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February 2018

Kayak Issue

“Honda provides me with reliability, fantastic fuel savings, quietness on set, low emissions and incredible harmonics which pull the fish. We’re now saving around 40% on fuel from one of my previous boats running like for like horsepower engines” Nicky Sinden ADOS Addicted to Fishing

“The choice of Honda engines was simple. Our experience with Honda reliability and support has been outstanding. The power is incredible, because the engines are hardly working, the economy is amazingly good.” Captain Phil Barchet Blue Water Adventures

“With a heavier hull on the new boat and a large array of pumps and electronics the big powerful 3.6 litre V6 with a 90amp alternator was the logical choice” Tony Orton Offshore Adventures








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Cover Images: Yakker Pics



30. 3




s it hot enough for you folks?

To remedy this, I’m focusing hard on what

Or damp enough?

I’m picking will be one of the biggest

If the weather sorts itself out, we might get some time on the water and if that happens - Wow - it’s mental out there!

and most exciting fishing competitions we’ve seen for a few years as the NZ Lure Masters looms at the end of May. I love the Beach & Boat (which is running while

I’ve had a few weeks of quiet time

I’m writing this - and I’m not there), but

ashore with the family, but it’s killing

thankfully there’s more on the horizon.

me seeing the wide variety and size of

Wayne and Daniel who’re running

some of these summer fish others are

the Lure Masters are keen to

catching. I have to wonder why I’m not

lure fishos, but they’re also keen

out there too!

fisheries conservationists.


It’s great to catch a feed, but the

to the fish without spooking them, you

‘catch and kill for glory’ comps have

can launch just about anywhere, and

their glory days behind them.

best of all, you stay fit - the more you

The idea of the Masters is to catch and

yak, the better for you! If you’re not

measure up to three fish of each eligible

convinced, read through this issue and

species; the winner being the angler with

see for yourself.

the greatest overall total length across

On a slightly negative note, I don’t think

three fish of that species. The length is

it’s ever been acceptable, socially or

measured against a special measure-mat

environmentally to dump marlin but I

for the comp and photos of each fish are

am sure as hell sure it’s not OK today.

submitted for judging.

Recently not just one, but four filleted

The world of competitions won’t be

marlin frames (with beaks removed) were

changing overnight, but there’s a good

dumped in a Northland estuary.

chance the popularity of this comp will

I cannot find the words to

help others make the transition to a

adequately describe the mixture of

more sustainable and socially acceptable

revulsion and shame I feel seeing

competition format.

these magnificent fish treated so

I recall about five years back Jai Sanders

ungraciously and disrespectfully.

winning the Beach & Boat from the

While on the one hand Legasea bring us

kayak with a 10kg+ snapper from his

the launch of their Fish Care program to

moocher hole up the coast somewhere.

help anglers update practices (please see

This issue we’re focussing on the

the FishCare release later in this issue),

‘yakkers out there who’re putting the

and the other this gross, disrespectful act

hard yards in for great results both

of fisheries vandalism. People - what is

bottom fishing and chasing game fish. Kayak fishing is still the fastest growing

going on? Have we not learned anything? Tight lines!

fishing segment in New Zealand, and there are many reasons why. There’s a low barrier to entry, they can put you close

Derrick 5


Sport FIshing from the Kayak: Live-baiting tips ‘n’ tricks BY Ryan Griffiths Stealth Kayaks NZ Ltd



z-zzz-zzzzzzzzzzz: that beautiful

through it will do the trick. The live-

sound your reel makes when

bait torpedoes which attach to the

your live-bait is smashed by

kayak and hang in the water, work

a predatory fish. This is my kind of fishing. In fact, regardless of whether I am soft-baiting, jigging or stick-baiting, I will always have at least one rod, rigged with live bait swimming around behind my kayak. That is why my trusty Stealth Profisha 525 has been modified to suit this kind of fishing, with a live bait well which

just as well. I always make it a priority to source live bait on my way out, and this is where a sounder proves invaluable. It can mean the difference between success and failure. I have also found that once you have sourced your live-bait, you need not travel much

is manually operated by a foot pump

further from this area to find the fish,

and keeps my live-baits in pristine

regardless of how shallow it may be.

condition. Any form of live-bait well

I often catch kingfish in six to seven

that keeps fresh sea water flowing

metres of water. 7


My traces are pre-made, with approximately 1.1m of 30kg Ultragreen mono and a No.8 power swivel on one end, and a 6/0 Demon Circle hook snelled to the other end. The 6/0 circle hook is more than strong enough to land most sizable fish but small enough to not scare them away. In fact, I have landed and released an estimated 45kg sailfish on a 4/0 circle hook. Snelling your circle hook will double your hookup rate, as it guarantees the fish will be hooked in the scissors of the jaw, once the live bait has been swallowed and the drag tightened up. I also tend to force a soft fluorescent bead over the point and the barb of the hook until it sits in about the centre of the bend of the hook. When it comes to tackle for live-

This acts as a stopper and prevents

baiting, I fish with my 7ft Yak

the hook from penetrating back into

Fisha and Yak Fisha Pro trolling

the live-bait, which could mean a

rods mounted with multiplier reels

dropped fish.

spooled with 24kg Ultragreen mono

If I am slow trolling on the kayak (which

and a five to ten metre 37kg fluoro

I mostly do), then I place the hook

leader. I believe the majority of my

through the nostrils of the live-bait

success is derived from my live-bait

( the two holes below the eyes). This

traces, as I prefer to fish with the least

allows the live bait to swim naturally,

conspicuous terminal tackle possible,

and so be towed a little faster behind

without compromising on strength.

the kayak without too much resistance.

8 9



The ratchet is engaged, and when my reels start playing sweet music, and the fish is screaming off with the live bait, I resist the urge to strike and let the fish swallow the bait completely. I lean back, tighten up the drag, and let the sleigh ride begin! Having the second bait on a sinker also

When fishing the shallows (out to

prevents the live-baits from becoming

about 15 metres), I only fish one

entangled and knitting a jersey. When

rod, with the live bait about 20

fishing two rigged live-baits like this,

to 25 metres and trolled slowly

be prepared for action, as often both

behind the kayak on the top of the water column. In deeper water, I will rig another rod with a second live bait. I will then connect a teardrop sinker with a rubber band, about 5m up from the trace. This is then lowered to the seafloor and wound up about three turns of the reel. When slow trolled, this bait rises in the current and will attract any hunting fish in the bottom half of

baits will be smashed at once, and you will be left with two screaming reels and a choice of which one to fight first. Once the live-baits are deployed, I slacken off the drag to a point where the line will not peel off the reel when paddling so the fish must encounter no resistance when snatching the bait. The ratchet is engaged, and when my reels start playing sweet music, and the fish is screaming off with the live bait, I resist the urge to strike and let

the water column. This bottom bait

the fish swallow the bait completely. I

has accounted for some good-sized

lean back, tighten up the drag, and let

snapper and john dory.

the sleigh ride begin! 



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COLOURS: Ballistic Blue, White Warrior, Orange Assassin & Shady Lady. 11


The Best Plan-B Ever! Hard yakker on the, err, yak BY Daryl MacAnally


The rod buckled over, and it was game on. The next ten minutes was the hardest effort I have ever had to put in to land a fish.


ast weekend I went up north

any tuna, I realised I was close to

to Whangaruru with a few

the hapuku mark we had earlier

guys from the East Auckland

decided would be our meeting

Kayak Fishing Club. I only had time

point to regroup. While waiting

to fish the Monday so left the soft-

for William, I thought I might

baiting gear at home with the goal

as well drop some hapuku baits

of either catching tuna or a hapuku.

over the side. I soon regretted the

We headed out as a group early on

decision, as after 20 minutes with

Monday with Keith Emmerson, Jade

no action I decided to wind in.

Boyd and Ali stopping around Danger Rock to haul in some nice kingies.

Cranking up a 30-oz sinker in 120 metres of water from a kayak

Meanwhile, William Askham (on a jet

is damned hard work. I had to

ski) and I headed several kilometres

stop several times for a rest. I

further north towards Cape Brett

was thinking ‘bugger this for fun’

and a GPS location I had for hapuku.

when William arrived at the spot

But with no sign on the sounder,

and wanted to drop a line, so I

we decided to head out wide and

thought I better stay for a while.

southward to troll for tuna.

I was sick as a dog and had already

I went out to the 100m line while

spewed up three times during the

William headed out to 140m. After

morning, so decided to move around

a couple of hours with no sign of

and look for sign on the sounder. 13



I waited a minute or so for the sinker to hit the bottom and a minute later, felt the line go tight as it had been doing with every bit of swell.

I spotted what looked like a small gully on the bottom with a fish arch above it so dropped the baits in. I waited a minute or so for the sinker to hit the bottom and a minute later, felt the line go tight as it had been doing with every bit of swell. But this time the pulling continued so I leant into it, then I started winding slowly. The rod buckled over, and it was game on. The next ten minutes was the hardest effort I have ever had to put in to land a fish.


JT with a 12kg tub of a King

The fish didn’t put up a big fight, but

forgotten when I saw it appear

a lot of effort was needed to drag it up

and float to the surface. I was

from the bottom when it wanted to

feeling too sick to turn on the

go in the other direction. Now I know

camera during the fight but got a

why they invented electric reels!

few shots after landing the fish.

All the way I was swearing and yelling

I checked the GPS and found it was

in pain but was determined not to

20 kilometres, in a straight line, back

stop winding as I didn’t want the hook

to the camp. I nervously handed

to come loose. I was hoping it wasn’t

the fish over to William to pack in

a shark or something else undesirable.

ice and transport back on his jetski,

The pain and sickness were quickly

then started the long paddle back.  15

// SMARTER FishCare

What is Fishcare? 16

Reccies, lets get our fishcare sorted! BY Scott Cushman

FishCare is broken down into five core principles 1. Fishing techniques 2. Handling methods 3. Utilisation 4. Minimising fishing impacts on other creatures (e.g. whales, sea birds) 5. Safety at sea and while fishing.


hat is FishCare the school of best practice? FishCare is

The first principle, fishing techniques,

an educational programme to help

is a simple look at the methods

recreational fishers reduce their

we use when fishing. Changes to

impact on the marine environment,

the methods we use can make a

particularly inshore fish stocks.

big difference to our impact on

LegaSea initiated FishCare because

the fishery. For example, there are

it is essential that Kiwis help

numerous fish species that have size

look after our fishery for future

limits, snapper being an obvious one.

generations. Every user of the

By using methods that avoid

resource, whether we are customary,

catching the undersized fish in the

recreational or commercial fishers,

first place, fewer fish are handled

have a stewardship responsibility.

and are at risk of being harmed.

As individuals and collectively

So, this principle is about being

we don’t want to be pointing the

highly selective in the methods

finger at someone else if we’re not

we use so that we do our best to

doing best practice ourselves.

target the fish we want to keep. 17

// SMARTER FishCare

Living to fish another day is the ultimate goal and preparation is the biggest element of minimising harm and avoiding tragedy Minimising your impact on other sea

The second principle focuses on

creatures is a part of fishing that can’t

handling and release techniques -

be ignored. Seabirds, mammals, and

what is the best way to handle and

the whole ecosystem can be impacted

release a fish that we don’t want to

by what we do. Learning how to safely

keep? There is a hierarchy when it

deter seabirds from grabbing baits

comes to handling fish. The optimum

and eliminating plastics from entering

practice is no handling, to release fish

the marine environment or simply

while they are still in the water. If

retrieving stray plastic to prevent

handling is required, use wet hands.

other creatures from ingesting

Use of cloth is not recommended

rubbish all contributes to FishCare.

as it removes the protective mucous layer on the fish’s skin.

Safety is the fifth principle. While most of the earlier principles deal

Utilisation - from kill and chill to

with the safety of the fish and

using as much of the fish as possible.

other creatures, safety for the fisher

For the ‘fillets only’ fishers, there

can’t be overlooked. Living to fish

is are lots of ways to make sure the

another day is the ultimate goal and

heads and frames aren’t wasted: from

preparation is the biggest element

fish stocks to smoking, to giving

of minimising harm and avoiding

away the rest to people in your

tragedy while on the water for the

community via

boat and land-based fisher. 


Be FishCare Aware!


Tip of the month: It’s time you came round to circle hooks. Circle hooks will: 1. Lip hook fish more often, and












Image courtesy of NZ Fishing News



2. Improve their chance of survival upon release. Reduce your impact. Help rebuild our inshore fishery. Learn the 5 FishCare principles at


Top Snapper Spot on the Citys Back Step L

ocated right at the end of the Whangaparaoa Peninsula, Shakespear Regional Park is a

Lurking around Shakespear Reserve

pest-free nature reserve, with the whole

BY Lee Kennedy

within. The earliest you can enter the

area fully fenced to protect the wildlife reserve is 6am through an electric gate which is run on a timer and will automatically open.



If you are looking at launching earlier,

doing the old ‘line up between this

there is a cool campground at Te Haruhi

tree and that rock and the top of

Bay, I highly recommend it. Te Haruhi

that mountain’. It took me all of two

Bay is where I launch from; it’s a nice

minutes to get set up, as opposed to

sandy easy launching spot, and not far

the hour it takes me these days.

from great fishing grounds.

As you do over time, I started getting

When I first started fishing this area, I’d

a bit more adventurous, venturing out

paddle up to a point on the left-hand

into the Tiri’ Channel, then out to the

side, literally 500m paddle and be into

island, out past the island etc.

the fish! It was an easy feed without having to paddle a marathon.

But what I’ve found over the years is the best fishing I’ve had around this

Back then I had no electronics. I’d

area is in the shallows and right on the

take a soft-bait rod and just wing it,

edge of the channel.



The reason why I fish in this area is that this is the path the snapper seem to travel on their way up and down the coast 23


A couple in the pod

Be visible to boaties

These are the methods that

The reason why I fish in this area is

have worked for me:

that this is the path the snapper seem

My go-to method is softbaiting, light

to travel on their way up and down the

jig heads as you’re only fishing up to

coast. There is an abundance of baitfish

20 metres max, so the more hang time

that congregate around this area too,

the lure has in the current, the better.

so if you’re looking for live bait, it’s an

I’ve pictured the general area that I

excellent place to pick a few up. You

fish on the map; the trick is to sit right

will catch snapper on both incoming

on the edge of the channel where

and outgoing tides but what I’ve found

the current starts to loop and change

is the outgoing is more productive.


Now because the current is travelling


Campground You don’t have to go far to find the fish

Shakespear Regional Park

so fast around that corner, you’ll quite often encounter aggressive bites, but you just won’t hook up, on

Summer Kingfish

a good day the fish will turn around

I like to position myself so that I can

and have another go, but most days

cast up-current; sometimes this means

they are just trucking past at pace.

having my drogue pulling me sideways,

Positioning is key in this case. I’m a

obviously depending on what direction

big believer in the theory that, if you

I want to cast. In this case, I’m casting

can place a bait directly in front of a

up current, giving these travelling

fish, they are more likely have a proper

snapper time to chase my lure down

go at it; snapper can be very lazy!

current and grab it before it starts to drag. 25


Smiles all round


Nice pannie


Consistent fishing in February

The best months for this area are October and November. I’ve caught fish up to 8kg in these months. There are plenty of hungry spawning snapper around this time. It’s worth having a crack right out in the channel at this time of year too. December is unbelievably quiet; you’ll still catch fish, but it’s very slow. February to May offers very consistent fishing but starts to die off over the winter, although you’ll still get the odd This method has worked well for me in

moocher if you try hard enough. Plenty

this area for fast-travelling fish, but as

of kingfish are there to be caught around

you know, each day is different. There

the area over summer, try chucking

may be a reason for the snapper to

some stick-baits or soft-baits around the

congregate around that area. There

two yellow buoys in the channel.

may baitfish, or shellfish; in this case, the snapper will have their heads facing into the current, so dragging your softbait may be the best option. If you’re not hooking up, there is always a reason; try changing your approach.

A couple of notes to newbies: Be very careful out in the channel, there’s a lot of boat traffic, as Gulf Harbour Marina and the boat ramp is just up the coast. It’s like a highway, so don’t just assume that the boats will see you. I’ve almost been

The best months for this area are

mowed down a few times! Also, check

October and November. I’ve caught

the weather forecast. Conditions in the

fish up to 8kg in these months. There

Tiri’ Channel can change in a matter of

are plenty of hungry spawning snapper

minutes, I’ve been stuck out there a few

around this time. It’s worth having a

times in bad weather. When the wind

crack right out in the channel at this

opposes the tide, the sea can get nasty,

time of year too.

so be careful.  27


Legasea Update

Conserving our crayfish


t is encouraging that so many

February. It is the most extensive survey

recreational fishers have expressed

measuring public support for various

a strong desire to conserve their

CRA 2 management options available

crayfish catch in the interests of

to the minister. By the time the joint

rebuilding the CRA 2 fishery between Te

recreational submission was sent to

Arai Point in the north and East Cape.

MPI in response to their review, we had

The MPI review of four crayfish management areas is now over, and we await the Minister’s decisions that will apply from April 1. Those decisions will be difficult for Stuart Nash as there are a broad range of views and a lot of pressure on him in his first year as Fisheries Minister.

received 3,600 completed surveys. Survey respondents have given the minister the thumbs up to take a more precautionary approach, including the closure of all commercial and recreational fishing, followed by the most conservative MPI option. People clearly want the Minister to make a bold decision to quickly rebuild the

The LegaSea Crayfish Crisis survey has

decimated CRA 2 fishery, and they are

been underway since the beginning of

willing to contribute to that rebuild.


Our dilemma is how recreational fishers

140-tonne allowance.

can make a meaningful contribution

Framing recreationals as being

to rebuilding CRA 2 when it is in such

responsible for the depletion is a

a poor state. The last National Panel

bit rich when excessive commercial

Survey in 2012 reveals that only 17%

harvesting has been condoned for years

of fishers returned with a maximum

even in the face of falling catch rates

bag limit of six crayfish. Around 49%

and exponential growth in effort. How

returned with one or two crayfish.

can commercial interests consider it be

Supporting that research are

reasonable to have a catch rate of 0.25

comments from the CRA 2 survey

kilos per pot lift when in Fiordland it is

respondents. A common theme is

3.5 kilos per pot lift?

that catch rates in some parts of the

The only justification for pulling

Hauraki Gulf and eastern Coromandel

up four pots to harvest one kilo of

are so bad that people don’t even

crayfish in CRA 2 is the export returns

bother suiting up any longer to get

for quota owners, with 95% of live

in the water and dive for a crayfish

exports going to China.

because the returns are so poor.

It’s a crying shame that a fishery

Before the MPI review, commercial

of such high social and cultural

interests indicated they would support

value has become a commodity,

the smallest possible cuts to the Total

available on the open market to

Allowable Commercial Catch (TACC).

the highest bidder while ordinary

There has been a lot of finger pointing

New Zealanders miss out. We are

at recreationals for being responsible

now left to dream of what crayfish

for the demise of CRA 2, despite the

tastes like because we can’t compete

plethora of data that shows recreational

when it comes to paying premium

catch has never got close to the

prices for a once-common catch. 

Call 0800 LEGASEA (534 273)

Subscribe at

Email us

Read more at 29


A real ‘Wow’ shot on the Parengarenga by Craig Dawson on a recent Yak trip

Ali Sarmad Yousuf with his first king - looks like Danger Rock

Alastair Munro showing of an EPIC Bream Bay sunrise over oily seas

Another one falls for a well kitted Profish


Blair Rossiter’s primo haul of gurnard

Brett Rigby with a pair of tasty mudfish - The yak deserves better!

Callum getting the better of a fiesty snap 31


Callum Millar with a fine red from the yak

Cyril Cherry with his new PB king at 18.2kg a magnificent fish - and how’s the scerenity!

Danny Harris’ day brightened considerably after landing his PB snapper off the Naki 32

Dee King sent this pic - before setting out into this stunning rise

Jade Boyd & his 12.5kg Far North King

Kevin Boyles with a true beast of a fish taken far off-shore beyond the Mokes

Matty Keeno - Ya see the strangest things... 33


Linda Wilson with her First King, landed off the Rock, Whatuwhiwhi

The best kind of selfie

The sort of shot that all yakkers love - cheers Simon


Natalie Dempsey looking a little underwhelmed with her new PB Snap landed at Long Bay, Coromandel Natalie Dempsey with a released Port Napier King caught the day before this issue went to print!

Paul Roundtree showing off a mid-range king (by his standards!) 35


Simon Anderson putting snapper where it belongs - right in front!

Rob Henson cuddling a mint king off-shore

Thanks Denzil Chetty - Many a yakker has enjoyed this launch


A bunch of great fish landed by Mateen Lim 37


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NZ Fisher Issue 76  
NZ Fisher Issue 76