Boat anglers who have gone out fishing in the last few weeks since we have moved out of Alert Level 2 and 3, have given mixed reports of successful snapper catches. It appears that those who have reported that fishing in shallow waters in depths of 10m and less have done very well. Some really good sized snapper have been caught. Those who have charged out deeper to the 30m and 50m marks have not had it all their own way. Lots of small snapper have been caught out there with the odd keeper. During Alert Level 3, when we could fish from the beaches, anglers all did extremely well, catching really good sized snapper. The indications are that snapper are being caught in the shallower depths. My suggestion is to first try in close and, if no success at your favourite spots, move out deeper as a last resort.
Shane Brooker, left, with his record-breaking tuna.
June and July bring the gurnard into the Kaipara harbour and these are normally good-sized fish this time of the year. When targeting gurnard, use smaller hooks on your ledger rigs such as a 3/0 or 4/0. Pink and red flash seems to work better than green and blue on your flasher rigs. Also use smaller pieces of bait on your hooks to entice them to swallow the bait. You will get a better hook-up rate with this approach. These are extremely tasty fish and a personal favourite of mine.
Bluefin tuna are starting to be landed, as they do this time every year. Earlier this month, some good fish have come out of the Hawke’s Bay area and a specimen of 100.4kg caught by angler Shane Brooker, earned him the Hawke’s Bay Club record. Reports of tuna that have been landed as far north as between White Island and Waihau Bay came from boats fishing out of the Tauranga Bay area. Any anglers keen on chasing these beasts must first make sure where they plan to launch from, as it appears that the boat ramp at Waihau Bay is currently closed until further notice.
At this time of year, there are a lot of bigger kingfish lurking around reefs. Live bait is the preferred bait to use and you can either keep the bait on the surface with a balloon or you can leave the balloon off if you want the bait to dive down deeper. The best bait, if you can land some, is blue koheru. Kingfish absolutely love them! You can catch them on a light rod using small micro-jigs, which you cast out into your berley trail.
Anthony Roberts, Tackle & Outdoors