Back to the light line species after tuna quieten down
  |  First Published: June 2013

June is usually a quiet month in the south of the state with the keen angler having limited options.

The estuary fishing has begun to quiet down with the cooler water temperatures and imminent snow-melt ensuring less productive outings.

On a positive note, the still winter days can produce ideal bottom fishing conditions around the Tasman Peninsula and wide off Southport where anglers will encounter striped trumpeter, morwong perch, gurnard and the occasional flathead.

Jumbo bluefin are also on the cards if heading wide to locations such as Pedra Branca.

The Channel also offers some productive floundering during the cooler months.

Tasman Peninsula

At the time of writing the smaller ‘school’ fish we had last year are yet to turn up with limited numbers of fish being caught.

The flip side to this although is the steady number of large trophy fish that are being caught with multiple fish of well over 100kg being caught during recent times.

As in previous years Hippolyte Rocks and Tasman Island are the locations that deserve the most attention, with Hippolyte Rocks usually the first port of call. Anglers targeting bluefin will do best to fish on rough days with a brisk south westerly wind usually bringing with it the larger fish.

Lures usually consist of a spread including two or three large pushers (usually dark in colour) a smaller bullet head lure or Yo Zuri skirt and finally a deep diver such as a Mack bait or Rapala.

Overhead combos of 15-24kg make up the standard outfit with 37kg recommended for those targeting the big boys.

The above locations along with Fortescue, Cape Pillar, the Lanterns, the Sisters and the edge of the shelf all offer bluefin plus an array of bottom fish such as striped trumpeter.

Anglers targeting bottom species seem to be using electric overhead reels more and more. The other option although is the more traditional threadline or Alvey reel loaded with 50-80lb braid.

An oversized paternoster rig is recommended.

Bruny Island

Bruny Island and the plethora of sheltered bays on the inside of the channel offer numerous winter fishing options and although sportfish are few and far between there are plenty of options if after a feed.

Depending on the arrival of snow melt and winter rains the often crystal clear bays surrounding Bruny make for some exceptional fishing for the odd calamari squid. Other main stays are leatherjacket, wrasse, mullet and mackerel.

Depending on recent escapes the odd Atlantic salmon is also a viable target species during June as these fish don’t seem to venture to far from home in the cooler months.

For those after table fish such as morwong perch, gurnard, trumpeter and gummy sharks boat anglers will do best to head wide off Adventure Bay or even further south towards the Friars.

A paternoster rig is preferred with squid, blue bait and fish pieces the best baits.

The Friars has also become a well-recognised southern bluefin tuna hotspot during recent times.

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