NICE CATCH: Dayne Taylor with his first Spanish mackerel for the year.
NICE CATCH: Dayne Taylor with his first Spanish mackerel for the year. Dayne Taylor

Coffs Coast anglers hit by 'fisherman's nightmare'

A FISHERMAN'S nightmare is how you would best explain this week!

We are in the middle of 'that time of year' where we can't seem to catch a break from those strong northerly winds.

It's not so bad if you are planning on ducking up one of the local estuaries, this is because you can usually find a bend that shelters you from it. But for the people wanting to venture off-shore there really isn't any where you can hide. Your 100% exposed to all the elements.

Australia day was my first day off-shore this year, so it would have been un-Australian to not have a crack at an early season mackerel. We found plenty of bait in close around park beach bombie, the water clarity and temperature didn't look so promising so with a fully loaded live bait tank we decided to head wide until we found some warmer blue water.

It was a nice early tide change around 8am so we decided to slow troll our live slimy mackerel baits around a couple of pinnacles just east of the light house. About half hour in and we were greeted with a screaming reel. A few minutes later and we were all giving high fives with a nice Spanish estimated around the 13kg mark boated.

After the tide stopped running the fishing slowed and we decided to head in.

We were greeted at the cleaning tables by a few spearos who also had some nice Spanish mackerel, a couple of cobia and nice mangrove jack which was great to see.

Over the weekend there were still plenty of mahi mahi caught off the wave recorder and FAD (fish aggravation device) although there seemed to be a lot more smaller fish being thrown back than making it into the esky compared to the past weeks.

Some nice pan-sized snapper were also boated in closer, with the odd fish up around 5-6kgs making an appearance. Everyone usually forgets how great our snapper fishery is once the warm water pelagic fish turn up, but if your struggling to get a run from a mackerel definitely have a fish for a red because they don't disappear!

In the rivers thing have been a little quiet, most of our estuaries will begin to rejuvenate after a big holiday period so expect things to fire up again real soon.

Ruby Taylor holding a nice big buck mud crab.
Ruby Taylor holding a nice big buck mud crab. Dayne Taylor

If you are heading out on the river for the day, why not throw in a couple of crab traps. My daughter Ruby and I have still been getting a few nice muddies, even throughout the middle of the day.

I also urge everyone wishing to target crabs to have a read of your latest local rules and regulations that can be found on the NSW DPI Fisheries website. You will find that rivers such as the Nambucca now have recreational crab closures over the weekends in place.

So please make sure you know the rules before you head out.