Yes, it’s tuna time
  |  First Published: June 2014

As we enter the colder months it’s time to prepare ourselves for the onslaught of large barrels hitting the decks in the form of bluefin and yellowfin tuna, with some albacore to keep things interesting. Get the heavy gear ready, go buy boxes of pillies and start heading wide.

When I’m targeting these beasts I like to run the boat out to the shelf until we find a change in temperature, then send a spread of lures out consisting of a mixture of Rapala X-Raps, Sea Striker cedar plugs and skirted lures and troll until we hook up on any of the above mentioned species.

Kingfish can still be found lurking around the usual haunts in and around Jervis Bay with reports of fish up to 80cm hanging out at middle ground, willing to eat fresh or dead squid towed slowly around the mark. It’s great fun on light gear. Snapper have been on the chew too, with good numbers of big bumpies out at the banks in the north and Stoney to the south of Jervis Bay. In the bay itself, top produces for snapper still include middle ground and plantation. They’re taking plastics such as Gulp 7” Jerkshads and fresh bait in the form of squid which is readily available throughout the bay. Just look for the sand patches in 3-5m of water and keep a watch out for the plethora of leatherjackets.

St Georges Basin has see the return of the big tailor and with their return, we see the guys who know how to catch these monsters busting out their downriggers to tow 2-3” hardbodies down deep to attract the bite of a big fish. It’s always a good option at this time of year to bust out your blades to target the artificial reefs in the Basin that were put there by the Department of Primary Industries in 2007. Their co-ordinates can be found at www.dpi.nsw.gov.au/fisheries/recreational/saltwater/artificial-reefs.

June marks the closed season for both bass and estuary perch, with a ban on possession of fish. There is still much confusion around the rules of catching them during this time, but DPI advises it is still OK to target these fish just not keep. However as mentioned in last month’s edition, most anglers will switch their focus to different species so the bass and EPs can do their thing.

Continuing with the Shoalhaven River, mulloway are still around in numbers with most people targeting them around the moorings at Greenwell Point and the canal. I have also witnessed some locals having great success just east of the bridge at the reef. I have also heard an unconfirmed report of a marlin being caught at the entrance to the river, a highly unusual event if it turns out to be true! Flathead are still around, with most coming from the straight in front of Broughton Creek down to the blue silos.

Get out there and hook up. Tight lines and good times!

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