Estuaries Eagerly Deliver
  |  First Published: November 2010

November is a great month to fish the estuaries around the Merimbula region with both Pambula and Merimbula lakes fishing well.

It really depends on what techniques you want to use to target your species with most methods working at present.

Anglers using soft plastics will have the edge as we are still in the transition period from spring to summer.

Flathead will be the main quarry with big 90cm+ fish common catches. This month is renowned for monster crocs and a few solid fish around 80cm have already been captured, so all looks well for future weeks.

The fish have moved down to the lower sections of the estuaries with the ribbon-weed edges in 4-6m of water being ideal.

I like using big plastics at this time of year with 4-5” models the go. Fish them pretty slowly with a methodical lift/drop presentation using a variety of natural colours.

Even with the larger lures you will still get a great feed of duskies up to 50cm and there's always the chance of mulloway at this time of year.

Those anglers fishing the channels have been doing well on bream, trevally and blackfish with both bait and plastic throwers getting fish.

Anchoring up and using berley sparsely with live nippers or striped tuna cubes has been great on bream, one can expect some good whiting too as the water temperature warms further.

There's been sporadic patches of salmon entering both systems but they have been patchy. One day salmon are all the go and the next they are nowhere to be seen; when they are about there is some great fun to be had.

You can catch them on shiners, plastics and bait but we have had great fun using bream surface lures on them too.

Beaches, Rocks

The beaches have been a little slow with the calmer conditions but there's still some quality fish to be caught.

A few locals have been getting solid bream mainly around the rockier corners of the beaches with whiting and yelloweye mullet in the shallower gutters.

Fishing the flooding tide on sunrise has been the key to their success with live beachworms and pipi the preferred baits.

When the conditions suit expect the salmon action to get better. The usual combination of a paternoster rig with a bait or popper is the best rig.

There should be a few mulloway in the suds too; fresh tailor slabs or big bunches of beachworms are ideal baits.

Better beaches at present include Tura, North Tura and Haycock.

Anglers throwing lures from the stones targeting the pelagic species should have some fun this month with kingfish, striped tuna, bonito and frigates all a real possibility.

The headland at Tura and Merimbula Wharf would be the pick of the spots.

Using live bait at these locations is a gun way to catch most fish, but remember to use heavier gear, especially for the kings. Casting whole pilchards on ganged hooks will also work.

Short Point to the north of Merimbula is fishing fairly well for blackfish, drummer and the odd bream; cabbage used in conjunction with berley has been working well.

Fresh peeled prawns on a lightly weighted outfit should also see a bream or two.

Those fishing outside are getting some quality snapper on the inshore reefs.

Numbers are not huge but the size is there with a lot of fish averaging 2kg; these are good table-sized fish and great fun on the right tackle. Long Reef and Horseshoe would be the pick with Lennard's Island also worth a look.

There's been a few kingfish around too. So far the big fish are yet to show up but that will change this month with trolling deep divers and live bait the best way to tempt them.

Out wider there's been sporadic catches of albacore and smaller yellowfin tuna but like usual everything depends on water temperature, current and bait activity.

At present water a little further north of us is 19ºC; when that gets wide of Merimbula expect the tuna action to hot up.

Trolling from the 70 fathom line to the second drop would be the place to fish with a spread of bibbed and skirted lures the go.

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