How to catch Snapper

Tips for catching Snapper - By Chris Cleaver

Snapper (Pagrus Auratusa) is a fish found in the coastal waters of Australia and are considered a highly prized table fish. Snapper take a variety of different baits and lures ranging from soft plastics to jigs. 

On a boat, flicking soft plastics has become highly popular, however you can still live bait and also use dead baits. Snapper eat a wide range of baits. Striped tuna, squid, bonito, and pilchards are just some of the options you could use to catch these creatures. They are not fussy eaters at all.

The best time of day to chase snapper is always a hotly debated topic, but the change of light periods of dawn & dusk will always be prime snapper fishing periods.

Snapper are commonly found in the depths of between 15 to 25 metres in larger bays, however, they can be found anywhere from 5 to 120 metres.

Shimano offers a large range of suitable fishing reels and rods for targeting Snapper.

The Stradic FL and Twin Power FD reels in the 2500-4000 size range are well suited to snapper fishing. These reels should be matched to a lightweight graphite rod like the Raider and Jewel series, rated to fish between 4-10kg braid Power-Pro or Kairiki line.   

Shimano also offers a wide range of Squidgies and jigs, such as the TIger Baku Baku jig, that are proven snapper catches.


Tips for Catching Snapper continued..

When using soft plastics for snapper, be vigilant when allowing to sink to the bottom as a high percentage of bites will come on the drop. Once on the bottom, work your plastic back to the boat ensuring it is always in the bottom 3rd of the water depth.

Vary your retrieves and styles of plastics until you find what is working on that specific day.

When bait fishing for snapper, create a burley slick. Anchor away from the reef and burley towards it. Try and be as silent as possible, snapper will spook easily especially in shallow areas. Remember to fish as light as possible in line, leader, and weight for your best chance.

If you're using a Baitrunner for snapper, disengage the gearing. Once the fish starts running, turn the handle and your on. There are preset drags at the front and a preset drag at the back, just to let the fish know how much tension you can give it. You can do up the front and if the fish doesn't like it, you can change the drag level at the back.