Break out the pig gear!
  |  First Published: September 2003

THIS CAN be a bad month for fishing in our area if the drummer are not on time but this year should be a beauty, with the pigs back to their usual breeding schedule.

What usually happens when things are going according to plan is the pigs start to spawn by the end of the second week in July at Seal Rocks and get progressively later until they spawn around the second or third week in August at Crowdy Head.

After the pigs spawn they will eat almost anything that is thrown at them, so it is pretty easy to hook them – getting them onto the rocks is another matter. Line of 15kg, a 1/0 or 2/0 542 hook and a running ball sinker just heavy enough to get the bait to gradually sink will do the job.

Of course, you need a rod with a bit of guts in it. You have to be able to turn a pig before he gets under the rocks and tangles the line around the barnacles and cunje. Once the fish is on top of the water, it is only a matter of winding down to the fish and swinging it out onto the rocks. That’s the theory, anyway!


The estuary has fished quite well for many species over the past few weeks. Flathead are still being caught from the river wall by anglers fishing with live yabbies or fish baits. A fish of 3.5kg was taken on whiting not long ago. Bream, whiting, luderick and school jew to 10kg have been caught in encouraging numbers.

Salmon are showing up around the mouth of the Manning and by September they should be moving up the river, chasing the whitebait that has entered the river. The salmon can be targeted on lures, live bait or floating pilchards.


The bream and big tailor should be gone by the time this goes to print but the small choppers and salmon should make up for them. School jew are usually pretty thick on Crowdy Beach when there are lots of small tailor around. They take beach worms, pilchards and slabs of fresh tailor, as well as live fish.

Of course, those drummer from the rocks will be the best option for any anglers who like a bit of a fight from their catch.


A few surface fish should be showing up during September. Bonito, and mackerel tuna should be providing some excitement for those who wish to troll or spin.

The close reefs always produce big snapper around the full moon on live baits and fresh slabs fished as floaters. There are always a few eastern blue spot flathead to be taken from the drifts over the sand.

The beach and rock angler will probably have the most success in September, but those who fish the estuary will be able to catch a feed if they put in the time.

The AAA State estuary championships are to be held at Harrington on the first weekend in September and with the influx of top anglers, the estuary fish should be well and truly sorted out.

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