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Mullet fishing



The shadowy shoals you have seen haunting the harbours and shallow lagoons in the summer are almost certainly mullet. Mullet also move into estuaries a surprisingly long way upstream, their grey backs occasionally cutting the surface. Thin lipped greys are streamlined torpedoes - their blue grey bodies with silvery sides are covered by faint horizontal grey stripes and there is a dark spot at the base of each pectoral fin. They graze on algae and organic matter in the mud. They are slow growing, have a strong instinct for sensing danger and are easily spooked. Their near relative the Golden Grey Mullet have a distinctive gold patch on their cheek.

Harbour mullet


June to late September with August usually being the best month.

MethodsMullet going back

The natural food of Mullet is so small that it can't be put on to a hook. However, the good news is that mullet can be weaned onto some other foodstuffs which can be then be used as hookbait. The intelligent use of groundbaiting is essential for targeting mullet. Roll or knead bread into small pellets and scatter them in the swim, where they will sink to the bottom. Increase the size of the bread pellets until you can use introduce a hookbait. Bread can also be used as a surface bait. Crust and stale bread will float on the surface and mullet can be induced to feed on them. This is an exciting way to fish for them as you can watch your target rise to the bait and suck it down. There are two disadvantages with surface groundbaiting - one is that both the current and wind can take your bait away from the area where you want to fish and the other is that it won't take long for every seagull in the vicinity to descend on your swim.

The golden rule is to fish light. Tackle-wise, go for a an 11 foot Avon type rod, a fixed spool reel with 5lb fluorocarbon line with carp hooks of either size 6 or 8. You can either freeline with bread, float fish with bread or use a small mepps type spinner baited with ragworm - all will score on their day. Be warned though, mullet are wary fish that are difficult to hook - trying to catch them will drive you nuts. Here are some effective set ups:

Bubble float spinner

Sugar puff rig

Above Bubble float spinner - baited with ragworm

Left Light float set up with foam to keep bait just sub surface - baited with bread on size 6 or 8 carp hook

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