A great month for snapper
  |  First Published: August 2012

August may be cold but it can be a great month for catching snapper. It’s usually the start of a good run into summer with most of the upcoming months producing consistent bottom fishing. The offshore reefs produce good numbers, while the inshore reefs can still produce quality fish. It seems to be a case of choosing your area and working it and you should get amongst them.

The weather does play a role and it can be a bit erratic at times; you just need to work around it and you should be fine. We still see a few strong westerlies in the mornings but with the warmer days on land starting to show these early winds have a tendency to drop out by mid morning opening the wider grounds up. The weather from midday on can glass right out and we often experience some amazing afternoons for fishing. This is just the best time to be on the water and the fishing can be well worth it.

Float lining for snapper would have to be one of the most effective techniques and will most likely be for years to come. There is often a fair bit of debate as to wether to use monofilament or braid as a mainline. My line of choice for my floating is Toray Radius 34lb braid and I run a long Toray 30lb fluorocarbon leader about three times the length of my rod. We fish overheads when float lining as it seems we have a bit more control, but once again this is a personal preference.

Float lining is not just something that is done in the deeper water; it can also be very successful on the snapper and spangled emperor around the shallow reefs off the Tweed. Using unweighted whole pilchards or long skinny strips of bonito has resulted in a lot of good snapper over the years. Only add weight if the current is running a bit and then only just enough to get the bait down slowly.

The River

The river should still be fishing well this month and August can often be one of the better months for bream as the Tweed seems to fire a bit later than many of the other rivers. Deep plastics and deep diving minnows will be the two go to techniques.

Getting the boat parallel to the bank and banging the deep diving minnow through the rocks can often produce some really good bream. Alternatively with the plastics it can be better to hold out a bit from the bank and cast back into it. This will allow you to hop the plastic down the steeper banks. The majority of the bites will often come just as the plastics gets to the bottom of the walls or banks.

My go to plastic for this type of fishing is the 2” Do-Live Craw. We also catch a lot of flathead using these little craws. They must mimic something that the flatties love eating too.

Luderick will be around in good numbers and judging by what’s been caught already it should be well worth keeping the long rods and floating gear out for another month or two. I sat watching a few more experienced anglers catching luderick around the middle of July and they were having an absolute ball doing it. These fish pull really hard and will often grab a lure meant for a bream or flathead.

Wider Grounds

The wider grounds may still hold a few big yellow fin tuna lingering and these fish are prized sports fish as well as table fish. If you are keen to head out and target them keep your eyes peeled for any bird activity, as this is usually a good indication of their presence. Working the area with hardbody diving lures like the Halco Laser Pro 190 is often the way to get them.

The bigger yellow fin are often found a long way from shore at this time of year and we had some quality sessions off the Tweed Canyons and even a touch wider than this last year. A group of boats spread out make finding these fish a lot easier as you are then able to cover a lot more area to hopefully find them. Good luck on the water and good fishing to you all.

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