Still a chance of catching a few despite the rain

19th May 2017 6:30 AM
Toonumbar Dam near Kyogle. BASS ABOUND: Toonumbar Dam near Kyogle. Susanna Freymark

PLENTY of fish to be caught on the internet or your TV screen this weekend as we settle in for some more wet weather.

But for those with good rainwear, or who don't mind a wet bum as long as they're catching fish, there's every chance of still pinning a few.

The estuaries have settled down reasonably well after the flood and everyone is hoping this rain isn't going to be too serious.

Brett at Ballina Bait and Tackle says the school mulloway have worked their way up to Wardell, while down around the lower reaches there are active bream and increasing numbers of luderick.

Bass and estuary perch have been caught from Woodburn to Coraki but remember, there's a zero bag limit on them until September 1.

Out on the beaches and in the headland washes there have been tailor to a healthy 3kg, especially at night, along with some good bream.

The beaches also have turned up bream, dart and flathead.

Some dusky flathead migrate northward at this time of year from one river to another, giving surf anglers fun and a feed.

Other duskies, meanwhile, head upstream and overwinter in the middle reaches in schools.

And it's not uncommon to find duskies out in even 25m depths, mingled with sand and rock flathead.

I don't know of any detailed migration studies on these extremely common and highly valued fish but I'm sure the results would be interesting.

Bass stocking

TOONUMBAR Dam has been pencilled in to receive another 15,000 bass fingerlings this season, according to the DPI's draft native fish stocking plan for 2017-18.

That's on top of the stocking conducted by the Kyogle Fish Acclimatisation Society, which has stocked the dam for the past 30-odd years.

The society runs raffles in Kyogle and also operates the collection box at the dam that every angler visiting should contribute to.

The DPI doesn't stock the rivers with bass but does offer dollar-for- dollar funding for groups that do.

Clarrie Hall Dam is to get another 8000 mangrove jack fingerlings under the pilot stocking program that has to be among the licence-funded projects that represents the least value for money.

They'll top up the ones released in March 2015 that seem to have disappeared, despite the offer of a $200 tackle voucher for anyone who caught one.

Comments can be made on the draft plan until June 16. Go to the Fisheries website for more info.

More jaws

THREE more juvenile white sharks have been caught this week on the smart drumlines and tagged and released, two at Evans Head on Wednesday and the other at South Ballina on Sunday.

That brings the tagged tally to about 95 in the past couple of years.