OFFSHORE fishers are still waiting for the kingfish run to start, at the moment there have been some caught, but they have been outnumbered about 20:1 by undersize kings.
Just when things looked like they were picking up the current stopped, and as the old saying goes "No Run - No Fun". The water has also settled to around 21c.
A check of charter and commercial logbooks from previous years indicated that the kingfish should have arrived on Boxing Day, unfortunately the fish didn't read the script and only a few undersize fish arrived.
Our spies tell us that there were good sized kingfish caught at Moruya on Friday, but they were gone by Saturday, and on Sunday gale force winds kept all boats in port.
There have still been some fishers coming from interstate who claim they are not aware that the size for kingfish is 65cm, a word of advice could save these fishers a hefty-on-the-spot fine.
As they say: “Ignorance of the law is no excuse”.
The fishing positives have been great catches of flathead and mowies with occasional snapper and pigfish taken everywhere from Mystery Bay to Tuross.
The bait situation has been a bit patchy, however if you watch your sounder you may come across schools of 150cm barracoutta, these make great strip baits for all species, but they won't stay alive to use as live bait.
The guys at Charter Fish Narooma report that there is still plenty of reef fish and flathead around, heaps of undersize kings, but not many legal.
Quite a few marlin had been seen and the odd one caught, so game fishing could be a great option.
Over the weekend there had also been a few striped marlin up to and around 60kg caught just inside the shelf off Tuross and further north.
Benny Bolton yesterday took out the “Nitro” on its first game fishing trip since its homecoming and refurbishment managing a 70kg blue marlin.
Benny says he marked up the bait ball on the sounder and then threw out a live bait to get his client Greg Stevenson of Canberra the marlin.
Word at Bermagui Bait and Tackle was that there were a few marlin caught off Tathra yesterday as well.
Small Nannygai are still hanging around Montague Island, these fish were nearly wiped-out in the 1980s through over fishing by trawlers, and are now making a recovery thanks to strict quotas on what trawlers can catch.
If these stocks keep improving they will again become an important part of every fishers catch, and they are great eating.
A few locals have ventured out to the Continental Shelf for a spot of drop lining in the last week.
Mixed catches of gemfish and ocean perch have been taken, if you are new or inexperienced on the specifics of drop lining just call into one of the Narooma or Bermagui bait and tackle shops for advice on what gear to use and the areas for best catches.
Dash at the Narooma Ocean Hut Compleat Angler reports that Wagonga Inlet still fishing well around the whitebait schools as local guru Mark Carradus has found himself among several red hot tailor sessions over the past few days.
Each session managing anywhere from 20 to 60 tailor as well plenty of bycatch in the shape of flathead and snapper.
Dash says it’s not rocket science, it’s just a matter of find the bait balls with in the estuary then work them with lures resembling the whitebait.
For beginner anglers just coming to Narooma for some estuary fishing, the folks at the Ocean Hut recommend finding a good spot, anchoring up and putting out lots of berley.
Scotty at Bermi Bait & Tackle reported over the weekend that onshore the warm windy conditions continue to favour those casting lures in the shallows with both bream, whiting and flathead all on offer from Wallaga Lake down to Wapengo.