Buckets of baitfish
  |  First Published: July 2011

There is an amazing amount of prawns and baitfish in all our local creeks and rivers at the moment.

Our local fresh prawn supplier who trawls a small part of the Pine River said this has been one of the best prawn seasons he’s seen in years. It’s encouraging to see how well our waterways have bounced back after the devastating floods earlier this year.

Because of all the bait, the fishing has been great lately with plenty of bream, tailor, whiting, flathead and jew coming to those who are prepared to brave the cold.

For the first time in a number of years, there have been multiple catches of jew ranging from 35-90cm coming from the Pine River. One of our regular customers caught several jew in one night using large fresh banana prawns and mullet fillets for bait.

Even when they are around in good numbers, these fish aren’t always easy to catch, but as I’ve said before those who put in the time and effort will eventually be rewarded. We’ve also had reports of a few of juvenile 30-50cm threadfin salmon coming from the Pine.

If you’re chasing a feed of bream, upstream from the highway bridges has been producing the bigger fish, some up over 1kg.

Whiting are extremely prevalent this time of year, with some good fish coming from the mouth of the Pine and Hays inlet. Other spots to try are Nudgee Beach, Red Beach and around to Skirmish Point at the southern end of Bribie Island.

Live bloodworms or yabbies are two of the best bait for whiting. If livies aren’t available then preserved beach worms or squid cut into thin strips will also work.

Tailor haven’t appeared in great numbers yet, but the quality has been awesome with fish around the 2kg mark coming from the rock wall along Brighton and the mouth of Cabbage Tree Creek at night with a rising tide.

Squid numbers have improved over the last month or so with both land-based and boat fishos getting into the action. Land-based options include the Shorncliffe jetty which is a great place to take the kids; Scarborough foreshore; and Redcliffe Jetty. Generally look for areas where baitfish congregate under lights. A 1.5” to 2.5” squid jig in natural or pinkish colours will see you well on your way.

Brisbane River

Big tailor have been harassing schools of baitfish around the river mouth lately with plenty of boaties braving the cold and getting in on the action. Casting small metal slugs or trolling shallow to medium diving minnows should see you hook up to one of these toothy little speedsters. Depending on the size of the fish, a small length of wire may be needed.

Snapper have also been caught in reasonable numbers from the usual haunts around the river mouth area. Gulp 5” plastics in pink shine or watermelon rigged on 1/4 size jigheads with 3/0 heavy hooks have been doing the damage.

When flicking plastics using an electric motor can be a big advantage. To be able to hold in one position and accurately cast to an area then easily move to the next spot, makes this style of fishing so easy.

Moreton Bay

I love fishing this time of year as the weather conditions have usually stabilised and the westerly winds kick in and make fishing the bay much more pleasurable. Snapper numbers have been fairly good lately with plenty of legal size fish being caught.

The various reef structures between North Reef and Redcliffe Point have been fishing well with either first light or dusk being the most productive times, although some quality fish have been caught in the middle of the day. Large bream and tailor can be a welcome by-catch in this area, but be prepared to loose a few rigs if the tailors move in.

There is a lot of bait in the bay at the moment so hopefully the longtail tuna stick around and the school mackerel season is a good one.

Fresh water

With the bass closure in creeks and rivers still in force, a lot more of us have been hitting our local dams instead. The redclaw have slowed a little which is normal this time of year, but there’s still enough being caught for a feed.

For those who would like to fish Lake Samsonvale from a boat or kayak, there may still be permits available for boating access to Lake Samsonvale. Please refer to the Information Paper (download a copy from the Boating Access Page) for details of the Boating Access Scheme and how to apply for a permit.

At the Tackle Shop we are continually expanding our range. We now have a lot of new products in store at very competitive prices. Also, we still have one of the largest ranges of quality fresh and frozen baits in Brisbane. Our business hours are from 5:30am-6pm Monday to Friday, Saturday from 4am-6pm and Sunday 4am-4pm.

If you would like more information on tips and techniques, locations or for an up to date fishing report please give us a call on 3862 9015 or just call in to say g’day. Myself and my team are all mad keen fishos and are always happy to help.

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