presence of French Arabs.
In addition, we expected less, compared with the European coast, the number of underwater hunters and, as a consequence, greater integrity underwater inhabitants. Apparently, it attracts and spear fishing champion Spaniard Pedro Carbonell world who told us that Tunisia - one of the favorite places of his workouts.
And, of course, the most important thing for us - according to information from the Embassy of Tunisia and our travel agencies, spear fishing in this country, unlike Egypt, is allowed. Other problems are caused, as they say, pay - and fly.
World spear fishing - Africa
Zipper, and our team has a cool March evening unloads on the Tunisian land numerous bags and trunks with equipment from the truck. Really hospitable natives threw our luggage in a large jeep and rushed us in Tabarka.
Stones, rocks and underwater ridges - a necessary condition for an exciting and successful hunt. They serve as a haven of algae, mollusks, crustaceans and many other organisms that fish feeds, and numerous cracks, caves, piles of stones are a great hiding place for fish.
A flock of mullet
Eyes run: what fish to choose? The rule as to etiquette: "Take the closest." The number and diversity of species in the rocky terrain much more than the bare sandy bottom, and networks in places not - then drew the fish. In general, when in the morning we raced out of the hotel to the sea for a morning jog, surrounding coastal species we pleased: the rock sticking out of the water in the required, by our standards, quantity.
It remained to locate fish and the most convenient place for hunting. Who better than anyone needs to know where, when and to whom you can hunt? Clearly, whoever he dives. With this in mind, we headed to the local diving center. Arab divers greeted us warmly, but the matter of a few spear fishing.
"Hunting is impossible", - he has translated the guide. "It is impossible without a special license," he -Slightly cheered us.
But, mindful of the bureaucratic state officials International, we have not experienced much optimism. As it turned out, in vain. In the remaining time before the closing of government offices while (it was Saturday - the shortest day) guide showed miracles in the organization of the process of obtaining the necessary documents for the license.
Despite the menacing look wrasse - fish is not dangerous, and their teeth are all in a row does not show. But the finger in the mouth it is better not to put
- Shoot the fish only for myself, not for sale, - said the head of the harbor. And he added: - Not more than 15 kg. But what kind of order! What care about nature! - We saw each other. - That's right guys do. Possible - but within the rules. Accounting and control. "
So we dived in all the official grounds. By the way, the paper we have guards then checked. The next day we were taken to a promising, according to the diving center, hunting place - Cape Module no.
- It is often the Italians come to hunt, - told us the road Tunisian Monge - live for a month or more in the vans, and even in tents on the shore.
It turns out we are not alone so smart. Only the Italians are smarter - come in June and July, when the water is warmer and the fish, according to Monsey more. Well, yes, we 16-degree water of the winter hunting - almost fresh milk. By the way, the house was a choice: take a thick suit, 7 or 5 mm?
It was decided that 5 mm - after all Africa, the sun is hot, and the cargo is less than necessary. The choice was correct. French wetsuit «Mundial Equipe» 5mm BEUCHAT Company with open sometimes perfectly insulated against heat loss. The wetsuit of this company, by the way, hunting and Pedro Carbonell. Been us 4-5 hours without any symptoms were cooling.
Immediately after water immersion underwater landscape impressed me the relative poverty of colors and the diversity of life. A small amount of algae, no shells and crabs more upset. Not what we have, on the Black Sea. But exotic as sea urchins and star bright red color brought me to feel that I still in the Mediterranean Sea.
Strong, fast trivially this time was out of reach
So I switched to the most important, for the sake of what we came here to fish. The bottom relief was fairly flat, with large areas of sand, and I immediately swam to a high promontory vdavshemusya deep into the sea from one bay region.
As I expected, the Cape continued high underwater ridge stretching far out to sea. In parallel, she ran a few more of these ridges. An ideal place for hunting. Scurrying around the huge stone fish in case of danger immediately scattered in the cracks or sinks to the bottom, by a sort of "street" between the two ridges in width of 3-5 meters out into the distance, ducking down the road under the plane wreckage piled up in this interval.
The experience of the Black Sea Hunt knows that these tabular plates had to be a favorite habitat of croaker, sea bream or Zubarev - laskirya. Croaker is not visible, and Zubarev, laskirey, their relatives in the HKSAR were many different kinds.
Representatives fish fauna of the Mediterranean - grouper, striped HKSAR salpa, ordinary HKSAR kefap-golden mullet.
Hovering around especially large underwater rock, I watched as their large flocks smoothly skirted me some distance. However, copies were small. Unfortunately, the appearance of small, typical for water in Tunisia at this time of year, is not allowed to observe from a distance more cautious big fish.
"Most likely, it is hiding under stones" - I decided, by analogy with the Black Sea and began to methodically examine a large gap lying at the bottom of the plates.
To get used to after a long winter break, I started at a depth of eight meters, reached along the ridge to about 15 m, and along the other side went back to the shore, gradually checking the appropriate stones. After working as forty minutes, I was surprised, decent shot specimens not found. Moreover, as I looked at the stones nor nor flashed dark narrow gap flashlight fish there was not found at all.
Once I caught healthy stingray - stingray yes sometimes loomed far smaller HKSAR. It is necessary to change tactics. Woke sports rage and excitement. And I began to dive to the bottom of the ridge: swim along it near the bottom ten meters, pop up slowly and carefully looked through the top of the other side.
It went better, I began to see the fish, a decent shot, and after some time, "shoot", emerged from the gap between two rocks, been under a rock decent wrasse. I must honestly admit that a few times before that missed by other fishes. First, I was not prepared for the fact that fish in a lump turned out to be much more careful and skittish than in our Black Sea coast.
Shot you need to get done as soon as he saw the fish, or the next moment she quickly runs away or moves away to a safe distance. First, I have sinned to the Italians: that they were wrong, all the fish scared away. But later, analyzing the situation, I decided that it's not just them. And local natives are constantly trying networks on top (they are in the day not far off the network pulled), and the natural enemies of the fish here anymore.
Grouper prudently placed on "their" territory
His brother predator rest also does not provide - a large sea bass, bonito, and tuna. My friend, by the way, it was possible during one of the ambushes on the bottom, holding his breath, watching the last eight meters deep in the water of large tuna. On the Caucasian coast of the Black Sea they do not, and sea bass, not to mention the bonito, very rare.
So, I watch the fish more or less large began, but in the mind, of course, cherished the hope to meet this large grouper - the legendary trophy experienced foreign hunters. Several small of his colleagues I have met. They all behave the same way - there and then left.
"If there are small, there should be more," - with this in mind I went to dive on the chosen scheme.
Once again, surfacing over the ridge, I saw in front, on the other side of the crevice, over boulders arranged in parallel departures grouper. Rather, he saw only the tail. Turbid water and decent distance made it impossible to see the whole thing, but the tail was clear that rather big fish.
There was only one - carefully cross the ridge and float on the next. Which I did. Really helped me regular winter training in the pool, because the duration of the dive was too big. But the tension forces worth it - as soon as I looked out over the next ridge, as directed in the valley saw two burly groupers, the largest was probably ten kilograms.
Alas, the same thing happened again - fishes darted past me along the ridge, I reflexively shot, but certainly did not hit, and with bulging eyes popped to the surface. Catching his breath and calmed down, I said. As they say, to clear my conscience for half an hour trying to find them, but knew from experience that the chances are minimal. And so it happened.
The catch for the first day proved to be rich, but you had to swim to shore. Despite the excellent weather, there was a decent rolling wave and this turbulence unaccustomed to great me tired. In the following days we continued to search for effective hunting methods and to get used to the diving conditions. And once again convinced of the truth of the words of one of our old friend, too, underwater hunter:
It cannot be that in the river was not a fish
To the sea ice that can be safely used. At sea, it is necessary only to be able to search for it cannot be a fish, have well-trained and well-known places and the habits of fish in a particular area. So, for example, a couple of days I worked on a method of hunting large white HKSAR.
It turned out that it is not necessary to climb them under a rock when they flee to. It is useless - because the fish pops up on the other side and "absorbed" in the following slots. I hovered two meters above the stone, in the region of the slot where the HKSAR and hid some of them bounced back.
So I managed to get a few decent pieces. The main thing was to have time to shoot. But when you already know where the fish wait, it's much easier. Yet it turned out that schooling fish, such as mullet and amberjack, like spinning near the steep coastal cliffs. Apparently, foam and small air bubbles formed by the waves of strikes, sheltering fish from the seagulls.
Shooting at a moving past the pack, when you shake their waves, very sporty and exciting. They caught and grouper, succeeded Paul - said the experience of participating in international competitions, and excellent physical preparation. Unfortunately, as always, quickly ended our stay in Tunisia.
We have seen once again that for the effective exercise of hunting are very important in those places where you need to show maximum results. And most importantly, that the professional approach, dedication hunting always will be.