Bega River opens up
  |  First Published: June 2011

The Bega River system has been hit by a mega flood, the second-biggest on record, but what does this mean for us anglers?

I recently crossed the Tathra bridge over the Bega River and on the seaward side the entrance looked massive, something I had never seen in my lifetime.

To my way of thinking all this is only great news for anglers.

The river should stay open to the ocean for a very long time, allowing the system to regenerate and providing a much-needed boost for the environment.

The whole river is alive with food everywhere. Nipper and worm beds have increased, prawn spawn has entered the system and baitfish numbers are massive.

Already anglers are benefiting on with some excellent captures of jewfish, which thanks to the wide, deep entrance, are able to move in and out of the river freely.

Warm offshore water brought in on the rising tide has the flathead, bream, blackfish and trevally on the chew.

The better areas to fish are the shallow flats where these fish go in search of the food already mentioned. Nippers, squirt worms and live mullet have been providing most of the action.

Further up the river, around the deeper rock walls, boat anglers using their sounders are locating schools of estuary perch. Although it might take an effort to get them to attack a lure, once this is achieved you can expect multiple hook-ups.

Up in the freshwater the bass have all but shut down but once Spring comes around, I think we will be in for something special.


Following the floods the beaches are also excellent with salmon at the top of the list and cricket scores are available for catch-and-release anglers.

Those who fish into the night are encountering plenty of tailor, the odd good gummy or whaler shark and jewfish.

Trolling along the coast has resulted in regular hook-ups on bonito, kingfish, salmon and the odd striped tuna.

The close reefs are producing snapper on soft plastics while the wider reefs have morwong, snapper, perch, nannygai and the odd pigfish. Over the continental shelf anglers with electric reels are producing plenty of blue eye trevalla, perch and hapuku.

If you venture that far out troll some lures or put in a berley trail because there are plenty of yellowfin, albacore and maybe an early season southern bluefin tuna.


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