The Espresso Report 7 October 2021
Opening Day! For many Auckland anglers last Wednesday , they must have felt the excitement and rush that their freshwater colleagues do at the start of each season. Much hoped for and eagerly anticipated – the move to slightly lower Covid19 lockdown levels thankfully happened, with the Auckland region in particular now able to go fishing. The welcome unleashing of fishing craft of all types out into the gulf…well, what’s happening out there? Mother Nature is right on time with an early spring mixed bag of fishes, mixed in terms of species and success level. Some doing well, while others struggling a bit with smaller and fewer pannie snapper. While the winds were a tad brisker out in 50m, closer in provided some good fishing on ‘opening day’. Slow pitch lures doing well out wider. Water temps are up, only just but the incline has started – great news as this brings more snapper in closer, and starts their more aggressive feeding inclinations. This was evidenced by the pop-up surface activity, with scattered fish underneath in the southern Kawau area, typical of early spring.
Inner areas stayed a lot quieter, to be expected really as spring’s positive impact on inner gulf and Waitemata harbours is only just beginning. There’s a way to go yet before prolific fishing can be expected throughout the inner channels of Waiheke, Rangitoto and the harbour bridge. Yet some very good snapper were being caught just off Rangitoto first thing in the morning, not huge specimens but well legal and certainly welcomed home. Similarly, in and around the Ahaas and Noises, mainly smaller snapper, but readily added to the fish bin. The snapper are in prime winter condition.
Kayakers have been having some good fish turn up – Whangaparaoa peninsula doing alright, snapper and kingfish here and there landed, great to see. Soft-baits are the go in close – the smaller 5” versions getting more attention than the bigger 7” models just now, that too may well change over the next few weeks, so don’t be afraid to start using the ‘big baits’ more and more. Kayaks over the western side of Auckland have been doing well, snapper, gurnard, trevally - check out @ManukauYaks. Kayaks are one of the fastest growing fishing categories there is, no wonder.
Some good activity experienced this week, which seems early, in the Tiri-to-Kawau area where schooling snapper were underneath some flash mobs of gannets and common dolphins. The bottle nose dolphins had already passed through the general vicinity a couple of days prior on their hunt, more close-in stuff along shorelines, right around southern Whangaparaoa peninsula and down the North Shore.
Crackling outboard run-ups and wash downs were a welcome change to daily sounds across the Auckland ‘burbs, bringing a little smile to many, the sound of a kiwi summer perhaps. Short sharp and sweet Espresso Report this week, a bit like the first day out for Aucklanders getting their fishing fix. If there is half a chance, check that wind, and enjoy fishing in your own piece of paradise.