To say that the bay has turned it on over the last month would be a vast understatement. Some good doses of rain, and prolonged calm weather have all added up to some sensational fishing and great captures by many anglers in the south of the bay.
A good indication of the quality of the fishing is the number of big snapper that have been taken in recent weeks. Trev, Lynette and the boys at Launching Way only weighed three snapper over 10kg last season, but have already topped that since the last week of November this year.
Most of the proven marks are producing snapper, but the common threads amongst successful anglers is fishing shallower water and using ‘snapper snatchers’. These pre-tied rigs, manufactured by Black Magic Tackle in New Zealand, and are dynamite on reds, especially when the fish are schooled up. A small piece of bait, normally squid or pilchard cube is added to sweeten the hook and entice the snapper to bite. The best features are that they will hook the fish for you, being a circle hook design, and that most fish are lip hooked, which allows for much more successful catch and release. Grab a few before your next journey onto the bay, and I’m sure you won’t be disappointed.
Conventionally rigged baits of all types are accounting for their fair share of reds out there too, with the humble pilchard still a winner. Not for young Terrence Bauer though, who recently bagged a 4kg ripper on a silver whiting, only a few kilometers from his house in Patterson Lakes. Terrence’s younger brother Dougie, who is a mad fishing addict, announced to me the other morning he is not going to rest until he lands one of the monster bream that live near his house – go get ‘em mate.
The great variety available in the bay was put on show for all to see recently with the running of the first Martha Cove multi-species fishing competition. The competition was the brainchild of Paul Worsteling, and was a huge success, attracting all sorts of anglers and boats. The end result was a much greater number and variety of species than expected, and a fun time had by all (see the Tournament pages this issue for a full write up – Ed.).
Most of the summer mainstays continue to keep anglers busy around the shoreline, with squid, whiting, flathead and other reef species winding up in many angler’s bags. I spoke to my good mate Adam Royter just before I sat down to tap out this report. He was fresh off the bay from a cracking session on squid with Doug Phayer. The boys both got their limit of squid while fishing around Ansetts, using brightly coloured Ecogear Dartmax jigs on light line.
As I mentioned a couple of months ago, my new boat has arrived, in January I will be giving the bream population somewhere in the bay a bit of a working over. Lately I have been doing a bit of product testing in my beloved ‘Patto’, with some interesting results - so stay tuned for further developments. Check out the attached photo of a couple of recent customers from the Patto. And yes, they are lapels on that Japanese fishing shirt!
Well, that’s it for another edition of VFM. I hope you all have had an enjoyable Christmas break, ate way too much food, and, most importantly, put a decent bend in your favourite fishing rod.Reads: 1388