A lot more fish have moved in close but there are large numbers of smaller snapper and, just like kids they don’t stop eating! If you find the first few fish are undersized, move as a large percentage of the small snapper released will die.
The worm beds have been consistently fishing well more up towards Tiri but make sure you stay well clear and outside of the cables. There are still reasonable numbers of snapper off Moturekareka and some better fish are on the low foul just to the east of Kawau.
Park Point, Rakino, Motuihe and Rangitoto channels are all holding reasonable numbers of fish as are the Noises so it’s just a matter of looking closely at your sounder. The snapper in the inner gulf are hard down on the bottom feeding on the open sand like farmer Browns cows where the bottom is flat very often making it hard to pick up fish-sign on the sounder.
I am now slowing down to less than three knots as I zig-zag into the tide closely watching the sounder which is set in bottom-lock. Being a Furuno sounder/chart plotter with Accu Fish which actually measures the length of fish that pass directly through the transducer beam I am mainly looking for tiny blue dots on the bottom as these are snapper feeding hard down on the sand.
By going into the tide you get a better idea of where the fish are and if you do come onto a bigger bunch of fish you can anchor on them without any maneuvering.
Over the years the trend seems to be less snapper migrating into the inner gulf and harbours which raises some concerns as to the future of the fishery. Over the winter months, I noticed a lot of small kingfish close in around the rocks and a slight increase in the number of snapper showing up in the channels when I was heading further afield. With the warm weather, the snapper are well into spawning and moving back into the inner harbour in greater numbers than in the last few years so let’s hope there is a swing back to normal.
It’s a good time to consider how important it is that we individually take ownership of the future especially at this time of the year when the fish are spawning. With a rapidly growing population in Auckland, we really do need to think about the way the fish are treated and the number of fish we keep. If we all want to restore the biomass for future generations we need to all play a part
Early evening and just on dark is proving best for those fishing in the channels but make sure you turn on your riding light as its bloody hard for us old fellas to see small boats and kayaks and I don’t want to see my big shiny bronze prop bent.