BEGINNER'S GUIDE TO...CATCHING JOHN DORY
While not renowned for its fighting capabilities, in the view of many the John dory is a table fish without parallel. The perfect, plump, white fillets can be cooked crispy skin on or off and accompanied by no more than a buttery chardonnay. Catching them
MICRO-JIGS AND SMALL SOFTBAITS
Fishing from a rod holder on a gently rocking boat will impart the best action. Fish the jig in the lower third of the water column. It pays to stay further away from the reef in order to avoid snags. Do not strike, just let the rod load up and wind slowly to the surface.
FREE GAFF OR NET
Plenty of New Zealand’s more famous fishing wharfs, like Houhora, Russell and Mangonui, see good numbers of John dory at night time. Use a flood light to bring bait up to surface and watch for Johnnies snooping in the shadows, particularly where the current eddies. If you are fast enough, a well placed gaff shot will yield dinner.
LIVE-BAIT ON A LEDGER RIG
John dory simply love to eat a small livebait. Use a heavily weighted ledger rig to stop the bait swimming around too much and fish the rig out of a rod holder close to the bottom. The best country is reefy foul in 10 to 30 metres of water. Do not strike the bite, just slowly wind to the surface with a net handy.