We love an Autumn beach fishing session mainly because we enjoy targeting Mullet. They are great fun to catch when they are 'on' as you can often get double headers or a bite as soon as your bait hits the water, so you need to be on the ball. Our favourite rig to use is a similar set up to a paternoster (one hook above the sinker and one hook below) but we like to include a berley spring (sometimes called a feed spring) which is attached just above the sinker. We squash our made up berley into the spring and usually take a couple of different options for bait such as worms, cockles or maggots. Our berley mix is tuna oil with fine berley and either curry powder or a few drops of aniseed, add water to get the right consistency, it should hold it's shape when squeezed in the palm of your hand. Bruce likes to use either Black Magic KL hooks size 1 or Daiichi short shank hooks size 8, while Jeanette uses either Gamakatsu long shanks size 8 or Mustad Aberdeen size 6 hooks. Our sinkers are weighted around 20 to 30 grams and we normally use Pyramid or Swivel bombs if there's a bit of weed in the water. We use 10 lb nylon and prefer to use Platypus Platinum or Platypus Super-100 with an 8 or 10 lb fluorocarbon leader.
We have had best results when fishing the incoming tide usually in the afternoon but the mullet will go off the bite at sunset. You don't need a surf rod, we both just use our general purpose rods from the beach as you don't really need to get into the deep water, the fish are generally in the shallows chasing food. Early risers will also do well on the morning tides. The best local beaches on the Fleurieu to try your luck at are Sellicks Beach, Myponga Beach, Carrickalinga, Normanville, Rapid Bay, Morgans Beach, Parsons, Tunks and Blowhole. The minimum size is 21 cm and the bag limit is 60. They are generally caught from late Summer to late Autumn or early Winter. We enjoy eating them, but some people find the taste too strong for their liking. You can take the skin off after filleting which gives the fish a milder flavour. The fillets can be seasoned and pan fried or beer battered and deep fried or crumbed and pan fried ( we have used crushed Salt and Vinegar chips as our crumb in the last photo).
Handy Tip - We always take a spare bucket down to the beach which we fill with sea water to keep our catch alive or to be able to put the fish back if we don't catch enough for a feed.
Have a go at fishing for Mullet on our local Fleurieu beaches. Take a chair and relax on the sand while watching the sunset.