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New year, new fish
Gary Brown

Andrew Humphries still hasn’t got the smile off his face after catching his first mulloway.

The Christmas rush and the Boxing Day Sydney to Hobart Yacht Race have long gone. Things will start to settle back to normal as you think about getting out on the water to chase a few kingfish, mahimahi, flathead, bream, whiting, tailor, trevally, bonito, snapper and mulloway, to name a few. January’s a month when most fish species are on the chew, as long as the conditions are right.

By now, kingfish will have well and truly moved into Botany Bay and the Port Hacking River and will be cruising around for a feed. Squid and live yellowtail are the first baits that I would put on for kingfish during the year, but I’ve had a number of kingfish take peeled prawns and nippers while fishing for trevally and bream.

In Botany Bay, anchor up at places like The Drums, the oil wharf, Bare Island, the end of the third runway and at Henry Head. If you’re trolling, try Yarra Bay, Sutherland Point and either south or north of the entrance to Botany Bay.

If you prefer to fish the Port Hacking River, patrol around the deeper bays and keep an eye out for fish swirls. These larger swirls are usually kingfish feeding on small whitebait that they have balled up near the surface. You may even notice one or two terns diving. The best bait by far in the Port Hacking River is live squid and the second best is strips of squid. If you think about it, one squid can give you five baits.

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