Channel Lizards Biting
  |  First Published: December 2005

Leading up to the festive season I wasn’t hoping for presents, rather that someone found the wind-switch and turned it off, or at least down a few notches.

Howling easterlies followed by gale force westerlies was the norm before the New Year making fishing a real challenge. And while on the subject of weather, it’d be nice to get another downpour of rain to help get the entrance open.

Despite the less than perfect conditions, the fishing has been excellent with some fantastic fish caught in the estuary and off the beaches. A quality run of bream has been on offer in the lake with a lot of anglers setting their size limit at a minimum of 29 to 30cm, and still bringing home a good feed.

The luderick have continued in the same vein and are probably averaging around a kilo with the odd one caught over 2kg. Sandworm is still the most popular bait although a few better bream have been caught on crab, shrimp and even tailor fillets.

For those keen on flicking soft plastics around there has been some good action down the channel with a mixed bag on offer. The flathead are really starting to bite and there are a few tailor and trevally. The odd yellowfin bream has also been caught on plastics.

The river is fairly high, making the snags pretty difficult to fish.

There are more small mullet in the system than I’ve ever seen. They make top live bait for the flatties. A few mashed up pilchards in a bait trap does the job nicely. At present it takes only twenty minutes to get plenty of live bait. I’ve had good results drifting down the channel but if there are plenty of boats around it’s probably better to anchor up.

The surf has been productive when the weather has allowed. Salmon around 2kg have been caught off most beaches along with a mixture of trevally, flathead, tailor and mullet. The odd big salmon between 3 and 4kg has been landed along with the odd gummy. Better baits have been pilchards, bluebait and salted salmon fillets. Blue surf poppers are also a good option – I wouldn’t go to the beach without one.

There is still no sign of any bait prawn although I did hear a whisper that there are a few really small ones kicking around. If this is the case then we may not be prawning until late January. Once the entrance opens we should get a better idea.

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