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Gathering Bait In The Eastern Suburbs

Mondo Rock

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G'day Raiders!

Long-time reader but first time poster - couldn't hold back any longer as being part of the Fishraider community seems like an opportunity that I'd be foolish to pass up, and, well, I just love to talk fishing. I hope to be able to contribute quite a few stories and tips to the site in the future but I thought I'd start with a small offering (and an accompanying question) to open my account.

I'm based in the Eastern Suburbs and do a lot of rock and beach fishing between Bondi and Botany, mainly late arvo or at night (too crowded otherwise). :1fishing1: The whole area is really productive I've found, as long as you put a bit of effort into choosing the spots, use the right gear and fish intelligently. Lately I've pulled in quite a few bream off the beaches and Salmon off the rocks (there have been some great afternoons in the past month where some big salmon schools have moved within casting range from the shore and I've been able to get great action using small metal slices - you just have to be prepared to drive around looking for them from the cliffs).

I wanted to start a thread on bait gathering since, as we all know, it is the acumulation of good fresh bait that often makes the difference between a fishy and a fishless night. The only thing I tend to use service-station bought bait for is to catch beach-worms (yep - that's what the beach bream fell to).

Speaking of which, I think many would be surprised just how many of the Eastern Suburbs beaches are productive beach-worming locations. I won't name the better ones, but geez there's only about six beaches in total so it's not hard to figure it out. I've alse recently begun to chase the worms at night - don't laugh it's a really effective method. :1prop: There's usually no wind and no people, and the use of a torchbeam and a head-light really focuses your attention on the little critters.

Of course you can't see the big waves when they come in to clean you up, but then :05:

I've also had a bit of sucess for squid off the Boot at Bondi lately, and if you head up to the north end of the beach in the evening and note where the light is shining on the water you'll probably also have some luck chucking a jig out there too.

My question, however, relates to the one live-bait that I still have trouble locating - poddy mullet. I'm reasonably competent at catching the buggers once I find them, but haven't yet found a spot in the Eastern Suburbs/Botany region where I can consistently chase them. I was thinking of trying the sand-flats near the boat ramp at the Port Botany container terminal at high-tide and was wondering if anyone had had success there?

If not - is anyone prepared to suggest alternate locations?

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:1welcomeani: Mondo!!

heaps of spots in Pittwater, but I'm sure your not keen on the drive up here for them. You can do a search on this site, but I can't recall any spots mentioned down your way. I'd have a guess and say up past tom's very uglie bridge on a shallow sandy flat maybe?!?!? There's heaps of guys here from down that way who'll be able to help for sure.

Any beeach worming tips are always appreciated (do you use pliers or fingers to get em out?) whats your strike rate? Mines at about 15 attempts for every one worm....frustrating at times

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Hi Kingy

Thanks for the reply and for the advice. I reckon the Tom Ugly's bridge suggestion sounds pretty reasonable too.

As for the beachworms - I now use my fingers having been given a really good tip by an old fella down at Bawley Point. He told me that instead of trying to catch them using the pads of my thumb and index finger (i.e. catching them between my 'fingerprints') I should use the tip of my thumb pressed against the side of the first knuckle on my index finger. It works much better as there is less give in the skin and the worms can't pull out as easily. Basically I lay my index finger on the sand between the worm and the hand-bait and make it crawl over the first knuckle in order to get to the bait - I let it get a good grip on the bait and as soon as it arches its back to tear off a piece I jamb the thumb down.

I reckon I'm now at about 50% strike rate thanks to that tip - although I still have trouble getting the really big ones out of the sand after I've pinned them.

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Welcome to the site Mondo :1welcomeani: I am living in eastern suburbs as well and i did most of my fishing at botany bay and south head. Been looking for a company living in eastern suburbs for so long, so nice to meet you here. i always catch my livies at Rose bay, heaps of yakkas but not sure mullets. but u can always give a go there.

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Welcome Mondo,

The estuary near where the boat ramp is near the Port Botany Container wharf does have good supply of poddy mullet. The only thing is that the main channel drop off can be quite a wade in on the high tide. If you get there on the bottom of the low, you will be able to catch plenty.

Hope this helps.

I do a lot of rock fishing as well in the Eastern suburbs, so if you ever need a buddy, for a kingfish livebaiting session, high speed spin or blackfishing give me a yell. I have been doing it on my own for a while and have decided it's time to find a few partners .. especially for any night/early morning sessions.

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Thanks to all for their advice!

I didn't get to chase poddy's over the weekend due to limited daylight time although I did manage to get out beachworming at 11pm on Friday night. Good news is that the East continues to produce great numbers of worms - must have seen about 200 (although many were too small) in my hour and a half and easily collected enough for a good beach session.

I decided to try Maroubra on Saturday arvo, picked a good looking hole at about 4pm and fished through to dark.

I caught one barely legal flattie (who went back to fatten up for next time) and that was the only bite all evening. It was pathetic, live worm baits were sent out to sit in the gutter untouched for 20 minutes at a time - I haven't had it so quiet at Maroubra for a long time. :mad3: In the end I had to let most of the worms go (one of the benefits of using fingers instead of pliers) so at least there is now a small population of worms at Maroubra!!

Maybe next week.

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