Offshore runs hot
  |  First Published: March 2011

I have been amazed lately how fast bad fishing water can change into great fishing water.

Temperatures have taken their time to rise in the ocean this season. One week it was sitting around 19° then in one day it rose to 24°, so this month I am expecting some great fishing as the current powers down from the tropics.

Offshore fishing has been great with a lot of marlin, mahi mahi and an array of other surface species around.

Bonito, tailor and salmon have all been in good numbers in close.

For the bottom bouncers the outlook is great with kingfish around in droves.

Some anglers have been catching a great number of kingies but are finding hordes about 2cm undersize.

But don’t despair, there are legal (65cm) ones among the smaller guys.

The best places have been North Reef, the Pines and the Marbles.

Along with the kings there have been squire, jewfish, some big morwong and large bream.

But the best news is the tailor are coming through and are of good size. March is a great time for big tailor in this area.

The beaches and rocks are also fishing well.

Tailor have been targeted with lures and pilchards under floats or on ganged hooks. A big greenback tailor on light line with a trace is great fun and these fish can really pull hard.

Bream are around the washes and a few drummer should be as well. Some bread berley and fresh prawns as bait should pull a few out.

Whiting are still feeding on the beaches and worms, prawns and red lures should all take a few.

Pipis also are great bait that’s readily available on most beaches and can take a lot of different fish.


A lot of fishermen have been talking lately about media reports about introducing a demerit point scale for boat licences tacked to.

As far as I’m concerned, that’s just another kick to your wallet, another way to raise revenue for the Government.

Everyone I have talked to agrees and a lot of fishers believe we already pay enough to fish without being pursued by a police or Maritime boat looking to drag more money out of us.

We already have spot safety checks and speed regulations by Maritime.

A lot of unhappy fishers have brought this up at fishing club meetings and it’s not going down very well.


The bass are firing in the Williams, Patterson, upper Hunter and Allyn rivers.

They have been eager to take lures, especially of an afternoon.

I had a go in the Allyn River and lost a beauty, and then a friend pulled a nice one on a live grasshopper, so a trip to the rivers could be worth a try at the moment.

This month I would be heading to the close reefs or trolling wide – the outside fishing scene is in full swing.

Or when the barometer is high enough, I’d be heading for a lazy afternoon fish for bass.

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