Confusion over crab law
  |  First Published: December 2007

It seems that most of us who like to catch blue swimmer crabs are of the understanding that the law prohibits us from leaving out overnight unattended witches’ hat nets in Lake Macquarie. This isn’t the case.

After some consultation with DPI Fisheries management I have been advised that due to some confusion in current legislation, fishers would not be penalised if they were to leave their traps unattended overnight.

The legislation will take some time to change but this ruling will stay the same after the change takes effect.


In the last issue I wrote about some of the finer points of whiting fishing except for what type of lures to use. I know many articles have been written about this technique lately but there are still some who remain sceptical so I see the need to clarify a few elements.

Whiting spend the majority of their feeding time in 70cm to 1.5m of water, mostly over sandy and weedy bottoms in search of worms, yabbies and prawns. So it’s simple, use lightly weighted lures that emulate the food they are looking for.

My personal choices are 35mm hard-bodied poppers. Colours can vary depending on the area but a simple prawn or baitfish pattern works well.

These fish are very aggressive when it comes to food time and when a water-disturbing lure is dangled in front of them, they find it hard to resist. Water swirls, bow waves and splashes will give you an adrenaline rush as they launch themselves at the lure.

The trick is to be stealthy when approaching the shallows, cast the lure over the area and strip it back towards yourself in short spurts, making the lure push water away from it’s face. The River 2 Sea Bubble Pop 35 in HA-11 colour is my favourite and in the soft plastics, try the Squidgy Pro Range Critter in grenade colour, weighted as lightly as possible.

Flathead reports have been coming in thick and fast. I have no doubt that this will be one of the best flathead seasons we have experienced.

Everyone should be skilled enough and have some knowledge of where the fish should be but if not, email

Good numbers of whiting and flathead were outstanding by-catch during the ABT BREAM Grand Final and some competitors reported sighting schools of 60cm to 80cm kingfish off Marks Point drop-off and Coal Point, showing that the lake is in fine fettle for the holiday season.

One of the three local anglers in the field, Drew Rhodes of Merewether, took out the non-boater’s section with his total of 10 bream for 5.41kg and won a Quintrex boat package for his efforts. Drew caught most of his fish on Berkley 2” and 3” Gulp Minnows in mouldy cheese and pumpkinseed.

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