I enjoy fishing in October. It generally hints of the coming Summer season and a often is highlighted by a run of big greenback tailor and jewfish around the rocks and beaches.
The salmon will have thinned out a bit, allowing the chance of more acceptable table targets to find your bait.
The beaches fish well this time of year with the seasonal transition still to complete and the first of the decent whiting usually make their way onto the sand from the tributaries.
Dart, bream and a few small sand flathead will be poking around the beaches and a little later in the month, the school jew should have a resurgence in better numbers in the gutters on the evening run-up tides.
The tailor tend to patrol the beach washes and the rocks at either end of the beaches, so the fringe between sand and rock is where I’d be aiming my efforts – Janie’s Corner is a good example of that.
The north end of Blueys Beach is another good spot for the tailor, so try casting lures around the bommies and rock fingers there.
The blackfish have still been running well along the breakwall and with the coast-run fish making their way back into the lake, catches are likely to continue.
Green weed is a little hard to come by but if you can get it, you should be set.
A reasonable run of bream and a few small jew are also along the wall.
There have also been some better captures, like Corey Shield’s 20kg jewfish on the Tuncurry Beach side of the wall; he SMSed me at 2.50am – thanks, mate! The fish took a live yellowtail lobbed into a heavy surf and surge.
His three-hour effort on the channel side proved fishless but his prospecting on the beach side paid off with two jew and a salmon.
It’s worth a change if you feel you are wasting your time on one side of the wall and, let’s face it, you’re already there.
The lower end of the lake and the oyster racks will start to fill up with bream again as they find their way into the estuary with the blackfish.
These bream are quite mobile through October and schools that you may find one day can disappear overnight. A bit of searching will pay off.
The increased numbers of fish also raises competition for the food so baits and lures are greedily fought over.
At the end of this month we will see the whiting getting all bent out of shape and ready to spawn, so they will become very aggressive and start nailing surface lures over the sand flats.
The flathead around the shallow weed patches are concentrating on the bait schools that are being drawn into the estuary with each run-in tide.
The bridge is still a good prospect for bream and the odd flathead, whether on bait or lures.
The last of the run out and the first of the run in is perhaps the best time to fish the area, because the flow can get strong with big tidal changes.
Offshore, the snapper have quietened down a little but the reefs north of Forster are still producing the odd big fish.
Trag, pearlies and, of course, leatherjackets are also helping fill fish boxes and an early run of bonito has shown up. Some of these bonnies are in the 3kg range and reports of big kings are also filtering through.
The kings are following the bonito and the cobia won’t be too far behind.
The rock fishing has been a bit hit and miss and the weather has been unsettled, with no supporting pattern to encourage the fish.
With a bit of luck, the rain will leave us alone for long enough for things to dry out and for the fish to get back to a regular bite.
Groper are always available and crabs or prawn heads are as good as it gets for bait. Just remember, there is a two-fish limit on the groper and, to be honest, I would prefer a feed of pig, anyway.
The black drummer have been a little disappointing to date but I’m hopeful this month will end with a booming run of quality fish – fingers crossed.Reads: 1940