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That was a bream season!
  |  First Published: April 2009



Bream season has just about finished for the year but what a season we have had!

Most days the bream could be found in most spots that I fished with clients and in an average day we boated six to 10 bream in an hour and both rising and falling tides fished well.

The bream in Botany Bay over the Summer season are normally not big stud fish, mostly around the just legal 25cm to around 30cm. These spawning fish generally travel north.

I caught a bream once in Botany Bay that had been tagged in the Shoalhaven River at Nowra. This fish was only 27cm – not a bad swim for such a small fish.

Bream catch themselves, all you need to know is when to target them and although the best time is over Summer when they are in large schools ready to spawn, you can still get plenty in Botany Bay and the adjoining rivers.

Fresh bait is needed. I love nippers, peeled prawns, bloodworms, chicken fillet in Parmesan cheese, home-made pounding, chicken gut, mullet strips – the list goes on. Yes, bream will eat just about any thing.

As a kid snorkelling in a South Coast creek I spotted a big school of bream. As I approached, the school spread out and I found out what they were schooling over – they were feeding on a dead rat rolling along the bottom. Yes indeed, bream will feed on anything.

Nippers, not dead rats, are my choice when I chase bream in Botany Bay or the Hacking River.

SIMPLE RIG

The rig that works for me is rather simple: All you need is light line around 4kg to 6kg, a ball sinker, a small swivel, a long trace and a No 1 hook and fish the shallows.

I know this is hard to believe for many younger anglers you can still catch bream on bait as well as lures!

I worked this out as a kid with Dad fishing the oyster racks at Foster with unweighted nippers. Dad and I would float along the racks in our canoe, casting nippers and getting smashed by big bream time and time again.

Botany Bay Winter bream are in smaller schools that travel all the way up the rivers and across the bay but you need to fish early morning or late afternoon for best results.

I catch good bream over Winter mixed in with the trevally schools but I never catch as many as in Summer.

Night is the prime bream time in Winter, especially the last two hours of the run-in tide and two hours of the run-out, then move. If you’re fishing the right areas, you’ll have to move then because these spots will drain dry on the low water.

Some of the biggest whiting you will ever see will also be on the cards at night on the same grounds.

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