Fresh or salt, it’s all good
  |  First Published: April 2005

This is one of my favourite months to fish freshwater and saltwater. In the freshwater the bass and EPs have started to school up for their spawn run down to the salt water and it’s also a great month for pelagics with a mixture of Summer and Winter species in the Harbour and Broken Bay.

Offshore there should be the last of the mahi mahi still around the FADs and fish traps. I can remember a few years ago we were still catching them right through until early May so let’s hope that the warmer currents keep coming down.

In March the fishing in the Harbour hotted up with kingfish, bonito, tailor, salmon, frigate mackerel and some unusual species normally not seen around Sydney. Mick Collins caught a cobia around 12kg in Middle Harbour and a couple of other anglers have reported cobes up to 90cm. I also caught some Watson’s leaping bonito in Rose Bay.

Middle Harbour has that much bait in it you can walk across it with plenty of kings being caught on squid and metals and soft stickbaits tempting salmon and tailor .

The bream fishing is also going well around the moored boats and jetties. The best lure have been Bass Minnows and Eco Grubs fished on 1/32oz jig heads.

Cast these close as you can to a boat, post, jetty, pontoon or any other structure, let the lure sink and watch your line for any sudden movement that might indicate a bream bite.

Once the lure hits the bottom or is at the required depth, give it a twitch with the rod tip, let it sit and then work it back with a lift-and-fall retrieve. If you feel a bite, drop the rod tip to allow fish to take the lure and then lift the rod to hook up.

Small crankbaits are also catching their share of bream; cast the lure past the structure so the lure can get down to the depth as it goes past the post or other structure. When the lure is near the structure pause it for a second and give it a twitch before retrieving at a slow speed.

Remember not to strike the fish with the rod, let the rod load and just ease back to set the hook.


The bass and estuary perch in the middle sections of the Hawkesbury River have been pretty average with only a few fish caught most outings. The main reason is the water is like mud and smells!

I do not know how the poor old bass can live in this crap. Most of the dirty water comes down the sewer outlet we call South Creek and I am afraid that Cattai Creek is going the same way, with all the houses and industry being built in its catchment. As soon as we get a good downfall the water turns to mud.

On the brighter side, the bass fishing has been good above Windsor with plenty fish being caught around the weed beds and under the trees on small Taylor Made and Feral Catt diving and surface lures. These lures set the standard. Best colours have been green and yellow or purple in the divers and darker colours for the surface. Both these diving lures float so after you cast, let them sit for a few seconds and give them a twitch before winding back. Often the bass will strike while they’re still on the surface.

The bass fishing around Penrith has been good with plenty of fish being caught above the weir around the rail bridge and along the edges of the weed beds. A lot of these fish have been falling to Jackalls during the day and Taylor Made Surface Walkers at night.

I will hold schools on sport fishing on lures around Sydney on the second Tuesday of the month at the Australian Bass Angler at Penrith, followed by a day on the water to put what you learned into practice. Ring me on 0408 334 892 or call the Bass Angler on 02 47210455

Reads: 1945

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