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Garfish in Middle harbour / Sydney harbour?


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hi guys, keen to try my hand at catching some garfish (to eat and as bait) - i read a post from years back about garfish at the wharf in Clifton Gardens. Are they still about?

Are there any locations in middle harbour?

I would be fishing by boat, with the following plan:

* early morning, after sunrise

* anchoring near wharf at Clifton Gardens or other suggested spots.

* use berley pot. White bread? Dough? Tuna oil?

* using bream setup: braid to leader with float tied about 30cm away from tiny hook. Bread or dough fitted to hook.


Is catching garfish in middle harbour  or Sydney harbour a pipe dream?

Any suggested spots that reliably produce?

Any changes to my plan above?

Thanks guys!



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I was fishing a few weeks back over Cliffton Gardens / Chowder bay and a school of Garfish spent a good 20mins circling my boat.

Had a burley of Bread, Chicken pellets and mushed up pilchards going.

I was anchored up near the big white drums, on the middle harbour side of the Navy wharf.

Didn't catch any but I was targeting bigger fish

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I use fresh white bread for bait. dunk half a slice into the water for no more than 1 second, then squeeze out the water. Practice will determine how firm you want the bread to be.

Lightly squeeze and the bread will be soft, hard squeeze and the bread will be very firm. I try for the middle of the road. 

Floating crusts will attract the gars, however, if there are seagulls in the area, they will swoop down and eat the bread, scaring the gars away.

I use a handline from my boat if there any gars about. No sinker, a size 10 longshank hook, and I flick the bait out (takes practice to do that, and cannot do it into the wind, a breeze behind does help)

A small float will be better for you on a light rod, 6 pound line.

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thanks penguin.

I tried over the weekend, anchored about 30m from Balmoral jetty. Came across lots good size yakkas at the bottom, had two floats (0.5m to 1m depth)  - no garfish, unfortunately.

Had bread burley as well as chicken pellets soaked in tuna oil in a berley pot, steady stream of berley visible. I didn't thrown any bread on the surface as did not want to attract seagulls.

Also made a dough mixture which was very effective on the yakkas, but as mentioned, could not find any gars.

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