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First Ever Watson's Leaping Bonito 05.03.21


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Headed out this morning assuming the wind would hold off for a few hours if I got out early.  Turns out I was right.

Decided to bring a heavier outfit alongside my normal 1-2kg bream setup. ¬†I usually hate carrying multiple rods as it annoys the¬†ūüí©¬†outta me having to put down and pickup a rod every time I stop for a cast. ¬†However, having come across some good sized Kings on most of my recent outings and being dusted several times, I opted for the inconvenience in hope of wrangling one these yellowtailed, Sugapen stealing bastards to the shore. ¬†

The heavier outfit was a 4-7kg rod and a 3000 reel - still light by most people's standards but super heavy for me.

The leader at 16lb was absolutely massive for this bream fisho ūü§£

Couldn't go past a few pontoons and boat hulls on my way to the spot and managed a couple of legal sized bream on an Atomic Popper.  Not my favourite lure and the bream don't seem too enthused by it either - it felt pretty quiet compared to other recent outings.  

I pushed on, confidence buoyed by the two small fish.

I'd restocked my supply of Keitech 5" plastics in white recently and grabbed some heavy 4/0 1/6oz jigheads for them.  There's not a lot of plastics out there that beat the Keitechs for their action in my opinion.  Unfortunately to get that action they have to be quite soft and have a tendency to tear and generally get destroyed by fish.  You can go through a lot in a session but I'm a big fan of that action - very realistic.  The fish appear to agree.

When I eventually got to the spot it was definitely on.  A massive bait school had accumulated and was being worked to the surface every few minutes.

Before I cast one of the new plastics I had to try a for a bit of surface action.  On goes the 95mm Sugapen for a few runs.  Hooked up after an extremely violent strike from a large tailor (would've been somewhere in the 45-55 range) and realised after pulling the hook and probably tearing the thing's face off that I had the drag set a bit tight.  Had a few more throws and got a follow from a Kingfish who eventually shied off after coming up beside the lure.  It was a little bit more difficult working the Sugapen on the heavier rod.  Kings don't appear to be fooled unless your retrieve is on point.

With the Keitech I was using a retrieve that @DerekD taught me a while back where you're twitching the lure by pumping the rod and reel together and holding the handle still.  Kind of fishing backwards? Difficult to describe but it achieves a very enticing side to side dart of the plastic.  It wasn't many casts before I hooked up to something solid.  Not solid enough to pull a lot of drag though but I was hoping for a small King.  After a bit of to and fro I got the fish to the surface and was met by my first ever Watson's Leaping Bonito - What a beautiful looking fish!  Awesome colours and vicious looking teeth.  The bonito must have had about a 1/2 doz Kings chasing him around on the way in, trying to grab the lure out of his mouth.  I'd get them next.

Got a quick photo and speared the Bonito back in.  Kept casting for a while but the bait had moved and it suddenly felt very quiet.

One more bream on the popper on my way home¬†ūüėÄ

That's my third new species ticked off this summer.  


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well done, i recently snapped a rod on a leaping bonito 54cm. was only 2-4 kg rod because it came out of the blue while fishing for tailor, still landed the fish though.

Good report :)

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