Couple questions for jetty fishing

Hi All, i'm still trying to work out some tactics for local saltwater jetty fishing  (noob trial and error!) and had a few questions that are probably more obvious to answer than i think.....

1) How to tell which way the current is flowing?
2) A good artifical bait for bottom or float fishing (alternative for when the tamban aren't around)?
3) Despite best effort (bucket with air pump, water changes etc.) the tamban can die before i get to fish them, are they still good as a 'dead bait'?
4) Bait theives!! - several times at bedok i used tamban on a basic sliding sinker rig, and no matter where i placed the hook (head, back, rear) i was reeling in the sad remains of a nibbled carcass but had no actual bites - are fish now so clever they chew around my hook?? I guess maybe i needed a smaller (artificial?) bait and smaller hook (used size 2) to combat this, or some other method?
  • ayeosq
    1) using a apollo rig, directly drop your rig, then see where the hook face
    2) artificial bait seldom attract first if no jerking action or reeling, however, bring small quantity of prawn, very useful on the sabiki for bait fish when tamban is not biting
    3) dead bait is fine, using live tamban is great choice, but big fish at Singapore jetty, you gonna be disappointed. try to look at what rig and bait are the people at jetty using. I recommend prawn for a start, they attract lots of catfish using apollo rig, at least catching is better than none
    4) it might be crab too, no way to avoid that, you have to keep looking out at your hook if bait is present
  • jumpinfrog
    Thanks ayeosq,

    1 - i used a float in the end but actually noticed i can just watch the regulars, they know which side to fish on and when
    2 - great pointer, actually yesterday the tamban just were not biting and i struggled for bait, seems the only live prawns come all the way from changi which is a pain, regular prawn meat would do the trick?
    3 - i pulled in 2 small but decent (ish) queen fish, did see one uncle pull up what looked like a huge sea bass, but yes mostly i'm using the tamban, will switch to prawn, I used cable car rig and sliding rig, some practice needed :)
    4 - Saw someone pull in a crab too, a slightly longer leader or getting away from the bottom may work to help avoid them?

    I also noticed one of my tamban came back with empty sockets....what on earth down there likes to suck eyes???
  • ayeosq
    1) float rig on a jetty, you have to keep watch, don't let it tangle to the pillar or other's line
    2) dead regular supermarket prawn of course
    3) prawn and tamban should get you some fish, make sure that you release catches that are juvenile
    4) apollo rig with the hook couple of inches above ground

    small fishes, sea flea and crabs are usually the cause...
  • jumpinfrog
    Thanks Again!

    Definitely i practice conscious fishing, I'm from UK and we have strict rules on the size of fish before taking them home so i follow the same guide. 
    With that said, i also try to just hold enough tamban in a bucket with air pump for a couple of bait changes - fine when they are biting but left me short on a day they just weren't about; is there any artificial baits that are known to work in case there isn't any bait fish/I didn't have prawn etc.?
  • ayeosq
    Bring an esky with ice, keep some tamban in there
    are you using sabiki for tamban?
    artificial bait? you can try spoon/ jig/ crank, anything, but you have to cast and retrieve.....
  • jumpinfrog
    Good call on the esky!
    Yes i use sabiki for tamban and don't usually struggle - only once when even the regular uncles couldnt bring them in!
    Cast and retrieve is ok, i did get some sinking lures, though nobody seems to use them - likely because of the angle of a jetty above the water line affectign the action, still they are in my box for 'just in case' :)
  • ayeosq
    Good luck and tight line
  • Hoodlums
    Tight lines
  • sharkbait10
    Nice insights. 
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