Snapper Fishing In Close
The Snapper have been firing lately both off the rocks and off the boat around inshore reefs. This is what’s been working for us lately…
Where To Fish
What you want to look out for whether you have a sounder or not, are either reefs or gravel beds. Snapper love to patrol the reefs, they literally swim around reef but off it, so park up where you need to and aim to have your lure or bait landing on the outskirts of the reef for your best chance. For gravel beds simply drift over them with your lure or bait working just off the bottom.
How To Fish
When anchored in the boat or off the rocks, burley is key to a great Snapper fishing session. Slithers of pilchards are a great go-to when fishing both off the rocks or out of the boat for Snapper because they’re small enough that they don’t fill the fish, but still gets them excited.
Make sure your lures or baits are mostly on or near the bottom, and don’t be surprised if you get a hit on the way down!
What To Use
The three popular ways to fish for Snapper are using metal jigs, soft plastics, and bait. All work in their own way, it comes down to a matter of preference most of the time, but sometimes it’s just easier to use one method over the other, like in deeper waters using metal is simple and effective with no fuss.
Metal jigs are great for both keen fishos and the lazier ones. Some styles of jigs are made to imitate small squid and don’t require much action like the Hayabusa Jack Eye Kick Bottom, which can be simply left in a rod holder to bob up and down with the swell. Other jigs like the Hayabusa Jack Eye Shot in 40g and 60g and the Jackson Gallop Assist Slow Fall in 38g are better when given light to moderate jigs in the bottom 2-3m of the water column. Both are very effective and methods, it just depends on what you want to do and what’s working on the day.
Soft plastics are also a great option for Snapper, because they’re versatile, they can be rigged to suit the conditions easily, and they’re relatively cheap. Jerk shads are the more commonly used Snapper plastics because of their slimline bodies and flicky tails, which swim well underwater and imitate common, struggling baitfish. Plastics need a bit more twitching of the rod to get their actions going, but you still want to be working them near the bottom. The size of the plastics you use comes down to personal preference, for Snapper though we’d recommend 6 inch plastics for most conditions, but 5 and 7 inch are also great. Any of these Snapper Soft Plastics Packs have a good spread of ideal Snapper plastics in them, for a reduced price too.
Cubed pilchards and squid strips are two common baits for Snapper fishing, and are especially good when burleying with pilchards already. There’s not a lot to it, often lighter weights and a slow drift down works well, generally the lightest weight that definitely gets you to the bottom is best.