For most Brits, fishing in Australia ‘started’ with Rex Hunt and the Seven Network’s enthralling ‘Rex Hunt’s Fishing Adventures’, which ran for an impressive 14 seasons and introduced us to the incredibly diverse and exciting range of angling opportunities offered by the country.
Rexy often headed to the Northern Territory’s Top End. Darwin, the cosmopolitan Capital and ‘gateway to Asia’, was his starting point for several adventures – and so it should be as the Northern Territory offers some of the finest angling opportunities on the planet.
Despite visits by some high-profile anglers, such as Martin Salter and Robson Green, we have been relatively slow over here to cotton onto the fact that the NT has been on the radar of some of the world’s best anglers for a very long time, but that’s all about to change as we are about to ‘blow the lid’ off NT angling – in a million dollar way!
So, what’s so special about fishing in the NT?
For starters the NT offers some 6,200 kilometres of largely undeveloped coastline shot through with estuaries, wetlands, mud flats and inland islands. There are thousands of square kilometres of eucalypt and monsoon vine forest, mangrove-lined rivers and creeks, offshore islands and coastal reefs. From freshwater billabongs and saltwater rivers to big game fish in the open oceans there are angling opportunities a-plenty. In fact the diversity of aquatic habitat is so great that if one venue is not fishing well, or one species is not biting it doesn’t take long to find one that is!
Fishing is year-round too, with four distinct seasons that offer unique environmental conditions, so no matter what time you arrive you will find fish willing to feed hard, and the fish species you can expect to encounter are as varied as the habitats in which they thrive. Indeed a colleague who recently visited the Tiwi Islands, some 60km north of Darwin, logged 18 species in a few days!
Local infrastructure and local knowledge are geared up for angling too, with a range of Barramundi and blue water fishing tour operators and guides, fishing lodges and camps, fishing competitions, specialist fishing agents, boat hire companies and local angling clubs all available to enhance your experience.
As far as the fish are concerned the mighty and iconic Barramundi is the headline fish for many, and ‘Barra’ are the signature fish for the Territory, but the NT also offers: Threadfin Salmon, Tarpon, Fingermark Bream, Saratoga, Mangrove Jacks, Golden Snapper, Black Jewfish, Red-throat Sweet Lip, Spanish Flag, Alligator Gar, Black and Gold Spot Cod, Blue Salmon, Queenfish, GT’s, Barracuda, Fork Tailed Catfish, Red Emperor, Spanish Mackerel, Reef Sharks, Sailfish, Marlin – and many more – so whether you prefer to fly or lure fish, to fresh or saltwater fish, or indeed to mix and match, the NT can offer you the angling adventure of a lifetime!
Now read on and find out why there has never been a better time to visit!
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