Botany Blooms
  |  First Published: June 2010

As we say goodbye to light winds and sunny weather in Botany Bay, we open the door to chilly mornings, brisk winds and hopefully fruitful winter species.

I love tucking in behind the container wall at this time of the year as it protects from the icy winds from the west. The sun brings warmth as it hits the sky and the fishing along this wall over winter can be very productive with trevally, bream, leatherjacket and tailor.

However, please spread out at this popular spot; it seems everyone sits right on the end of Trevally Alley. The wall will fish well along its total length so spread out a little this season when fishing this spot.

Tailor and salmon are about in good numbers if you can find them. They tend to move into the bay and hold up feeding on larger baits, like yellowtail and slimy mackerel.

Using larger lures will produce well but a little effort is needed to locate the fish as there is no surface action to spot. Blind trolling is required, just drop a few lures over the back, feed them out 30-50m and spend an hour or two trolling the area. Once you have found fish troll over the same spot again; this will usually produce another hook up as these species are schooling fish.

Trevally are very much at home in the bay and even though they are around all year, they seem to like the cooler waters over winter. Any deep water spot will hold trevally, it’s all about dropping anchor and giving it try. These fish love berley and small baits floated in the trail, but keep it as fine as you can.

Trevally eat well as long as they are bleed and iced down straight away. Take two fillets from the trevally, add a small amount of olive oil and rock salt to the skin side of the fillet and then cook on a hot plate skin down. Apply pressure to stop the fillets from rolling up and once they have cooked just give them a quick turn to finish on the flesh side. Serve with a lemon wedge and they are delicious.

Leatherjackets aren’t really a targeted fish but they are about in good numbers over winter in the bay. You will find them at all the deeper water spots along with the trevally.

Jackets are actually great eating and easy to catch if they’re about. Drop a bait on a small hook right to the bottom and lift just a little. I use a dropper rig for this; start with a 5 ball at the bottom and about 50cm up add a small loop for your number 10 long shank hook. Squid, prawn or nippers are all good baits.

For all anglers that fish the Botany Bay or deep sea, I now have weekly reports on my web site along with great photos tips and lots of specials on trips coming up. Jump on and have a look at what’s on offer www.fishingsydney.com.au Sign up and you will receive my news letters and specials each month.


Rules of etiquette on the water when fishing:

• When approaching other boats fishing, slow down to a crawl;

• Pass at a safe distance of around 100m;

• Motor past other boats on the anchor side, as they will be fishing the other side;

• If a boat is anchored never anchor right behind them as they will probably be fishing in that direction with the tide and may have spent time berleying the spot;

• The tide runs in and it runs out, so think about this before you anchor and give all that are there before you the right of way (look at the direction they are fishing as this will tell you the direction of the tide most times);

• If the bay is looking a little crowded then head offshore for the day as it will give the earlier boats a better chance;

• Let boats on the drift past at a safe distance as they are still fishing.

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