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Winter weather welcome
  |  First Published: May 2012



Moreton Bay is looking good, with a normal shade of green a welcome sight with winter approaching.

Bream and snapper are a good bet in May, with Mud Island and Scarborough Reef top spots as the weather cools. Sweetlip, cod and other mixed reef fish are a regular pick up, so a mixed box is a real possibility.

Tailor may show up early and good catches will be patchy at first, but things should improve from now through to September, in all areas of the bay. Last year slugs and pencil style hardbodies were very productive on tailor with the added advantage of long range casting.

Jewfish have been in good numbers in the northern areas, such as Sandgate, Shorncliffe and Hayes Inlet. The platform on the Ted Smout Bridge has seen some good specimens caught lately on lightly weighted drift baits.

Blue swimmers are a good target for April-May and all regular spots in the Northern Bay should produce.

FRESHWATER

All the lower reaches just keep turning it on, thanks to the earlier wet weather. As May creeps on, some of the natives will become a little more selective, more so with artificial than bait.

Bass and golden perch are showing up as regular as ever in North Pine, Kurwongbah and linking creeks and rivers above and below the dams. The lower reaches of Kurwongbah are especially firing from all local reports over the last six weeks.

Saratoga have been quiet but that’s normal for this time of year. If toga are still your preferred target a mid morning session will normally be more productive than an early start.

For shore-based anglers things are great in May. Early south to southwest breezes can move bait schools of bony bream and gar to the shorelines of Bullocky Rest, Forgan Cove and areas in between. Large plastics and sinking bibless lures cast long distances are a great choice for large late autumn and winter bass.

Keep an eye on shallow well-lit areas for goldens, and watch for mushrooming patterns of water. This is nearly always an indication of feeding fish.

A quick reminder that the closed season for bass starts on June 1.

BRISBANE RIVER

The river continues to improve and May will be full of surprises as water clarity improves and the temperature cools.

Threadfin have still been caught up until now but sizes seem to have dropped, with only a few large fish reported lately. Smaller threadfin have been showing up in some of the river’s feeder creeks, with some thumping bream over 1kg for company.

Snapper will get better and tailor are often present near the mouth, which can give anglers another option if needed.

OFFSHORE

It’s that time again when an extra layer of clothing is needed for those early starts to the many offshore fishing locations.

Snapper are always a favourite for this time of year, with larger fish more likely. The plastics working on snapper recently are the Z-Man Streakz 5” jerkbait in new penny, along with 9” grubs in glow.

Long-tail tuna should be in greater numbers and better size in all waters offshore from Moreton Island right across to Bribie. Tuna often respond well to extra small offerings such as slugs in the 10-20g range, resin minnows and trimmed down plastics.

Yellowtail kingfish are great around now and locations like Hutchies can produce some outstanding specimens on deep water jigs, plastics and live bait.

Cobia that are still around the area are likely to be smaller.

ESTUARY

Things look fantastic in all our local estuaries this time of year, with beautiful weather and plenty of fish on offer.

Flathead will still make up a good percentage of most mixed bags this time of year.

Tailor will start to appear around now and they regularly hunt on sand bars right through the passage and surrounding waterways.

Big-eye trevally and small GT can often be mixed in with tailor and, while not outstanding, they are not bad if bled straight away and eaten fresh.

Jewfish will be patrolling most channels in Pumicestone as May progresses. Live baiting and plastics will options to cover most jewfish situations.

Grunter have been prevalent through March and April with some anglers landing outstanding fish on live yabby and prawn baits. May can still produce good grunter, especially in the lower end of Pumicestone passage.

Crabs are still turning up, with muddies being caught in deeper main channels rather than creeks and mangrove drains, due to earlier freshwater pushes.

Bream catches are getting better and sizes are on the up. These fish take such a huge variety of baits and artificials they truly have something to offer everyone, particularly beginners.

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