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Salmon prowl the beaches
  |  First Published: May 2007



The beaches around Merimbula have been fishing extremely well with some thumping big salmon falling to pillies rigged on ganged 4/0 hooks on an Ezy Rig combination.

Paternoster rigs with bait on one hook and a surf popper on the other are also producing some outstanding results. Fish to 3kg are plentiful with the odd brute to 4.5kg.

All beaches have been holding fish but the hottest spots have been the main beach at Tura and North Bournda, just south of Wallagoot Lake. Look for the deeper gutters, which are plentiful, fish the incoming tide and you should soon be in business.

Tailor are also around but most are quite small. Over the next few months expect bigger tailor to show up.

I have also heard reports of nice bream and decent flathead coming from the Pambula River entrance. Live beach worms have been the pick of the baits with pilchards, blue bait and larger soft plastics accounting for some of the flatties.

The rockhoppers have been doing well with quality blackfish, drummer, bream and groper. The drummer are up to a solid 2kg and formidable opponents. Cunjevoi, red crabs and cabbage weed are the best baits and a little berley in the washes will increase catch rates.

Expect these bread-and-butter species to improve further as the water cools. Short Point is again the gun spot to wet a line.

May is a super time for the rock-spinning diehards to throw metal around. Mack tuna, bonito, longtail tuna, big salmon and the odd kingie can be expected with Tura Head the pick of the platforms.

Inside Merimbula Bay is also worth a look, especially the rocks north of the wharf. I like using quite large lures at this time of year with any chromed metal slice up to 50g working. It pays to have a selection of lures on hand; what works one day doesn’t always work the next.

Offshore, yellowfin tuna will be around as the water temperature hovers at 20°. May is the premium month to target yellowfin, especially big fish. The seas are usually quite calm during Autumn, allowing the smaller boats venture farther offshore where the tuna are.

Albacore can also be expected in the cooling waters, along with the odd mako shark. Trolling smaller skirted pushers is ideal because you cover a lot of water.

Once you locate the fish, try reverting to berley, cubes and livebait – it can pay massive dividends at times.

Snapper will continue to chew on the inshore reefs with all the usual haunts producing. Use fresh tuna, pilchards and soft plastics for best results and concentrate on early mornings with a tide change.

The flatties have gone a little quiet but the fish that have been are quality specimens. The flattie grounds off Pambula have been the hot spot. Expect a few morwong and leatherjackets as well.

Merimbula and Pambula lakes are still producing bream, flathead, blackfish and the occasional school jew. Bait and lures have been working well but fresh bait has certainly outfished lures lately.

Pambula is holding good numbers of trevally and a lot are kilo-plus – great fun on the light stuff and not a bad feed if prepared the right way. This action will last for a while yet and every year this system fires in late Autumn.

Fishing the first kilometre of the system is best; tide does not matter much as long as it’s flowing.

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