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Offshore action maintains momentum
  |  First Published: April 2013



The offshore action has certainly kept its momentum, as the waters off St Helens are absolutely alive with small to medium albacore of 5-15kg.

Some anglers reporting that they hadn’t seen numbers this strong for many, many years. Water temperatures out on the edge of the shelf have risen to around 21C with the inshore grounds not far below so it is no wonder the fish are in large numbers and spread well inshore as well as offshore. This has been a boom for small craft able to head out not far from shore and land quality tuna of all sizes.

The larger yellowfin tuna have also turned up, whilst not in huge numbers they are certainly a welcome addition and have stretched the arms of quite a few anglers expecting the smaller albacore.

In the last month there has been more plenty of striped marlin hook ups and fish landed barely a mile or two offshore from St Helens point on both lures and live baits although trolling lures have accounted for the lions share.

Many anglers are also reporting having marlin in their lure spread slashing at lures but not hooking up and quite a few small striped tuna being caught are coming to the boat very beat up after being smashed by marlin under the boat.

Bream

The last month has also been an absolute cracker for quality bream, many of the east coast systems have been producing excellent numbers and sizes of black bream and at this time of year the flats fishing with hardbodied lures is just superb.

The recent Tassie Bream Classic was held on the waters of Georges Bay and whilst the weather didn’t pay the part on the first day making if difficult for anglers, they more than made up for it on the second day with plenty of quality fish weighed in, the largest 10 fish bag topping the scales at almost 9kg.

The biggest bream weighed in for the comp was a 1.5kg specimen which unfortunately paled in comparison to the almost 50cm bream that was caught in the week that followed by local charter guide Michael Haley on a Squidgy Wriggler and weighed well over 2kg.

The prawn season is also in full swing up and down the coast with plenty of prawners out on the calmer night rounding up a feed or two. The presence of the prawns has also brought the calamari around and some fine specimens have been taken from Georges Bay and St Helens point of late.

With Easter coming up the water ways around St Helens will be busy with the garfish coming on hot and for the next few months we should see some top gar action with fish averaging 450-500mm in length.

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