Action in close and out wide
  |  First Published: June 2013

Offshore anglers have been having a field day with a variety of species, particularly over the inshore reefs.

Heaps of snapper averaging around 1.5kg are succumbing to a wide range of techniques. There's been the odd fish to 4kg but I expect more big fish to be caught this month.

Almost all reefs are producing at some time although moving around to locate feeding fish has been the key to more consistent results.

Concentrate your efforts on the gravel and not the hard stuff. Being able to read your sounder is paramount here and knowing how to tell the difference between bottom hardness and formations can be the difference between a good day and a fishless one.

The snapper are responding well to whole pilchards on paternoster or running-sinker rigs. Squid, cuttlefish and striped tuna strips are also working.

Anchoring up and berleying has been popular and effective when there's current.

It's paramount that there's some sort of movement to get the reds to bite.

Mixed in with the snapper are morwong, trevally, john dory and the odd smaller kingfish.

Out wider, game fishos’ only real chance of success is with yellowfin tuna and southern bluefin tuna. Every June we get our fare share of both and early indications are we might just get a solid season on these speedsters.

Reports from down south are encouraging on the bluefin front and longliners to the north have been getting good numbers of yellowfin.

When they turn up, trolling will be effective, as will a berley/cube trail. Every day is different so be prepared to do both.


The beaches continue to fire with salmon in huge numbers along any beach with a decent gutter. They are responding to a wide range of techniques and bait and lure anglers are doing well.

I had a fish for an hour or so with my daughters on my local beach at Tura a few days back. We managed a handful of fish around 1.8kg on bream tackle casting 25g shiners. The kids had a ball, as I did, on these great family fish.

With the salmon expect tailor to 3kg. Better beaches to try include Haycock, Tura, North Tura and Merimbula Main.

The estuaries have slowed down but that’s to be expected with the colder water. There are still plenty of fish to catch but what you target at this time of year and how you go about it will certainly determine your success.

It’s a great time for chasing trevally and bream in the channels with soft plastic stickbaits.

Some tidal run is paramount here. Cast at 45° upstream and let your offering come down with the tide.

I’ve found lately that casting blades is working very well in water of less than 5m around the margins for bream, whiting and blackfish. It's easy, fun and gets you solid results.

The Top Lake at Merimbula is loaded with tailor. These feisty fighters are good in the smoker if you bleed the fish immediately and ice them down. Look for working birds, cast 20g-30g shiners and you will soon be in business.


The bread-and-butter species have put smiles on most rockhoppers’ faces. Blackfish, drummer, groper, bream and a few good snapper have all had a chew and that won’t change this month.

Drummer numbers and size will continue to increase as we head into Winter. Lightly weighted baits fished in the washes will account for the bigger fish.

Try whole crabs, cunjevoi, bread and prawns, if you can get fresh ones. Use a little sparse berley, just enough to get them interested, and hang on.

Good local ledges are Tura Head, Short Point and inside Merimbula Bay on the northern side near the wharf. The latter spot fishes particularly well with a southerly swell but please take care and don’t go there if it looks dodgy.



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