Snapper fire up in the cool
  |  First Published: April 2014

It’s starting to cool down, the days are getting shorter but the fishing is heating up!

Down south in the estuaries there have been good patches of black bream up the back of Burrill Lake on the edges. There has also been a decent run of black fish towards the mouth next to the bridge with plenty of people floating weed down the drop-offs.

In the basin the snapper really start to fire up this time of year in the drop-offs. A lot of lure and bait fishers do well anchoring up and digging in with a consistent berley trail. I find a simple cube trail, similar to what you would use for tuna works most effectively, with no other berley in the water. Throw one cube in, then when that one disappears throw the next one in, then repeat. From this, expect a by-catch of flathead or tailor that hang in the trail waiting to pick off whatever they can.

Moving up into the Shoalhaven River, mulloway continue to reward the dedicated angler with reports of 20lb+ being a common catch. This time of year we start to see the Bass bite slow down, as they start to move their way down stream ready to spawn. Now’s the time to pull out the tray of divers, as the surface action can be pretty inconsistent.

Offshore really started to fire last month and we hope that it continues into April. There have been reports of a good number of kingfish off the humps at the banks but the sharks continue to give everyone a hard time. The guys out there catching fish have been bagging out within a few hours of fishing.

If you sneak out a little bit wider and head out to the Shoalhaven FAD (Fish Attracting Device) you stand a good chance of hooking up to one of the great number of mahi mahi that are hanging around it currently. To find the GPS coordinates to any of the DPI’s FADs go to http://www.dpi.nsw.gov.au/fisheries/recreational/saltwater/fads/map. Your best chance for success will come from throwing almost anything around the structure as close as you can to the FAD, from silver flashes to 7” jerk shads and bibless minnows – whatever you want!

Generally the marlin are hanging around a little wider this time of year. Head to the kink at Jervis Bay, as it is a good spot to start with bait and switch being a great method to cover a lot of ground and find the fish.

April kicks off the snapper season in Jervis Bay, where you will find good numbers on a lot of the reefs, such as Plantation, Middle Ground and Long Nose, with the odd bigger knobby turn up to give you hell. There’s always a good chance of finding a decent kingy hanging around a couple of these reefs, so be prepared for the encounter and look out for the patches of bait.

Until next time, good times and tight lines!

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