First rate surf fishing
  |  First Published: May 2010

After an excellent summer of fishing the water has now cooled and the island fishing changes for the next few months of winter.

The main fishing focus is offshore during still, fine spells and onto the east coast beaches and the North East River when westerly weather prevails.

Inshore and surf fishing

Inshore, the schools of Australian salmon and trevally are back on the beaches of the east coast and in the North East River, making for first-rate surf fishing.

Plastics, bait, flies or lures all work well and are a matter of personal choice of fishing method.

There have been reports of tailor in with the salmon with fish of around 1.5kg being taken from the beach on the north side of the North East River.

Garfish are also around in good numbers this winter, particularly around Lady Barron.

For the inshore angler the staple catch is now flathead and gummies as the snapper and yellowtail kingfish have left for the winter.

The best area for flathead will be out around Kangaroo and Prime Seal islands on the west side of Flinders Island and out to the east of Lady Barron for the gummy sharks.


Offshore, the attention is now fully on the bottom fishing with striped trumpeter the main target.

These fish are more active during the cooler months and fish to 15kg can be caught in 60-100m of water.

Further out, trevalla and other deepwater species such as gemfish and hapuku are there for those keen to fish in over 400m of water.

While whale and dolphin stranding themselves is not uncommon on Flinders Island, Mike Nicholls of Emita recently found a large mako shark washed up on Caves Beach on the west coast of Flinders. All part of the natural process but certainly unusual for an oceanic shark, apparently in good condition to wash up on the beach.

Chad Jackson with a blue eye trevalla

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