Game season approaches
  |  First Published: November 2009

Game fishers are getting excited as yellowfin tuna numbers continue to increase as the weeks pass us by.

The fish are widespread from the 60-fathom line to the second drop-off, with the water hovering around 19°. Most are school fish averaging 30kg, though larger models have been encountered.

Albacore have also been also plentiful with fish to 12kg common. These great eating fish have been more prolific from the shelf to the second drop-off.

As we head further into December, expect the water temperature to rise sharply and bring striped marlin.

We always get a few beakies during December, with trolling lures definitely the way to catch one. You cover a lot more water and hopefully find the fish.

Concentrate your efforts around bait schools, particularly striped tuna, which have been prolific over recent weeks.

The current usually pushes hard this month to, so watch out for current lines, tide lines or temperature breaks and fish them accordingly.

At Montague Island the kingfish have been sporadic, to say the least – great one day, slow the next. When they do decide to chew, the action is fast and furious with jigs and live baits working well.

The northern and western sides are where most of the action is.

Big bonito have been hammering the bait schools. These guys are great sport and not bad on the plate if looked after correctly.

Troll smaller deep-diving minnows over the shallower grounds south of Montague, especially if the current is pushing hard to the south. You’ll get the odd kingfish to 10kg over these shallower sections, too.

The reefs closer to shore should keep the bottom-bouncers happy as snapper, morwong and flathead continue to do the right thing.

Almost all the local reefs north and south of Narooma are holding fish with the best Potato Point to the north. Snapper to 3kg have been caught recently with local angler Graham Sawyer getting amongst them.

A few switched-on crews are getting their bag limits inside a few hours but the boys are doing the right thing and keeping only enough for a feed – great to see.

This action will continue right through Summer. The reds will get a little smaller but kingfish are a huge possibility.

Every year some big hoodlums are hooked at Potato Point so always take fresh bait, jigs or, better still, live bait.


Wagonga Inlet is fishing nicely with big flathead, mulloway, tailor, bream, snapper and whiting all having a chew at certain times.

The mulloway action is the best seen for years with great success on bait and lures.

Most of the fish have been hooked during the day, with tide changes and fishing concentrations the key. I know of at least nine fish from 6kg to 16kg caught on soft plastics and many more lost over the previous week or so.

The guys using bait have also had a field day with fish to 11kg caught on live tailor, squid and yellowtail.

I have fished this system for along time and it’s great to see these bronzed marvels around in numbers. I’m not exactly sure if there are more fish this year or it’s just a case of a lot more anglers now targeting them; I suspect the latter.

This action should continue for a few months.

The flatties have really fired to with fish to 70cm quite common. While guiding there the other day we had a great session, which yielded five duskies over 65cm including two crocs over 85cm.


To the north, Tuross has produced some great bass action with fish to 42cm caught on various crankbaits, surface plugs and soft plastics.

The latest spate of hot weather has really turned on these guys and all looks promising for a fantastic season.

The upper reaches are certainly the place to fish and having a canoe will certainly help.

The lower sections of the Tuross River have been great for flathead and catches of 10 or more have been the norm. This will slow down a lot as we head into the busier holiday period.

Tuross always fishes great early; the water warms quickly in the shallows and this system has miles of shallow banks.

There’ll be great whiting action this month with squirt worms, nippers, small worm imitation soft plastics and unweighted surface lures all working at times. Surface lures like walkbaits and poppers will produce.

The beach action has been steady without being red-hot. Bream and whiting have been around but hard to entice to bite. Anglers who have downsized their tackle have had best success with live worms, pipi and fresh peeled prawns being the best baits.

Fishing the rocky corners of beaches on a rising tide close to dark has been the key to good bags. Narooma Main, 1080,and Handkerchief beaches have been the best.

The rock fishing looks set to continue as blackfish and drummer chew. Last month they were a bit quiet but in recent weeks have been good.

Fresh cabbage and prawns are the best baits with the south wall near the Australia Rock a good place to start looking.

The surface pelagic action should get better as we head further into Summer with kingfish, striped tuna and frigate mackerel all possible early in the mornings with chrome slices. Try Dalmeny Headland, the Golf Course Rocks or Mystery Bay.

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