The Bay goes off
  |  First Published: March 2010

Now that the desalination plant work has almost finished and the water in Botany Bay is not getting stirred up as much, the fishing is really going off.

Anglers have been pulling in bream over a kilo, flathead to 90cm, whiting to 40cm, flounder, snapper to a kilo, tailor to 1.5kg, salmon to 3.2kg, bonito, frigate mackerel, kingfish to 95cm, mulloway to 5g – and that’s only what I have caught or seen caught. I am sure there have been even better caught lately.

Places worth a shot for bream during April include the Oil Wharf, The Sticks, The Drums, Bare Island, Trevally Alley, the end of the Third Runway and the middle of the Bay.

Lure fishers should keep changing styles and colours until they crack a pattern, which will vary day to day.

Bait fishers should anchor up and have a small, steady stream of berley going and use leaders at least 1m long. I prefer live nippers, blood and tube worms, peeled Hawkesbury prawns, half or filleted pilchards and strips of frigate mackerel.

There will be plenty of kingfish about in the Bay for the next couple of months. Fresh or live squid have been the undoing of plenty of kings lately but if you can’t get them, try small live yellowtail or slimy mackerel.

As Scotty Lyons reported last month, there are plenty of silver trevally about. When moving from spot to spot, you need to keep your eyes open for feeding tailor, salmon or kingfish. I have caught plenty of trevally and bream by letting my bait or lure sink through the feeding school.

Beaches from Cronulla to Boat Harbour have been producing some great whiting and bream during the day and tailor, salmon and the odd mulloway at night. Try nippers, beach or blood worms, whole pilchards and strips of mackerel. You can also use berley from the beach.

Bream and drummer will start to show in numbers off the rocks from the Kurnell Peninsula down to Stanwell Park.

In Port Hacking there have been bream, whiting, flathead, tailor, salmon and kingfish, especially on weekdays when the boat traffic is lighter.


Andrew Hansler fished with Neil Kelly to take out the Squidgies Southern Bream Series Georges River round with an impressive bag of five bream totalling 5.16kg, with the biggest 1.26kg. We fished the comp for four bream totalling 1.785kg.

Neil had never fished the bay before so it was up to Andrew to devise a plan. Everything seemed to go their way with a good drifts from 4m of water back in towards the shallows of about 1m.

They used 3” Gulp Minnows or 2” Shrimp on 1/16oz jig heads in the deeper water and swapped to Jackall Shallow Chubbies when the bottom was closer. Every lure colour they tried caught fish, upgrading four times.

Carl Dubois took out the kayak section with 3 bream for 2.175kg.

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