The Definitive Guide To Stockton Harbour Luderick

This month Nath and  I have had a ball chasing luderick in Newcastle’s Stockton Harbour. As the waters are still the right temperature for these fine fish, we think it’s only fitting that this month we share our knowledge on targeting ‘blackfish’. Sure we’ve been mainly fishing our home waters but this article has pertinent points for luderick right around the country – the species is found along the east coast of Australia from southern Queensland to Tasmania and South Australia. They are primarily found around open estuaries, inlets, near rocky outcrops  and inshore reefs. They are often found in large schools and as seasoned luderick anglers know, when they are on they can really be on!
Caino with a quality luderick.

Caino with a quality luderick.


Luderick are predominantly a herbivorous species. Like bream, their environment influences their eating flavour. Fish caught in estuaries often taste muddier in flavour than those from open water. One tip for those keen on take home a feed of luderick – be sure to fully remove the black stomach lining before cooking as this will taint the flavour of the flesh. Luderick have a moist, soft white flesh and a distinct flavour. They are prime table fare but also a great and challenging sports fish so only take enough for your immediate requirements.Dry methods of cooking such as grilling, baking or barbecuing are recommended for fillets. Whole fish can be baked, BBQ’d or steamed.  The species holds up well when used in wet preparations such as soups or curries. luderick

Fish Light For Luderick

Luderick are a fantastic fish to catch on light gear and very easy species to target even for the most inexperienced angler. Nath and I have recently decided to change tactics and show you, Kaydo readers,  a different way of targeting these great fish by using a light spin setup with live saltwater nippers or yabbies

Luderick On Bait!

Invest in a live bait pump a small battery operated aerator and a small bucket to keep the nippers fresh and healthy as always fresh is best, The easiest way to find nippers is on the low tide either on the mudflatt’s or sand banks they have very distinct holes in the mud or sand look for raised sand with several holes within close vacinity to each other for the best result this can be a great way to get the kids involved take them out get them muddy have a laugh.

Best Tackle To Use

On a recent adventure we were using light LOX ambassador 6ft3 ULS spin rods and small 2000 size spin reel. Spooled with 4lb Timberwolf PE braid, at the business end we ran 4lb and 6lb yamatoya fluorocarbon leader. With this style of fishing you don’t need the best gear to chase luderick you can use a $20 dollar rod and reel if that’s all you have that’s the beauty of this technique. We were using a light clip on sinker with about 20 to 30 cm of leader on to a size #2 bait keeper hook.
Two mates fishing for luderick - it doesn't get much better!

Two mates fishing for luderick – it doesn’t get much better!

Tips For Beginners  

You’re all set up now to find these fish. In most areas winter is the best time to target luderick. This is particularly the case in coastal bar zones and estuary mouths where they are known to aggregate and spawn. Spawning occurs during July and August in south east Queensland, and a bit later on in the year in NSW and Victoria. Some of the easiest places to find Luderick are usually near rock walls pylons in the harbors or wharfs.

Fish Near Green Weed Patches

Weed patches or near where you found the nippers if you are not sure whether the area you have chosen to target them has blackfish grab a loaf of bread or some of the nippers break them into tiny pieces and throw them in the water sometimes they will come up and eat them right in front of you. Now you don’t have to throw your line a million miles out 2 meters is plenty use either a pea sized sinker or smaller enough to slowly sink down the water column then all you have to to is hang on and wait because they will take off like a freight train on steroids. A 23 cm Luderick is thought to be around three years old, an average 30 cm luderick is probably around five years old, while a 40 cm Luderick may be upwards of 11 years old. The larger luderick can be difficult to catch sometimes given its age and cunning but pays to try something different like live nippers because everyone has probably used weed and cabbage weed to catch that fish.
Yes you read the headline right ... luderick can be taken on bait and this is the best rig to use.

Yes you read it right … luderick can be taken on bait and this is the best rig to use.

Oyster Covered Rocks As Well!

In the images you can see the oyster encrusted rock wall the depth of the water is around the 2m range. There was also a slow current moving in front this was almost perfect conditions to chase them with no wind and an overcast day. Almost every cast and at least every second we were pulling in a fish – either a bream or Luderick. It was highly entertaining with a lot of laughs, a hell of a lot of snags but well worth loosing a few hooks. We also had a lot of fun ripping each other off all day mainly on how Nath wasn’t catching a lot but after all that’s what fishing is to us. We go out not worrying if we catch a fish or plenty but the pure enjoyment of being outdoors and having a laugh with a great mate. That is why I love this style of fishing easy fun and the whole family can get involved.

About Caine Goward

I started fishing at a very young age and was taught by my grandfather Peter (pop) Green. I have many memories of spending countless hours on the beach with my pop and brother Jai digging for pippies and arguing with my brother about who caught the biggest fish. These mornings on the beach watching the sunrise over the water and spending time with loved ones is what ignited my passion for fishin. Ever since then i have tried to learn every thing I can about fishin reading books and spending every chance i can on the water. But there was a snag in the water with no one willing to help and guide me in all styles and techniques of fishing I was stuck. That is until I met a bloke who fished in the ABT circuit he took me under his wing and showed me everything from salt to fresh, spin to fly, boat and land to kayak. I learnt alot from this man and spurred me on to fish and share my learning and knowledge. I moved home After I finished in the Army to be with my family I designed a fishing site on facebook to start showing people all the secrets the myths and generally have a laugh and get back to enjoying what fishing meant to me. I have fished plenty of boat and kayak tournaments through my time but my main specialty is kayak bream and bass fishing.

Previous A Beginners Guide To Kingfish On Fly
Next Top Tactics For Golden Perch


No Comments Yet!

You can be first to comment this post!

Leave a Reply

Prove you are human * Time limit is exhausted. Please reload CAPTCHA.