Grey Mullet on a fly?

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    Posted: 24 Mar 2008 at 8:58am
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Anyone know if it is possible to entice mullet to take a fly & if so what type?
 
Yesterday I observed about 30 or more large sized mullet schooling around
& around a fairly confined area. Would love to take one or two on a fly.
 
Reminds me of the time in a club "one fly" competition on the Ohinemuri.
Could not believe our luck, when arriving at the allocated beat we looked
down from the bridge to see virtually wall to wall "trout" with many giving
enticing silver flashes.
 
Whilst I acted as observer on the bridge my mate dragged his chosen fly 
through the packed fish, only to have them part ar the very last
moment to allow the fly to pass through. Later on, after the competion
many others also tried with an endless variety of flies to no avail.  Apart
from the fact that they could be seen from the bridge, an angler could be
forgiven for assuming the pool was empty. Also they were packed in so
tight, one would have thought it would have been near impossible not to
inadvertantly foul hook them, but even that did not happen.
 
After well over an hour of trying fruitlessly, a local crossing the bridge
stopped to chat. When the school of trout were mention, he peered down
intently but said he could not see any, so I lent him my polaroids. He said
he still could not see them & I remember thinking to myself " The poor guy
must be near blind" until he added " I can only see those mullet!!!!!!"
 
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Post Options Post Options   Likes (0) Likes(0)   Quote andrew-simpson Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 24 Mar 2008 at 11:25am
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I have seen this before,

i grew up in Whakatane, about 300 metres away from the river so i spent many afternoons at the river, spinning or fly fishing for sea runs and kahawai. I would often get mullet too, the would take just about anything a trout or kahawai would, and often seem less fussy..

when I was home for xmas I went down to the river and saw a very similar thing to what you describe, it seemed like every mullet in the river was there, all bunched up, and they were not interested in anything!

I wondered if they were spawning? any ideas?

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Post Options Post Options   Likes (0) Likes(0)   Quote MarkE Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 24 Mar 2008 at 12:13pm
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Post Options Post Options   Likes (0) Likes(0)   Quote ThomasW Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 24 Mar 2008 at 9:12pm
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Have caught quite a few mullet while fishing for KY. They basically take any fly a KY would take. Realistically anything from a size 2-8 should work fine. They get more active just on dusk and often feed from the surface.  That is when they are the easiest to catch.

Maybe early morning also, but I never fish then.

edit: There might be a difference between the feeding habits of  the ylloweyed and Grey mullets. I mainly/only catch yelloweye. 

edit 2: According to NIWA both species of mullet must return to the sea to spawn.

This might be helpful

"Grey mullet feed on detritus and plant material that they suck from the substrate. They are also known to feed by grazing the surfaces of aquatic plants."

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Post Options Post Options   Likes (0) Likes(0)   Quote Uncle Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 24 Mar 2008 at 9:28pm
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Originally posted by Militaris Militaris wrote:

Have caught quite a few mullet while fishing for KY. They basically take any fly a KY would take. Realistically anything from a size 2-8 should work fine. They get more active just on dusk and often feed from the surface.  That is when they are the easiest to catch.

Maybe early morning also, but I never fish then.

edit: There might be a difference between the feeding habits of  the ylloweyed and Grey mullets. I mainly/only catch yelloweye. 

edit 2: According to NIWA both species of mullet must return to the sea to spawn.

This might be helpful

 
 
 
 
"Grey mullet feed on detritus and plant material that they suck from the substrate. They are also known to feed by grazing the surfaces of aquatic plants."
 
Yellow eyed mullet are suckers for pipi's & tuatuas.
I caught "millions" of them when I was growing up around the Canterbury rivermouth lagoons.
Grey mullet are a different kettle of fish--Craig Worthington has caught a handful using small nymph type flies.
I've foul hooked a few & they are dynamite for the first few minutes.
Sure would like to find a way to catch them consistently.
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Post Options Post Options   Likes (0) Likes(0)   Quote ThomasW Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 24 Mar 2008 at 9:32pm
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Fish a fly which imitates plant material on the substrate.

 
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Post Options Post Options   Likes (0) Likes(0)   Quote Onecast Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 25 Mar 2008 at 3:09pm
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Used to catch a lot of Mullet In Durban Harbour in South Africa using white bread with a piece of crust attached to keep it afloat.
 
Didn't take long to Graduate to tying White flies of the Quill variety and then the fun was really on. Ruined a lot of flies before going for a Synthetic White Glow Bug style fly which stood up to the punishment a lot better.
 
Of course this was in Salt Water, But I cant see why it would not work in fresh water.
 
The real strange thing was that a small Black Fly ala a Zulu or Black Gnat also seemed to turn the Mullet on at times. Isn't fly fishing just the greatest?  Jack
A man is only as big as the things that annoy him

RIP 'Onecast' Jax Murray
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Post Options Post Options   Likes (0) Likes(0)   Quote bazza Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 26 Mar 2008 at 3:15pm
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Update on progress with catching a mullet or rather the lack of it.
 
Returned the next day at roughly the same stage of tide, namely about
an hour or so before low & sure enough there they were congregating
again.
 
Tried a few flies but as with past attempts, absolutely no interest shown.
 
The fish are packed quite tight into an area approx 3 X3 mtrs. & can
sometimes be seen reasonably clearly or otherwise by silver flashes
as they presumably roll on their side. I would estimate the average weight
at about 1 1/2 kilos, maybe more. My young grandson was getting frustrated
at our lack of success.
 
Almost ashamed to admit to this but yesterday, resorted to making up a
spear with six splayed stainless steel prongs, thinking if they are packed
as tightly as before there is no way they can avoid being impaled. They
arrived again on cue, but repeatedly hurling the spear at the pack only
resulted in bent prongs from hitting rocks etc.
 
The G/kids all wanted a turn & I made them loop the attached cord to their
wrist to avoid losing the spear, emphasising how annoyed I would be if they
lost it. Just before giving up I decided to have a final throw only to discover
I had forgotten to loop the cord around my wrist.
 
So will be returning at low tide today with a gizzmo I have made to retrieve it.
Have decided whilst waiting for low tide will try drifting a glo bug suspended
under an indicator. If they are going through some sort of spawning ritual I
feel there is a possibility they may like most other fish, respond to an egg roe
pattern.
 
After so many failed atempts catching one has become something of an
obsession now, therefore if the glo bug does not work, does anyone know
where I could buy some hand grenades??
 
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Post Options Post Options   Likes (0) Likes(0)   Quote bazza Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 27 Mar 2008 at 9:56am
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Globug did not work either, but at least managed to retrieve the spear
so my consience is clear regards that as was worried someone might
injure themselves on it. 
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Post Options Post Options   Likes (0) Likes(0)   Quote Pole Dancer Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 27 Mar 2008 at 10:32am
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Have you tried burleying with bread and a fishing a bread fly??? I have yet to do this, but the Ozzies seem to account for a few that way.
 
Must try it on the schools up near Matakana.
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Post Options Post Options   Likes (0) Likes(0)   Quote bazza Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 27 Mar 2008 at 11:11am
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Originally posted by Clark Clark wrote:

Have you tried burleying with bread and a fishing a bread fly??? I have yet to do this, but the Ozzies seem to account for a few that way.
 
Must try it on the schools up near Matakana.
 
No Clark
 
Have not tried a bread fly imitation but bread thrown on the surface does
not solicit any response other than from sprats etc. as it drifts out of the
area where the mullet are.
 
Am prepared to try some real bread on a fly hook if that would stand a
chance of working. Tried using soggy chook pellets as berley however
that did not make any difference
 
I have no doubt that at certain times mullet will strike a fly or bait but
am inclined to think these are currently performing some type of breeding
ritual & therefore not interested in anything else.
 
Nevertheless their ability to evade capture is amazing even with a multi
prong spear.
 
Incidentally the area they are holding in is estuarine i.e. tidal but with
considerable freshwater input. They seem to appear an hour or two
before low tide, when I would imagine the freshwater content is at it's
peak. They may well be present at other times but maybe not visible.
 
Militaris has suggested using substrate material. What excactly is that??
 
Cheers
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Post Options Post Options   Likes (0) Likes(0)   Quote Barbary B Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 27 Mar 2008 at 11:14am
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Ive seen a mullet take one of Uncle's minimaks. Maybe tie a set on with a small ball sinker, cast and retrieve through them.
"Look ahead, look astern, look to weather, look to lea
Look down along the coast of High Barbary..."
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Post Options Post Options   Likes (0) Likes(0)   Quote bazza Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 27 Mar 2008 at 11:18am
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Originally posted by Barbary B Barbary B wrote:

Ive seen a mullet take one of Uncle's minimaks. Maybe tie a set on with a small ball sinker, cast and retrieve through them.
 
What are minimacs Barbary? Willing to try anything at this stage, even it
it comes from MacDonalds !!
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Post Options Post Options   Likes (0) Likes(0)   Quote Pole Dancer Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 27 Mar 2008 at 11:51am
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Give Uncle a private message. Mr MacBrayne's flashers,, minimacs, macskippies are all legendary!!!!!
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Post Options Post Options   Likes (0) Likes(0)   Quote roddholder Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 27 Mar 2008 at 2:36pm
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mcflashers catch any fish in the sea. Thumbs%20UpThumbs%20Upwhy didnt you try them uncle,Thumbs%20Down youre always telling me how good they are??LOLEmbarrassed
she was only a fishermans daughter, but she reeled at the sight of my rod!.
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Post Options Post Options   Likes (0) Likes(0)   Quote Pole Dancer Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 28 Mar 2008 at 10:33pm
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Originally posted by andrew-simpson andrew-simpson wrote:

I have seen this before,

i grew up in Whakatane, about 300 metres away from the river so i spent many afternoons at the river, spinning or fly fishing for sea runs and kahawai. I would often get mullet too, the would take just about anything a trout or kahawai would, and often seem less fussy..

when I was home for xmas I went down to the river and saw a very similar thing to what you describe, it seemed like every mullet in the river was there, all bunched up, and they were not interested in anything!

I wondered if they were spawning? any ideas?

 
My guess, correct me if I'm wrong, is that the fish hitting the same flies as the Kahawai or sea runs were yellow eyed mullet??? The grey mullet are the problemimatical fish....
 
Might go and have a lash at the Tauranga harbour brigade this week sometime...
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Post Options Post Options   Likes (0) Likes(0)   Quote andrew-simpson Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 30 Mar 2008 at 11:45am
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Yeah, you are right there, when I read the post I lumped all mullet into one, forgetting grey mullet..

Yeah, Sounds like they are surely a challenge!
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Post Options Post Options   Likes (0) Likes(0)   Quote Rusky Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 04 Apr 2008 at 10:05pm
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Would say a shrimp, crab, or worm imitation work?  Ive speared quite a few now, and have several places that have resident schools, but they are very hard to watch or observe.  Or I could just spear a few and take them into the lab one day with another project I got going and observe their gut contents under the microscope?
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Post Options Post Options   Likes (0) Likes(0)   Quote bazza Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05 Apr 2008 at 9:42am
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Originally posted by Rusky Rusky wrote:

Would say a shrimp, crab, or worm imitation work?  Ive speared quite a few now, and have several places that have resident schools, but they are very hard to watch or observe.  Or I could just spear a few and take them into the lab one day with another project I got going and observe their gut contents under the microscope?
 
Yeah, probably worth a try Adam even could try the genuine article to prove
if either works or not.
 
However I am almost convinced they are not feeding at all & grouping together
for some other reason or other.
 
Cheers
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Post Options Post Options   Likes (0) Likes(0)   Quote Onecast Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05 Apr 2008 at 10:08am
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Hey Bazza; seems as though you may  well have come to the end of your tether with these Mullet.
 
Now I'm sure you have tried the good old induced take among a host of other methods. SO there is always the good old fall back plan to the sure fire Hawaiin Cast Net.
 
Had many a good evening in South Africa Using a cast net to get Live Mullet for fishing for Kingies and Garrick next day in the surf near Durban Natal.
 
Guess that just proves I am right out of ideas of how to solve your quandry.  Have Fun.  Jack
A man is only as big as the things that annoy him

RIP 'Onecast' Jax Murray
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