I’ve caught a lot of rays and they are one of the most powerful things you’re likely to catch around these areas and most of the ones I’ve had have put up a good fight with some decently fast and long runs. I’ve had them as far south as bluff wharf where I got my first one and also off the timaru wharf, lyttelton, brighton pier and kaikoura wharf have lost count of how many now but they are one of my favorite things to target and catch even though so many people seem to hate them.
All my surf reels are filled with about 400 – 600 meters of 50lb braid joined to 200 meters of 30-40lb mainline so around 700 – 800 meters of line to play with. Also have 13-14 foot surf setups made specifically for sharks and rays and casting big baits with low mount reel sets and Daiwa Saltist overhead reels with the same 600 meters of 50lb braid and topped off with mono which makes catching bigger fish a lot easier than on normal surf gear and spinning reels.
Catching big fish is a lot about putting the time in and trying things that other people never have in spots people don’t think big fish are. I’m certain you could find a good spot around the dunedin area off the rocks or even some good beaches going into deep water where you could catch threshers and blues and possibly makos if the water was deep enough and you were getting baits out under balloons.
I’ve spent a decent amount of time fishing off the wharf in timaru trying big baits but never had success apart from one stingray and a LOT of carpet sharks at certain times of the year which will take some pretty big baits. There has to be better spots around the area or off the breakwater though just have to put the time in. Anyone who’s seen me fishing has seen the size of some of the baits I’ve put out, things like whole or halfs of big kahawai or school sharks with 10/0 hooks and steel traces and even I think it’s crazy sometimes but I’ve had success with it and it’s really the way to catch big fish without mucking around catching the smaller stuff, although most people would be surpised the size of dogfish etc that you can hook on baits twice the size of them.
some info here on otago
http://www.fishing.net.nz/index.cfm/pag … Page/Otago
[quote:o51u3np7]Also offshore, some of the best big game fishing for shark in New Zealand is to be had. Mako, Thresher, Porbeagle and Blue Shark can all be caught a short distance from the harbour. This is a seasonable fishery, with the best months being December to March.