Love those late starts!
  |  First Published: July 2011

I just love those late starts! These shorter hours of daylight will be noticeable for at least a few more weeks so take advantage of those 6.30am starts in semi-darkness and the early arvo twilight for a fish.

Some cracker rock blackfish (pigs) to 3.5kg are wreaking havoc on anglers not equipped for the job, while fish are falling to those savvy anglers who are prepared and are consistent.

Even Sydney Harbour has pigs to 1.5kg are available as the sun goes down.

One early evening with Warwick Harper at Fairlight Pool we caught three bream to 850g, four trevally to 500g, a fat 3kg salmon and the highlight of the night, a rock blackfish of at least 1.5kg which he handled with finesse on 10lb fluorocarbon leader and 10lb braid.

The trevally did not show up until almost dark and went off again after a short period. Then the other fish showed up.

George Leonidou and Jason Li had a great Harbour session at the Grotto, which is virtually opposite Balmoral. Be aware, though, that it is open to bad weather, especially from the South.

The guys caught nine luderick to 650g, 11 trevally to 700g, a 45cm flathead and two tarwhine to 31cm. About half the fish were released.

First up came the trevally, which took peeled Endeavour prawns, pillie fillets and half pillies in a prawn, pillie and bread berley. Then we tackled the luderick on hair weed under floats with sand and hair weed berley.

I had a spare couple of hours to fish during a rough day off a high ledge at Warriewood recently. I cast bottle squid out about 115m and accounted for a brown groper of about 4.5kg, a jewfish around 4kg and four snapper to 750g, all on a low tide around noon.

Jack Mateland had a great outing at Long Reef, landing his first ever silver drummer (a small fish around 800g) as part of a great catch of a dozen trevally to a kilo, three salmon to 2kg, a 1.5kg pig, two tarwhine and a bream.

He released most of the fish, electing to keep only a feed. Hawkesbury prawns and half pillies did the damage, with the prawns slightly better on the day.

This month be prepared for stud pigs and big silver drummer.

If you get bitten off after a short, hard battle on prawn, bread or especially cunjevoi baits, it was most likely a silver. A 5cm to 20cm length of 10kg wire crimped to the 1/0 or 2/0 hook will give you a much better chance.


The beach scene is still producing some good hauls of whiting, salmon and bream and should continue that way for the next month or so.

Nick Papadis and Jeremy Lane had a great outing at Collaroy/Narrabeen Beach with 10 whiting to 31cm and some great bream to 36cm. The fish were in a gutter barely 1m deep and took beachworms caught on site. Typically, moving around a little is the key.

Taking up beach fishing for your retirement is a great way to keep those muscles in tune. Bill Atherton and Stewart Smith found that out with two bream and seven whiting on live beachworms, even though there were stacks of surfers nearby.

Whiting and bream are available for about nine months of the year. Even if the weather is a bit cool, give them a go during the late morning or early arvo high tide and you might surprise yourself.


Tony Davis from Matraville Bait and Tackle says snapper are still available for those who can cast a distance. Generally fish have been from 31cm to 40cm but Tony had a client a snapper of 2.18kg recently.

Ben Bucker, South Maroubra’s Yellow Rock and Kurnell are the producers, with salted striped tuna and mullet fillets the baits that the reds are falling for.

Some quality catches of bream from 500g to a kilo are coming from many headlands with the top spots Lurline rocks, South Maroubra and North Maroubra next to the drain.

Fish the washes for the bream and be prepared for the odd big pig that takes the prawn baits.

There have been some quality tailor to a kilo around Mistral Point, Browns Rock at Bronte and La Perouse. Glow sticks and turban floats work just fine and will reduce the loss of floats on the rocks on those dark nights.

Among the by-catch have been whopping salmon to 4kg. Similar-sized salmon have been taking small salted pilchards off Yellow Rock.

For catches of trevally try Little Green at south Maroubra but bear in mind that the area is very dangerous in anything but flat conditions.

A few trevally are around most deep-water areas at the moment. Berley with bread and chopped pillies and fish light sinkers in the wash so the berley spreads.

Trevally and luderick have been caught at North Maroubra and some big square-mouthed luderick have come from the wreck around the corner from Yellow Rock.

For a safe spot up high, try Browns Rock for tailor and salmon at night but be careful and don’t fish alone.

Squid are playing the game for those willing to put in the effort late arvo/evening. They are mostly southern calamari and you can expect two to eight a session.

Pigs are at The Blessings and Honeycomb north of Lurline. There have been huge ones at Wedding Cake Island and quality ones from Donkeys, north of Julians, and Cape Banks

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