Bass, perch on the bite
  |  First Published: November 2008

The bass and estuary perch in the upper reaches have been on the bite with a good number of fish up to 44cm.

They are being caught from Windsor right down to Wisemans Ferry, the best area being the Sackville-Lower Portland area. Most have been caught on plastics and small trolled lures.

Some good flathead have been taken in the lower, middle and Cowan Creek reaches on soft plastics and bait.

I love catching bass on surface lures cast close to cover or any shallow area.

Cast the lure as close to or under any overhang, let it sit for a while and give the lure a little twitch, then let it sit a little longer.

This is when it usually gets belted; if not, wind the lure a metre or so, let it sit and repeat the process.

If this does not work, vary the speed of your retrieve. Active bass often like a lot of disturbance and lethargic bass will often strike if you slow down and leave the lure in the strike zone longer.

Surface lures can be used all day if they are cast into the shadows and also work well in open water over weed and along the front edges, especially after dark. My favourite surface lures are the Taylor Made Walker and small fizzers

The boys at the Australian Bass Angler at Penrith report that good-size bass are being caught above and below the weir. Most of the fish are being caught below the weir on surface lures and small Beetle Spins and small spinnerbaits.

Above the weir, the water is warming with bass being caught on bait and lures and some catfish on worms.

Bass are also being caught at North Richmond bridge and there have been mullet around Windsor

Ben from Windsor Bait and Tackle has been getting plenty of reports of flathead and flounder on the drift between Box Head and Lion Island, as well as along Patonga Beach. Best baits seem to be whitebait and pilchards.

Plenty of school jewfish have been moving around the Spencer area and are being caught on Hawkesbury prawns and 3” pumpkinseed Bass Minnows around the sandy drop-offs.

Around Wisemans Ferry there have been pockets of estuary perch and bream eating small prawn baits drifted around the tidal eddies.

Bass and perch have been a little slower to move right up-river this season because of slightly cooler water.

However, there are always a few fish that bolt up early enough to secure their Summer homes and they have already started smashing surface lures and small spinnerbaits.


Kingfish have started to turn up around Blue Fish Point and the closer reefs, where I have been picking them up on small trolled skirts and 9” soft stickbaits tossed around the washes.

Schools of tailor and kingfish have been falling to small metals and soft plastics around Goat Island and the Harbour Bridge. Remember that you cannot stop or drift between the area marked under and around the bridge.

I also heard of a good catch of kingfish in the Harbour near the channel markers.

The best way to target the kings around the markers is to troll live bait or cast weighted soft stickbaits close to the marker, letting them sink before working them back up with a stop-and-go retrieve.

Bream anglers have been catching plenty in the harbour around the moored boats casting small soft stickbaits close to the keels and letting them sink and watching their lines for any movement. Most of the pontoons are also holding fish.

Flathead have been caught up around Middle Harbour on larger soft plastics around the drop-offs.

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