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how do you catch those fooocking grey mullet??!!

Printed From: The Fishing Website
Category: Saltwater Fishing
Forum Name: Saltwater Flyflingers
Forum Description: A forum for saltwater fly fishing enthusiasts
Printed Date: 24 Feb 2024 at 11:46pm

Topic: how do you catch those fooocking grey mullet??!!
Posted By: C A
Subject: how do you catch those fooocking grey mullet??!!
Date Posted: 29 Jul 2011 at 7:18pm
frustrating as hell, hoping maybe a fly fisherman has the right fly/technique to use,  

they seem to ignore everything its like they have a sixth sense 

anything appreciated, cheers 


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Posted By: seawolf
Date Posted: 29 Jul 2011 at 7:30pm
do you get mullet down gizzy? dont see many in ohiwa harbour thought we to far south but if you guys get em must be another reason for the lack of em. craig worthington cracked the mullet on fly trick sounds pretty hard tho!

Posted By: C A
Date Posted: 29 Jul 2011 at 8:49pm
Heaps mate, in the summer big schools of thirty plus fish cruise up the river and I can't catch one it is really annoying!!

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Posted By: Blue Asparagus
Date Posted: 29 Jul 2011 at 8:59pm
Net bro simple if that fails BP service stationEmbarrassed

Ultimate GAME Fishing Adventures. Northland

Posted By: C A
Date Posted: 29 Jul 2011 at 9:25pm
Nets too easy I like a challenge

It's going to be a 12 gauge shortie soon tho if they don't start eating what I put in front of them hehehe

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Posted By: FishMan
Date Posted: 30 Jul 2011 at 10:08am
Berleying with crushed corn flakes or bran may work. Then use a size 12 hook and tie a small 'scum' fly that imitates the berley. You'll probably need a resident mullet population though. They seem to take a long time to switch on to the berley. It could take days. An almost impossible fish. 

Posted By: photog
Date Posted: 30 Jul 2011 at 11:43pm

If I'm not taking photos I'm fishing. If I'm not fishing I'm taking photos, either way I'm having fun.

Posted By: FishMan
Date Posted: 31 Jul 2011 at 12:07pm
In my experience grey mullet mostly ignore bread. Maybe crushed up as dry breadcrumbs may work better.

Posted By: photog
Date Posted: 31 Jul 2011 at 12:41pm
Many years ago when I was a kid, (I can just remember) we used to target grey mullet in the UK with very small pieces of bread under a small float, small hooks and fine line. They were really finicky but it did work. Not sure though if the mullet here would respond the same as I have never tried it.

If I'm not taking photos I'm fishing. If I'm not fishing I'm taking photos, either way I'm having fun.

Posted By: C A
Date Posted: 31 Jul 2011 at 2:38pm
they ignore breadd round here its annoying as hell, was thinking maybe a baby crab on a hook chucked under their noses mite work? (or a crab imitation fly)

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Posted By: hookerpuka
Date Posted: 03 Aug 2011 at 4:20pm
Originally posted by Craig Worthington Craig Worthington wrote:

In my experience grey mullet mostly ignore bread. Maybe crushed up as dry breadcrumbs may work better.

 Got some of the locals in Whangarei that fish for the mullet in the basin. admittedly there not fishing for them with a fly rod but they use small gear. tiny hooks and bread... they reckon they catch a few doing this so no idea why it wouldn't work on a fly rod ?  these are old boys as well and been doing it for a long time. 

Posted By: Jet_ski_fisher
Date Posted: 18 Aug 2011 at 7:24pm
Get the rubber latex shrimp things on the sabki rigs as small as they make em, and re rig it to 2lb fluro on a 10ft fluro leader as light as you can go and then have a try they do have a go :)

Posted By: Finatic
Date Posted: 19 Aug 2011 at 10:02am
Cast a treble hook into the middle of them and retrieve as fast as possible to jag them

Posted By: Muppet
Date Posted: 19 Aug 2011 at 10:04am
Originally posted by Finatic Finatic wrote:

Cast a treble hook into the middle of them and retrieve as fast as possible to jag them
That just ain't cricketLOL

Posted By: Finatic
Date Posted: 19 Aug 2011 at 10:05am
Kiwi's suck at cricket anywayLOL - Here's an old thread that might have some info

Posted By: C A
Date Posted: 20 Aug 2011 at 3:19pm
Originally posted by Finatic Finatic wrote:

Kiwi's suck at cricket anywayLOL - Here's an old thread that might have some info

cheers finatic theres some good techniques in there 

now i just have to wait for the southerly to p**s off and the river to stop resembling a chocolate milkshake

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Posted By: Dabizket
Date Posted: 29 Aug 2011 at 8:15pm

try sea worms

Posted By: tackle whore
Date Posted: 31 Aug 2011 at 12:19am
tiny crab and white shrimp patterns work in south africa for us

Posted By: theloadedjuggler
Date Posted: 31 Aug 2011 at 5:25pm
Agree with Craig- there's a trick to get them biting & it generally means getting them used to a particular feeding response. Most of the mulllet in a particular marina in my part of the world will take most things that float under a burley float.
Ain't the same bit further up & down the coast however as that style of fishing isn't as popular.
That being said I've got a few on fly (little ones) with a few more blokes around me getting more using bait etc... I would suggest using a big bread fly as an attractor then hang a smaller weighted nymph/bread/scum style fly about 30cm under. burley heaps (bread or pollard soaked in oil brings in most everything) & try fishing at night if there is light nearby. helps keep the gulls away and the fish are less gun shy.

Posted By: pjc
Date Posted: 11 May 2013 at 4:19pm
finally cracked it,flour water rolled up,use kids sprat rod with flasher rig.pahuerehure estruary runs into a fish can enter hide but cannot escape low to follow

Posted By: pjc
Date Posted: 11 May 2013 at 4:27pm

Posted By: Jet_ski_fisher
Date Posted: 11 May 2013 at 6:03pm
seawolf you have to know where the mullet are in ohiwa harbour. bloody heaps of them in there :)

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MH... Catch measure release...<*))))<

Posted By: pure--lure
Date Posted: 11 May 2013 at 6:14pm
dint realise they were hard to catch although only on caught them on bait, quite powerful when hooked used 6kg line with small hook and earth worm worked last time i tried that sprats like it to though


Posted By: Jwest
Date Posted: 11 May 2013 at 6:38pm
nice work PJC, there is hope!

Posted By: Pole Dancer
Date Posted: 12 May 2013 at 3:52pm
The challenge is to get them on fly... We accepted there were other ways LOL

-------------" rel="nofollow -    FFF Certified Casting Instructor / Umpqua Designer Tier

Posted By: pjc
Date Posted: 12 May 2013 at 4:20pm
Originally posted by Clark Reid Clark Reid wrote:

The challenge is to get them on fly... We accepted there were other ways LOL
i guess when the doe fall off and your left with the flasher and hook would that be considered as a fly?due to the fact they would rise to the surface and when they did packed together under an old plastic bag
at the start of the thread it was only mentioned to ask a fly fisherman,not who can catch on a fly

Posted By: harry mike
Date Posted: 12 May 2013 at 6:22pm
haha funny story, i was at whiti marina and i tried foul hooking them for bait and i foul hooked a few but didnt land any coz they got off and i had a little jack seguroid pencil on and after about the 50th cast i felt a few knocks so i struck and i was tight and line was screaming off so i thought i had a rat kingi on but i turned its head and nek minit a mullet pops up with a stickbait hanging out of its mouth!! i think the mullet hit the lure out of aggression as when i pulled the mullet out of the water it had about 3 hook marks on its back!

Posted By: pjc
Date Posted: 10 Jul 2016 at 9:54am
any more success on this?pond down the road has them back again,so went down this morning looking like the village idiot armed with crumbs to get mullet up off the bottom,tossed out a hook with green wool to imitate some weed and certainly created interest but no luck,might try in the evening?

Posted By: FishMan
Date Posted: 10 Jul 2016 at 1:21pm
I'm surprised you've even got any hanging around. All the mullet around here seem to be out at sea spawning somewhere. I'd imagine that any mullet you've got there would be cold and not feeding much... not that this would make any difference to your chances...

Posted By: herby
Date Posted: 10 Jul 2016 at 5:22pm
Do they move around s bit Craig? I speared one at the Mokes a while back. Was a bit weird I thought.

Posted By: FishMan
Date Posted: 10 Jul 2016 at 8:19pm
Seem too. We get big schools around the wharf when they're coming (spring) and going (autumn). Have witnessed thick surface schools all scum feeding like parore out around the islands in deep winter. They are quite catchable in this state and will suck in a small fly floated their way. Don't think it's a real legit catch though. They are also reported doing this at the same time of year in Sydney Harbour. Some literature suggests it is a spawning activity. In the Mediterranean they do it and migrate right into the middle of the Med in order to find water of the right salinity.

I have also seen those quick rock hugging schools right on the edge of the wash at Cape Brett in high summer. Seems like a strange place for them to be. 

Very versatile species that obviously gets around and can survive in lots of different habitats.

Posted By: sinful
Date Posted: 10 Jul 2016 at 10:02pm
Florida Mullet ......caught on a Fly !

“There is no hunting like the hunting of man and those who have hunted
armed men, and liked it, never care for anything else thereafter.”
- Hemingway.

Posted By: smudge
Date Posted: 10 Jul 2016 at 10:29pm
I caught some once on a fly that was tied to resemble an arrow. I needed an unconventional casting technique though. On a more serious note they are very wary and even lifting a bow put them down so would require some serious stalking. But I guess fly fishermen are well used to that :-)

Best gurnard fisherman in my street

Posted By: FishMan
Date Posted: 11 Jul 2016 at 5:50am
Yes John (sinful) that looks like a mullet to me. Did you jag it ? LOL Wink

Smudge, an arrow through the brain is too good for most of them...

Posted By: pjc
Date Posted: 11 Jul 2016 at 8:04am
they seem to spook with any shadow thats why I was thinking of evening when hopefully more active on the feeding front,where I go they seem to swim up the drain at high tide get trapped in the lagoon and go out on next tide,more fresh than salt water,last lot had very mushy flesh

Posted By: kaimaikid
Date Posted: 11 Jul 2016 at 7:00pm
I read somewhere once that tuna bombs can be very effective.....

Posted By: FishMan
Date Posted: 29 Sep 2016 at 8:05am
Sun shining, mullet schooling, sickness returning...


Posted By: Fraser Hocks
Date Posted: 29 Sep 2016 at 10:03am
You don't have to do this Craig.  Have you considered a methadone program instead?  LOL

Na Im with you brother.  When there out on the surface, how can you not pop a cast in and hope for the best.   

Good luck and cant wait to see if you can get a few.   Iv found a black ant pattern to work sporadically, but that was with fish in the Swan River Western Australia. 

Posted By: FishMan
Date Posted: 29 Sep 2016 at 11:59am
Yep, totally bonkers Wacko but it sure is nice standing in warm water on a sunny day casting at a multitude of splashing fish. The whole hooking fish thing is highly overrated Smile

An ant pattern is on my "to-do" list, but I can't say I ever seen the local mullet sipping insects off the surface. My only success has been on a small lime green rabbit fur pattern, but it could have been just luck. I generally tie up a few different patterns every year to try before I get totally despondent about it all again and give up. 

One of these days...

Posted By: Fraser Hocks
Date Posted: 29 Sep 2016 at 6:17pm
Yea mate, one day you will crack it.  I tell you what, when you do it will be on everyone's bucket list.  Mini milkfish for sure and there out there in there thousands. 

Yea im sure they weren't taking it considering it was an ant, but must look something like something else they were eating?  Lime green rabbit fur makes more sense to me.  Maybe take a leaf out of the book the milkfish guys are using?  Just a though as they are very similar fish. 

Posted By: FishMan
Date Posted: 30 Sep 2016 at 8:24am
With mullet I think one fish per one hundred casts rather than one fish per one thousand casts will be 'cracking it' Smile

But as you say, even at that rate, with their abundance and world wide availability they would quickly become a very popular target. 

Posted By: Mike.Thomas
Date Posted: 30 Sep 2016 at 11:16pm
Grey Mullet are fished for here in the UK, if this link works it is a video of one of the top Mullet Fly fishermen in the UK discussing the how and the the flies!
All the best.

Posted By: FishMan
Date Posted: 01 Oct 2016 at 6:22am
Hi Mike, trust all is going well back in the UK and you're re-adapting to the local fishing.

The UK and european mullet fishing info is very interesting. There is absolutely screeds of it on the internet. Some massive mullet too. 

Unfortunately, all of the UK stuff relates to two mullet species that are completely unrelated to our grey mullet (Mugil cephalus). I have read much of the info in the hope of gaining insights into a possibly successful strategy, but at the end of the day this could all be red herring info that is leading me down the wrong path.

The big difference you will see with the UK mullet and with those species that are caught regularly on fly in other parts of the world is that these species are also caught fairly regularly on baited hooks. Our Mugil cephalus is caught on baited hook only rarely, wherever it occurs in the world and there has been some very limited success with flies, sometimes in association with various forms of berley (Shocked shouldn't even mention that word LOL). Indeed - it is the Mugil cephalus fly fishing mystery that is waiting to be cracked.

The fact that these fish are happiest eating detritus, algae and plankton suggests that fly fishing will ultimately deliver the best method for catching them on a regular basis. 

My system is to take some of those methods for UK thick lipped mullet and tweak them until they work on Mugil cephalus. I personally think this will involve quite a different type of fly and fly presentation. What this ultimately will be I can not say. But I have got a few small clues.

Anyway, it's a fascinating way of getting in lots of casting practice! Smile

Posted By: Millsy
Date Posted: 03 Oct 2016 at 3:48pm
Craig, I had success last December with mullet.

It was while I was wading for kahawai that were trying to blend in with the mullet. On occasion when they were in an "aggressive" breeding mode they would follow clousers.

The 3 times I did target them only was with a 12ft tapered leader and 6X fluorocarbon tippet. Uber invisible, they have sharp eyes.

The fly was a #18 spinner fly. The few mullet that took this fly, opened their mouths and ate it, it was all pretty easy to see. 

The trick was super delicate casts, I used a 4 weight and suitable fly line.

This didn't work later in the season when they were not chasing females (presumably). Maybe that is more because they were not in that mode where they chase one fish in circles for ages. 

I will try it again this year. Problem I have is the schools I find are usually found by people with gills nets soon afterwards. Then they all die.

Posted By: FishMan
Date Posted: 03 Oct 2016 at 9:31pm
Thanks Millsy, that is interesting.

As you say - I'm not too sure whether it correlates to what mullet do on the shallow flats or whether it will work on them in a shallow harbour feeding situation, but all info and success on mullet is worth examining and adding to the puzzle.

I have seen those small groups of spawning mullet at the mouth of the Manukau many years ago. What is interesting is that when the mullet spawn here they are in much bigger schools and they go right out past the islands. They can be seen slurping something off the surface when they're like this. Possibly they switch on to more of a plankton diet at this time? It is similar to the mullet schooling in winter that Justin Duggan describes happening in Sydney. They do catch them on small surface flies at this time. 

Trouble is, it is those bloody flats rolling jumping bastads that I'm interested in. They're the biggest tease of all and seem to have something wrong with their brain. The size 18 spinner fly looks well worth adding to the arsenal of flies I need to try this year. Size 18 is pretty bloody small though! I'm struggling tying on size 14. Unfortunately it looks like size does matter.

Thanks again for the info Smile

Posted By: 064pointbreak
Date Posted: 19 Nov 2023 at 9:04pm
Originally posted by FishMan FishMan wrote:

Sun shining, mullet schooling, sickness returning...


Looks like something I should tie onto my personal bait rig...

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