Mixed Bag for April
  |  First Published: April 2011

April is a fantastic time of year to get out and fish the estuaries and rivers that make up the Jumpinpin system. The weather is spot on and the fish should be firing as the water temperature drops. Bream and flathead will make up the bulk of most catches as they are around in large numbers and relatively easy to catch.

Where to look

You can expect to find bream around anywhere that there is decent structure. Rock walls, drop-offs, snags, jetties and weed beds are great spots to start looking and you should always be able to get a few fish.

Bream love a good berley trail. By using only a little bit often, you’ll keep the fish interested and stir up a few of the larger ones that come around to see what’s going on. Last year a mate and I used cubed pilchards in a good bream spot and managed to catch a 1kg fish that had bits of pillies in its gut, so it does work. Try around the Pig Styes, Short Island, Cobby Passage, the Five Ways, the Powerlines, Steiglitz and Fishermans Channel.

Flathead should be around in good numbers as per usual and taking a variety of baits and lures. White bait, pillies, prawns, froggies and herring are the pick of the baits to use. When choosing soft plastic colours and shapes it is best to pick lures that best mimic these baits and twitch them in a way that best resembles a wounded fish. For a feed of flatty try around Kalinga bank, the Stockyards, Cabbage Tree Point mud banks, Pandannus weed banks and the top of Crusoe Island.

Whiting catches tend to slow in the cooler months but rest assured they are around in good numbers so target all the usual hot spots like Couran Cove, the Broadwater, Never Fail Islands, Tipplers, Gold Bank, what’s left of Squire Island, Cobby Passage and the Logan and Pimpama rivers.

There are plenty of live bait in the water, especially around the Bar and the bottom of North Straddie. I saw schools and schools of baitfish there and birds diving having a feed. There were no tailor that day but I’m sure it won’t be long until they turn up. If you’re using lures to target tailor try to use the same size as the bait, which is usually only the small 10-20g size. Also using pilly baits mid water out from Swan Bay, Kalinga Bank and Crusoe Island is another great way to catch a tailor.

School jew are being caught in good numbers from Kalinga Bank and the deep water off the bottom of North Straddie. Use live bait, big mullet strips or bonito strips, 5-7” soft plastics and big balls of sand worms work very well in the surf.

Banana prawns have been around in good numbers from the rivers and look to be sticking around so grab the cast net and get out there as the chance to get a good feed of prawns is hard to resist. Target feeder creeks and drains as they tend to congregate there feeding on all the goodies that get washed out into the river.

Crabs tend to quieten down this time of year but with all the rains at the start of the year I think the season will go a little longer so keep taking the pots out.

Thanks for all your reports and fish weighed in. Drop us a line at Gem Bait and Tackle if you’d like to order bait or get some up to date info on what’s biting on (07) 3287 3868 or email --e-mail address hidden--

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