The local, shallow reefs have really been turning it on over the last couple of months.
Good quality coral bream, blackall, spangled emperor and bluey parrot have been thick enough to keep many anglers from travelling too far from the harbour. Big squid have converged on these same reefs to spawn and have been all over any jig presented to them.
Big Woody, Picnic, Duck and Little Woody islands have been the hot spots to target squid lately but Point Vernon, Kingfisher and Urangan piers and the rockwall at the harbour are all worth a try. Some anglers still persevere with the old bait jigs but most have changed to the prawn imitation or yo-zuri style of jig. These are by far the most successful jigs on the market and allow anglers to cover a lot of ground quickly.
The Artificial Reef is worth a try in April but catch some fresh bait beforehand. The anglers who consistently do well are the ones in the shallows chasing fresh squid or jigging for livebait before they fish the arty. Cod, coral bream, blackall, coral trout and snapper are all on offer so the effort can be worth it.
The 25 fathom hole and the gutters are where you want to be in the next few months as the weather becomes more predictable. Fresh squid and livies are the best baits but frozen ones will still produce good fish. Squid and mullet fillets are my favourite store bought baits and frozen yakkas from home are better than none.
The Coral Patch/Gastropods area is a nice alternative if the wind gets up from the southeast. The fishing is as good as out wide and it’s a lot closer to sheltered water if it turns nasty. This area holds most reef species and is especially good for scarlet sea perch and snapper during the colder months.
April is a great month on the reefs so, grab some fresh bait and give it a crack, the fish are waiting for you.Reads: 532