Tough times offshore
  |  First Published: December 2011

Fishing has been pretty tough offshore with prime bite times short and random.

The gurus who like to pretend this is not happening are less than truthful; fishing has been poor from Fraser south to the border, and no amount of fishing knowledge has made it tangibly better.

Water temps as well as currents have been all over the place and fish are biting where you find them on the chew. All bets are off for seriously planning productive fishing trips with any certainty at the moment.

That said there has been the bonus of tag jew staying on into the summer, as well as wahoo and yellowfin tuna hanging around Hutchies on the run-out tides.

The shallows are still fishing way below par with the yellowtail kingies a veritable no-show this year. Hussar, fusilier, red throat emperor and the usual other creel fillers are all absent without leave at the moment.

The new artificial reefs are hot and cold with cobia more miss than hit at the moment. There are quality fish to be had as well as numbers of good reefies, but there is a lot of sweat shed to obtain these results. If I sound doom-and-gloom then I would rather be criticised for my honesty than because I have overstated the lack of quality in our fishery at the moment.

The best chance of success comes with fishing with the minimum of lead and by float lining. All the best fish at the moment are succumbing to floaters and are very shy of any baits anchored to the bottom with paternosters and heavy leads.

Trying fluro carbon leaders and anything else to present your bait more naturally are the keys to grinding out a feed at the moment. The other trick is to study your tide tables and your solunar tables to make sure you are on your best honey hole at the prime bait time. Now is not the time for experimenting with hit-or-miss new spots.

On a personal note, I have regretfully sold the Incredible for use as a crew transport vessel for the new LNG plant in Gladstone Harbour. This is the harsh reality of our current tough times. Incredible Charters is still open for business as I am attempting to lease a charter vessel to continue to service those of us who wish to fish north of Cape Moreton. If you know of anyone with a survey vessel who would like it to be put to work in the charter fishing Industry please contact me.

Please give Keith of INCREDIBLE CHARTERS a call on 3203 8188 or email --e-mail address hidden-- to check out the best spots to fish offshore or to book a charter.

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