The rocks run hot
  |  First Published: May 2010

Those anglers fishing the stones have been having a field day with multiple species on offer with a variety of techniques successful.

Fishos targeting pelagics like bonito, rat kingfish, salmon and tailor on ganged pilchards and metal shiners have fared best, with Tura headland, North Head and Merimbula Wharf in the bay all producing at times.

This action will continue for a few weeks yet with larger mackerel tuna to 10kg also on the cards.

Those using live bait will have a more realistic chance at the bigger fish although a little more effort is certainly required to procure the bait and keep it alive.

Local fishing nut Jimmy Downes has had some fun with the salmon and tailor from 1.6kg to 2.4kg on poppers. Jimmy said he didn’t land that many fish but it was loads of fun watching them smash his popper.

This month we will see better captures of blackfish and drummer in the washes with Short Point the pick of the spots. Fresh bait like cabbage, cunjevoi or fresh prawns should suffice.


Salmon and tailor continue to keep the beach goers happy with most beaches holding fish.

North Tura towards Bournda Island has a cracking gutter loaded with fish. I took my two little girls down there last week for a mid-morning session and caught seven salmon inside a few hours.

We used live beach worms on small hooks aimed at whiting so if you went targeting the salmon properly you’d clean up for sure. Paternoster rigs with a popper/bait combination or half-pilchards on single-hook rig would be the go.

In the estuaries it’s been a bit tough by southern standards, though the fish are there. Those doing well are using lighter leaders when throwing artificials and smaller presentations, even for flathead.

We’ve been doing OK on prawn imitations fished slow in 4m to 5m of water, especially in Pambula. The water has cooled considerably over recent weeks so ‘slow is the go’ from now on.

Like most southern estuaries at the moment, this place is loaded with bait so sessions around the dense schools of bait have produced some solid bream, trevally and tailor on blades and plastics.

Over the next few weeks the lower sections of the system should pick up for trevally with soft stickbaits the go in the faster water.

Salmon schools have entered the system occasionally, providing abundant fun for anglers targeting them.


Outside, the tuna action is about to hot up. Game crews are eagerly awaiting the tuna to arrive in better numbers and a few already have been caught. Locals have caught yellowfin to 30kg mainly on trolled skirts from the 40-fathom line towards the shelf,

Bigger fish to 80kg are on the cards with berley, live bait and cubing the best way to target them over coming weeks. Every year we get some big fish so let’s hope this season is the same.

Closer inshore, the snapper run should gain some momentum as the month rolls on with fish to 3kg possible. It’s been a little slow with the reds lately but hopefully things will pick up.

Anglers fishing the freshest of baits will fare best with squid, cuttlefish and striped tuna strips the go. Try around Long Point, Haycock Reef and in close to Lennards Island.

Those trolling smaller skirts or bibbed minnows in close to the headlands may be rewarded with kingfish, bonito and salmon.

It’s been a dynamite year for bonito with fish to 5kg common. These speedsters fight great on lighter tackle and not bad on the plate if prepared the right way or better still, smoked.

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