The thermostat comes down
  |  First Published: June 2013

Someone has stopped turning the thermostat down and the weather on the Tweed Coast has finally settled into its usual Winter trend.

We can expect reasonably chilly mornings with regular westerly or south-westerly winds that generally abate around 9am-10am once the sun has had a chance to warm up the landmass.

Offshore fishing forays can entail hanging in close and having a crack at a few snapper, jew, tailor or spangled emperor and waiting for the conditions out wider to improve.

Once the land breeze has settled, the sea will normally stabilise nicely and you can head out wider in search of teraglin, pearl perch, snapper and a variety of other reef species. It is a just a case of fishing smart and adapting to the conditions.

Tailor should be in good numbers along the beaches and headlands and we have already seen some reasonable schools moving through in recent months.

Some of these schools can, however, frustrate the land-based anglers when the diving birds and chopping fish making their way along the coast can be seen behind the back line of breakers – just out of casting range.

These schools often move into the gutters or beach holes as the light fades, finally giving the patient land-based fisho a crack at them.

A boat makes getting among these schools of tailor a lot easier and some hectic sessions can be had casting slugs and poppers into the wheeling birds.

If no fish are visible on the surface then let your metal slice sink before starting your retrieve; the fish may just be a bit deeper in the water column.

Always be wary of the sea when doing this because it is quite easy to become focused on the fish become caught out by a swell if you follow the fish in too close.


These tailor will also be prevalent in the river, with some really good fish often showing up in June.

They usually hang around the rock walls in the lower reaches but can also make their way well up-river following the baitfish and creating havoc as they go.

Many of the popular bream spots like the Blue Hole, the rock bar in front of the Kennedy Drive boat ramp and the bridges can be hot spots for tailor as well.

The river has been looking quite healthy with luderick and bream really starting to fire in the lower reaches, so let’s hope that the rain holds off for a bit and we can enjoy a nice run through Winter.

If this happens the upper reaches should also fish well, but they have become extremely temperamental at times with only a bit of a deluge causing the fish to end up with a case of lockjaw. All we can do is hope.


For those who didn’t quite get their fill of pelagics there should still be the odd one around.

June is actually a good month to target the larger solitary Spanish mackerel on the inshore reefs. Large live baits like tailor, slimy mackerel or yakkas are the prime baits with rigged dead baits a very close second.

Don’t expect many bites for your efforts, but the quality should make up for the quantity.

It will also be interesting to see if we get a run of big yellow fin out on the wider blue marlin grounds this year. They were a no-show last Winter with only the odd fish as by-catch while targeting the larger blue marlin.

These yellowfin normally move down the coast around 40-60 miles offshore and we see the odd school move within striking distance around the Tweed Canyons and Jims Mountain.

They are often 40kg-60kg and can occur in large schools if you are lucky enough to be out there on the right day.

If you do run into them. then it is quite an impressive site seeing a footy-field-sized school of these great fish launching out of the water.

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