Fishing Journalist, Publisher And Presenter
Scott has been a NSW North Coast fishing personality for decades, has written for multiple magazines, founded and published the former “Fish Life” magazine and been a frequent TV and DVD fishing presenter. Not to mention that his fishing photography has inspired too many anglers to count! These days Scott is taking a break from publishing to focus on his agricultural and working dog businesses….. but he’ll never stop fishing!
Scott’s Top Flathead Fishing Tips
- The techniques described in this episode are applicable to flathead fishing anywhere on the east coast, but Scott’s backyard is the northern NSW coast.
- Flathead can be found in water of any depth within these systems in water depths from 10cm to many metres, but the primary depth for glidebaiting is 2 metres or less.
- Flathead are perfectly adapted to estuarine conditions and are often found on sand between ribbon weed beds, however they also like muddy substrates and gravel beds are a great spot to look for them too.
- Low light conditions around dawn and dusk often fish best although Scott gets flathead right through the day and wouldn’t discount any part of the day. Cloudy, overcast conditions often create good opportunities.
- Scott used to focus his flathead fishing around the runout tide, but has discovered that they can be caught any time the water is moving, just the slack water periods tend to be quieter.
- Stealth is important, especially as the water is often shallow and very clear. Long casts can help a lot.
Scott’s Glidebaiting Tackle For Flathead
- For larger glidebaits Scott typically uses the same outfits as he’d use for soft plastics on snapper. A 7ft rod coupled with a 2500-3000 size spin reel, 20lb braid and 15lb fluorocarbon leader works fine.
- For smaller glidebaits (ie 5-6”) Scott will use standard mid-range bream gear. A 2-4kg spin rod with a 1500 size reel, 6-10lb braid and 10-12lb leader is perfect.
Scott’s Glidebaits For Flathead Fishing
- The 9” Lunker City Sluggo in white or pearl was the go-to glidebait for big flathead for many years and still catches plenty of fish – even in sizes up to 12”. Scott also likes include the Westin Shad Tease in sizes up to 22cm.
- Smaller glidebaits in the 6-9” range include the Westin Hypo Tease, Biwaa Dues, Gan Craft Bariki Shad and Squidgy Whip Bait.
- Scott prefers white or very light coloured lures, which he rigs on a Gamakatsu Emag worm hook in a size to match the lure. He then adds a treble hook stinger to the underside of the tail, attaching it to the worm hook with 20lb braid to which a small clip is tide. It is absolutely critical the hooks are perfectly centred in the lures.
- All lures are fished in much the same way – Cast long, allow to sink and then and work back super slowly. Scott uses several different retrieves, but commonly he moves the lure forward with a long, slow, horizontal sweep of the rod, allowing the lure to pause while he winds the rod back to the starting position. It’s ok for the lure to touch bottom during the pause. Other times he’ll slow roll the lure all the way back and doesn’t find that twitching it makes much difference. This is s style of fishing where a slow moving lure with minimal action is desirable.