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Madeira Fishing on the M.Y. Balancal

 The Team

We are delighted to welcome a new face to our team - Captain Salomão Lopes.

Salomão is originally from the Azores born and has lived his life around boats and the sea, working as a mechanic and supporting the local fleet. He is now the Captain of Balancal and keen to develop other types of fishing throughout the year as well as the targeting of pelagic species.

Captain Anibal Fernandes is recognised as one of Madeira's most experienced fisherman. Anibal spent twenty years fishing commercially in South Africa before returning to his native Madeira in 1982. It was at this time that he met Roddy Hayes and eventually became the skipper of 'Anguila'. Their first season together was one of the most successful ever with over 80 Blue Marlin caught and tagged. He went on to skipper both 'Lara Jade' and 'Margarita' and during this time guided anglers to almost 20 'granders'. He has now been working the Balancal operation since 2000 when the boat was originally constructed.

M.Y. Balancal


The Balancal is a British-built Lochin 333 Flybridge sportfisherman, launched in 2001. She was originally commissioned as a private sportfishing yacht and still continues to serve her owners in that capacity, but for the last three years she has also been placed in charter, taking her guests to sea in comfort and safety.

The 33 foot Lochin hull has proved itself in a variety of demanding roles, including that of RNLI lifeboat, and is renowned for its seakeeping and safety.

The Balancal is powered by twin 300 hp Perkins diesel engines giving her both speed and manoeuverability.

The interior is outfitted to yacht standards with a spacious open cabin and marine head.

A comprehensive ensemble of fishing tackle is carried. For blue marlin we fish with four 130 lb outfits comprising bent butt chair rods and Shimano Tiagra 130 reels spooled with dacron backing and hi-visibility nylon monofilament topshot. A range of lighter tackle is employed for smaller game fish. The lure box is equipped with a select collection of proven artificial baits.

Over the last seven years, despite spending relatively little time on the water, the Balancal has more than proved herself as a fish raiser with notable highlights including a fish of over 1000 lbs hooked and lost in September 2003, a giant fish estimated at 1100+ lbs released in September 2004, a double hookup with two fish estimated at 700 and 1000 lb+ in June 2005, and in July 2006 the successful catch and release of three blue marlin in a single day.

Captain Anibal's unequalled experience at the helm, combined with the capabilities and equipment of the Balancal, provide her anglers with the best possible chance of success.

The boats' videographer specialising in big game fishing can be booked by appointment to record your days charter.

Fishing Equipment


We run four 130 pound class outfits.

• Shimano 130 lb Reel
• Shimano 80lb Reel (130lb line)
• Penn Int. 80lb W Reel & Rod (130 lb line)

LIGHT EQUIPMENT

• Penn & Shimano light tackle ranging between 20 - 30 pound class outfits.