Focus is on the mullet
  |  First Published: May 2012

It’s been another very wet month but fortunately there have been a few days of delightful weather in between the showers and the fishing has been great.

The mullet have been gathering in the lower parts of the estuary and a couple of schools of hard-gut fish have been seen along the beaches.

The mullet should be running by Anzac Day and that will spark some great fishing from Crowdy Head, the harbour walls at Crowdy and the rocks at Diamond Head.

When the mullet are moving up the coast the sharks and jewfish ambush them when they are trying to move around the headlands; the mullet may be held on the southern side of a headland for a couple of days.

However, when the urge to move north becomes too strong they will go and despite the attacks of the sharks and jew, they will carry on north.

The mullet do not get any respite because the predatory fish stick close to the schools and feed on them as they move along the beaches.

It is not only the mullet from the Manning that bring the jew and sharks, but all the other mullet schools that come from the rivers south of here.

The mullet could still be moving past Harrington well into May.


School jew have been caught in great numbers from the sea wall at the mouth of the Manning.

Most of the fish are 2kg to 3kg but some of 8kg to 10kg have been landed. Soft plastic stickbaits around 6” long have been the lures to use.

Some anglers using squid baits fished from the end of the wall and from the beach north of the wall have been landing fish to 10kg.

Bream, flathead and luderick have also been on the bite from the walls at the mouth of the river. Whiting have not been seen for a couple of weeks but may turn up when we get some calm weather.

Crowdy Beach is just starting to form up again and the tailor and salmon are much easier to catch with a bit of formation to fish.

Early mornings and late afternoons are the best times to chase tailor and lures and bait both work well.

Good bream and some whiting have been caught from the southern end of Crowdy Beach.


Excellent pearl perch have been caught from the grounds wide off Crowdy Head and a 16kg bar cod came from the same area.

Small mahi mahi have been in plague numbers out around the wave rider buoy and leatherjackets are starting to show out wide.

In early May all anglers will be following the mullet run and trying to hook a decent jew. Jew of 25kg and up have been hard to come by and anyone who scores a fish of 20kg is considered to have done pretty well.

Live baits and fresh slab baits are the way to go for big jewfish. Live mullet, tailor and yellowtail make good baits while slabs or heads of mullet, tailor and bonito make great dead baits. Fresh squid, whole or just the head, are also top bait.

Bream will be schooling in the mouth of the river getting ready to spawn and those anglers prepared to brave the cold will be able to score a bag of them if they fish the last two hours of the run-in tide and the first two hours of the run out.

Luderick will also be schooling up to spawn and will take weed during the day and fresh yabbies at night. There can be no reason for anglers not getting plenty of fish.

Joshua Smith with his first jew. His grandfather cast the bait and Josh did the rest.

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