As we head into September, the gurnard season is slowing down and we will have to wait for next year’s winter to come around again. For those of you who have fished for gurnard in the Kaipara and Manukau harbours, you should have done well as these areas are very productive over the winter months. Gurnard are lovely to eat and the skin can be left on as there are no scales. In fact, the skin crisps up nicely when fried with the fatty layer underneath.
Interestingly, those of you who have put out a boat longline during the winter months may have landed some surprising results. Catches on these longlines have been above average and some hauls of snapper have had to be put back. September and October will fish slow, but many a fisherman looks forward to the spawning season in November when catching snapper is easy. I know some won’t like what I have to say but here goes: I feel there should be some sort of a closed season on the snapper while they are spawning. I feel it is wrong that so many snapper with roe are removed from the sea at the peak of the breeding season, especially if we want to preserve this species long term. Enough said.
Meanwhile, I thought it might be a good idea to explain a few things about fishing line whilst the fishing is in limbo. I find it interesting that most anglers will spend top dollar on a rod and reel without batting an eyelid. Once purchased, they do not seem to worry about what line they get spooled up with. My thinking tells me that if I lose a big fish, in most cases it is because the line has broken. You can catch a fish on a hand line but without line your expensive rod and reel is absolutely useless. Moral of the story: make sure you load up that reel with the best quality co-polymer (mono-filament) or braid that you can find. This will ensure the best chance of landing that prize fish. Over the next couple of articles, I will explain co-polymers, braids and fluorocarbons. Believe it or not, there is lots to learn and the knowledge will improve your ability to fish.
Anthony Roberts, Tackle & Outdoors