These fish truly are a great fighting and great looking fish. Gilthead Bream have the edge in fighting abilities over any sea bass.
Locations are similar to fishing for Flounders and Bass so we are talking tidal harbours, creeks and estuaries. They will swim right into the shallows hunting for food therefore the tactics for catching them are very similar to flounder fishing Stay out of any fast water.
The inside of a gilthead breams mouth is able to make easy work of any crab, razors, mussels, clams and small fish. The terminal tackle used needs to be strong as I have already mentioned they are a feisty scrapper, Size 4 carp hooks are ideal. A simple 3 hook short paternoster rig works well from the boat with as little lead as possible; a small ball weight of 1-2oz is perfect. A soft light spinning rod is required as it will absorb a lot of the impact and sudden jolts, a bait runner reel is perfect enabling the fish to move away with the bait before the strike. I have found shop bought frozen shrimp a very effective bait but you can also use razor, crab or lug.
Don’t ask me why but windy conditions seem to be the least productive for me.
The season is very much dependent on the water temperature and a sustained period of warmer weather can attract them in greater numbers towards the back end of April, but it is more likely early May will see increased catch rates. The most fruitful months tend to be June, July, August and tailing off in September.
I have caught them on both a flooding and ebbing tide here in Cork harbour and all manner of tides from neaps to springs.
Hopefully this will give anglers some idea of how to target the mighty Gilthead Bream.