by Mat Cameron
December along the East coast is a time when the weather is warm and the rivers are full of Garfish. These billed-blighters not only make excellent bait for everything from bream to marlin, but they are also tasty morsels and make for good eating over the Christmas holidays.
A simple, yet effective way to catch them is by using small portions of peeled prawn or bread on a size 12 Gamakatsu long shank hook suspended under a small float. The distance between the hook and float will vary depending on water clarity and depth of fishable water (distance between water surface and weedbeds/structure below), but will generally be approximately 30-90cm.
This style of fishing is an excellent way to introduce kids into fishing, as it allows them to watch their float to see the bite, rather than having to feel it through the line. The small gauge on the size 12 Gamakatsu long shank hooks make for a good hook up ratio on the small mouths of the garfish as well, so you can be confident that the kids will be able to catch their own fish, with only minimal guidance needed. But be warned, it is far from uncommon to encounter bream when fishing for garfish. And not just small bream! Many legal bream have fallen for this tiny presentation.
For this light fishing application the Samurai Inflict rods are ideally suited, as they ae light, sensitive but still quite responsive to be able to set the hooks and lift the fish out of the water. Both the 2-4lb and 6-12lb Inflict models have both accounted for many fish with this style of fishing, showing great versatility.