Reef balls work a treat
  |  First Published: June 2006

Last month I mentioned the artificial reefs in Lake Macquarie just west of Galgabba Point, Swansea, in about nine metres.

These were placed last December and DPI Fisheries officers have taken some great pictures to show how much growth there is and the numbers of baitfish making homes for themselves around these moulded ferro-concrete Reef Balls. Fisheries officers say they are most happy with the progress of the reef program and will continue to monitor it. This program should be adopted in many other areas along our coast, including offshore.

Some fishos whom I have given the GPS co-ordinates have said they cannot identify the reefs on their fish finders. They must remember that all the domes are around the same height of 750mm and form a fairly level platform but they will show up on a fish finder which can indicate harder bottom structure.

The best bet is to anchor a short distance away from the edges and allow the wind to lay you back over the reefs. Berley with a mix of bread, tuna oil and maybe some Stimulate and float baits such as fine mullet strips or garlic-marinated chicken breast, or spray on an attractant such as Big John’s Prawn Oil Mix. Use 4kg to 6kg monofilament and 6lb fluorocarbon leader and it’ll be hard to go wrong.


Land-based anglers will be treated to a better than normal June because the warmer currents travelling south have continued along our coastline.

The platforms at Catherine Hill Bay are some of the best local rock locations and some weekends, it’s standing room only and the earlybirds achieve the most favoured spots.

Kingfish numbers seem to be always increasing since the banning of commercial kingfish traps and Catho is the place for kings year-round. Fishos using with prawns for drummer and bream have even been busted up.

This month and next is the time to target big tailor in the whitewater off the rocks and beaches. I’m sure you won’t mind hearing how I rig up for greenbacks.

On the rocks I prefer to use garfish as I believe that the bigger tailor and kingfish can’t resist them. I use 10-15kg main line with a crane swivel joining 60cm to 70cm of 15kg monofilament trace. The hooks are four ganged 4/0 Mustad 4200D with a 2/0 trailing hook of the same model which I hook through the tail section. Some tailor will attack this area first.

A size 0 ball sinker just on top of the first hook is enough weight. To complete the rig, a 25mm piece of plastic tube on the trace holds the gar’s beak. Cast into the whitewater and retrieve it slowly.

The same rig can be used on the beach with a running star or bean sinker to anchor the bait to the sand.

Blacksmiths, Jewells and Redhead beaches all are carrying attractive gutters and have consistently produced over the past few months. Afternoon and morning sessions have been popular and June won’t be any different .

Whiting should be targeted along with all the other usual species. If live worms aren’t available, don’t discount live pipis, which have been plentiful along the beaches. Some fishos have reportedly been pulling worms from Third Creek and a little further south to just behind the Belmont Golf Club.

(Pic courtesy of DPI Fisheries)

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