- 14/06/2011 at 1:26 am #18320
I liked them once rayhunter until I caught some… oops… I mean “hooked” some really big ones. I’d estimate some of the rays around NZ beaches and wharfs at 200kg plus. They wreck everything and they’re uncatchable. Yes I have some photos too of big sharks and rays caught LBG that I will put up and heaps of kingis. I used to use all Alvey gear but I’ve switched to Otomo LBG rod and a Pro Gear 541 with 350 metres 15kg. I’m going to try targeting barracouta with live mullet and then try a couta under a balloon for the hell of it. Hoping to attract a big shark of some species. I wonder what a dog shark would be like as a live bait?
I’m not trying to boast that I’m a great fisherman either. It’s not hard to catch big fish when you live on East Cape like I used to. So far in the South Island I’ve caught two mullet on a sabiki rig so i’m not doing well. I hate sinkers so I miss all the bottom feeding fish. I mostly just berley and stray line into it until I can get a live fish out under a balloon.
rocky14/06/2011 at 3:52 am #18323MiliwolfParticipant
I suspect the couta would thrash itself to death in no time if used as a live bait… Have hooked a few surf casting and did not realize and they were all but dead when I pulled them in. Having not tried one it might turn out better then I would expect.15/06/2011 at 1:18 am #18327
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.15/06/2011 at 7:15 am #18333fishforpotParticipant
A lot of the big fish around these parts feed on the bottom …..Ive had some interesting results livebaiting on the bottom …and will continue to experiment with the technique in the next year or 2 ….17/06/2011 at 9:55 am #18335
Yes that is exactly how to catch big sharks and I’m undergunned at the moment. I like 1000 metres 24kg and I used to have a Penn Senator 16/0 with about 1500 metres of 37kg especially for landbased shark fishing but it was stolen. I know how big sharks get. I’ve been spooled about four times with 600 metres of 24kg in the Lottin Point area on East Cape and spooled of 1000 metres off South Beach in Wanganui. Big sharks can show up at anytime anywhere around NZ, though obviously more so in summer. I’ve also kite fished for them at the Opotiki River Mouth.
They can be tricky without live bait. I’ve fished in a bay up North that was full of big sharks that could be seen from the cliffs above the bay. Not once would they touch a wire trace yet every nylon trace was bitten off within minutes of hitting the water. Bait was bonito. Gave up because they were biting through 50kg leader even with circle hooks. Just because you’re not hooking up doesn’t mean there are no sharks around. Berley does attract them pretty good.
I’ve had some mammoth shark battles that I lost. Hooking a big shark is only half the battle. Their skin chafes the line so the longer the fight then the less likely it gets to land a big shark from shore. Weed collects on the line so you end up fighting a big dead weight of weed as well as the shark over a period of hours. I’ve had stainless sampo swivels break and split rings pull straight. I’ve hauled big sharks into the breakers then had all my gaff men chicken out and the shark has rolled back out with the wave surge. Most huge sharks off the beach are lost at the end in the surf. They also roll up in the trace which is a real tackle buster.
Sorry you’ll never convince me that stingrays are fun. Maybe a little eagle ray perhaps but even then I’d sooner not hook any sort of ray. But… I have to be honest Zac… when I first started LBG fishing I targeted rays too. They were the most powerful fish I was likely to catch with my skill level at the time. Once I hooked into big kingies and sharks and learnt how tame rays are (they follow you around snorkeling for paua) then I lost interest. Rays are powerful but nothing like a fifty pound plus kingfish trying to smash you off on the rocks on purpose. That’s a street fight.
I think a couta would work under a balloon. I’ve put kahawai out for over eight hours then released them at the end of the day. Some just give up and die but others are staunch. I’ll try it out anyway if I get a chance but I don’t have a proper livebait reel at the moment for really big fish. I’ll have to put it out on my medium gear.
Your setup sounds great Zac. Like you said…. just a matter of putting in the time. I’m not that fussed on dead baits for sharks on their own. I like a live bait out as well or prefer a live bait to a dead bait. You can set live baits at any depth using a slider rig but I like to balloon because I get a huge rush when I see splashing around the balloon, or a big tail comes out of the water… or even just seeing the balloon pop off and that split second before you put the reel into gear and all hell breaks loose. Unfortunately catching a live bait can be a real hassle in winter.
I’m thinking that Timaru lends itself to kitefishing a big shark bait out wide on a big reel. The layout of the number two wharf or whatever it is called behind where all the logs are stored…. lends itself to putting out a kite in almost any wind direction. Personally i think it’s wide open down here for some serious shark fishing. There’s not much else to target in winter. I’ve convinced myself I can pull a kingi in the summer from around here somewhere so we’ll just have to see if I’m dreaming or not when summer comes.
There used to be a secret ledge down South somewhere where some LBG guys pulled grouper from the rocks. Big ones too. I think it was over West Coast though heading towards Fiordland. I think it’s pretty obvious you’d get Great Whites off the Catlins in close chasing seals but I think they’re protected in NZ which means you can’t deliberately fish for them even if you do let them go. They’ve been caught LBG up North and hooked on kitefishing rigs but only small ones about 100kg.
rocky17/06/2011 at 10:22 am #18336MiliwolfParticipant
rocky17/06/2011 at 1:00 pm #18337
I agree grouper deserve protection. They live a long time and become resident to an area. So do big old snapper.
rocky17/06/2011 at 9:20 pm #18338
Great whites have been protected since I think 2008 but knowing where they are and what spots they come close to land you can expect other species of sharks to be there as well. Have always found dead baits to be effective for sharks although haven’t spent a lot of time livebaiting things like kahawai. The problem with livebaiting round these ways is barracouta which will take almost anything under a balloon or float even if it’s dead they just like the movement which makes it hard fishing for kingfish at places like black rock in christchurch when there’s so many couta your baits not in long enough. Fishing baits dead or live under a balloon always has it’s advantages especially if there’s a lot of crabs and smaller sharks around and with a big bait smaller sharks like dogfish usually just avoid it. Wind conditions have to be right though so it’s not always possible, but places like the timaru wharfs you have differrent areas in every direction you can fish from although I’d be more confident fishing for bigger sharks somewhere out of the harbour.
Depending what I’m doing at the end of the year I’d be keen to put in some time fishing around Timaru and a trip further south around Dunedin would be really good just need the info on what spots are fishable cos it’s a big place and I don’t know the area at all.18/06/2011 at 6:23 am #18341surfrodParticipant
Forget livebaiting with coutas. If you manage to hold one down and hook it through the back once you put it in the water it will make a serious nuisance of itself. My bet is that it will find the trace and bite it off. Trouble is that in the absence of kahawai you’re lacking a mid-sized pelagic fish to use as livebait. That being the case i’d focus on sharks with big deadbaits, maybe whole skipjack. I’d try and sail that out with a beach ball or a blown up rubbish bag off one of the deep beaches in a stiff norwester. With braid you could spool up a huge amount of line and get your bait into blue water.18/06/2011 at 6:57 am #18342
Thanx for the advice surfrod. I have a thing about livebaits. I’ve watched sharks and rays and kingis play with them the way a cat plays with a mouse. They have huge attraction properties over a deadbait. Like even with deadbaits I still like a livebait out just to attract fish and get them worked up to bite at the deadbaits. You’re right though. Huge gap in the food chain with no kahawai and another huge gap with no kingfish or snapper. I’ve done some research and I agree that couta probably won’t work as a livebait. Apparently they die real fast just like everybody has been telling me.
I’ll try a few super strength berleys and see what shows up.
rocky18/06/2011 at 9:48 am #18344surfrodParticipant
i’m with ya on the livebaits rocky, very exciting way to fish. Yeah, my comments are really just cos there’s no really reliable livebait available to you down there. Down the Catlins you could probably use blue cod, i’ve caught kingies on those, but they are not exactly strong swimming fish like a kahawai. I guess i’m just syaing that if i was Canterbury based i’d probably look at that technique off the deep beaches as a more likely ways to get into something interesting. I think if you were to sail a deadbait out you could also attach a berley bomb to your rig.18/06/2011 at 4:49 pm #18346
You can get kahawai around timaru and further south over summer and a lot of good sized yellow eyed mullet that make good bait. School sharks would also work for livebait for bigger sharks. You can catch salmon off the wharf but not sure if you’d be keen on using that for a livebait.19/06/2011 at 9:23 am #18355
Today I fished a couple of the Timaru breakwaters. At first I fished straight LBG and straylined a berley trail for zero bites. No mullet in berley. Not one. Switched to squid baits on the bottom and caught about ten spiny dogfish and a large carpet shark about 1 metre long and very wide. Saw one mullet in berley entire day. Went to put a dogfish out as a livebait but it swam under a rock and snagged up my livebait rig while i was tying on the balloon so I wasn’t impressed. Saw a dolphin and a large rat. I was thinking the rat would make a good live bait for a short time. Had dogfish eat baits almost as big as they were. Only the carpet shark put up any sort of a fight and even that wasn’t great. Fishing got best at dark but I had to leave. Wasn’t as good as I’d hoped considering the tide and sea was spot on with a nice lumpy high tide near dusk. When do the seven gill sharks come in?
rocky19/06/2011 at 3:00 pm #18357
Sounds about what I would expect at this time of the year which is why I don’t even bother. As for seven gillers I’ve never caught one in timaru but I would expect they’d be around from about october onwards. Put your time into trying for other species like moki if they’re still around. Should be red cod around as well but it’s gonna be hard avoiding the carpet sharks and dogfish. Usually if you fish baits dropped straight down off the wharf you don’t get the sharks unless there’s a lot of really small doggies around. I’d say best time for fishing around there is december – march.19/06/2011 at 9:51 pm #18359
I don’t know how to catch Moki. I’ve heard you need small shellfish baits? All my gear is set up for casting big heavy baits off rocks. It’s okay… I expected the fishing to be poor midwinter although that’s when the Red Cod run up north. Not that I fish for red cod but the runs used to bring the barracouta and sharks. June/July the red cod run into the Wanganui Harbour and can be caught off the wharf and the North Mole breakwater swarms with couta and sharks. The runs have got less and less over the years though and sometimes don’t even happen. Possibly the same down here?
I just discovered that seven gill sharks get up to 150 kg plus and 3 metres. I never knew that. I thought they topped out at about two hundred pounds and two metres. I found a picture of a huge one on the internet. I’ve caught a hundred pound one off a beach and I’ve got the photos here of it. Up North they love those steep shingle beaches at night. For the lack of something else to chase in the LBG type of fishing then I thought I might try and deliberately target big seven gill sharks…. strictly catch and release of course. I wouldn’t mind hooking up to a really big one in the 100kg range.
They hit the East Coast beaches on East Cape in November. So I’ve got until October to work out the best shingle beach. They usually have specific areas on a beach that they prefer and seem to hang out more although they do cruise just behind the wave dump line on those really steep beaches (like at ashburton). I used to berley them off a shingle beach with a sack of berley tied to a rope and just thrown into the surf. Several times I’ve had sharks come in and rip the back out of the bag. We used to catch about ten school sharks for every seven giller. I’m hoping you have somewhere similar down here. I know Birdlings Flat has a name for seven gillers but these shingle beaches around Timaru look promising and I’ve heard some of the old fisherman here mumble about certain spots where the big sharks come in on the shingle beaches around Timaru at certain times.
If I get time today I’ll upload some of my shark and stingray and kingi photos… all caught from beach or rocks around NZ North Island. The best shark bait I’ve found so far is fresh… as in just caught… large yellow eye mullet… bigger the better. Whole bonito are great too for really big sharks. There is one bait I’ve found that beats any other bait in NZ for big fish but it’s hard to get. Even up North. I used to get it from a friendly charter boat skipper. I don’t think you can buy it anywhere. That’s flying fish. Big fish go loopy over them. Wait till the bite is on and biff out a whole flying fish and kabang everytime. There’s been many a fishing contest secretly won with a flying fish bait.
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