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Whale of a time at Port
  |  First Published: November 2013



Time on the water in November can mean lots of fun and excitement.

Recently those fishing offshore have possibly had more enjoyment watching whales, and at times dodging them, rather than tangling with fish.

Hopefully this month with warmer water and easing winds we should see offshore action improving.

Those with smaller craft will find plenty of plate-size snapper on the inshore reefs off Lighthouse and Nobbys beaches.

Those wishing to venture farther afield will do well off Petersons Reef to the south and the FAD off Port Macquarie should start to produce mahi mahi this month. The FAD should be out an in place by now.

Estuary action has been mixed due to the clarity of the water. Some days the fishing can be very average and the next on fire.

Those targeting bream and mulloway after dark have been catching some quality fish, especially on the breakwalls and coal walls.

Luderick have still been willing to take weed along the coal walls and around the oyster leases in Limeburners Creek on unweighted yabbies.

Best places to pump yabbies are at Blackmans Point and on the exposed flats in Limeburners Creek.

FLATHEAD TIME

November is flathead time with plenty moving around and congregating near the bigger females, making them easy to catch when you come across a patch.

Top spots this month are locations where back-eddies form and flow increased due to changes in the structure of the bottom. Places in the Hastings like the bottom end of the Maria River and around the Rawdon Island Bridge are hot.

On the Camden Haven River flathead can be found in similar spots, although they do love the Dunbogan Bridge.

Best bait this month will be live yakkas or whitebait. If you like throwing lures then a decent 4”-5” soft paddletail or jerkbait on a 1/8oz-1/4oz jig head should to do the trick if worked close to the bottom.

Bream will be moving about, finding spots to hold up during the warmer months.

For me it’s a top time to cast small crankbaits against banks, snags and structure and very slowly roll them back to the boat.

Nothing beats the feeling of a feisty bream crunching a hardbody and turning for cover. Top lures to try this month include the Ecogear CX35, Cranka Shad and Jackall Chubby.

Surface action for bream will also improve with early mornings and late afternoons the key to success.

This time of year I like to use a cicada pattern up river, with a black one the best choice because the little black prince cicada is the first to hatch out in our area.

In the lower reaches I like to throw a pencil or popper surface lure on the flats for bream. A quick retrieve and a decent pause will yield good results.

Already whiting are on the chew and it’s looking like being a cracker season with fish moving into the Hastings and Camden Haven rivers and reports of decent catches.

Top spots for bait fishing for whiting will be around Blackmans Point and the weedy edge down river of the Hibbard Ferry on the northern bank.

Freshwater fishing will certainly improve this month. A recent trip to investigate early bass numbers on the upper Maria River proved there weren’t huge numbers and they were mostly small but they were in excellent condition.

We perhaps could have caught plenty if it wasn’t for the presence of school mulloway that were chasing the baitfish. We saw big boils around snags and in open water and then one decided to take a spinnerbait, much to the surprise of Craig Ainsworth, who thought he had a big bass.

It just goes to show you need to be ready for anything. Good thing he was using a baitcast outfit spooled up for chasing bass in impoundments in heavily weeded areas.

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