January brings big fish
  |  First Published: December 2009

January brings our best fishing with summer all about warm water temperatures, pelagic species and clear skies.

There are plenty of fish being caught in the Derwent estuary right on Hobart’s door step, with large numbers of Australian salmon and bigger than average barracouta. There will soon also be some of those amazing yellowtail kingfish too.

Trout and bream are on the chew with soft plastic and bait anglers getting amongst some trophies.

Game fishing options

As long as water temperatures cooperate, we should be amongst the game fish in January with striped tuna, albacore and mako sharks all on the menu.

For those fortunate enough to be on holidays, the arrow and calamari squid are a popular species that can be targeted by the whole family. These species, especially the arrow squid are a favourite food of the bigger pelagics.

Remember good quality squid jigs are the key to success.

D’Entrecasteaux Channel

For the freshwater angler, the upper reaches of the Huon River is the place to be with resident and sea run trout available, plus the odd Atlantic salmon.

Besides the main river itself the small tributaries such as the Russell and Denison Rivers are also productive throughout January, February and March.

The middle reaches of the Huon will gives up some good sized bream and estuary species such as yellow-eye mullet, mackerel and even the odd juvenile barracouta.

Soft plastic anglers will do best to drift and spin from a boat. Trolling with Cobras is also effective.

Flyfishing with Woolly Buggers or smelt style flies can also be effective. To attain the required depth an intermediate or sink tip line is recommended.

Further down the river Port Huon provides a productive fishing platform where with the use of berley a school of mackerel or mullet can soon be bought to the surface.

For those that prefer sheltered water, bay fishing Cygnet will also give up numbers of sand flathead, juvenile barracouta and Australian salmon.

Trolling from a small boat is recommended with deep divers, or large slice lures. For the flathead slow trolling will work although drift spinning with soft plastics will get better results.

Bruny Island

On Bruny Island, Adventure Bay is as productive water as any. Anglers will find various species including barracouta, large Australian salmon, mackerel, gummy sharks, squid and for those that can get out wide enough, the striped trumpeter and morwong perch are a tasty target.

Bait fishing and soft plastics are the two recommended methods although anglers who troll the bay with silver slices or blue and silver cobra lures will also take fish.

For those after somewhere a little closer to home the Browns River at Kingston has been fishing well for bream of late. Bait fishing with striped tuna, crabs, mussels and prawns is effective as is spinning with soft plastics. Catch and release is the best option here as the water is quite polluted at times.

A small kayak is advantageous to gain access to some of the preferred locations.

Heading south anglers will find the Esperance River a productive fishery if wanting to target Atlantic salmon, bream, Australian salmon and flathead.

As access is often difficult, the boat angler is at a greater advantage.

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