Several species are slurping lures
  |  First Published: June 2017

The rain we received last month has helped the local estuaries. Both Merimbula and Pambula lakes are picking up considerably. Over the last couple weeks we have guided there on several occasions and Merimbula Lake is a standout when the wind allows.

Every session has seen seven or more different species encountered with bream, flathead, trevally, snapper, tailor, luderick and whiting all succumbing to a range of soft plastics and blades. Most of the action has happened in the top lake with the shallower margins between 2-4m along the ribbon-weed edges the gun place to start. Catches of 30+ legal fish per session are on the cards with some solid bream and smaller snapper to 40cm playing the game.

The lower sections in the channels have been a little quieter. I’ve heard of nice bream and whiting being caught towards the entrance on bass yabbies. As the water cools further over winter, expect the channels to really fire up. Trevally, salmon, tailor and bream will be the most predominant species.

On the beaches it’s business as usual. Any beach with a half decent gutter is producing. Merimbula’s main beach has been good for bream, whiting and mullet with beachworms and fresh prawns the better baits to use. If you’re after salmon then Tura Main and North Tura are the picks with abundant salmon available and some big models to boot. I’ve heard of several fish to 4kg. Sambos at that size are great sport on any beach tackle.

Mixed in with the salmon are some decent tailor. June usually produces a better class of greenbacks with monster fish to 5-6kg possible opponents. These bigger fish are quite often caught after dark by anglers targeting mulloway with big fresh baits. For those who prefer gentlemen hours, smaller school fish to 2kg will be catchable too. Anglers using a paternoster rig rigged with whole pilchards or bluebait on either ganged or single hooks should be in for a good time.

June is prime time for rock hoppers targeting luderick, drummer and groper. These species love the cold water and any headland or rock platform that has a decent wash and cabbage encrusted rocks will hold good concentrations of these species. Short Point, Long Point and the rocks near the aquarium wharf are prime locations. Cabbage, cunjevoi, black crabs and fresh prawns will all work at times. Having a little berley in the wash will also improve your catch rates.

Those after the pelagics should have no dramas with salmon, tailor and big bonito all on the go. Fishos using whole pilchards rigged on ganged hooks will do well. The spin brigade is getting plenty casting chromed slices up to 60g. There’s still the chance of a stray kingfish, especially at Tura Head. Last season saw some solid kings to 13kg caught off this prime LBG location.

Those fishing offshore for tuna, especially yellowfin, will be happy. Recently there have been notable captures. I’ve heard of a few fish around the 60kg mark plus a stack of fish between 25-30kg. Most of the fish have come from the shelf where the water is still 18°C. The fish have been on top with quite a few caught by anglers trolling. As the month goes on, berleying and cubing will be the main methods.

This June we should see some jumbo yellowfin caught. The bait is there, the conditions are right and every indication of the fish getting caught north of us points to a bumper month. Later in the month and heading into July expect some bluefin tuna to be patrolling the wider grounds. They are catching plenty of solid fish south of us so it won’t be long before they are on our doorstep.

Inshore the snapper have been good with fish averaging a kilo. Most reefs are holding fish with Long Point being the pick. Fresh squid and tuna strips have been the better baits though sportfishers fishing soft plastics in the washes have fared okay too.

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