Weekly Report 6 Feb 09

Water Tower Bait & Tackle
10 Ernest St, Manly
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Weekly Report 6 Feb 09

Post by Brad » Fri Feb 06, 2009 7:49 am

There has not been a lot of reports filtering in over the last week due to many anglers being back at work and the windy weather, both of which have hampered the efforts of those keen for some piscatorial action. The early part of the week created a few opportunities and anglers venturing into the bay reported mixed results.

A few spotted mackerel were caught around the Sand Hills area after plenty of effort. The mackerel were present yet very hard to approach. It was often a case of waiting and hoping you could see a couple cruising around within casting reach. Even when there was a little surface action, the school would sound as the first lure hit the water. Hookups were fairly light on although the few spotties landed were quality specimens better than 3kg. Several small bust ups were also seen in the Harry Atkinson area but again the fish were hard to approach and hook. Jigging plastics in this same area produced several squire that were hovering just around the just legal size.

Better quality snapper have been caught around the bay islands but anglers have been on the water well before dawn and have usually only had one or two quality hits for a morning session. Fish to around 5kg have been landed by anglers with a good knowledge of the water they are fishing. Mud and Peel have been the main islands producing fish but St.Helena and Green would also be worth a look. A few quality sweetlip have been taken on fresh fillet baits at Green during the week by anglers on the water an hour or two before dawn. The bite has only lasted for around half an hour, just as the sun breaks over the horizon, so it pays to be out early. Anglers have also been hooking plenty of small whaler sharks and the occasional school mackerel while targeting snapper and sweetlip around the bay islands on baits.

A quality golden trevally of around 7kg was caught on a live yakka at the Curtain Artificial last weekend. The angler was actually trying to tempt one of the resident yellowtail kingfish but they were too cautious to take his bait. An odd cobia is also caught in this area, as well as XOS longtails, by anglers live baiting. Jigging plastics on the edge of the main ledge (in around 23m of water) will often produce a few quality snapper and other species. Whiting have been fairly plentiful over the last few weeks, both in the creeks and the banks throughout the bay. These summer whiting are very tasty and it is worth the effort of obtaining some live worms to entice the better quality specimens. Strips of squid will also work, especially when tenderized with the back of a knife before hand so they are softer and easier for the squid to mouth.

Anglers working the shallows around the bay islands with lures have been scoring on a few quality bream. A broad array of offerings have worked, with small stick-bait style surface lures producing the goods on many occasions when in the hands of skilled anglers. Species such as trevally, flathead, longtom, pike and chopped tailor have also been getting in on the act. The mud crabs have been fairly consistent since the recent rain flushed many of the smaller creeks. Setting pots at the mouths of feeder creeks, gullies and along deeper banks has worked well, especially for those anglers willing to leave them out overnight. This is the best way to score a feed of tasty muddies but also heightens your chances of having your pots stolen if your are not close by to watch them.

There have been plenty of greasy prawns around in the creeks, which makes getting some quality fresh baits easier if you have a cast net. No reports of banana prawns have been forthcoming but good numbers should be available soon. The shallows around the bay islands and many of the gutters on the eastern side of the bay have been worth a try for squid. Try around areas with reef and rubble bottoms or around the weed beds. Squid generally like good clean water so finding this around such areas is a good place to start.
May your bait be nervous. Gordon Macdonald.

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