What Bait Do You Need for Your Deep-Sea Fishing Trip?

You and your friends can’t wait for your next deep-sea fishing trip. You’ve invested a lot of money in a new line and tackle, and you’ve already scheduled a boat rental for next week.

But don’t forget that your choice of bait affects your chances of a successful haul. That tiny can of worms might work well in your local rivers and lakes, but it won’t be enough to attract the larger species that live in the sea.

Not sure what bait you should use? Consider the type of fish you want to catch on your next trip.

Australian Salmon

With their bright yellow fins and blue-green bodies, Australian Salmon make for a popular catch during the autumn and winter months. If you want to reel in some salmon, use pipis, squid or pilchards as bait. A paternoster rig, AKA the snapper rig or double-dropper, may help you get the most of your bait and allow you to swap hooks quickly in case a bite straightens your hook.

Bream

Black bream are a deep-bodied fish that have a silver or olive brown colouring. They rarely leave the estuary, and you can usually find them between June and November. They tend to eat sandworms, mussels and prawns but you can also use local seaweed to attract them. For best results, try a running sinker with your bait. The technique allows the fish to attack and run away with the bait while giving you time to prepare and hook the fish.

Flathead

If you want a sporty fish that you could potentially bring to the table, you might want to look for the flathead fish. Flatheads have a wide, flattened and elongated body, and they tend to peak between October and March. Like salmon, flathead fish prefer pilchards, prawns and squid for bait, and the pasternoster rig will help you reel them in.

King George Whiting

King George Whiting grow as long as 72 cm and can weigh as much as 4.8 kg, making them a great catch for professional and new fishers alike. They have an elongated body, recognisable spots and a pale golden brown colouring. You can find them during the spring and summer months near King George Sound. If you want to catch these fish, use mussels, bass yabbies or squid as your bait. Both the paternoster and the running sinker techniques work well on King George Whiting.

Garfish

Also called the sea needle, garfish have a long, slender and laterally-compressed body that measures about 5o to 75 centimetres in length. Their green bones often discourage people from eating them, but the colour is harmless and the flesh tastes delicious when baked, smoked or barbecued. As they migrate throughout the year, you should look for them between November and July. Place pipis or prawns on a long-shanked hook to catch them.

Bluefin Tuna

Southern Bluefin Tuna measures at a whopping 2.5 metres in length and 260 Kilograms, making them a prize to catch on any trip. They tend to peak between October and February, though you can catch them anytime between August and April. For bait, try chunks of mackerel, menhaden, squid or herring, though many experts prefer to catch tuna with trawling lures as well.

Do Your Research

The above fish species each have their own preferred bait. But if you have a different species in mind, don’t hesitate to do a little research about what the fish like to eat, as well as the best techniques to reel them in. When you take the time to learn about deep-sea fish, you increase your chances of catching an impressive specimen on your next trip.