Fishing still good despite colder weather
  |  First Published: May 2017

May signals the start of the cooler season. As a lot of fishos know, there is some hot action to be had! Port Macquarie recently had a decent bit of rain. We got the first bit of dirty water we’ve seen in a long time. With the river running brown, what do we target?

Mulloway and bream are two species that love a bit of dirty water, and the local breakwalls will throw up some big mulloway over the next week. The most important thing will be to make sure it is safe to fish! Waiting a few days until after the swells abate a little will still have you in with a chance of catching fish, especially around the dirty water line.

Secondly, it’s good to fish with a capable partner, as it can be awkward to try and land a fish on a wave-washed wall. Use a long gaff for this job. Remember, it’s not fun trying to control a 20kg+ mulloway in the swell and fish can be lost here at the last stage of the fight if you don’t take care.

Gear needs to be strong, and 9-10ft rods capable of handling big spin or overhead reels loaded with 50lb braid and 60-80lb leader are the go.

Lures are many and varied for floodwater mulloway. Big hardbodies are among the best. Croaker, Koolabung and Killalure are just a few that account for plenty of floodwater mulloway.

Good old bream can be a lot less complicated to catch. They will be in the Settlement Point Canals as well as the back channel near the marina, and you can get quite a few in the dirtier water. I use Berkley Gulps for this, as they work a treat with their special formula. Add a generous application of your favourite scent and this will get the job done. The trick is to cast them around the jetties and walls and work them very slowly using light jigheads.

That’s worth a try if the water remains dirty or we get another downpour. When it clears up it will be business as usual. May can be a great time in the rivers for some deep water action.

Many anglers would know of the Samaki soft vibes. From this month on they become my favourite lure, and the 70mm whitebait pattern is my go-to for school mulloway. May is also the start of the deep water schooling bream, so the bonus of the soft vibe is you can get a good bag of flatties on them as well. Locations these lures will get you onto fish will be in the Hastings River along the rock walls and up-river in the deeper channels and bridge area.

Rock and Beach

Off the stones we should see some drummer and bream getting around as well as tailor. A few luderick are also starting to show up, so there are a few options for a fish. Locations such as the lighthouse rocks as well as the rock ledges between Port and Crescent Head produce. If you’re heading south, check out the rocky outcrops off most of the beaches between Port Mac and down to Dunbogan. These all produce at times.

The beaches have been fishing quite well. With the swells and rain it will pay to check out the formations before heading off. They will probably be in different areas. If in doubt try around the corners of the beaches where the rock meets the surf, as it is always good for bream, tailor and the odd mulloway.

Hopefully the mullet will have started to move and mulloway will be a viable target. Once again, find a good gutter where you can throw out a slab of your favourite baitfish, be it mullet or tailor. Then wait for that silver ghost to cruise through and find it. It’s definitely worth trying.

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