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High powered Watts
  |  First Published: June 2014



Watts Reef is where all the action has been happening in recent weeks. It hasn’t been uncommon to go out on this reef and catch big bluenose bream to 1.5kg. It does rough up in any sort of weather, but it’s easy to get to and the fishing has been really good. The best time to fish has been on the run-up tide, and the best bait has been live nippers.

Locals have been picking up nice bonito to 4kg lately. The gun method has been to slowly troll 4” white skirted pushers about 100m from the rocks on the southern side of Botany Bay, around Tabagai and Yena Gorge. As well as being excellent bait, bonito are actually quite good to eat – especially if they’re brined and then smoked with a hickory mixture.

Also in the bay the big whiting appear to have gone and have been replaced with the smaller trumpeter whiting (winter whiting) but there are still some good fish around. Good hauls have been taken on Silver Beach off Kurnell on the incoming tide using live blood worms.

Blue swimmer crabs are still around and can be netted out the front of Quibray Bay, The Patches and The Logs. They’re pretty big as well. Now is your last chance to enjoy good crabbing until the water temps warm up a bit. At the moment the water is around 17-18ºC but that will drop over the coming month.

If you’d like to tangle with a trevally, look no further than Molineaux Point. Look for the number 157 stamped on the wall, because that’s where you’ll find the big schools of trevally. Berley up with wheat, bran and bread marinaded with pilchard juice. This combination works extremely well. I recommend using 4kg line with a 00 split shot sinker and size 1 Mustad 92247 hook. It’s a bait keeper hook with two barbs to hold the bait securely. Casting live nippers or live prawns into the berley trail will produce good bags of trevally.

The eastern side of the new runway has been a hotspot lately. It’s a great place to get away from the westerlies because it’s nice and sheltered. It’s blessed with a fair amount of depths so you get the various species that frequent that type of water. The fact that it’s only a few hundred metres from the foreshore’s boat ramp makes it a very popular spot, and it’s very productive for flathead and bream. It also has good surface fishing for tailor.

The kingfish appear to have pretty much gone. The few stray fish that have been caught have come from the artificial reefs in Yarra Bay and Congwong Bay.

The good news is that some big tailor are hanging around, and a lot of anglers have been having good success using live yellowtail. The tailor have been going berserk over the yellowtail, cutting them in half and even jumping out of the water in their efforts to eat them.

On the southern side of the bay from Towra Deep and Towra Cose the annual bream run is on in earnest. Fish up to 35cm are being taken on both tides using nippers or bloodworms as bait.

When it comes to flatties, the bay hasn’t been that good this year. Only a few scattered catches have been reported, mostly from along the Brighton shoreline at the Novatel.

COOKS RIVER

Anglers have been doing pretty well on the northern break wall fishing in the afternoons on the outgoing tide. They have been using pilly tails as bait with the best time being an hour or two before the low tide. Tailor and mulloway have been taken early in the morning and late in the afternoon on livies.

Further up the river, the Princes Highway bridge at Tempe has been rewarding for school mulloway in the 5-7kg class. They’ve been taken both on hardbodies and soft plastics on the slack water.

We’re at the time of year when the Georges River is going through the change. The fishing has been very ordinary of late, requiring a fair bit of effort to get results.

Luderick are being taken in good numbers from Jannali Reserve and from Bonnets Bay and Thompson Bay. The fish haven’t been huge but at around the 30cm mark they’re still decent fish. Green weed is at a premium though, and is hard to find.

At Chipping Norton Lake plenty of mullet are being taken from the reclamation wall, and they’re showing a preference for dough. Luderick are being caught from Floyd Park, and a few muddies have been taken from Two Pipes Bend. The stretch between Como Beach and Jewfish Point has been yielding good catches of flathead, as well as whiting at night and the odd school jew in the deeper water.

Around the bridges I recently counted seven boats under Captain Cook Bridge, all fishing for school jewfish. The best I heard of was 10.7kg and that was caught on a squid bait taken from Bare Island. Tom Uglys Bridge has been yielding mulloway as well, albeit smaller than at Captain Cook Bridge. Most have been caught on the first two hours of the run-up tide on the western side of the bridge.

THE MONTH AHEAD

The period from the end of April to the end of June is a great time to fish the bay. After that the water gets cold and the fish get torpid. Every year as soon as the westerlies hit, the fish go off the bite – so don’t miss your chance to go fishing in June.

We can expect mulloway to move up the river chasing the schools of mullet in June and July, travelling all the way to Liverpool Weir. The best bait will be locally sourced poddy mullet, and you can gather these from the Picnic Point boat ramp with a spotlight.

Big bluenose whiting will become available during June and they will be found in the deeper parts of the estuary in the Georges River. You’ll find them on the edges of the sand banks where the bottom drops off into the deeper channel. You’ll need plenty of blood worms, and you can expect to catch some quality fish up to 45cm.

If you’re after bream you’ll find them around the bridge pylons. Check out the Captain Cook, Tom Uglys, Como and East Hill bridges. The top baits are live nippers and pungent dead baits like chicken gut and mullet gut.

Trevally will be in much greater numbers and size in June. Salmon around 2-3kg will also push their way into the river, and will take floating live baits or anything shiny. They’re great sport if you’re using 2.5-3kg line.

All in all, over the next month the fish will be fewer in number but the bigger average size will make up for this.

For all your fishing needs, as well as the latest info on what’s biting, drop into Gabe’s Boating and Fishing at Narellan (4/1A Somerset Ave), or Silvania (268/264-276 Princes Hwy). You can also call them on (02) 4647 8755 or (02) 9522 5100 respectively, or visit the website at www.gbaf.com.au.

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