The best time of the year to catch Bonito fish in Sydney is from summer to autumn. You can catch Bonito from the shore or in a boat close to the shore. Bonito is an inshore pelagic fish species and are found around rocks and reefs. Usually used as bait the Bonito is a good eating fish.
- Size: Up to 7 kilograms
- Length: Up to 70cm
- Food Rating: Good
- Territory: Inshore
The scientific name for the Bonito is Sardini. Bonito means pretty in Portuguese and Spanish.
How to identify a Bonito Fish
- Bright blue-green back
- The lower body is silver
- Narrow grey stripes on the sides
- Gray fins
This Bonito is from the same family as the Tuna and you will often see them swimming together in schools. They are built for speed with a torpedo shaped body. The Bonito swims close to the surface near the shore and in and around rocks and reefs. They can weigh up to 7 kilograms on the east coast of Australia. Their jawline is strong and supports one row of teeth. There are a lot of people that think the Bonito is only good as bait or berley. However, if they are bled then cooled immediately they can be excellent sashimi. The Bonito prays on smalled fish for its diet.
Where to Catch Bonito
If you see foaming white water and birds above then the chances are high this is caused by Bonito as they terrorise baitfish. A lot of anglers prefer to chase Bonito from a boat. But this fish is also caught from close to the shore. You can use lightweight to medium-weight fishing rods. The Bonito commonly found in schools in bays and large estuaries.
The Bonito is super fast so a little patience and you will be rewarded with a great sporting fish. The best time to catch Bonito is in the morning at dawn from Autumn to Summer. The water temperature at this time is between 16 - 20 degrees Celcius.
How to catch Bonito fish
Bonito is a popular and delicious game fish that is widely sought after by anglers. Here are the steps to catch Bonito:
- Choose the right equipment: Bonito are fast, strong swimmers that can put up a good fight, so it's important to use the appropriate fishing gear. A medium to heavy spinning rod and reel, with a fast action and good line capacity, is ideal for catching Bonito.
- Identify the right location: Bonito are found in temperate and subtropical waters, and are often caught near the surface or in shallow water near shore.
- Select the right bait: Bonito feed on a variety of baitfish, such as sardines, anchovies, and herring, so it's important to use a bait that closely resembles their natural prey. Live or dead baitfish, as well as small artificial lures, can be effective.
- Cast your line: Cast your line into the water, making sure to reach the desired depth.
- Watch for bites: Pay attention to your line for any signs of a bite, such as a sudden pull or a change in the line's tension.
- Set the hook: When you feel a bite, quickly and firmly set the hook by pulling the rod back.
- Fight the fish: Be prepared for a fast and energetic fight, as Bonito are strong swimmers. Keep the rod tip up and reel in the line steadily and quickly.
- Release the fish: If you're not planning to keep the fish for eating, gently remove the hook and release the fish back into the water.
It's important to follow fishing regulations and to always practice catch and release to ensure the health and sustainability of fish populations. Additionally, be aware of your surroundings, as fishing from shore or in the surf can be hazardous.
What bait do i use to catch Bonito fish?
Bonito feed on a variety of baitfish, such as sardines, anchovies, and herring, so it's important to use a bait that closely resembles their natural prey. Here are some popular baits used to catch Bonito:
- Live baitfish: Live baitfish, such as sardines, anchovies, or herring, can be very effective for catching Bonito. These baits are fished near the surface or at a desired depth, simulating a school of injured or fleeing prey.
- Dead baitfish: Dead baitfish, such as sardines, anchovies, or herring, can also be effective for catching Bonito. These baits are fished near the surface or at a desired depth, imitating injured or dead prey.
- Artificial lures: Small artificial lures that imitate baitfish, such as jigs or soft plastic lures, can also be effective for catching Bonito. These lures are fished near the surface or at a desired depth, imitating injured or fleeing prey.
It's important to experiment with different baits and techniques to determine what works best, as Bonito can be fussy feeders and their preferences can change depending on the time of year and water conditions.
Fishing for Bonito in Sydney
On all our fishing and deep-sea fishing charters in Sydney, all you need to bring are the right clothes depending on the weather conditions. We will supply everything else including bait, fishing rods and reels and fishing licence. At the end of our fishing trip, you get to keep what you catch. We have 3 purpose build fishing vessels that have all the facilities and amenities you require.