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Dover Heights Snapper


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To be honest we hadn’t planned on a fish dinner for Tuesday night, but I woke up late and completely forgot to put the bone broth on for the Ramen soup I’d promised the kids. Instead, I’d taken the kids to my parent’s place to swim and while there my mum had mentioned that it would be nice if I got rid of some of the squid heads I had stashed in her freezer. At about the same time, my wife called from work and asked if I’d remembered to put dinner into the slow cooker. Thinking on my feet I told her that I’d forgotten but would see if I could catch some fish for dinner.

So... while the kids swam I set up my cliff fishing outfit and threw a paternoster rig over my parent’s backyard fence, 80M down to the water below. Due to the amount of line I have out and the delay in feeling bites, I use circle hooks over there and just pop the rod into an umbrella holder until something hooks itself. The squid heads with all the guts tend to self-berley too so it seems to be an effective technique for that spot.

It wasn’t long before the bites started coming on pretty strong and after 4 casts I came up with a small but decent pan sized snapper.



Having sorted out dinner, I thought I’d try something different and changed hooks to a 6/0 live bait hook, baited up with those little strips of cartilage that I cut off the squid wings. I thread them onto the hook through the middle so that they look like tentacles wafting in the water and usually get some good bites.

In this case the bite came immediately and bent my 20kg rod right over. I struck immediately but it was too late and whatever it was swam off (I’m guessing a big snapper - I’ve caught several there before). I let the line drop for a second so that I could tension it onto the spool as I brought it back in.  When I started to wind it back up I felt some weight on the line and then some wriggling, only to find that I’d hooked up one of these (not sure what it is, but catch a lot of them in that spot).


Threw it back, put my rod away and took the kids home to cook up the snapper, thinking I’d get a couple of bites and leave some for the wife when she came home. While I was cutting up a salad and the girls were upstairs my son was sat at the TV downstairs with the fish on the table. I heard footsteps and arguing, so I walked into the dining room to find that my 7 yr old had sneakily eaten 3/4 of a 40cm snapper himself and was licking his lips! 😂

Not many fish, but a good day in the brown rainy water anyway.

Having read some of @Scratchie’s reports, I am thinking that I may try a soft plastic on my paternoster rig next time. Will certainly make it a cleaner experience!

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