Hot snapper fishing in close
The snapper fishing in Bream Bay over the last few weeks has been as good as it gets – and you haven’t had to travel far.
The whole of the bay at times has been alive with gannets, marine mammals and other predators getting into the pilchard and jack mackerel schools.
If you strayed beyond 20 metres, you were too far out.
Recently the action was concentrated from Bream Tail to the Waipu Rivermouth – Uretiti region. Leading up to the recent full moon the action was some of the best regular anglers have experienced with several snapper over the magic 20-pound mark being caught and released. The good thing about fishing in this depth is you can release those bigger breeders with some confidence they will survive.
Because of the predatory nature of this style of workup fishing, lures have performed well, with soft-baits doing the business for us over sliders, inchikus and micro-jigs – but all have had their moments.
The action some days has been frenzied and prolonged, while others have only produced short bursts of activity.
There has been a good number of decent-sized gurnard and john dory appearing in the bin when fishing over the sand or near and the reef edges. There could be worst things to do than catch a jack mackerel and then trail it behind you as you lure fish around the bait schools.
Several anglers have been ambushed by kingfish, the best I have heard of being a 20kg model which nailed a Blue Neon seven-inch soft-bait in 10 metres of water. It took the angler nearly 25 minutes to get the fish alongside. That was only the start of the battle as he struggled to get it into a small kayak-style landing net!
This is a good time to get the berley pot out and set up a trail over the deeper foul for a good straylining session. One angler, fishing around the Chicks, caught some great snapper during a dusk bait and berley session.
Reports from the Mokohinaus are suggesting there are still some good snapper to be had, but the kingfish bite has slowed.
We have been bleeding our snapper by cutting their throats and this has resulted in an even better quality fillet than just packing them on ice along. While it is mid-winter, you still need to care for your fish well with a decent slurry.