Central Coast is fish central
  |  First Published: January 2015

Yet another top fishing month, February offers anything and everything from marlin to mullet. What’s even better is that with the holiday season done and dusted, our boat ramps will be more easily accessed and the fish won’t have to put up with all those engines revving over their heads.

As I have been saying in recent months, bream fishing has been quite good in the estuaries, as is to be expected throughout summer. This season seems to be better than previous years though, and most likely due to it being such a long, hot summer with just enough rainfall to keep things ticking along nicely.

There have been some cracking bream caught throughout Brisbane Water, the Tuggerah Lakes and at the bottom end of Lake Macquarie lately, and they’ve been smashing surface lures enthusiastically. Luckily I have been able to get out a few times to enjoy the bream action, but certainly not as much as I’d like thanks to work commitments. Isn’t that always the story?

So the good times with bream should feature strongly again throughout February. The latter part of summer is often the best, so if you are yet to get amongst them or are new to lure casting for bream, there is no better time to try than right now.

As also mentioned last month, the whiting and flathead fishing is normally reliable at this time of the year. When casting lures or baits for whiting, be sure to try right up in the skinny shallows where it’s only ankle deep. In fact, with the warm water we have at the moment, the shallower the better. If there’s enough water to cover their backs they’ll swim in it and take surface lures.

It’s a great time of year for estuary fishing, and some other fish that have been or will be caught over the following weeks include flounder and garfish, which are both very tasty. Prawns and crabs complete the seafood basket that’s available in our local waters; catching your own sure beats buying it.

Bluewater fishing for a variety of pelagic species is very popular off Central Coast waters, and it should be kicking along nicely this month. Due to the nature of ocean currents, it’s not as easy to predict fish movements as it is inside estuaries, so make sure you keep an eye on the sea surface temperatures that are available on a number of different websites.

February is normally the peak month for this sort of fishing, and that means all the species including black and striped marlin, mahimahi, and on the lighter side of things bonito and frigate mackerel. Throw some others into the mix such as kings, cobia, mac and striped tuna, and it’s no wonder many anglers take their holidays this month, whether the boss likes it or not.

Off the rocks, there will be others casting lures, pilchards or live baits for the same fish, although kingfish and bonito are the main ones landed from the shore. You never know though, because black marlin do occasionally get in along the deeper ledges like South Avoca and Wybung Head, so I guess it pays to be prepared with some heavy tackle. Big cobia are another that could show up when you least expect it.

If this sort of fishing doesn’t appeal or the predators just don’t appear, then don’t worry as all the regular rock fishing targets like tailor, bream or blackfish are still there to be caught. They may not burn up a drag like the larger pelagic fish, but they are probably better to chase if you want fresh fillets for dinner.

The same goes for our beaches, from Pearl Beach right up to Catherine Hill Bay. They should all be well worth trying this month for a feed of bream, whiting or tailor. Some nice size mulloway have been caught at North Entrance and Budgewoi throughout summer, so that is another option if you want to fish after sunset with heavier tackle. The only thing is that blue bottles often get washed into the beaches with all this warmer water, and you can’t really see them at night. Even though it’s warm, it can be an idea to wear some light waders just in case.

So as you can see, there are all types of fish for all types of anglers this month. Now we only need the weather to remain fine and our bosses lenient when it comes to taking a few days off!

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