Best season for bream in years
REPORTS from all centres are there are stacks of fish in the estuary and, when the boats can get offshore, still plenty of surface fish out wide and reef fish close in.
Local residents say this is one of the best bream seasons for several years both in quantity and quality, and there are still large schools of blackfish around the lower reaches of the estuaries and around the headlands.
Reports from upstream above Grafton are quiet because of the closed season on bass, although a few smaller flathead are being taken in the vicinity of the Grafton bridge.
Anglers are reminded the bass cannot read and do not know they cannot be caught and kept during the closed season - so should be returned to the water.
Fisheries officers at the moment are very active in checking bag limits and catches.
Feature of this week's weigh in has been the number of bream weighed in with quite a few fish around the kilo mark.
The beaches and headlands are fishing well, although uncertain weather conditions has meant much of the angling has been done in the more protected estuary waters.
One of the hot spots, especially at night, has been in Yamba Bay among the trawler moorings, although the fishing area is limited while upgrading work continues.
Biggest bream was taken in the Bay, a fish of 1.062kg caught by John Price of Yamba, but more were taken on the Middle Wall.
R Crichton of Eatonsville did well with bream between 592g and 802g, while Elih Brooks tried Oyster Channel for a fish of 850g
The Middle Wall paid off for Maureen Stone of Iluka for a bream of 786g, but her husband Robert managed to beat her with a fish of 822g
Good catches of blackfish are reported from some of the deeper water along Palmers island, in the vicinity of Oyster Channel and Romiaka bridges, and the various training walls close to the entrance
Greg Biffin of Micalo fished to the Middle Wall and returned with a blackfish of 1.240kg. Big schools have also been reported in the vicinity of the Yamba Tavern and near the T-Piece.
For those who are not equipped for blackfish, there are still plenty of flathead on the bite.
Tony Blair of Maclean has returned to the weigh in list after a lengthy break with a flathead of 562g taken at the entrance to South Arm near the MacFarlane Bridge.
However biggest was taken in the Broadwater, a catch of 2.756kg, by Harold Warwick of Grafton who used a plastic lure.
Browns Rocks continues to produce flathead, with Bob Gutteridge scoring one of 999g.
There are plenty of small school jewfish in the lower reaches but a few large fish are being taken closer to the ocean.
Steve Orth of Goodwood landed one of 6.270kg on Iluka main beach, where Michael Beck of Casino scored one of 14.420kg
However biggest for the week was landed by Jack Moore of Grafton who fish at Red Cliff just north of Brooms Head for a catch of 18.520kg.
More jewfish were taken in the deep water at the North-east corner by Karl Sismey of Yamba, but the best fish he weighed in was a yellowtail kingfish of 8.100kg - and he said there were still plenty more out there as well.
On the quieter side, Allen McLeod fished the beach at Brooms Head for a tarwhine of 1.140kg
MONTHLY WINNER FOR MAY
THE winner of the $25 open order awarded for May goes to Steve Smith from Waterview Heights. His name came up in the random draw from all those anglers who weighed in fish during May.
Steve's catch was a 16.670kg tuna taken on a fish bait while fishing off Arrawara
The open order is presented by Marina Boat and Tackle located in the Yamba Boat Harbour.