Reel Deal: Anglers chase big blue marlin

Cute catch: Jude Hall is proud as punch with his baby bream just before he released it back into Lake Illawarra.

Cute catch: Jude Hall is proud as punch with his baby bream just before he released it back into Lake Illawarra.

Luke from Leisure Coast Bait & Tackle at Corrimal said the weather never gets much better than last weekend’s Easter four-day holiday and the fishing was red hot yet again.

Information courtesy Bureau of Meteorology

Information courtesy Bureau of Meteorology

Lots of big blue marlin were getting about out over the Continental Shelf and beyond and nearly all that were hooked won their freedom before a tag could be inserted for Fisheries research purposes.

You honestly have to see, hear and experience the sight of a massive gold game fishing reel in the 80 or 130 pound line class, being emptied in a matter of seconds when one of these majestic marlin takes a fancy to the bait or lure.

Far too many anglers to name them all but Coen McKay fished with Mick Wearing and Josh Grimshaw, losing a couple of bigger blues estimated to be well in excess of 150 kilos in just that fashion.

Coen and Josh were rewarded with the consolation prizes of a pair of thumper dolphin fish with Coen’s pulling the scales down to a very impressive 17 kilograms and Josh’s fish a touch over the 10 kilo mark.

There were some excellent snapper about last weekend on both the shallow and the deeper reefs and with very little current it was a pleasure to fish using little to no lead.

The flathead bite went nuts again last week with many boats bagging out in no time at all with some XL fish in the mix as well as some big flounder and the tasty gummy shark.

Beaches seemed to be very quiet and holidaymakers seemed to enjoy the swimming rather than fishing for salmon or tailor.

At a depth of 45 metres, the Port Macquarie offshore artificial reef is the deepest reef built by DPI so far.

Just six months after construction in February 2016, the diversity being identified around the structure represents some of the fastest recruitment of fish to a reef so far seen by DPI.

Following more recent surveys of the reef, the total count of fish species identified on the reef has now reached 15, including many popular recreational species such as snapper and pearl perch.