Friday 11th October 2013

Tackle specials and angling politics

from Downrigger Shop



Andy, had a great weekend with plenty of nice fish up to the meter mark with all fish over 90cm released.



Good one mate, if anyone can crack it you can. I’m out there on Tuesday. Kevin Lithgow brings good news from SEQ too:



Wednesday morning I drive up to Hervey Bay to get a charter with Andrew Chorley from Hervey Bay sports fishing (top bloke). It was tough going cause the tuna are feeding on micro bait and flying fish and the schools are all over the place. They track erratically so you'll put in a cast and before your lure hits the water they have changed direction.  We managed some good Mac tuna but the long tail all spat the lures.  When we got too frustrated we'd head to some reef and flick plastics about or drop some slugs for spotted mackerel.  There are huge numbers of tuna in the bay already and when the micro baits grow in about a month the longtail will be in full swing. Hope all is well with you and I think I'll need to order some micro jigs soon


Top fish, Kevin! They go SO HARD. This evocative pic from Ian Pengelly reminds me of great times up north:



here is that barracuda I caught last week on a Head Start Lure with a Gar. Give you an idea, table is 1500mm long.


Backyard bass! Forget hikinging into the upper Wallagaraugh. Darryl’s hooking up good ones just the other side of the Hills hoist, down past the choko vine:



Went for a bass fish down the end of my street earlier this week. We managed to land ten bass, including equalling my Cattai Creek pb at 37cm to the fork and 39 overall. Fat too and I only just managed to keep him out of the snags in such skinny water. Not bad for three minutes from home!, Cheers, Darryl


Well done Daz. Ross and Lew Ireland begun their bass fishing career last weekend. Here’s Lew:



G`day cobber, been a while! Lew n I had a great couple of hours on the Wyong river. 6 bass between us, not big, but great as they are our first bass. Looking forward to it warming up some more. Cheers Rossco


Excellent. With the cool wet summers over the last three or four years, rivers should be full of them this season. Andy McCotter bought a couple of our light reels for chasing luderick. All went well:



Thanks for the 3000 reels and Carbontex. Worked a treat on Blackfish, exceptional value, and service outstanding. Went out with good mate Steve chasing Blackfish on Lake Illawarra last Saturday.  In a great little 2 hour session ended up with 28 fish boated all keepers and several over 40cm. Unfortunately the season is close to being at an end




The Daily Telegraph says Aussie women are getting into fly fishing thanks to lessons from the tackle business, RiverFly. Sounds like PR to me, especially since the author is in the pic. But if true, it’s good news:



Jay Barker follows the Golden Rule Of Fishing – one I stupidly break, all the time. That is, fish for what’s around:



Hi Andrew, had everything planned for a nice public holiday offshore adventure out of Swansea on Monday but the conditions weren't in my favour. As I left the heads the swell and southerly winds looked like a day ender. I noticed a huge school of salmon chopping up the surface just off Moon Island so went for a troll around and picked a few up before calling it an early day.

Not bad considering the conditions out there! Cheers, Jay


Mate, I never tire of them, always have a cast at the schools whenever possible. They’re a top sportfish, we’re very fortunate to have them around in good numbers. Mike Lazar chasing them too, this week:



At Compleat Angler city store on Wednesday morning, and stunned to see they are selling a 2000 gram jig, ‘The Hernia.’ Here it is, next to a 40gram jig:



Out to Long Reef on Tuesday with disappointing results. The ocean was swarming with hungry shearwaters hitting poppers, soft plastics, anything. Here’s my reward for releasing one that hooked up:



Dave Potts was out there. Double downriggers (the right ones) and twin live bait tank set up on a wake board boat, you don’t see that everyday. They got a few too:



We scored 2 kings at Long Reef, one keeper, one 2cm under. The bow rider did well outside.


Chris Sun and crew made a good call, considering kingfish hard to find on Tuesday:



Andy, with kingies being a bit hit and miss over the last couple of days (they were undersized and quite finicky), I decided to do a few drops for flatties. Got these before the storm hit yesterday at midday. I tried to call you on vhf 21 at around 12, but you must have been driving or something, coz I didn't get you


Sorry champ! That does sometimes happen. At least we didn’t go home empty handed:



Dan Pietrangelo had a sensational session on the mid-north coast last weekend. Check this out:



Hi Andy Port Stephens fished well Sunday stumbled across these guys amongst some nice snapper. Check out the bite marks on the biggest fish, it got a surprise visit by a cranky shark at the side of the boat !!!!!


Kerry Bailey from Blackout Sportsfishing in Cairns phoned in to order some Head Starts. He was out off Batt Reef at the time, in glass out conditions, and promised to send me a pic of how things went for his client. Looks like mixed results:



Spiro reminds me we are only eight days away from the Tinnie & Tackle Show, at Eastern Creek in western Sydney. We’ll both be on the same stand so if you’re passing, stop by? A friendly face at these shows perks me up enormously.  I’m taking a whole lot of one off and unused sample reels to discount and clear there, so there’ll be some bargains to be had:



Mick Tait is a great friend from the old days who moved to WA several years ago. On his way back now towing his big trailer boat, and sending regular progress updates. Here it is next to the Kalgoorlie pipe line:



Happy run so far, have a great tailwind, boat is towing well. Happy days.


It’ll be great to have you back here, Mick. Martyn ready to rock summer 2013:



Hi Andy just thought I'd share my fishing rig for this summer, looking forward to trying out the 2 new downriggers I bought off you.


Nice! You can accomplish a lot in a weapon like that Mart. John Klapsis goes high tech. A lot of fishos interested in this new system:



Hi Andy, looking forward to trying out the latest chirp technology by Garmin.




Caught you in the Fish NSW magazine mate.... Great stuff!!


Glad you enjoyed, it Mike! But the real credit goes to editor Ben. The copy and pics I sent in were rough as bags, yet he whipped things into shape beautifully.


To politics, and I hate always having to cover the waste and misdirection of Fisheries policy in this country. But unless we monitor these developments we’ll never be able to change them. In NSW, Fisheries Minister Katrina Hodgkinson (AKA Bodgy Hodgy) is too busy, to reply to correspondence. But she’ll always take a day off for really important stuff:



‘Pay attention, Katrina! You’re pouring the fingerlings onto your boots!’



Daffy Katrina thinks these pointless photo ops will somehow increase her ‘popularity.’ Dead wrong, Bodgy!  Les makes a fair point:


Do we actually need a politician to release some fingerlings? Everyone else does the work, like breeding the fish and transporting them whilst keeping them alive and then the pollie turns up in her chauffeur driven limo, gets led to the waterside and tips a bucket of fingerlings into the water while all the cameras flash and she becomes a bloody hero.


She wants five committees to advise her on marine parks. I invite readers to imagine how many busybody greenies and ‘get off my lawn!’ types will stack these affairs:



Now Bodgy plans an artificial reef off the south coast – spending hundreds of thousands of dollars, of our fishing license fees. And typically adding as much red tape, fake consultation, and expense as possible to the process. Here’s Brian Vanderwalt, arguably NSW anglers’ second worst enemy, explaining how they plan to bog the process down with faux consultation:



Remember that this government, to get elected, promised they were ‘restoring the balance’?



Instead they will spend thousands on environmental impact statements, stakeholder information nights and other time and money wasting nonsense. Why not just get a stack of sandstone blocks and tip them over the side at the appropriate depth?



Using the same sandstone Sydney cliffs are formed from, nothing could be more natural or compatible. It’s criminal, the way Bodgy wastes time and money – namely our time, and our money. To some more positive news, and Mark Winser writes to tell us that Manly Council’s plan to shut down the Stuart Street boat ramp has been thwarted, by a public campaign. The message is clear my friends – fight for what’s right:


Hi Andrew, always enjoy your newsletter! Thought I’d give you (and your readers) an update on the potential closure of Little Manly Boat Ramp as a result of a sell-off of the properties on Stuart Street that adjoin it.


Following several public meetings and a protest outside of the Council Chambers (addressed by a range of speakers including yours truly on behalf of recreational boaters and fishers) the community group Save Little Manly Beach Foreshores Inc (funded solely by donations) took Manly Council to the Land and Environment Court on the grounds that Councils actions in re zoning and selling off the properties were contrary to State planning laws.  The result was a clear victory, the final judgement ensured the properties remain zoned as community land, cannot be sold off and SLMBF were even awarded costs!



This is great news as the properties (and hence boat ramp and parking facilities, such as they are!) will remain public land for the foreseeable future!


Now time to start nagging them to include the pontoon alongside the ramp that was agreed to by Council in 2003!


Anyway, great work by the SLMBF folk, many of whom are ardent conservationists, and who were happy to work with a grotty fisho like me to get what we all wanted! I’d also like to thank Peter Johnson from the Shooters and Fishers Party who did some valuable leg work chasing up the media and state pollies to help establish the support for this protest by recreational boaters and fishers, it is a powerful alliance when different political groups can align on one issue at a time regardless of their personal agendas.


I was also surprised to find that when dealing with these types of issues the power of the community is far greater than we think! The Land and Environment Court judge noted that the number of people committing to signing petitions, attending Council and public meetings and joining the community protest group combined with the fact that many of these people were from out of the area but travelled to use the Facilities was an important factor in their judgement. Work together with all the various allies that present themselves and persist, anything is possible!


Even Manly Councils pathetic attempt to neutralise angry boaties was too little, too late:



The message is clear. Committees, submissions, even meetings are, so often, a waste of time. What does work is a direct political and media campaign which embarrasses the Minister (or the council) publicly. Basically, we have to make more noise and more fuss than the greenies. Well done Mark, Peter Johnson, and the SLMBF team. You’ve shown us the way forward. Until next week,


Andrew Hestelow

Managing Director