Bermi Bait & Tackle fishing report
OFFSHORE waters are holding between 20.5 to 21.4 degrees and the tide is pushing in on the edge westward.
Bait levels remain solid with slimy mackerel and yellowtail holding off the first and second point at the Bermagui harbour entrance most days, whereas Camel Rock is more consistent with good bait levels available each day with some really good-sized baits to be had.
On the Continental Shelf, bait is sporadic but on and around the tide-change, bait does show and can be jigged from 20-40 fathoms down.
Both striped tuna and sauries seem to be around in 60-100 fathoms and with a relatively slow amount of current it all paints a good picture for striped marlin fishing.
The bite at this stage is average with most boats raising at least one fish on any given day.
But should conditions hold as they are, there will be the odd day where bait ball activity is more prevalent and finding seals working bait near the shelf is also going to have a marlin or three on it.
A key indicator being one, two or three albatross circling tight and this is definitely something crews should be heading towards.
So it’s obviously important to have your eyes peeled as pursuing marlin in such situations can be as good as it gets.
Lure trolling has been fairly successful in this early part of the season but rigging your lures with leader down to 200lb and hooks of finer gauge such as Pakula Katana's and Maruto 1620's will help with hook set.
Your best hook up rate will come from running skip baits either stitched to the nose of a fresh bait or through the use of a pin rig, which is versatile and simple to rig.
Estuaries see big tides:
The big tides surrounding the dark of the moon have allowed schools of whiting to push in to some estuaries including Wallaga Lake, Wapengo, Cuttagee and the Bermagui River.
These fickle fish are catchable obviously on live prawns, nippers and fresh worms but so too they will take surface lures.
Small poppers and stick baits worked across the water will produce fish, and bream are more readily taking such lures at present.
When there is some breeze across the water, the whiting too become less discerning and will take a lure.
Long casts are essential and if you do believe a bream is following, then it is important to pause the lure, and if it is not taken straight up, then a slight twitch may entice a bite.
From there it's simply repetition and being consistent with your retrieve style.
Whiting really do need the lure to keep moving. Some surface lures come with larger trebles and it is worthwhile dropping down to size 12 or 14 treble hooks, which help the lures action and are often more sticky, particularly when a quality treble if used like a Vanfook or Owner.
Lure casting on Wallaga Lake remains effective and fishos trolling small hard bodies around the lakes edges are catching better sized fish by just staying wide of the weed line that surrounds much of the lake’s edge.
Cranking hard bodies along the weed edges at dawn and dusk is worthwhile and matching this with a higher tide helps.
The surf fishing has been sporadic and salmon catches off the middle of Cuttagee have eased while Long Swamp and Haywards have produced some better fish.
Those casting single hooks on lighter leaders with just a ball sinker (#2/#3) to the hook are doing well on bream, while whiting can be taken using fresh beach worms.
Those still prawning as the moon grows should be aware that Fisheries says it will be out targeting gear and bag limit compliance on the local estuaries from Eden to Narooma over the remainder of summer.
So the do the right thing and don’t exceed your 10-litre limit and make sure you have your licence with you.
Scotty, Josh, Michael and Loz
Narooma Sport and Game Fishing Club:
THE weekend was the club’s monthly fishing competition.
Winners were Dan Edwards with a fine catch of snapper and flathead, while Cheryl O’Kane won with a mixed bag of whiting, flathead, mullet and bream.
The competition is held on the second full weekend of the month and the winners get a $30 purchase voucher for one of our sponsors.
The next event on the club calendar is the Australia Day celebration (on the 26th of course); there will be lamingtons, Anzac biscuits, a sausage and lamb chop sizzle, with damper and salad on the side. Come along and celebrate the birth of our nation!
On Sunday, there were more than 50 boats fishing Montague Island.
Fishing was however patchy, with boats coming in with reports varying from “a disappointing catch” to a “great day’s fishing”.
Some people venturing out to Montague Island had catches of good size kingfish and snapper, while others hooked undersize fish and had a poor weekend, especially on Sunday when the rain started.
This was great for the garden but uncomfortable when fishing.
Mixed bags consisted of snapper, kingfish and flathead, and a few bonito were also caught.
Live bait produced the best results, some people reported good catches with pilchards on Saturday.
Fishing the surf provided poor results.
You are invited to come to the club, located across the boat ramp from Taylors restaurant, on Friday evenings starting at 4.30pm,.
The club will also be open on Australia Day, Saturday, January 26 from 6pm, and we look forward to seeing you there!
- Terry Vincent