Now’s the prime time
  |  First Published: March 2012

This has been the strangest season I can remember, with so much rain, cold water that hugged the coast on and off and everyone saying, ‘what happened to Summer?’.

February picked up a little and a few kings finally moved into the Bay and the bream fired up right across the bay.

Well that’s Sydney. Summer can be a tricky time but March is a great month for all fishing. The water in the Bay and along the coast is now at its best and weather seems to settle down a little, making it easier to plan ahead for a day fishing.

Across the vast flats of Botany Bay from Towra Point to the airport runways, there is lots on offer.

Early morning on a high tide, head into the shallows and spin for flathead and bream which both move up into the skinny water in the dark to feed.

Small blades or soft plastics work well cast ahead of your drift in 1m to around 3m of water. Get on the water at first light for the best of it.

Around 9am, move out wider into 4m to 5m because most fish move back off the flats once the sun rises higher.

If you’re a bait soaker then anchor in this area on both tides for bream. The rig is simple – a ball sinker, long trace and light line. Cast out and allow the bait to sit on the bottom.

Nippers, prawns, chicken, worms and many other baits will work as bream don`t seem to fussy.


Kingfish are about in good numbers in March. Live squid are a must but soft plastics will also work for the anglers who put the time in. The boys from Shimano did well earlier in the season just offshore, landing quite a few fish up to 18kg on live fish and squid.

It’s about fishing the right location and there are many spots in the Bay – the Drums, Trevally Alley, the Oil Wharf, the end of the Third Runway and Bare Island, to name a few.

Make sure you have a live bait over the side at each spot you fish and you’re in with a great chance on bagging a king on the Bay.

Trolling along the coast should produce bonito, salmon and the odd kingfish. Run a spread of lures with one on the surface and two divers for best results.

Work north or south about 100m off the coastline and trolling at 4 to 6 knots.

The close reefs will produce trevally, snapper and sweep if you anchor and fish lightly weighted baits in a berley trail. Try off any rocky point 15m to 25m.

Out wider can be a little slow but I still do well on morwong and the odd snapper but I spend time on the sounder searching for fish across the reef systems and then anchoring in that area. Squid, prawns, pilchards have been working well fished on the bottom off Coogee in 65m.

The season might have been slow to kick off but March should prove red-hot, so plan a day and I’m sure you will find a few fish.

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