Pound for pound, silver and black drummer are one of the hardest fighting fish on our coastlines. Their thick concave tail and broad shoulders make them accustomed to snapping you off on the nearby rocks. Being omnivores, a small hook is needed to accommodate their diet size, and a thick gage hook so you can pull hard!
Targeting a kingfish? Your tackle needs to be perfect. Inhabiting the inshore reefs and coastal estuaries of Australia, kingfish only know one way – structure. To accommodate this, thick gauge hooks are required to extract them from their habitat, with circle hooks proving to provide for more positive corner-jaw hook ups.
Arguably Australia’s premier sportfish, barramundi are known for their acrobatic and airborne performances. Whilst this might make for a good spectacle, it requires the angler to be faultless in their tackle selection. Circle or weedless hooks are ideal for fishing in and around thick structure, with a Colorado or willow blade making for that extra ‘flash’ when the fish are shut down. Barramundi tend to inhabit tropical estuaries and river systems right up into freshwater rivers and isolated billabongs, and are also stocked in freshwater impoundments. In saltwater environments barra live around structure such as rock bars, fallen trees and mangroves as well as tidal drop-offs, mudflats and creek entrances. In the fresh they hang around structure including weed beds, fallen and submerged trees, rocky outcrops and undercut banks.
Inhabiting coastal rockwalls, estuaries and beaches, mulloway are a fish that can be caught on a range of baits and techniques. Often labelled as ghosts of the dark, mulloway have hard mouths, nocturnal feeding tendencies and a powerful tail which makes it all for more of a reason to get your tackle right. Needle sharp medium-gauge hooks between the 4/0 – 8/0 will cover most fishing scenarios, with circle hooks recommended for catch and release purposes. With anglers often going sessions without crossing paths with a mulloway, many resort to snelled or double hook rigs to increase their hook up rate – a technique that works perfectly with Owner’s taffed ring eyelet technology.
Despite being one of the most commonly targeted species in Australia’s coastal bays and estuaries, flathead are no easy-beat when it comes to landing them. With their bony mouths and the tendency to thrash their head back and forward, choosing the right hook is essential, especially when targeting the bigger ‘crocodiles’. Needle sharp light gauge hooks are recommended, which offer eyelets allowed for snelled-hooks to be tied with ease.
Inhabiting the coastal beaches and estuarine sand banks, sand whiting are a popular yet difficult fish to master. With their diet consisting of small crustaceans, worms and nippers, whiting have a small downturned mouth that requires sharp thin-gauged hooks to pin. Medium to long-shanked hooks are recommended when using bait, while small assist hooks can make topwater fishing for these inquisitive fish a much easier task.
Earning a lead position in both the recreational and tournament fishing scene, bream are arguably the most accessible fish to target in Australian waters. Open to eating practically anything, bream require short shanked, light gauged hooks. Bait holders are great options when using soft or fresh bait, as bream will often feed in numbers and pick at the bait before engulfing it.
With some of the sharpest teeth in the business, tailor are an aggressive acrobatic fish that inhabit our coastal beaches, estuaries, and rocky headlands. Renowned for cutting through the thickest of leaders, hooks selection with tailor is crucial. Long shanked or ganged hooks are recommended when fishing baits, with plugging singles ideal when throwing spinners or topwater lures. Often found schooled up in washy or turbulent inshore waters, tailor can make for some great fun for beginner fisherman.
Often touted as a sub-par fish due to their eating qualities, Australian salmon are worthy candidates for one of Australia’s premier sport fish. Inhabiting the coastal beaches and inshore estuaries, salmon require needle sharp hooks to withstand their areal displays and impressive stamina. Often honed in on micro sized baitfish, medium gauged, short, shanked hooks in the black chrome are recommended to reduce visibility in the water.
Snapper are one of the most sought-after species targeted by recreational fishers in most states around the country. Large snapper are a true trophy fish, prized for their hard fight, relative elusiveness, striking appearance and fantastic eating qualities. Being a demersal, or bottom-dwelling fish, snapper require extracting from some harsh habitats, which means hook selection is essential. Medium-thick gauge bait hooks with offset eyelets for double hook rigs are the choice set up for many successful snapper anglers. Eating a range of baits and known to hunt out a burley trail, Owner’s multi-purpose or cutting point range is a great starting point for any snapper session.
Often labelled as ‘Aussie battlers’, the Australian Bass is one of Australia’s premier freshwater sportfish. Known for their aggressive bite, hard fighting tendencies and the close quarters habitats you find them in, Aussie bass can often call for some clever tackle selection to be triumphant. Owners range of Hooks is a great starting point for any time you find yourself flicking in some gnarly looking territory.
Lurking deep in the overhanging trees, snags and rock bars of our inshore estuaries and coastal bays, mangrove Jack are pound for pound one of the most aggressive and hard fighting fish on offer to recreational anglers. Known for their lighting fast strike and unforgiving first run, mangrove Jack require strong thick gauge hooks to extract them out of their zone. When fishing in tight quarters, weedless hook presentations can be the difference between a bite, and a donut.
In the conversation for one of the tastiest fish on offer for recreational anglers, a failed hook is only more of a devastation when tangling with a red emperor. Generally inhabiting water depths between 40-100m, Red Emperor demand strong, thick gauge hooks that are going to be able to extract them from inshore reef systems, gravel patches, coral reefs and deep isolated artificial structures. Red emperor have proven to be a tough opponent and it’s not uncommon to be taken to the cleaners when you get the bite. The sheer size of mature fish matched with their powerful head shaking and ability to fight from the bottom to the surface make them a formidable opponent.