After an eventful and enjoyable Christmas of stuffing ourselves with seafood, chocolate and other Christmas treats, it’s time to hit the water again and catch the first fish for the year. Why not make use of the after-Christmas sales, grab some new gear and set out to catch a fish you haven’t caught before?
Closed season for our predominant sports fish is still in action but there have been reports of plenty of threadies, blue salmon and golden snapper around the river, predominantly up the front with all the islands and narrow branching creek systems.
The salmon have been going well on lightly weighted plastics using a prawn-like pattern. I am predicting this will keep up unless we get another serious dose of rain like last year, hopefully not.
In the creeks and beaches, there have been reports of large bream and flathead in the deeper parts of the water, however the flathead are becoming somewhat harder to find. The bream on the other hand, especially the pikey bream have been a very common catch for people heading down to places like Wild Cattle and South Trees, along with Moses perch and odd grunter.
I am predicting that when barra season opens up in February after only a little rain so far, the fish will be going off and it will be a cracker season targeting them. The lack of serious downpours and flooding (so far) means the water will be very salty and teeming with baitfish, like mullet, and will make the barra extremely active and give them that decent shiny body and yellowtail we all like to see on them.
The combination of summer heat, light rain and storms, and abundance of small baitfish, has turned the fresh right up.
The best areas are around the lilies or treelines. Small curl-tail plastics, such as the 3” Banana Prawn Swimming Mullet, make any fish in the freshwater lagoons come out and play!
With a little more hot days getting into the middle of summer and continuing with the occasional rain, the freshwater areas should be filled full of sportfish. Target them with grubs, hardbodies and, for whoever wants to take up a challenge with the smaller baitfish floating around, cast a fly around the lilies.
The crabs this time of the year are extremely active and full to the top of meat. With all the summer sales, crab pots are cheap as ever making it an affordable day on the water for anyone to give it go! Crabbing can be heaps of fun, especially when you’re trying to grab a big buck to put him in the cooler. Read up on your local rules and regulations or ask when you come in to buy some pots.
Time to make that New Year’s resolution to target a species you haven’t targeted before!
Fish light, get the bite.Reads: 510