For the last month the East Coast, particularly around St Helens, has been very busy on the water.
Georges Bay has looked like Sydney Harbor at times with the amount of boat traffic on it, yet it has continued to produce a wide variety of fish. The bay is just getting better and better all the time.
The best evidence of this is in the recent Tasfish.com St Helens Charity Grand Slam fishing competition which was held on Saturday 23 January as part of the St Helens Regatta.
The object of the competition was to catch the three “Grand Slam” species of fish, Australian salmon, silver trevally and bream, measure and photograph with a digital camera and add the lengths together for a total length in centimetres which were your total points.
For every additional species caught an extra ten points added to your total.
Thiry-two teams entered in the comp, 15 of those managed to catch all three of the Grand Slam species and were able to record their points.
Between all the teams there were 14 different species of fish caught and these included, bream, salmon, trevally, wrasse, snapper, King George whiting, mackerel, leatherjacket, flathead, weed whiting, tailor, mullet, squid and sweep. Team Shimano, Tas consisting of Michael and Joel Haley and Paul Mason, won the event for the second year with a total of 167 points, the three Grand Slam fish and 6 extra species.
A total of $1600 was raised as a result and donated to the Leukaemia Foundation and all in all it was an excellent day on the water enjoyed by many.
There has also been a couple of captures of yellowtail kingfish in the bay and also around Elephant Rock. Yellowtail kingfish are becoming a more common catch in the bay now and only a few years ago this would have been just a chance catch by a few anglers every now and again.
Most of the kingfish have fallen to the use of soft plastic lures cast at likely areas such as channel markers, pylons and areas where there are fast currents with swirling back eddies.
Another fish that has always been quite elusive but has started to show up in more consistent and larger numbers is the King George whiting.
Large whiting have been caught in the bay, mostly around the shallower sand bank areas along the channel.
These fish can be caught with baits such as pipis and clams and also soft plastic lures and are a great table fish.
Not only have they been caught in Georges Bay, Ansons Bay has also had its fair share of decent King George whiting and also some small snapper.
The water temperatures have increased offshore again with 19C being recorded well inside the shelf.
Small albacore tuna to 5kg are being caught around the 100m mark. Small feather lures such as the Zuker and skirted lures such as Pakula Fluzi are perfect for the average sized fish, and with some yellowfin tuna already boated so far this season the hot action is not far away.Reads: 2022