Gear up for a good feed
  |  First Published: May 2013

As we push into the cooler months, it’s time to gear up for the bread-and-butter species that push into Botany Bay over Winter.

It’s a great time to fish the Bay and fine weather can turn it on for weeks. Yes, it’s a little cool at times but the fishing is rather good and the odd run of kings can also turn up to provide some real fun.

Trevally and bream will start schooling around structure and spots like Trevally Alley, Watts Reef and the Oil Wharf, while the Drums can also produce well on both tides.

Deep water in the Bay is about 10m-20m and many spots I fish are in 12m, so a simple rig is all that is needed. A No 1 hook and a 0 ball sitting on top of the hook and that’s it. Bait up with a peeled prawn or a pilchard cube and you’re set to target trevally and bream over the Winter months around structure.

Anchor your boat and start a berley trail of fine chopped pilchards and chicken pellets. Keep your berley fine for best results but don’t put out too much because it can lure fish away at times.

Drop your loaded hook into the trail and feed out line at a steady pace with your reel’s baitrunner switch on or your bail arm open, keeping up with the current flow until you feel weight on the line or the drag screams to life. Then just wind and set the hook.


Winter is also trolling time on the Bay and along the coastal headlands. Bonito hang about along the coast right through Winter so early morning trolling with minnow lures or small skirts will produce well.

Tailor feed on larger baits over Winter so troll along structure like the runways, the Oil Wharf, the Drums and along Brighton Beach just off the drop-off. Put the time in and results will come.

Flathead take soft plastics in Winter and no hot spot stands out, so move about for best results. Any plastic around 80mm-100mm will suit, on a jig head to suit the depth you are fishing.

I normally work 3m-5m for best results and again the drop-off along Brighton is a standout in a westerly wind and a top shore-based spinning area. Spend the morning walking the beach casting and working this edge and I bet you will go home with a feed this Winter.

The drop in the air and water temps show that the warm season is behind us but how good was the weather in March! It was our Summer, with temps in the 30°s some days, flat seas and light winds.

The fishing was red-hot with great surface action on tailor, salmon, mack tuna, bonito and we even caught a few Watson’s leaping bonito. We caught them all on Bumpa-Bar Lures, top metals made in the Sutherland Shire from 316 stainless steel and top components.

In recent times we also have been using a new range of Shimano gear, Starlo Classix 721 2kg-4kg rods with 2500DL Baitrunners and Schneider 6kg Fine Line, which have been bulletproof and great for the Bay.

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