Winter species dominate
  |  First Published: July 2009

The water temperature off Coffs is still hovering around 20° and although quite warm for this time of year, the Winter species are starting to bite.

Bream, tailor and jewfish are dominating the catches of anglers throwing bait or lures around the rocks and beaches, with Bonville Beach producing great bream and the northern beaches the pick of the jewfish possies.

Big sea-run bream are also in the gutters around many of the northern headlands, such as Moonee, Emerald and Woolgoolga, with cut mullet attracting the best fish. Undersize jewfish have been taking soft plastic lures in the mornings and bigger specimens have been biting just on dark.

On the eastern ends of headlands there have been no shortage of tailor willing to hit a metal lure or a slowly-retrieved ganged gar or pilchard.

Long rods and big threadline reels will allow you to make long casts with the unweighted ganged baits and a slow retrieve back to the rocks works best. If you are casting into a headwind, add a small bean or ball sinker directly above the bait.

All Coffs headlands will produce tailor, with Mutton Bird Island, the Quarry, Charlesworth, Diggers, Emerald, Woolgoolga and Station Creek good for the bigger fish.

If you are planning to chase jew on plastics, high tide produces the biggest fish, although they can still be found on the outer fringes at low tide.

Low-swell days, offshore winds and low tide can allow anglers to cast lures on the seaward side of rocky outcrops.


Mates John Lambert and Stewart McIntyre have been getting big bream on Boambee Beach down near the entrance to Boambee Creek. Their favourite bait has been cut mullet strips, with bigger jewfish also showing interest in their offerings.

Offshore anglers have been getting snapper to 7kg, tuskfish, teraglin and morwong, with all the deeper reefs producing outstanding fishing.

Those jigging the reefs have been hooking some bigger samson as well as kingfish.

The Solitary Islands are still producing pelagics with longtail tuna, yellowfin tuna and kings taking trolled lures and baits around the island washes.

Further out to sea, cleaner water has been producing yellowfin tuna and striped marlin, with trolled lures taking some bigger fish just wide of the shelf.


Another week of heavy rain has just turned the creeks chocolate brown for the umpteenth time this year and where the bass and bream are at the moment is anyone's guess.

There have been some good flathead taking poddy mullet and whiting hitting nipper baits in the lower stretches of Bonville and Boambee creeks.

Anglers fishing from breakwalls along the Nambucca and Kalang rivers have been hooking solid bream and the odd jewfish; beach worms have been the best bait for jewfish at Urunga.

Over the next month I'll target jewfish and tailor from the rocks and beaches, with the odd excursion offshore in search of snapper and kings.

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