Bigger and better December
  |  First Published: December 2013

December will see the nor’easterly breezes solidify this month, and when the weather gets hot the fishing will get hotter. This month will see more species enter the realm and bigger fish will become more frequent, whether caught or lost.

Warmer nights and water temperatures, along with more daylight, will allow more time to fish suitable conditions; beaches, estuaries and even our lakes’ temperatures will rise encouraging most species to get on the chew.

This month sees the kings get bigger and the squid get smaller and smarter.

Plenty of kings are around this season and now is a good time to target them on artificials, like plastic and hardbodies. Harbour kingfish in particular are most aggressive towards lures and plastics at this time of year but a small live squid a metre from the top or the bottom will up your chances by as much as 40%.

Some super squidding is upon us and due to the quantity of anglers now chasing squid locally, you’ll be required to become more efficient at successfully filling the live well, so here are a few pointers:

• Plenty of squid can be caught on cheap jigs but cheap jigs don’t last, so no complaining when it comes to big squid lift time and the spikes fall out of your jig.

• I usually try a size two in orange or pink as my first jig, day or night. Bright colours are recommended for night but work doubly well during the day.

• Pound for pound squid have the largest eye in the ocean, so a dark jig gets a run at midnight or on dark evenings.

• Any attracting scent will be an advantage on a jig. After a squid drops a jig there is every possibility it may come back if it tasted good, so use plenty of scent like Egi Max, S Factor, Pro-Cure or the stimulate sprays for example.

• The secret to keeping squid alive is clean water. As soon as a squid inks, the water will require replacement. Keep changing the water as a live squid for bait at this time of year is a massive opportunity for kingfish.

• When you go squidding, be sure to move frequently around from spot to spot. I rarely stay at a location for more than 30 minutes unless there are good numbers of squid. Be sure to also try a few different directional casts; really give the joint a peppering.

• Squid need kelp, rocks or structure and light, mostly to hunt, so try all the local wharves at night where baitfish mainly congregate and use bigger jigs if you fish the ocean rocks as the eastern calamari are a bigger squid.

• If your squid does die, it will still make a terrific bait so keep it cool and use it fresh, even as strips or the head on its own. Fresh squid is a gun bait.

We are still getting reports of salmon and trevally, which is quite unusual for this time of year. The salmon are being spun up off the rocks, while the trevally are around The Spit, Balmoral and Clifton Gardens.

Some big flathead are on the move right now with some large females are being caught at Roseville, west of the Spit Bridge. Damon Curtis and Mark Dyer caught a 69cm and a 76cm while throwing soft plastics near the boat ramp at Echo Point.

Speaking of the Roseville ramp, there will be more improvements and general maintenance to the car park down there this month, so give yourself time to find a park when you are using this facility.

Just a reminder that from November 2013 mulloway bag limits decreased from five to two and their size limits increased from a minimum 45cm to 70cm. The Fisheries have informed me that they will be enforcing this rule so make sure you all do the right thing.

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