Stockyard point is a legendary landbased fishery for those wanting to catch gummy shark, elephant fish and the occasional snapper. Contrary to popular belief, it can be fished on both high and low tide, however the location for each tide is different. If you are fishing the low tide be aware it is a long and physically demanding walk, so travel light or use a fishing trolley.
LOCATION: Jam Jerrup
MAIN SPECIES: Gummy shark, elephant fish, snapper
I am going to split the fishing information between high and low tide for this guide.
For low tide access, park at the Jam Jerrup beachside campsite, and follow the track all the way to the point, do not cut corners here or you will get stuck in the mud! At low tide the channel is only about 20 metres from the point, and excessive casting distance is not necessary, running sinker rigs and paternoster rigs will both produce fish, with squid and fresh banana prawns producing most of the fish. The point is best fished 2 hours either side of low tide, use 4-6 oz bomb sinkers depending on current, and 6/0 Black Magic KL Circle Hooks.
If you are fishing Jam Jerrup at high tide, park at the same car park but walk directly on to the beach, the water here is shallow and a good cast is necessary to reach the fish, 4 oz bomb sinkers work well here, and again banana prawns are the stand-out bait as the smell similar to the crabs these species come to the beach to hunt.
Gummy shark (Low tide)
You hear many things about targeting gummy sharks on beaches, the moon, the bait, the tides, what colour underwear you have on, what you eat for breakfast etc. the reality is, the right tide at the right time will often being gummy sharks, this doesn’t mean you will catch them but it’s a start. As the tide gets lower the Sharks move off of the banks where they were feeding on crabs and bass yabbies, and move back towards the channel to scavenge whatever they can find, put a fresh squid strip, banana prawn or pilchard in the channel around the low tide and cross your fingers. Persistence pays with gummy sharks, and even the best anglers have multitudes of donut days, you will see images of gummy sharks caught from the beach but you will not see the multiple trips that resulted in no fish (unless you watched our Grantville Pier episode). Be patient and persist, set your drag at just enough that you can pull it out by hand but not loose enough to just strip with a couple of fingers, these fish will hit the bait and bolt so make sure you have a good rod holder, try to fish night time tides as gummy sharks are mostly nocturnal hunters, so come equipped with glow sticks and a good head lamp.
Gummy shark (High tide)
As stated above, gummy sharks will come into the shallows at high tide to feed on crabs, squid works well but prawns work better, thread them on to your hook and half hitch the tail, leaving a good amount of hook exposure, use a running sinker rig and a circle hook, all the rules that apply in the above gummy shark tips will apply here, fish directly in front of the car park for best results.
Elephant Fish (both tides)
People don’t often target elephant fish, for the simple reason that they usually inhabit the same areas as gummy sharks, my advice is to aim for gummy sharks, chances are you will get an elephant as a by-catch, but if you get a gummy, even better!
Snapper (Low tide)
Snapper are not a common catch at Jam Jerrup, but they can sometimes be found, other odd catches such as big flathead and even seven gilled sharks have been caught here. Fish with a paternoster rig and a 4 oz bomb sinker, fresh squid and pilchards placed directly into the channel on a Black Magic Snapper Snatcher is your best bet, with Feb – May being the best time of year to target them here.
Remember to be patient when land based fishing for larger species, you will catch stingrays, banjo sharks and other undesirables, please make sure they are returned to the water unharmed as they are important to the Eco system (unless you plan to eat them), give other fishermen space to fight fish if they get a run, and respectfully leave at least 10 metres of space from other fishermen whenever possible.
As always, good luck!