Manukau Harbour & West Coast fishing

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Post Options Post Options   Likes (0) Likes(0)   Quote smudge Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 13 May 2023 at 5:52pm
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Nice catch Bananas. Was it red weed or green weed? Surprisedthere are no gurnard in that mix but then maybe they aren't so prolific on your side? I've never given gurnard a decent crack over there.
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Post Options Post Options   Likes (0) Likes(0)   Quote BananaBoat Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 13 May 2023 at 6:42pm
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The green stuff, its like long grass

No gurnard, they seem to like your side better... bloody fussy buggars
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Post Options Post Options   Likes (0) Likes(0)   Quote FlawOne Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 13 May 2023 at 9:17pm
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When I used to live out Parau 10 years ago, most catches included gurnard even in the summer. Nowadays all of Smudges spots on the other side of the harbour seem more reliable. Either that or the boat got bigger and the fish got further away!
Inner City Slayers.
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Post Options Post Options   Likes (0) Likes(0)   Quote Hookski Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 14 May 2023 at 10:42pm
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It was nice to meet you yesterday Bananas. I managed to hook a couple of carrots for dinner. The green weed was challenging though. Moved to deeper water during slack tide and landed a 60cm snapper. A cracking day on the harbour.
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Post Options Post Options   Likes (0) Likes(0)   Quote BananaBoat Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 15 May 2023 at 7:22pm
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FlawOne
Are you using any specific rig when targeting them, strayline / droppers or other method. Is there a "go to" bait that you use
Ive done over 60 plus trips on the muddy for 1 only gurnard... they seem to buggar off when I show up
I will give them a good crack over the coming months
Theres a few sheltered bays that I reckon will hold them & was given some intel for along the Te Tau banks worth sussing out


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Good result for you in the end eh, I wondered how you got on
The couple gurnard that you caught, was it in the same place where I saw you land the first one
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Post Options Post Options   Likes (0) Likes(0)   Quote smudge Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 15 May 2023 at 7:50pm
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Originally posted by BananaBoat BananaBoat wrote:

FlawOne
Are you using any specific rig when targeting them, strayline / droppers or other method. Is there a "go to" bait that you use
Ive done over 60 plus trips on the muddy for 1 only gurnard... they seem to buggar off when I show up
I will give them a good crack over the coming months
Theres a few sheltered bays that I reckon will hold them & was given some intel for along the Te Tau banks worth sussing out

Having read your reports over the years and seen the good snapper you pull out of the harbour (and having met you) clearly you are a good fisherman and know your stuff so it is an absolute mystery to me why gurnard don't feature in your catches. I mean it is way harder top catch a 60cm snap than a decent size gurnard IMO. All you need is a place where crabs, shrimps and juvenile flounder hang out and the gurnard turn up for me. A gutter leading up onto those places certainly helps at the start of the incoming and start of the outgoing but you seem to be doing all that! I have never really targeted gurnard on your side and clearly the south side of the harbour works well for whatever reason. Flaw One has vouched for that so maybe that's it. Why? I dunno but that's the challenge of fishing eh! One thing is for sure, one day you WILL crack it.
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Post Options Post Options   Likes (0) Likes(0)   Quote smudge Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 15 May 2023 at 7:51pm
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Originally posted by Hookski Hookski wrote:

It was nice to meet you yesterday Bananas. I managed to hook a couple of carrots for dinner. The green weed was challenging though. Moved to deeper water during slack tide and landed a 60cm snapper. A cracking day on the harbour.

Welcome to the forums Hookski, look forward to seeing more reports.
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Post Options Post Options   Likes (1) Likes(1)   Quote rowboat bob Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 15 May 2023 at 8:43pm
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I used to fish the Manukau a lot when I lived closer . A few things that helped catch Gurnard I reckon were small salted bonito baits , pink flashers , fishing right in the middle of a bay , lining up both headlands , starting in 7 to 8m deep and moving in to 4 or 5m if no fish and sometimes 2 to 3m . Had some great catches in 2 to 3m sometimes when deeper failed.
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Correct - I caught them both in the same spot (5m).
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Post Options Post Options   Likes (0) Likes(0)   Quote Hookski Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 15 May 2023 at 9:11pm
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Cheers Smudge. Your reports and content led me to the harbour last year and I can now see how addictive it is!
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Originally posted by rowboat bob rowboat bob wrote:

I used to fish the Manukau a lot when I lived closer . A few things that helped catch Gurnard I reckon were small salted bonito baits , pink flashers , fishing right in the middle of a bay , lining up both headlands , starting in 7 to 8m deep and moving in to 4 or 5m if no fish and sometimes 2 to 3m . Had some great catches in 2 to 3m sometimes when deeper failed.

Interesting about the middle of a bay. I agree with fishing the shallows too, hard to beat skippjack and those pink flasher rigs for sure.
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Post Options Post Options   Likes (0) Likes(0)   Quote smudge Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 16 May 2023 at 6:10am
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Originally posted by Hookski Hookski wrote:

Cheers Smudge. Your reports and content led me to the harbour last year and I can now see how addictive it is!

That's nice to hear Hookski.
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Post Options Post Options   Likes (1) Likes(1)   Quote DIY Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 16 May 2023 at 6:53am
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Hi Bananaboat

I launch from Cornwallis and do pretty well on Gurnard over the other side around Ropers/Waiuku channel area.
Obviously this isn’t an option for you but I have caught a fair few around no 7 marker off Cornwallis in about 6-8m.
When the tide is running or I’m fishing a bit deeper, I use pink ledger rigs with small cubes of salted bonito and at slack tide or shallow I use this strayline rig. I’m doing my first carrot hunt tomorrow so I’ll post how it goes.

Oh what a smasher - two eggs and a rasher!
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Post Options Post Options   Likes (0) Likes(0)   Quote rowboat bob Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 16 May 2023 at 7:54am
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The smack in the middle of a bay with lined up headlands trick is something I read as a kid in an old Aussie fishing book. It has something to do with the way currents eddy and food accumulates . It's how I found fish in the pre fish finder days , and it still works.
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Post Options Post Options   Likes (1) Likes(1)   Quote seahunter Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 16 May 2023 at 4:24pm
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We also got out on Saturday morning. Feels like many months since we've had decent weather..... 
Fished over the low tide, in ~7-8m of water. Lots of small snapper 20-30cm, a few small Kahawai, and ended up keeping a couple of decent snapper (46 and 48cm) that were caught on straylined fresh Kahawai. 
Harbour was stunning and it was so good to be out again. Water was surprisingly clear too (for the Manukau). 

We also struggle to catch Gurnard. Have no problems pulling good snapper out, but the gurnard are few are far between for us!

Stopped for a run around with the dog on the sandbanks, it's always an interesting experience to be high and dry in the middle of the harbour


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Post Options Post Options   Likes (1) Likes(1)   Quote Tonto2 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 16 May 2023 at 5:48pm
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Same for us. It's nearly 3 years since we moved to Waiau pa, in that time I think I have only caught 3 maybe 4 Gurnard. I thought I might enter the GH but I would need divine intervention to win it 😂
slowly going where everyone else has already been
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Post Options Post Options   Likes (0) Likes(0)   Quote smudge Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 16 May 2023 at 7:04pm
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Originally posted by Tonto2 Tonto2 wrote:

Same for us. It's nearly 3 years since we moved to Waiau pa, in that time I think I have only caught 3 maybe 4 Gurnard. I thought I might enter the GH but I would need divine intervention to win it 😂

Martyn, I will see what I can do if you enter The Grunter Hunter! I had some guy give me a serve on FB a couple of weeks ago. He reckoned the GH was rigged so only 'club affiliates & sponsors' won it. Apparently he thought his 800g or so gurnard should have been in the money!

If it was only about winning I wouldn't bother, after all, I've never even come close to winning and I fish it every year. I'm going to stop overthinking it this time so watch out! Big smile

We have a 'gurnard how to session' at Franklin H&F on June 3rd - you don't have to fish the comp but I'm more than happy to give some 'secret' tips on gurnard fishing on The Big Muddy.
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Post Options Post Options   Likes (0) Likes(0)   Quote BananaBoat Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 16 May 2023 at 7:41pm
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Awesome guys, thanks for sharing the good stuff on these sneaky fish

Ive read time & again on here..... bling, as in pink skirts, pink baitflies & the Tarakihi terror flasher rig
Most say salted bonito, others fresh kahawai

I met a fala at the ramp Jenkins bay, I thought I would shamelessly ask about gurnard.... he shared a spot to try out over winter, but...... you need the best rig for them at that spot, he said.
2oz ball sinker & heaps of those floating beads with a hook on the end with a pink skirt
He said there's thick mud, the sinker holds its position, the floating line pops up for the gurnard & the best bait he said was fresh mullet

The rig, something like this

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Post Options Post Options   Likes (1) Likes(1)   Quote BananaBoat Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 16 May 2023 at 7:53pm
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Originally posted by DIY DIY wrote:

I have caught a fair few around no 7 marker off Cornwallis in about 6-8m

I fished it one time next to a local at no7, she was in her tinny at the time
I asked her, do you catch any gurnard around here, she says yep, right here..... next fish comes up was a big bloody gurnard...... I looked the other way, saying the F word
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Post Options Post Options   Likes (0) Likes(0)   Quote smudge Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 16 May 2023 at 7:56pm
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Wow, great advice there. I have a couple of friends that fish like that. Marcel and Gerald. I have to say they do very well on gurnard and trevally. Marcel (MARS) is especially good on trevs. I can tell that isn't Gerald's rig as he uses more beads and more colours!
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