Manukau / Auckland West Coast

fishing report

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Manukau and Auckland West Coast 29 April
Note: If map is showing it is created by LINZ / New Zealand Hydrographic Authority and made available by Creative Commons 3.0. Maps should not be used for navigation

Goodbye summer. So many people think that it’s all over for another six months but nothing could be further from the truth. Snapper will be in their best condition as they have been preparing for the winter that’s now not too far away.

Snapper can be found pretty much anywhere off the coast or in the harbour but especially in the harbour they will have their preferred hang outs.

Out west I’d be fishing from in close out to maybe 35m or so. Avoiding kahawai will be your biggest challenge but some sturdy tackle will take care of them if they prove to be a nuisance. Inside the harbour, I’d be exploring the channel edges using strayline rigs in shallow water and dropper rigs with heavy bomb sinkers in deeper areas, especially if you know an area with a bit of foul or other structure.

Gurnard are one of my favourite fish to catch and when fishing the coast they remain in reasonably good condition all year round and they can be caught wherever snapper are. A little trick that works very well off the coast is a jig such as an 80g slider or inchiku jig with just a small piece of squid tentacle on one of the hooks. Cast that out, let it drop to the sea floor and engage the reel.

Put that rod in the rod holder and leave it. Carry on snapper fishing and the rig sitting there unattended will generally pick up a few gurnard.

Inside the harbour things are a little different.

For a start gurnard numbers have started to significantly increase and those fish will be in much better condition as the water starts to cool. Small straylined baits in the shallows, particularly where there’s a gut running off the banks at the turn of the tides can be very effective.

I will also have a two hook dropper rig in action whenever I am gurnard fishing. Flasher rigs work very well. Keep the baits small and skipjack, mullet and kahawai are my favourites.

You will also pick up trevally and kahawai using these techniques of course but that’s one of the interesting things about fishing, trying to find somewhere that will hold the fish you’re hoping to catch.

I certainly do have some favourite spots but I also like to choose somewhere random each time I go out, although sometimes I just get too lazy. We will never get better if we keep doing the same old stuff.

Please take some time to read the new recreational fishing regulations as there have been changes to our daily catch limits and they are good changes in my opinion.

Planning for the 2022 Grunter Hunter competition is now underway, I’ll get an update on the CSFC facebook page as soon as details are finalised. In the meantime set aside June 5 for a chance at winning some decent prizes for a humble gurnard!

Good luck out there and stay safe.

Smudge.

This Manukau / Auckland west coast report is supplied by Michael "Smudge" Parker and supports the Counties Sportfishing Club​

For more information on the Counties Sportfishing Club visit its website here.

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