Following two seasons of flooding, one area that is now definitely worth a visit is the magnificent Bega River.
Although wandered and fished this system for four decades now, I never have seen the entrance to this river so wide, nor the aquatic life now residing within it so active. That goes all the way from the upper freshwater reaches through to the brackish sections and right down to where it meets the ocean.
No matter what form of estuary fish you wish to pursue, the Bega can offer it all.
At present both black and yellowfin bream are the mainstays in the salt to brackish sections. You will find some around the entrance, although most fish will move further upstream seeking the warmer water in the shallows for food and comfort.
It is quite easy to polaroid these fish over the gravel beds, where their food sources like prawns, shrimps, nippers and worms are available. Anglers should use similar baits to entice the fish to feed.
These fish will also take lures, although expect to work harder than what you would if you were using bait.
Another fish benefiting from these conditions is the estuary perch, which is growing in numbers and becoming a more regular catch.
Anglers pursuing these fish should concentrate on the rock bars upstream from the bridge. Sometimes you can sound out EPs in the deeper sections and by slowly working soft plastics or metal blades you may entice a fish to strike.
Another species common in the Bega system at this time of year is luderick, which is partial to green weed or sea lettuce (‘cabbage’) around the bridge or the rocky structure near the boat ramp.
There are also some flathead starting to show throughout the system but again anglers should concentrated on the shallows where the fish sun themselves while waiting for a feed.
Brogo Dam should also be starting to warm and its bass become active, although don’t expect great fishing until the weather warms further.
The annual Brogo bass comp is on the first weekend in December and funds raised will go towards the 2012 stocking program. For more info call me on 042 7934 688 or email me.
Other options around Tathra include those prolific schools of Australian salmon patrolling the coast and even moving into the estuaries.
From the beaches, rocks, the wharf or a boat, there are enough to satisfy any angler.
The Wharf is a great area for visitors and locals, with abundant silver trevally, yellowtail schools to keep the kids amused for hours, luderick near the rocks and sand flathead that require a long cast with a heavy sinker.
From the rocks, black drummer are still taking cunjevoi, bread or cabbage weed, while red crabs are always a favourite with the groper.
A bit of berley will attract quality garfish, the odd bream and a few silver trevally.
Offshore there should be increasing numbers of sand and tiger flathead south from Tathra and out from Bournda, as well as off Bithry Inlet to the north.
If you put in the effort you should find snapper still willing to take a bait along with the usuals like morwong, nannygai, ocean perch and gummy sharks.Reads: 1612