Big jew on the prowl
  |  First Published: October 2003

All the indicators are pointing towards October being the month to chase that elusive 30kg mulloway. In the ‘old days’ October was considered to be the best month for jew over 50lb and along the way you’d probably hook a very big fish.

Unfortunately, not all of the big ones are brought to gaff, as they are mostly hooked at a spot where, if they run east, they have to be stopped immediately or your line will be cut off on something sharp in close to the rocks. The big fish always seem to make a charge for this particular rock once you turn them. The smaller fish seem to want to run south and south-east, which is basically open country, and you can let them tire themselves out before floating them in to the gaff.

At present there are heaps of undersized tailor on our beaches and rocks, as well as plenty of salmon from just over 1kg up to 2.5kg. These fish are the sort of food that big jew like, and with the numbers of tailor increasing from week to week the conditions should be just right for the big jew during October.


Luderick are running at the time of writing, with fish being caught on green weed and cabbage weed around the Gantry and further up the river wall. At night bags of luderick are being taken on live yabbies fished without a sinker.

A few bream are taking yabby baits and fish strips at night, while plenty of school jew to 5kg are taking fresh tailor fillets and beach worm baits near the end of the seawall.

The river should produce a few nice flathead up to 2.5kg in October, both on plastics and on live bait. The big fish of five or more kilos usually arrive at the mouth of the river by late November or early December.

Rock and beach

There are still a few larger tailor left in our area. Diamond Head has fished well for fish just over 1kg but they are hard to find. Most of the tailor on the beaches and around the rocks don’t make legal size, but they are the right sort of baitfish to attract the big predatory fish.

The ‘Blue Hut’ area of Crowdy Beach has fished well for bream and small school jew lately. Harrington beach, near the seawall, has produced plenty of school jew to 5kg on beach worms and fresh tailor slabs.


It has been a bit quiet for the outside boys in recent weeks with only flathead being plentiful and a few pan-sized snapper to keep the anglers happy. A couple of yellowfin tuna were weighed recently though, so all is not bad on the outside scene. There are also some bonito and mack tuna around to target by trolling, and their numbers should increase as the water warms.

By now there should be plenty of salmon on our beaches and, if fished with light line, these are mighty fighting fish. Although they aren’t much in the eating department, a slab of fresh salmon is a top bait for a big jew. The river will be full of luderick and the whiting will also be coming on the bite.

1) John Philpot with a brace of mulloway. October is traditionally the month to catch quality jew.

2) A solid 950g bream caught off the beach.

3) There are still some snapper around to keep anglers happy. This 2.9kg fish was caught by Nicole Gunson.

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