Southern Hauraki Gulf - October 2012
Pre-spawn signs build-upEUGEN DE BRUYN
There are some very positive signs for the upcoming schooling season around the Gulf at the moment.
The work-up activity has been a little slow, with the bulk of the birds and snapper sign that we've seen on our own forays coming from north of the Noises in about 35m. The other consistent patch has been in around 25m to the west of Rakino, with some bright snapper to around 60cm coming aboard in reasonable numbers.
This is very positive, and I would hope by the time you read this we will be seeing them more regularly. (The jack mackerel schools are also stacking up in these areas, and it is true that they often school over snapper.)
I had a few calls from last month reaffirming my comments on the good fishing at the Ahaas, but there were also good vibes coming from shallow-water stray-liners around Maria Island, who were getting into the action around the gut-ways. The trevally are still plentiful around the points there too, and the kingies are often showing up in the berley (small schools, and some are barely legal, but good to see).
Down in the Firth it has been a bit touch and go, but the banks out from Pakatoa can sometimes load up with spawners in the early season, so this might be worth a shot.
Around town there have been some reasonable snapper plucked out of the shallow reefs for persistent and quiet anglers. Kayakers stalking the shallows are having some success around Bastion Reef and Bean Rock; scrappy snapper around 50cm are not that uncommon.
On the Rangitoto shoreline it is similar - small pockets of fish that need a lot of patience and encouragement - but it is satisfying when it all comes together.
The upcoming month should see some definite patches of school snapper forming. The Rakino Hole and Matiatia are worth keeping an eye on, as are the birds out on the 40m line. Anything might work on the day: flasher rigs and bait, inchiku jigs, soft-baits or hard-bodied lures all become attractive to aggressive pre-spawning male snapper - it's great to have a choice - so make them pay!
Southern Hauraki Gulf by Eugen de Bruyn
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