Boating NZ : FREE TO READ March 2014
hook works just as well. If you fish ledger/flasher rigs, two or three droppers are ample. Don’t use hooks and baits that are too big because most harbour snapper are pan-sized schoolies. I like flasher rigs with 4/0, or better still, 5/0 hooks for harbour fishing baited with small pilchard pieces, strips of skipjack tuna, mullet, squid, mackerel or kahawai. STRAYLINE RIGS If there’s not too much tide running, you can fish weighted strayline baits with a sinker sliding on the trace to the hook. If you can get to the bottom with a medium-sized bait and half to three-quarters of an ounce of lead sinker, you’ve got a good chance of catching bigger than average harbour snapper. Really big baits are seldom worthwhile because you’ll hook rays and sharks, but half-pilchards – whole ones if they’re not too big – or strips of skipjack tuna and mullet work well along the edges of the channels and wherever the tide is slow enough to get your baits to the bottom. Straylined baits are the best option if you fish the shallow flats over the top of the tide. Anchor the boat as quietly as possible and set a berley trail by hanging the berley bag over the transom – the water is shallow and the tidal stream less fierce than in the channels. Cast your baits well away from the boat and use as little weight as possible, or none at all. Light tackle is an advantage because shallow water TO AVOID CATCHING UNDERSIZE FISH • Use decent-sized hooks, 5/0 or larger, including flasher rigs • Avoid extra-long traces • Use recurved or circle hooks • Hold onto your gear and actively hook fish before they have a chance to swallow the bait. If you use circle hooks, lift the rod smoothly to set the hook, don’t strike. • Up anchor and change to lure fishing from a drifting boat – soft baits and slow jigs/inchiku jigs don’t hook as many small snapper as natural baits • If small fish continue to be a problem, move locations until you locate legal-sized specimens TIPS Our harbours are often full of snapper in summer, but many of them are undersize fish. Here are a few tips to avoid catching too many small fish. EARLY MELANOMA DETECTION SAVES LIVES More than 70% of melanoma cases occur in the 50+ age group. It’s more common in men, who have a higher mortality rate. But if detected early, melanoma is treatable. So check your skin regularly, look for changes, show your doctor. It could be the difference between life and death. Proudly supported by: For more information or to donate, please visit melanoma.org.nz MEL0017 Boating NZ and Fishing News Ad Horiz.indd 1 21/05/12 2:53 PM 0314 108 Boating New Zealand March 2014 Out of the Ocean_March14.indd 108 18/02/2014 9:54:14 a.m.
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