WITH WINTER now well and truly on our doorstep, icy offshore breezes are the norm and only the keen anglers among us braving early starts but, as usual, it’s the keen ones who reap the rewards.
So drag yourself away from the heater and tuck into what should be a great Winter season.
Rock fishos are certainly starting to enjoy some great fishing with many species starting to come on the chew. Bream are in good numbers and starting to congregate around most local headlands and beaches. The cooler months always see large schools of bream running along our beaches and headlands following mullet on their annual pilgrimage.
The past couple of years have seen a steady improvement in bream angling with the banishment of the dreaded figure-six nets stopping the slaughter of many tonnes of travelling fish. Beach hauling is still having a negative effect but adverse sea and weather can at least make it difficult to net schooling fish.
Some good tailor have been on offer with some nice greenbacks around. Early mornings have been the go with those willing to brave the chill earning the prize. Fresh garfish have been the gun bait, attracting the larger fish. Garfish are definitely a hardier bait than pillies, lasting more that a couple of chucks, and the bigger tailor seem to have a strong liking for them.
With that certain chill now in the air I would expect a few pigs to start poking about. The next few weeks should see a steady build-up in drummer action, reaching a peak at the height of Winter. After last year’s dismal showing, fingers crossed for a better season.
Schooling blackfish and bream are already moving into the Hastings system, taking up residence for the cooler months. The past couple of years have been bumper seasons for blackfish with anglers enjoying good captures from all the usual spots. Already the indications are pointing towards another hot season ahead.
Anglers have been slipping a few bream in the keeper nets with the south and north walls coughing up some fairly decent specimens. Freshly-pumped yabbies have been the go with bream scoffing them down readily.
Up the river, Limeburners Creek has certainly been worth a toss with myriad oyster-clad racks home to some burly bream. These fish put in hard among the sticks, more times than not gaining their freedom on the oyster-clad poles. Remember, take care when fishing these areas not to damage anything as you are hurting someone’s livelihood.
Lure fishos in the cooler months can still get in on some great action. Bream and flathead will still suck in plenty of lures over the cooler months and with a bit of determination some great angling can be achieved.
What can I say? A somewhat brief mackerel showing was over as quickly as it began, so on with the show. There was a good showing of cobia which propped up what was once again a disappointing season on the speedy fish from the north.
Bottom fishos have still being doing it tough with currents hampering fishing on the wider grounds. I would expect things to improve over the following weeks with the current backing off to a trickle, allowing from some good angling in the deeper water.
Snapper numbers should start to build as this time of year is prime reddie time. Floatlining for reds has certainly gained in popularity over the past years with anglers choosing this path enjoying better captures plus better quality fish. Braided lines also add to the mix, providing better feel with their superior sensitivity and minimal stretch. It makes things that much easier to detect a bite or to find when your drifting pilchard or squid bait has finally wafted down to the bottomReads: 560