Fishing doesn’t get any better than this and the gamefishing season is shaping up to be one of the best on record out of Swansea.
With the water temperatures on the shelf hovering from 21°C to 24°C, it has provided a haven for all the bait fish and in turn the pelagic game fish.
The period from late January to mid February was near perfect, and boy, were there some fish caught! Lake Macquarie game boats such as Optional had a cracker of a day with five marlin tagged and two yellowfin captured. These fish weighed in at 73kg and 40kg. Not a bad day’s fishing!
Since that day other boats such as Janashia, Running Bear and Deep Blue consistently went chasing the big fish and .Janashia had a good day with seven marlin tagged out of ten, as well as three yellowfin to 35kg and a 12kg mahi mahi. Running Bear tagged four marlin from nine and also came home with a 40kg yellowfin.
There were many reports from other boats with numerous marlin being tagged.
March will be a month to look forward to for all boaters and fishers as the warmer water settles in and filters through to the estuaries.
The most unfortunate part of February was the fact that the cooler water stayed in close to our coastline for longer than most other years. I spent many hours checking the sea surface temperature websites to survey the warm and cold current movements and found that the 21-23°C water had been edging closer to the coast so that by the middle of February we had experienced warmer temperatures hugging the coast.
By surveying these sites you can form an opinion of what to expect in regards to where and when the warm currents will arrive at your favourite fishing spot.
Some of the best spots for game fish were on the Middle Canyons and the Norah Head Canyons, east of Swansea.
Most fishers were getting pretty frustrated and upset with the cold water conditions and as previously stated, this has changed.
In March and April we will hear of snapper, jewfish, kingfish, cobia and many other reef species being caught on our reefs.
The closer reefs such as The Fruit Shed, Redhead Close, Dudley Close, The Doctors and all the washes around Catherine Hill Bay and Frazer Park will provide excellent territory for anglers.
Get all the weekly updates from our website, www.fishermanswarehouse.com.au. All these reef GPS locations are also highlighted on the website.
The same will be on offer with the beach and rocks. The Lake Macquarie area and surrounding coastline offers some of the best beach and rockfishing locations and platforms.
This period is even more attractive and exciting because of the larger pelagic fish on offer. The rocks platforms of Catherine Hill Bay, Pinny Beach and further south to Frazer Park are a hive of activity when the weather is kind and there are some nice catches such as kingfish and snapper, as well as jewfish at night.
Redhead and Dudley rock platforms shouldn’t be forgotten, as these areas are also excellent positions for most rock species.
The only disappointing part is that the north easterly wind can make afternoon fishing a little rough but the positive is that those same winds normally drop off at dark. So try to persevere, as some of the better fish are caught after dark.
Blacksmiths and Belmont beaches have also been on fire for those chasing jewfish. The best advice I can give you is to use fresh bait. Squid, mullet and pike fillets will do the trick.
I’ve mentioned various hotspots in this article and it can be hard to describe the exact locations, but if any of you would like some more definite directions, don’t hesitate to call into our shop, email or phone on (02) 4945 2152.
Finally, I’ve had some reports of people fishing the artificial reefs in Lake Macquarie. Bream to 1.3kg and plenty of flathead are the main fish reported. Early mornings have been the more productive times to fish. Floating baits and soft plastics are the go.Reads: 1435