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wazatherfisherman last won the day on September 7

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About wazatherfisherman

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  1. wazatherfisherman

    Old days

    Hi Zoran am trying to keep this thread going- invokes great memories for many of us! I have tons more stuff to put on yet- reels, rods and sooo many old lures
  2. wazatherfisherman

    Drummer in 2-3m of swell?

    Hi Chokpa Curracurrang Bay in the Royal National Park is a good example of a spot that fishes well for Drummer etc during and just after a huge southerly swell. Masses of dislodged whole cunje pods get washed up into the protected corner of the bay, where they rot in the sun. The fish know they are there and on the high tides come into really shallow boulder strewn area to get at the decaying/breaking down cunje. This area, although normally harbouring Drummer etc, really turns on good fishing when the weather is/just has been wild, with heaps of hungry, active fish seeking the cunje- far more fish in there when wild conditions rather than a 'normal' day.
  3. wazatherfisherman

    Drummer in 2-3m of swell?

    Hi Rebel there were tons of stories like that in those days, you had basically no chance of being competitive as a team if you didn't get at least a couple of hundred fish between the 4 of you. The same 4 guys and I think another 4 in a second team from their club won a Sydney Metro Beach Comp with another big catch of Drummer, Bream, Tarwhine and Luderick- all caught on cunje from Tamarama Beach- There was a huge complaint at the weigh-in re species, but I know for a fact that they had been burleying the spot for days prior to the comp and although not 'usual' beach species, they cleaned up on them. I think they even had a couple of Groper also. The guys with Bream, Whiting etc-traditional beach fish- were no chance, as those comps used to be 1 point per fish and 10 points per kg. A couple of decent Drummer outpointed a whole bag of Whiting. Regardless that they were arch rivals, they were both skilled and innovative in their approach to comp fishing. Didn't work for them the very next year, they only caught about 40 fish on cunje, but managed to catch a big bag of Tailor on 1 block of pillies- somehow
  4. wazatherfisherman

    Drummer in 2-3m of swell?

    Back in the 80's, 4 guys fishing as a team for Sydney Eastern Suburbs Anglers Club, caught about 400+ fish overnight in the Sydney Metro Rock Championships, from memory there were over 200 Black Drummer up to about 3.5+ kg's. They fished at 'Big Rock', the northern most extremity of the Cliff-base spot- 'The Mattens'- the sea was big that night and they were up high. My club fished the south end of the Mattens about 850 mtr's south of the Easts guys, we were on lower level platforms and barely could wet a line as the sea was just too big, although 73 yr old Wally McLuckie from our club won the Veterans title (for the 6th or 7th time) with 2 really big Snapper, hooked from a ledge about 20 mtr's above the water. In big seas, like that night, the Drummer (and most fish) were well out from the rocks and about 4-5 mtr's under the surface (the water is about 15-18 mtr's deep there)- a size 1 or 2 ball running between swivel and hook the rig, cunje the bait, they had tons of burley- not sure what other than heaps of bread. They caught a couple of dozen big Luderick, Bream, Tarwhine and finished the session catching big Tailor on Pillies in the morning. One of the best catches of fish from a "non-murk" location in AFCA Competition. We used to get big Black Drummer down "our end", but mainly when really calm on super low ledges fishing down the sides of deep "walls"- the fish would be about 4-5 mtr's straight down the wall- again it was about 15+mtr's deep. Luderick are usually really active when it's rough, but you have to take into consideration how far out the 'naturally' washed in cabbage goes before sinking to the 3.5-4 mtr's depth that the fish seem to prefer feeding at. Often, less experienced Luderick fishers fall into the trap of kicking burley in (with rock plates) and it doesn't sink until well out- same as when it's rough, The fish are watching from below and follow the 'non-sinking' cabbage "out the back", where they instinctively stay, waiting for more. Picking a good water pattern to drop burley in so it sinks close rather than far is key to getting them feeding back in close. You can't tell other guys what to do however, and sometimes you have to drift to "New Zealand"(as it's known) to get a down, Had plenty of days when we couldn't get them to come in regardless of "selective" burleying and drifting floats out 40, 50, 60+ mtr's the only way to get them. In answer to your question, yes they feed actively, just not so much in the 'washing machine' conditions. A suggestion re burley- we found that chicken layer pellets are THE burley for Pigs (Drummer)- you have to soak them in a bucket until they have broken down completely into a 'mushy-mud-like' mess, like thick sand- they/it sinks quickly and we've had great success with them- just make sure the pellets have broken right down or the fish will eat them and ignore your bait! Hope this info is helpful and you get some- they're really tasty Regards Waza
  5. wazatherfisherman

    What is a good cheap setup for luderick? - New Beginner

    Just a tip if you use the rubber stoppers Derek suggests- you can buy a tubular version that are coloured red,green and yellow. Put 2 on your line rather than 1- Reason?- Often you may adjust your depth, until the fish are located, that involves going deeper /shallower from your originally intended depth. By moving only the bottom stopper down if you try shallower, you still have a visible location on your line to 'where you were at'- if you want to go deeper you move both up, then the top one roughly the distance up again, that way you again know where you were at. Might sound a bit silly, but if you are fishing deeper water and the fish are 'holding' at a certain level, gives you a visual 'reference point' of the depth you have tried - a lot easier than just moving it up and down without knowing what you have tried
  6. wazatherfisherman

    Black drummer spots near Botany Bay

    G'day again- cunje grows on the ocean front mainly, but it's also growing in estuary systems close to the open ocean. Dobroyd area has plenty but you are no longer allowed to take anything (weed/cabbage included) from that area. It also grows really well on most of the marker buoys and large mooring structures in places like Sydney Harbour, but to get it you then need a boat. Adjacent to many rock platforms you will find it at low tide, but as it grows in the 'wash-zone' be mindful of the sea when collecting it. Cunje lasts for a few months if you salt it, making sure to drain off all the water and seal in airtight containers. As mentioned, separate the 'meat' from the guts before freezing. As for species, well, most demersal species eat cunje. Other than Drummer (Pigs as there known to most fishers) you'll encounter Bream, Tarwhine, Luderick (especially this time of year or at night) Groper, Leatherjackets, Parrot Fish, Wrasse and most fish that feed close to the shoreline. All these same species also take crabs (bar Luderick which don't have the teeth to deal with them) Cut sections of crabs (particularly Red Crabs) are also excellent bait. To catch the Red Crabs, an easy way is to buy an 8 inch octopus skirt (the same ones on large trolling lures) and bind it on the end of about 4 ft of really thick wire- use strong wire that you can just manage to bend. Bend a bit around at the opposite end for a handle, and the legs of the skirt hanging off the other end. Find a couple of large tidal pools with crevices along them at or just below waterline and push the octopus skirt legs first into these crevices/cracks- any crabs will usually come racing out for you to grab. From trial and error, I found pink and white skirts are the best, especially if you can get them with blue dots/stripes across the pink. Be mindful of the sea as it's easy to get distracted when getting bait. Check also you are not in any sanctuary zone or intertidal protected area. I think the bag limit is 10 crabs for bait. Once you have them, use a knife to lift the top shell off from the back-to-front. Then cut the legs off parallel to the body- IMPORTANT-Don't break the legs off, cut them or you pull the meat out and ruin the bait. A crab the size of a 50c coin can be cut into 4 sections- thread either 1 or 2 legs on over the hook shank then the quartered section. If crabs are really small or scarce you can use a whole crab but beware as Groper including giant ones also love crab done like this. As for 'deeper' water, if you can't make out anything on the bottom, that is 'deeper' water! Dobroyd area is under 6 mtr's deep. Easy way to check depth over the edge is just tie a sinker on and drop it over! Most quality fish that are feeding/looking for feed are generally about 3-5 mtr's under (unless in the shallow washy zone) The spot at Burning Palms is only fishable during flat seas and the lower parts of the tide as although there is a large rock outcrop in front of you, there is a small natural wave break that sends a wave towards you- if you fish it during times of no swell- generally associated with a westerly airflow- towards low tide you should be fine- you can tell from the headland before you make the descent to beach level if is ok to fish there. That platform is called "Oyster"- there are quite a few really small oysters. The actual spot is called "The Tablet". There is a higher spot to the right known as "Tiny Blowhole" (the blowhole is about the size of a tennis ball!)- From there you cast southeast over the visible kelp patches for Drummer, Bream, Luderick. It is most known for producing outsize Tailor- not many, but large ones. From there, you can walk south about 15 mins to the famous Figure Eight pools platform,, sand bottom and good general spot. The bay between the 2 platforms is shallow, boulder strewn, with several small platforms that are good to fish but you need a spray jacket as waves constantly break close by sending big spray over the rocks- good shallow water bobby cork area for Drummer and big Bream but difficult to fish. If you do go as far as the Eights platform it's worth a look and a swim when the sea is calm Hope you find this helpful, good luck if you go Regards Waza
  7. wazatherfisherman

    Black drummer spots near Botany Bay

    Hi eladamrine and welcome to Fishraider- it was me who posted the info on Dobroyd. It is a good spot to have a fish for Drummer- just make sure you have rock plates and a life jacket for anywhere rock fishing in Sydney. Years ago, before it was declared a marine sanctuary, when Drummer fishing Dobroyd, we used to cut cunje on site and use it for bait, of course you can't take any now, so it's worthwhile sourcing some elsewhere and taking it anywhere you want to catch Drummer. Sure you'll get them on a variety of other baits like prawns (green and 'Royal Red') , crabs, bread etc, but if you aren't having any luck, go to the trouble of collecting some cunje. Take the firm red meat out- it has 2 'nipple-like' teats at the top, which is where you thread your hook through. Keep the 'guts'- the softer underside of lighter red and the yellow squishy part, along with the empty outer body for burley. Once separated from the guts, you can salt the cunje lightly with non-iodised salt, allow to 'toughen up' for a couple of hours, then freeze for when you are going fishing- it's by far the best bait for them (bar Abalone gut which has been banned due to the possible spreading of the Abalone virus) As you have discovered, just about everything eats prawns and although you get plenty of action with them, a lot of it is from unwanted species. A couple of suggestions for you- if you are happy to use a float/bobby cork, then fish deeper than 2 mtr's- that way you'll avoid (well to a degree). the heaps of Sweep, Mado's and Yellowtail that abound in the top 2-3 mtr's of the water column. For example if fishing Dobroyd, which fishes best (for most species) at high tide, you'd want to set your bait down between 3 and 4.5 mtr's depending on which spot you choose (there are heaps of places to try there)- ideally you also want to be fishing about a mtr or so off the bottom to minimise unwanted bottom dwelling species like kelpfish. There are just as many Drummer if you fish close-in along deep sections as there are in the white water zone, often people fishing the white water are throwing out past the fish- the larger ones are usually really close to the edge, particularly where there is a natural water 'run-off' from a cabbage/weed covered area- even more so if it's adjacent to a cunje covered spot, they are opportunist feeders just waiting for the run-off water to bring food from above over the edge. This also applies to Groper, which commonly "surf" a swell onto a low platform to search for crabs- I've seen plenty of large ones do it in quite a few different locations, they know how to get their food and get back off the ledge. Also there is a variation of the bobby cork rig that works really well. Have your sinker above a swivel then about 50-60 cm's of leader down to your hook. Use slightly lighter line-say about 15 lb under your 20 lb line,, The bait still swings freely and if you get busted off or snagged, you generally only lose your hook or worst case your lighter leader. Also using the lighter line will result in more bites, once you start using line over 20 lb you'll get significantly less bites. If you choose to fish for them without a float/cork, the easy rig is simply to run a size 0 to 1 ball sinker below a swivel running straight onto your hook- have always preferred a Mustad 92554 2/0- which is basically a double strength suicide (octopus pattern) like the "Big Red"- easily camouflaged in cunje. Keep the distance between hook and swivel at about 45 cm - that way you keep in good contact with your bait Another tip is to use chicken layer pellets for burley- you can get them at produce stores and pet shops. You need to soak the pellets in a bucket of water until they mash up into a mud like consistency- DON'T throw them in until they've mashed up or the fish will gorge on them and not your bait! They are cheap to buy and can really get Black Drummer in a feeding frenzy- sometimes right in view. If you are prepared to drive to the Royal National Park, there are heaps of places to catch them along the coast there as they are quite abundant. The rock platform at the southern end of Burning Palms beach is an excellent spot for them with most fish in the 1-1.5 kg range- not giants but plenty there. There is a deep gutter between the shore and the large rock outcrop at the north end of the platform, only fishable during flat seas on a falling tide. You fish 4 mtr's deep under your float and get your bait as close as possible to the land side of the outcrop. If you start getting unwanted species there just adjust your float a bit shallower- there is also heaps of cunje on location. It's not fishable from about halfway up an incoming tide as it is low to the water. By catch there are Bream and Luderick. October is the month when Black Drummer (correct name Rock Blackfish) activity is at a peak, with spawning aggregations and large fish biting freely around Sydney, which is handy at a time when prevailing westerly winds help flatten the sea. Hope this is useful info for you best of luck. Regards Waza
  8. wazatherfisherman

    Places to find weed for Luderick in Sydney - New Beginner

    I stand by Tortue as the best mono- they sell it in 2,3,4,5,6,8 kg etc. Old stock went up in pounds from 3+half by 1 pound. Still using 6+half and 7+half main and 5+half, 6+half trace
  9. wazatherfisherman

    Places to find weed for Luderick in Sydney - New Beginner

    Hi again- keep your fish alive in a keep net until you are going to clean them then just cut their throat across ways and put back in keep net or better still if there is a pool handy that they can't escape from, put them in there to bleed out, they will swim most of their blood out, which is what you want. Don't break their necks or they die before pumping the blood out. The reason you want the blood out is because a stress reaction with an adrenalin-like chemical the fish has, combined with a primarily vegetative diet results in a release of an iodine like substance, which goes through the bloodstream and can often result in poor or weedy tasting flesh- not always, but if it happens they aren't as tasty. Oscarthebeagle gave you great advice on gear and landing net extension- the rod he suggested is also a good starting point, as he said not expensive should you decide Blackfish aren't for you. As for main line 8-10 lb (4 kg) is plenty, the thicker your main line the more floatation (vaseline or similar) you need on it- just keep your leader (trace we always called it) slightly less strength than your main line, but Blackfish become less likely to bite on lines (whatever strength they are) over .2mm- which is just over 6lb in most decent lines. I try to steer people that are new to Blackfishing towards Tortue Super -control- the green colour. Reason?- It is relatively inexpensive for a quality mono, has a long life (make sure you wash under the tap after use) has great abrasion resistant properties, is reasonably thin diameter and most importantly- half hitches really well. This last point becomes relevant the more baits you put on, some fluorocarbon lines don't half hitch very well and actually abraid themselves when doing half hitches- Tortue is great stuff (and I worked for a fishing line distributor years ago- not 'our' brand) and good value. Although a lot of people seem to use braid, I strongly suggest you use mono- you can keep the same 'contact' with it.
  10. wazatherfisherman

    Places to find weed for Luderick in Sydney - New Beginner

    Hi again to answer some of your questions- yes JWalker floats would be ok- make sure the entire body part of the float is under the water though, you only need enough float stem above water to see it- no body at all though as that creates too much resistance and the fish will likely let go of the bait. Use mono not braid, the minimal or no stretch in braid will often pull hooks out and also reduces the shock absorption effect of the rod. If you aren't using a soft enough rod this will also happen. The extra stretch in mono is an advantage. To get your mono to float, simply soak a small piece of felt in vaseline, 'bend' it around your line between your fingers and pull about 15 mtr's of line off your reel through the felt- you'll see when there is a 'coating' on your line. Keep the piece of felt in a small tin or snapseal bag and leave in your fishing bag as often you'll need to re apply when out fishing. Make sure you get vaseline off your fingers before touching your weed/cabbage. Use the smallest size swivels- 12's or 14's, hooks size 8 or 9 for the river- most tackle sellers have purpose made green hooks for Blackfish- the "Panfish" variety (can't remember the brand) are good and have a small eye which is good if using soft cabbage/weed- the Mustad 'needle sneck' have a large eye- ok for weed. Generally almost all short shank hooks in size 8/9 will catch you fish. Leader- 6lb is heavy enough for any Blackfish- you can use fluorocarbon which is harder for fish to see, but I prefer mono, it is better for doing the half hitches on your bait and much cheaper. Use lighter leader than main line so you only lose your hook if busted off/snagged. The ocean rocks around Cronulla will have bait, be mindful of the sea and the slippery surface. Sounds like you have already got a couple of likely weed locations to try.
  11. wazatherfisherman

    Places to find weed for Luderick in Sydney - New Beginner

    You can use most lighter rated (2-3 kg) rods, particularly if they have a relatively soft action- meaning that the bend of the rod continues from the tip down about 2/3 rds of the rod length. However, there are several reasons why Blackfish rods are more of a 'specialty' item, length being important. Firstly, for shore-based fishing for Blackfish, in most areas, you are drifting your float a reasonable distance from where you're standing. When the float dips under, you need to be able to gather your slack (floating) line quickly to strike the fish, this is more easily achieved with a longer rod- say 9 or 10 ft as a minimum. It's also easier to keep a true line between you and your float by using the rod to 'lift' your excess floating line back into a direct (straight) line, this also is much easier to do with the extra rod length. Casting also is much easier when swinging a float and trailing rig and bait if you have the extra length. Then the more important factor of playing the fish- as Blackfish are more of a 'lunge fighter' and not a distance runner (well, mainly), a longer soft rod acts as a 'shock absorber' the bending action of the rod (slow taper) is the main factor in subduing the fish. Most dedicated Blackfish rods are slow taper, some bending right down the rod to just above the front grip- for the most part you shouldn't be able to break 3 kg line through the rod, or certainly not easily. Don't want to discourage you by saying any of the above, but if you want to get into Blackfish fishing, then it is well worth saving your $ and getting some appropriate gear as you'll enjoy your fishing time much more. My first Blackfish rod was a 9 ft 3 piece solid fibreglass Jarvis Walker "Swansea" which would be considered as an extremely heavy rod to hold by today's standards, first reel a Steelite centrepin (which was very difficult to cast any distance with) yet caught me plenty of fish. Just a tip with regards to weed, some freshwater weed works really well, especially if you make up a decent burley with it and damp sand. Sometimes you can turn the fish onto whatever weed you have with a small constant burley trail. The "better" weed, if you look closely at it's individual strands, is generally round at one end (the roots) and 'solid looking' then either flat stranded or hollow tubular (which becomes 'flat') at the opposite end. Very similar colour and texture to ocean cabbage, just finer. Undoubtedly others may disagree, but I've found that the darker filamentous weed is better than the light stuff. In my opinion, the weed gathered from Mona Vale rock baths (I know it's miles from your area) is consistently among the best in Sydney and it's a very dark green colour. When the fish are fussy or water clear, sometimes they will bite off the 'flat' section/s leaving the round 'root' section untouched. If you start getting downs and not getting hook-ups, remove the 'root' section from your bait. Blackfishing is almost a sport within a sport- a great fish for Sydney fishers as they are available year round. There is heaps of great info here on Fishraider. Hope this is helpful, if you need any info you can't find just msg me. Good fishing Regards Waza
  12. wazatherfisherman

    Places to find weed for Luderick in Sydney - New Beginner

    Hi JamoDamo I used to get a bit of weed and also soft 'sheet cabbage' from the drain and small inlet at Kelso Park on Henry Lawson Drive- this was a few years ago however, but in general, most small creeks and canals that flow through or past golf courses will have weed in varying lengths. As Derek said, most water outlets with nutrient enhanced water like golf courses, drains adjacent to parks and also ponds are likely places to check. On the ocean front, most saltwater rock baths will have weed growth at different times, only problem is council rangers/workers poison it off due to it being a slipping hazard. Often a 'weed patch' will grow where sand and rock meet, but these spots don't last long due to being found by both the fish (they often eat it at night on the high tides) and also Luderick fisho's who prize this type of weed as it's both quality and keeps well. If you find the really soft "sheet cabbage' which is found both on mud flats and in shallow creeks, often it is really fragile and tears- just use a multi-layered bait by placing a few layers flat on top of each other Weed also grows well on logs, ropes, chains that are in the water, but again, if the fish can get at it, it usually isn't there long. Often just walking the shoreline of shallow bays with mudflats and a few mangrove trees will source you some, be prepared to get it when there's water on it as it's easier to grab
  13. wazatherfisherman

    Amazing underwater photos

    Unreal photo's! Thanks for posting them Derek- love the squid (and all of them really)
  14. wazatherfisherman

    Central coast kingfish

    Truly a great read Derek! Congratulations on both the fish and sharing the story. Great pics too! The reflection of the Kingfish 'journey' is also a great story in itself, I'll bet a lot of other readers are also thinking of the significance of fishing milestones after reading this story! Fantastic mate! Now for the next size chapter! Regards Waza
  15. wazatherfisherman

    Old days

    Look forward to seeing your reports! Best of luck- hope you both get fish on them (or any lures!) and bring them home safely. Old stuff is still around, but not always easy to replace a 'favourite'!