Fishing’s like a box of chocolates
  |  First Published: July 2012

July is a magnificent time of year to head out fishing Jumpinpin with plenty of cool clear days and heaps of different species to target. One of the best reasons to fish Jumpinpin is not only is there an abundance of regular bread and butter species of bream, whiting and flathead, but there is all sorts of by-catch available right through to your trophy mulloway, jacks and the like.

Rains earlier in the year have flooded the system with much needed nutrients, which fires up the small fish and the cycle continues. So this time when you head out to the Pin and get blown away by something a little larger or lose a decent fish, don’t just assume that it was a shark or ray.

Larger seas by southerly storms have pushed a few larger snapper inside the bar and have been caught as far in as Steiglitz. Most of the snapper being caught around Kalinga Bank are between 35-50cm and if you’re keen on chasing them, the snapper can be found in most of the same haunts that you would find large bream throughout the winter months. Large banana prawns, pillies, livies and soft plastics are some of the best baits to try for snapper and you’ll certainly know when you hook one up.

Kalinga Bank can also throw up some other unlikely catches with massive trevally up to 14kg being landed, tailor to 5kg, mulloway to 20kg and the odd tuna. Even small sailfish have been hooked but not landed. In fact the whole stretch of mangrove-lined bank that is the southern end of North Straddie is a great spot to fish for every species that can be caught in this area.

The beach on South Straddie is also a great place to land a variety of species with most of the largest tailor of the season coming off the beaches as they migrate up the coast. A lot of smaller tailor will make their way into the bar to feed and for shelter against predators, but if you like your beach fishing and larger fish, then that is certainly the way to go. You can also get large sea bream, mulloway, trevally and good-sized whalers off the beaches as well.

Other notable species that don’t fit the norm and can be caught quite regularly are estuary cod, mangrove jack, fingermark, Australian salmon, nannygai, tuskfish, grunter, a heap of different sharks, rays, eel and trevally species and of course the lovely catfish. Some other unlikely critters that can turn up are morwong, stargazers, hairtail, giant sea toads and other things that are just plain ugly.

As usual if you can’t identify what you have caught or it has large teeth or spikes be sure to release the fish unharmed. I know all these fish can be caught here as over the last 13 years fishing these waters I have landed everyone one of them myself all while fishing for bream, flathead, mulloway and whiting. So keep trying all the same hotspots for your bread and butter fish because you never really know what you’re going to get.

Thanks for all your reports and fish weighed in and feel free to drop us a line at Gem Bait & Tackle on (07) 3287 3868 or email --e-mail address hidden-- I’ll catch you next month.

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