From offshore bottom bouncing to soft plastics in the river, a wide variety of fishing pursuits is on offer this month.
In the estuaries this month you’ll have a multitude of options, from jigging deep holes for bream to ripping plastics on the flats for flathead, from soaking weed for luderick to drifting prawn pieces for tasty garfish.
Bream will be moving around the estuaries with the majority of fish holding in deeper sections. The breakwalls and coal walls will be the best starting points.
Up-river, you’ll find bream holding in deep water around the bridges and on the deeper banks of the Hastings around Rawdon Island and the black cliffs in the Maria River.
Best options during daylight hours will be soft plastics, try them unscented at first and then as the bite fades, smother the lure with plenty of scent.
Fresh prawns and slab baits will be the best baits. Look for areas with some water movement, and fish as light as the conditions will allow.
Normally I’d say work some good berley but at this time of year it can bring on a bevy of undersize fish. So if you’re taking the kids for some action, berley away. But if you’re after some quality fish then try not to berley and be patient and willing to move spots if the action isn’t coming.
For flathead, this time of year I like to head up-river to the large flats around Rawdon Island and the weed areas in the Maria River around The Hatch.
If you start catching a host of small fish, keep casting because this is normally a good sign that bigger fish are in the area.
‘This time of year I like to fish plastics for the big flathead. The old saying, ‘big lure for a big fish’ isn’t necessarily true this month, with smaller plastics accounting for some quality fish.
It’s simply a matter of working the lure at the desired speed to entice the fish to strike. Mix it up and you’ll soon find the right pattern.
This time of year I favour a soft stickbait or a minnow grub, with purple or dark green good early and late in the day and a more natural pumpkinseed colour in broad daylight.
Garfish will be schooling this month and the mouth of Limeburners Creek and the Maria River will be good places to berley up some quality fish. Breadcrumbs are ideal and the best bait is certainly peeled prawn pieces, either unweighted or rigged under a quill float or a small piece of grass straw secured to the line with a half-hitch.
Don’t be surprised if you snare a few luderick fishing in this manner. They will be on the move and willing to feed up when the water flow is good.
If you’re fishing an area with water movement and changes in depth then you’ll more than likely do well on the luderick, especially around the lease edges in Limeburners Creek and along the coal walls.
Just remember to take what you need, not your limit. I still can’t believe the number of stories I hear of guys bagging out, then going home and emptying their bags and heading back for another session.
Don’t be afraid to speak up when you see someone doing the wrong thing. Sometimes a wise word can influence an ill-informed fisho to change their ways and become a more sustainable angler.
Offshore action is in transition this month, with bottom bouncing for snapper still popular. This month they will be a little more spread between the inside reefs in around 6m to the outer reefs in 15m or more.
Soft plastics have been accounting for a large majority of snapper catches in recent months.
This month we should also see some warmer water species, with the odd tuna and mahi mahi possible. Kingfish should be good around Point Plomer.
Beach anglers will still be chasing bream with some quality fish still on offer. Mulloway will be big targets on the beaches, with North Beach from the Hastings River to Point Plomer a good place to hit in the 4WD to search for gutters.
The Port Macquarie BREAM Classic will be held on October 9 and 10. Get along to the 6.30am starts to see some fantastic boats head off for a day’s tournament fishing, then come back to Port’s beautiful Town Green for the weigh-ins at 1.30pm to see some great Hastings River bream and talk to some of Australia’s top tournament anglers.
So no matter what type of fishing you do, get out and enjoy the weather and wonderful angling available in October.
Email me and tell me how you went on your fishing trips. Karl from Laurieton sent me some great pics and tales of his exploits.Reads: 2800