Large Bluefin Tuna reported off Tathra with Local Angling Restricted Mainly to the Estuaries.

Photo Caption: Heather Sutterby Member of Tura Beach with a lovely Salmon taken from Pambula Lake.

Offshore angling received a boost during the week with a really nice 44Kg bluefin tuna taken by Bernie and Judy Sillis on Mr Hooker out of Bermagui, almost directly off Tathra, out past the first drop off. There is a report of a near 100kg bluefin from another vessel. Water temperatures are rising offshore, up to 19.4 degrees reported. Whales remain active as they continue their travel northwards for their breeding season in much warmer waters and provide a wonderful spectacle for nearby anglers.

As follow on from last week’s discussion about the long term possibility of Merimbula Lake closing – the negative effect on local business, not to say the Merimbula Oyster Industry, prompts us to consider all avenues for proper management of the lake entrance. Bill Deveril of Mitchies Jetty tells us that before the great storm of May 1974, the trees and vegetation at Mitchies extended along the barrier bar from Mitchies all the way to the entrance channel near Bar Beach. This cyclonic storm was named the Sygna after the Norwegian Bulk Carrier that was wrecked on Stockton beach near Newcastle. Winds of 165km and waves over 17m were reported at the entrance of Newcastle Harbour. Bill tells us that here at Merimbula waves were breaking right across from Long Point to Haycock, “The surge was so great that water was gushing up from the drains neat Twyford Hall”. “After the storm the vegetated sand spit had completely disappeared.” The barrier bar regrew and has lasted more or less in the one place until it was breached in late 2018. Bill tells us; “This is the first time he has seen the entrance awash since the Sygna storm”. Dredging may be required or even a “training wall” (breakwater). Recently the Coastal Infrastructure Unit from Crown Lands, and the Rescuing Our Waterways (ROW) program for navigation dredging was transferred into Transport for NSW Maritime’s; Maritime Infrastructure Delivery Office (MIDO). The program offers partnership funding to local government for navigation dredging under Andrew Constance the Minister of Transport.

Offshore flathead remain elusive however a few morwong have reported from our local reefs; Haycock and Hunter in particular, with best bait pilchards and squid. Off Haycock Beach a couple of large calamari squid were taken as by-catch on a two hook metal jig. A few calamari have also been taken from the Merimbula Fishing platform using No.3 slow sinking jigs. Anglers fishing our headlands and beaches have taken salmon and tailor and congratulations to Paul Hogie of Tura Beach for his lovely tailor taken in early evening at Dolphin Cove of Tura Beach.

In the Merimbula front lake the start of the run-in from the sea has provided some nice Australian salmon. There are tailor and trevally in the channel and lots of tailor in the top lake. Pambula River remains the stand out fishing spot during the past week with ubiquitous salmon, tailor and trevally. Try the channel between the shark hole and Broadwater. Stand out lure is the “Spanyid” Maniac 21. There are lots of “chopper” tailor in the Merimbula Top Lake plus some occasional bream and trevally. The Bega River remains open though still muddy with a fair amount of debris. Soft plastics used up river past Thompsons has rewarded anglers with the occasional dusky flathead and bream. There are also a few bream beside the rockwall further down river.

The MBGLAC Club Room remains open on Friday evenings, commencing 6.30pm. However due to social distancing rules attendance is currently limited to 20 persons. MBGLAC Membership application, Membership renewal and everything you need to know about local fishing is on the Club’s Website All enquires to Alan Wilkins 0412 149 998.

Keep your rods bent!