Estuaries make up a large proportion of areas fished by anglers, particularly in the northern coastal areas of Australia in the search of estuary species such as Barramundi and Threadfin Salmon. Accurate casting is the key to success in these estuaries as it is hardly a random cast when you are out hunting for these predators who themselves are out hunting for the preys such as herrings, mullets that swim into the safe haven of the shallow water during the low tides. At least that’s what the baitfish thinks and that’s what are lure is supposed to behave…a foolish bait fish. Casting it into the strike zone and then working the lure to imitate the movements of these bait fish just to get whack by these predators is something we anticipate even before we do get whacked. The moment your lure gets the attention and the hits,misses & hookups just sends the chills down your spine. Fighting it well to land and a quick photo before the safe release is what the sport fishermen aspires…on to the next target then.
Travelling and Fishing Northern Australia…what every sport fishermen ever spawned dreams of an extended fishing holiday to some remote and wild location where species would queue up to smash their well-presented bait or lure. This is the ultimate sportfishing “sportfish” and the big barramundi is what many anglers would dream of landing. It involves constant homework! If you are into it, it would be expected that you do your homework as to where you may find these monsters, what they eat, types of lures…whether hard or soft, periods where you will find them, guides that would be able to bring you to these locations as well. With all the homework done, you do have to contend to the uncertainties of the current weather patterns or rather not patterns since the uncertainties of storms, cold spell, windy conditions etc. You simply need to have an extra stroke of luck…and it makes a whole lot of difference when you have that divine assistance on your side just to hook them and then land them for that picture before releasing them back it came from….
Winds picked up in the late afternoon as the tide rises towards its peak and makes it rather difficult to have a good long cast with our lures into the strong wind facing the bank. Bob decided to cast with the wind and have his lure into the open section of the port side, a few cranks into his retrieve he was smashed and was already into the fight with what we knew was a beast. 25mins into the fight, we see the massive 1.2 metre long Barramundi surfaced for the first time. As soon as the image of the monster Barramundi registered into the brain of the tired angler, things changed and adrenaline levels rises. Fight changes with the anxiety of landing what might be a record size Barramundi. After some photos, the beast was landed for a couple more pictures before release after a quick revival. Because of the hard fight, both fish and angler needed to rest, the Barramundi was then released and swam away feeling defeated but yet relieved that it was not the kill we were after.
Barramundi are not clean fighters…they don’t charge with just brute strength but often may shake its massive jaws to try to dislodge the hooked lure or even stretch them to break hooks. Leaping out of the surface to smash the lure across the surface of water and if all else fails will open its jagged blades on the side plates of its gill cover to cut the leaders which often are already frayed by its sandy-like lips.
Learn more of our decades long chase of this amazing sportfish School of Fish, Singapore
Barramundi, a very sought after sport fish is also one that can be lazy when the tide movements are slow. During the low tides, either down or up, these predators can be sitting on mud flats waiting for the change of tide movements. They could also be waiting for innocent bait fish to swim into the muddy waters, thinking that they are well concealed. Both predator, Barramundi and prey such as Mullets think that they are both well covered. But, we know that they are there from the sounders and to cast our soft plastics into the line of travel to have our lure bounce right into their line of sight. As soon as the lure comes into the sight of the predator, it would be hard for it to resist.
Advance Electronics have made finding reefs or wrecks much easier than it has ever been. Gone are days when the Captain has to time his course to hopefully throttle to the vicinity of Groupers producing pile of rocks. With the reliable electronic anchors with built-in GPS, exact bearings can be held over and over again. Advanced radar, sonar, mapping and GPS has done much for bottom fishers. With the correct tidal movements, Fishers can then use presentable soft plastics lures to bring their offerings right to their posts.
School of Fish, Singapore with a random fishing session demonstrating that the DOA C.A.L range is indeed a catch anything lure. Ranging from predators like Fingermarks, Golden Snappers, Red Snappers, Mangrove Jacks and Barramundis, the DOA Shad Tails are favoured by a majority of lure eating fishes. Simply pick up some of your favourite colours of DOA 3″ Shad Tails or what you think might work and pair them with the DOA Jig Heads of various colours and weights. Simpler still is to just pick up one of those pre-selected sets and you should be on the right track to catching some of these targeted predators.
May 2016 was almost Summer but it was not feeling warm. Fishing in Lake Erie, New York, USA off Niagara was in fact a sub-zero experience for Shawn and myself on our maiden fishing trip together. Our “nuts” were almost frozen but still we persevered as both of us did not want to dampened our spirits and of course this father-in-law/son-in-law trip. The start of the trip was just cold but it soon turned freezing with the fog moving and covering us as we progress in the trip. The bites from the small-mouth bass were thick and we were like taking turns getting hit on our drop-shot rigs and fighting these bass with our light spinning tackles on a 8lb leader. This was trophy season and was indeed a high season but it also mean’t that these larger spawning bass were less interested but only attack as our jigs drift pass their nest or eggs. Known as Smallmouth Bass in comparison to the Largemouth Bass simply because its got a smaller mouth. The upper jaw does not extend past the eye while the largemouth bass has its upper jaw extend past its eyes. Some other differences exist in their dorsal fin as the smallmouth has a shallow notch while the largemouth counterpart has a deep notch on its dorsal fin. There is no dark horizontal band on the body of those smallmouth we were hunting. What a chilling experience but we had a hot soup and fish & chips (haddock) to wrap up of father & son trip!
Barramundi has been and would probably remain as an “Icon of Sport Fishing” @ School of Fish, Singapore. Simply because of the spectacular fights presented by this sport fish. Over the decades we have been hunting for this species in Australia, Singapore and Thailand. There is no doubt that this sport fish would present an unrivalled type of fight unseen in other types of fishes. The Barramundi is equipped with the weaponry of the “abrasive” lips, which can easily snap braided lines and fray mono & fluorocarbon leaders. If the angler fights a deep-throat Barramundi where the lure or hook is in the throat, he cannot help but worry if his leader can withstand the abrasiveness of the lips of this fighting fish. Many times we have seen the fray on our leaders after a short fight and if our leader is not of suitable quality, the line may just give way. We cannot afford to not re-tie the lure knot after the abrasion of a fight because you never know the size of your next catch. Often anglers would just loose because of the lax or complacency of their part. Equipped with strong jaws, there have been times that we have seen our hard plastic lures smashed apart to be left with a beak on our leader. Hooks can come apart or straighten due to its strength of stretch of its massive jaws. The gill cover has a jagged edge blade on both sides that can just cut through lines or predators including our hands and so beware not to handle via gill cover plate…or we can end up with a nasty cut like any jagged kitchen knife.
But, nothing can cause more thrills than the jumps that these fighters can present. When hooked on the mouth, these Barramundis can leapt out of water to try to shake off lure, stretch the lure and smash its mouth into mud or against snags which can leave you stuck on a tree. I got my lure stuck on my knee once when the Barramundi leaped out of the water and smashed the lure onto my knee…nasty. The flight of the Barramundi is indeed spectacular and we love it when it leaps even if it risk us loosing the fish while we know that there are many “food” fishermen who would resist the jumps by dipping the rod in water or lowering the line/rod just to present resistance and weight on the setup. At School of Fish, Singapore…we love the jumps and would fight the fish like its meant to.
This Fishing Lesson is a session of ~6 hours specialty-guided package, designed specifically for a child to learn correctly the “Art of Sport Fishing”. Our experts will provide guidance and use of our premium equipment to get him or her in sync with the specific sport fishing techniques required to kick-start them right into this lifetime sport.
Our instructors will illustrate with practical lessons from choosing fishing setup to learning how to cast the all-important bait-casting setup and also the all-time spinning tackle which is widely used. To make it also interesting, the session is an actual practical fishing session that will allow him or her to start fishing. They will learn to setup, cast, lure techniques, strike, hook-up, fight, land and handle the fish correctly. The instructors will always be at hand to educate the participant the A to Z of this sport. This is an intensive course to cover all aspects to groom them to acquire the right set of sport fishing skills and etiquette. With the techniques learnt, your child will be able to perform well in future fishing endeavors.
All the hassle of setting up is left to us. Lessons are conducted in safe location in our Singapore fishing parks. All you have to do is turn up or arrange our pickup service. In taking such lessons, your child can by-pass weeks or months of unsuccessful or frustrating outings and get right on with catching fish. We also offer you valuable advice on what to buy as soon as you are keen to take up the sport.