Weekly Report 13 Jan 09

Jason and Virginia Isaac
Ned Kelly’s Bait and Tackle
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Weekly Report 13 Jan 09

Post by Brad » Wed Jan 14, 2009 12:26 am

On the offshore scene, obviously the Golden Lure has been the focus of the week, and as reported, there have been some terrific captures of various game species including marlin, mahi mahi and tuna. Hopefully the good weather which graced the first half of the competition will have extended to the last two days, and some hot action eventuated. For bottom bouncers, the strong currents, whilst easing a little, have made conditions challenging, especially when the nor easters get up later in the day. Best results have come from the close in reefs off Plommer and Cathie, with a few nice size snapper, kingfish and pearl perch on offer. Don’t overlook the humble offshore flattie when the currents are strong, as whilst the action isn’t dynamic as a rule, the end table fare is first class.

Off the rocks, some big tailor remain on offer, more like the winter class of fish rather than the usual choppers of this time of year. Along with the tailor, some feisty kingfish have been on offer from the ledges to the north of Port, whilst locally and to the south, blackfish and drummer remain viable targets for those floating a bit of cabbage around the washes. No real land based game action as yet, however with the waters now beginning to warm nicely, it is hopefully only a matter of time. Off the beaches, results overall remain a little on the disappointing side, however having said this, there are some nice fish about if you are prepared to put in the time. Lighthouse has given up some nice whiting, particularly from the northern end, along with a few reasonable bream. Perhaps the best new however is in regards to tailor, with better numbers and quality about than we have seen for some time. Best results have been during evening sessions, with lures before dark, and pilchards after.

In the estuaries, whiting continue to dominate reports, with good results from both baits and lures from pretty well all locations. Quite a few blackfish too have been on offer, particularly around the shallow weed beds on lightly weighted yabbies. Flathead too have been excellent, with a significant improvement over the past week, particularly from the lower reaches. Whilst this is good news for the average estuarine angler, unfortunately it also signifies the commencement of the annual breeder removal program. It is at this time year when the large female flathead congregate in the lower reaches, doing their thing to ensure a continual replenishment of their species. Regrettably, this congregation also sees a small but determined army of anglers also drawn to these waters, with seemingly the sole purpose of doing their bit to keep the numbers of flatties down. Now whilst I certainly acknowledge any anglers right to keep one flathead per day over 70cms as allowed by current regulations, what get many anglers riled is seeing some anglers doing this day after day, week after week, with some even going to the extent of taking their prized flattie home, and returning shortly thereafter to get another one. For those who release their large flatties unharmed, you can understand why these actions leave a sour taste in their mouths. With substantial overall angler support for releasing these big fish, and the proven worth of their breeding importance, it really makes you wonder why NSW Fisheries have not followed the lead of their enlightened QLD counterparts in introducing a slot size arrangement to protect the future of this most valued species.

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