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Months of hot action
  |  First Published: March 2009



March marks the start of three months of excellent fishing in the Manning region, especially on our local beaches.

Better-sized tailor are starting to show up on our beaches and around the headlands.

Fish to 1.5kg and better can be caught from the beaches this month when the bait schools move in and the seas are down a little.

Around the rocks, it is possible to score a fish of 5kg or even 7kg.

Mulloway are frequently in the estuary system over these months and can be caught in the river on a live bait under a bobby cork or on a fresh slab bait floated along the wall or down the tide from a boat.

Bream are also starting to school up and can be found in most parts of the river and up the tributaries that flow into the Manning.

ESTUARY

The river has been fishing well for flathead, bream, whiting, mulloway and luderick.

The mulloway have been caught from the sea wall on live herring or live mullet fished under bobby corks and have ranged in size from 4kg to 15kg.

Flathead are still plentiful, with the occasional good fish of 5kg and more being caught, with live bait accounting for most of the big fish.

It has been more difficult to score a decent bag of bream, with the best catches being made at night and up river from the mouth.

The whiting are taking surface lures spun over the numerous sand flats in the lower part of the river.

There are heaps of luderick to be seen feeding along the retaining walls at the mouth of the river but they are not biting well on weed during the day.

At night, it is a different story with anglers are scoring fish to a kilo on live yabbies.

BEACH, ROCK

Tailor have appeared in good numbers in recent weeks but southerly winds and a big onshore swell have limited fishing time.

When the sea is big, the whitebait leave the gutters and holes on the beaches and move out to sea to get away from the stirred-up sand.

Consequently, the tailor follow them and not much is caught from the beach.

But when the weather improves, and after a few good days the tailor will be back in the gutters chasing the whitebait.

The best tailor have been caught from the northern end of Crowdy Beach, with some fish over a kilo.

A jew of 10kg was caught on a fresh tailor slab near Abbeys Creek so it might pay to convert a chopper to a jewfish if you have the right gear.

OFFSHORE

Boaties have been scoring some good catches over recent weeks.

Pearl perch have been taken wide of Diamond Head, while kingfish have been caught around the wave rider buoy on live bait and on jigs.

Slimy mackerel are plentiful around the shallow reefs and make great baits live or as fresh slabs.

Snapper have been a bit scarce but some nice cobia have been boated. Flathead are still on the bite and are making up the bulk of the catch for the bottom-bashers.

March should provide plenty of opportunity for shore anglers to grab a bag of fish. The estuary and the beaches should provide plenty of action, especially at dawn and dusk.

Boat anglers in the estuary will be able to target bream, flathead, luderick and whiting.

On the beaches, tailor and jew should be the fish to target, with tailor on lures and pilchards and jew on live tailor or fresh tailor slabs.

Outside anglers will be able to concentrate on big snapper around the closer reefs.

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