Variety from the rocks
  |  First Published: April 2012

Rock fishing in the area has been excellent, as is the offshore scene and the Bega River is replenished with fish following recent rains.

Tathra has some superb rock platforms. The main headland down behind the pub and around Kianinny Bay are the prime spots for chasing drummer, groper, bream and trevally.

Cunjevoi and cabbage weed are the preferred baits, rigged with a small ball sinker run straight down to the hook to reduce snagging on the bottom.

Predators also visit along the stones and it’s quite possible to catch a variety of species.

Kingfish patrol the shore, feeding on a variety of baitfish and this month they are joined by longtail, striped and sometimes yellowfin tuna, along with sharks, tailor and salmon.

Drifting out a live bait under a balloon or bobby cork is most popular and high-speed lure casting can also produce results from the rocks and Tathra’s historic wharf.

Bait can be obtained by berleying these same areas. At this time of year keep an eye out for garfish, they can provide entertainment, bait and a good feed while awaiting the big strike.

The wharf is fishing very well for a variety of species – great for families on holidays as the kids get stuck into the baitfish schools. Yellowtail and trevally are regular captures along with the ever-popular slimy mackerel.


Game fish and bottom dwellers are on the chew. Marlin are still around and if it’s a big blue you’re looking for, now is the time. Tathra Canyons out over the continental shelf have been the venue for many an epic battle and probably the best way to encounter a big blue is with a spread of large skirted lures, because you can cover more water to find the fish.

Once you have raised a fish you then can revert to live slimy mackerel or small striped tuna.

There will be other species encountered when chasing billfish, from mahi mahi to tuna (including albacore) and a mixture of sharks.

Calm conditions have allowed bottom fishos plenty of scope to work different depths. The wider reefs out in 70 fathoms are producing some very nice snapper, mowies, tiger flathead and very big trumpeter.

While fishing down deep anglers can berley and sett bait for sharks, tuna or marlin.

Fishing for flathead has always been popular out from Tathra. Most of the grounds south of Bournda or north to Wapengo have good schools of sand and tiger flatties with the odd red gurnard and gummy shark.

On the inshore reefs most popular targets are snapper. Bait is still the most reliable way to catch reds but soft plastics are increasing in popularity in shallower water.

In the Bega River up around Blackfellas Lake and the rock walls in the ‘Thompsons’ area are proving very productive for bream and estuary perch on lures.

The drop-offs and the main channel down towards the entrance have produced lots of flathead and tailor and some jewfish on lures and live.

Down around the flats anglers using nippers and fresh prawns have had some exciting fishing around the weed beds for whiting, blackfish and bream.

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