Short days, many fish
  |  First Published: June 2005

Cold mornings and shorter days – we always complain that a day’s fishing is too short but this month it’s true!

So maximise the time you have on the water. Early starts can be hard but when you hook into some nice fish it doesn’t seem so bad at all.

With the approach of cool, calm days and good conditions a few drummer outings will be on the cards. Plans will be set, berley prepared and bait collected; all we’ll need is for these bruisers to play the game.

Best baits to my liking will be cunjevoi and abalone gut. I use bread and cunjevoi juice for berley, with a few cunje casings stuffed with bread thrown wide to attract more fish.

There is nothing like the power of drummer from the rocks. They can be finicky on the bite but once hooked you have to be geared up and ready for a fight. These strong brutes can be very stubborn and don’t stop pulling until landed. A definite outing in the coming weeks and sure to be a whole lot of fun.

The river has been fishing consistently well for some nice fish. The lower reaches of the Hastings have held some monster schools of mullet and some very clean-looking bream.

On a recent outing a mate and I lost three monster bream in three consecutive casts around timbered structure.

The first fish came into the clear and we got a good visual on this monster. I thought I had him beaten until he turned and went back to where he had come from with no chance of stopping him.

As I re-rigged, my mate Burky threw in and was hit as soon as the lure landed. He didn’t get a chance to put pressure on this fish before it was all over. By this time I had a new jig head on with a bloodworm Flickbait and hooked another fish, got a quick look at it and lost it to the timber.

We quickly moved around to the other side of the timber, where I pulled a good fish into the clear but it was nowhere near the size of the first three.

These silver foxes of the river are out to play and get as much food into their bellies as possible before they do their run to sea. So make sure you get on the water early or late in the day and have a go at tangling with some of these wonderful bream.

The flathead have been all over the place with some good fish for the table being landed and with good conditions this should continue.

If you like garfish then pick the tides and find some clear water near weed beds and you won’t be disappointed. There have been some excellent schools around and well worth tucking into.


It’s a time of brilliant sunrises and glorious sunsets so make the most of these short windows of excellent fishing time and get on the water.

The beaches have been really firing with a good session producing quality fish around 2kg. Strip baits of mullet and gar are my favourites but a reliable source has told me that fresh king prawns have accounted for some monster bream off Light House Beach. A waste of prawns, if you ask me! But if big bream are what you’re after and you don’t mind forking out for king prawns then give it a go.

Tailor have also been around with some good fish being taken from the beach on the North Shore.

Offshore, no two days have been the same. One day the current will be running full bore and the next, just about nothing. Some good mahi mahi are still around with anglers aboard Ocean Star getting some action.

The usual bottom-dwelling species will be on offer as the pelagics look for warmer waters and move with their regular food sources.

There should be plenty of snapper on offer and with the trend to target these wonderful fish with soft plastics I’m sure we’ll get plenty of reports of good fish falling to this new method.

Phil Whatson from Port Macquarie tackle spent all of last season refining this form and is definitely the man to talk to in our area about how to get reds-on-plastic action. I’ll be hitting him up for an outing or two in the coming months.

The 2004 Port Macquarie BREAM Classic was such a huge success that the Sundowner Breakwall Tourist Park has come on board. The 2005 event will be the Sundowner BREAM Classic Port Macquarie and we will bring the Reef Science tank and move the tournament HQ to the Town Green, making it a showcase event for the Hastings Region.

Entry forms for the Classic, to be held on November 12 and 13, can be downloaded from www.bream.com.au and www.portmacquarieholidays.com or phone me on 0401 191 554 and I’ll post one.

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