Bring on the big bream
  |  First Published: June 2004

ATTENTION bream fishermen: start your engines! It’s that wonderful chilly time of year when bream are at their most numerous and, although we’re hearing some tales of large catches of undersized bream, some 1kg-plus fish are still being weighed in.

Catching one of these brutes is quite an experience. Pound for pound they are one of the best fighting fish around, and can hold their own against many of the more classical sportfish. You tend to find the larger bream near rocks, oyster beds and submerged snags. These fish pull extremely hard, and if you’re using light line they can take you to the cleaners quite easily.

When fishing in fast moving water, bream use their shape to their advantage, getting side-on with the current and making their job easier and yours harder. I find you get the best results in the fast-moving waters along breakwalls and steep banks, or if the water is swirling and whirlpooling. My best fish came in these conditions using a no 3 teardrop sinker with a 50cm leader of about 15lb to a 1/0 baitholder hook baited with a large whack of fresh mullet fillet. You can fish lighter or heavier depending on the conditions, but I’ve found this rig is good in most situations around the ‘Pin.

On one trip, while fishing the north wall of Wave Break Island, the lead had hardly hit bottom when the rod was nearly ripped from my grasp, and I reckon the tip of the rod hit the water before I struck (I must have been reaching for a refreshment). It was a very powerful fight but it didn’t take too long to land as I was only in about 15ft of water. Swiftly netted by my competent mate, the fish was estimated at well over a kilo and released unharmed to fight another day. I just wish I’d brought the camera!

Other spots to have a go at the big bream are around the rocks on the southern side of Russell Island, Kalinga Bank, Cobby Passage and Marks Rocks in the Logan River.

The junction of the Albert and Logan Rivers is currently the best spot to score some whiting on bloodworms and small peeled prawns. There have been many winter whiting about and these pesky little buggers are responsible for most of your bait disappearing in a hurry. If that happens, move on.

There are plenty of chopper tailor out from the mouth of Swan Bay and along the dirty water line at the bar. Trolling lures in a zigzag pattern over this line, or casting into it, has been proving fruitful when the birds haven’t been working the surface, but always keep an eye out for them and be ready to move.

School-sized flathead are being taken on soft double-tails and live herring and poddies along the steep drop-offs in most of the channels throughout the ‘Pin and in the Logan and Pimpama rivers. Remember that the bag limit for flathead is five.

The best jew so far has gone 9kg from the Logan near Marks Rocks on a live banana prawn. The crabs are still about, but fewer fishos are chasing them now.

If you’d like to order any bait or need any advice, give us a call at Gem Bait & Tackle on (07) 3287 3868, email --e-mail address hidden-- or stop in and see us on your way to the ‘Pin. I’ll catch you next month.

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