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Spectacular Fishing and the Scent of Jasmine

By Dan Hutton on October 6, 2011 in

Spring has sprung like a jack in the box, full of surprises, fun and the promise of the summer ahead. With the scent of jasmine in the air and a handful of worthy beach sessions under the belt, it sure is lovely when the days are growing longer and dreams of summer fun and mayhem run through one’s mind.

The fishing has also been spectacular for those anglers who are well prepared and out on the water early. The rocky ocean headlands have been providing keen but careful anglers with luderick, drummer, Australian salmon and tasty feeds of southern calamari squid. The beaches have also been fishing well with anglers reporting decent catches of bream as well as some whiting. Expect both of these environs to continue to fish well throughout October but keep in mind that rock fishing is seriously dangerous and never attempt to fish from the rocks if the conditions look even slightly daunting.

In the harbour things are still slowish. The kingfish have tended to be small whilst the jewfish have almost been non-existent amongst my group of fishing buddies. Flathead have begun to awaken and are taking slowly worked soft-plastics around the sandy drop-offs and rock bars. Squid have been plentiful, as is often the case at the end of winter, and they’re keeping anglers happy and well fed. Silver trevally and bream should respond well to a fine misty burley around North Head, Dobroyd and the Sow and Pigs. There has been an omni-present school of robust Australian salmon around North Head most days, and scattered amongst them are silver trevally and bonito.

Offshore, the tuna schools will be essentially gone by the time you read this and soon enough the billfish species will start to poke their pointy noses through the early stages of the EAC. October is also a great time for anglers looking to catch a bull mahi mahi. Having said this there can be days and many kilometers between them. Instead of seeking out the FADs, head wider and target the open water, keeping an eye out for floating objects and temperature breaks.

At the end of the day, springtime off Sydney is all about snapper catches. Unfortunately most of them are caught by commercial fishos setting large fish traps in the 30-60 metre belt of water. Like the recreational anglers who target snapper at this time of year, commercial fishos are targeting the spawning aggregations that come together like clockwork each year on the same grounds. Keep this in mind if you get onto a hot-bite and only take home what you can eat fresh. Remember, we depend on the success of spawning fish for the future of our fish stocks.

Until next month, happy summer dreaming!

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