Melbourne Cup Weekend is usually an important fishing weekend on Flinders Island, well this year I should have kept quiet.
Strong easterly winds, rain and sea fog slowed the fish right down, making fishing hard work, however for those who stuck with it gummies and flathead were the main catch.
Interestingly the low light levels had the calamari on the go and we had good catches on baits rather than jigs.
The following weekend a different story, good weather, snapper and good gummies easy to catch.
December is now with us and with the holiday season approaching the focus of the fishing will be on families, with days out around the islands fishing for flathead, gummies and snapper as well as trips ashore for a barbeque. Somewhere in that time the first of the kingfish will turn up around the outer reefs.
For the offshore angler December sees the arrival of the first of the tuna out off the east coasty of Flinders Island and although it will be mainly small albacore for a start, the bigger fish will follow.
We usually do our first tuna run straight after Christmas and this is an ideal time to shake down all the gear for the coming season that runs through till May.
While out on the edge of the shelf, mako sharks are always around and if the tuna are quiet the mako provides good sport, either on baits or with the smaller fish on flies.
For those coming to the island in the next few months, the Furneaux Tavern has a new chef Paul Keenan for the season and the reports from patrons are glowing, with the highlight the seafood chowder, so put his on your list as a must do while on Flinders Island.
All best wishes for Christmas and the New Year to all Fishing Monthly readers and Good Fishing for 2011
James Luddington operates the Strait Lady on Flinders Island and is the islands most experienced skipper for a wide variety of fishing experiences. James can be contacted through www.flindersisland.com.au/fishingtours
Peter Lees and Steve Davis with an early season snapper.Reads: 1411