Big grunter dominate winter catches
  |  First Published: August 2012

This year has seen the winds blow extra strong and made fishing a ‘wait and see’ proposition.

The big grunter have been around and plenty of tourists have gone home with their bag limits. The Spanish mackerel have turned up and will still be around in August, so bring some good gear.

Looking at the late run of grunter and the Spanish mackerel, the famous blue salmon run will probably turn up around the middle of the month. These speedsters will create havoc with people who put out more than one bait at a time. They hit and go with plenty of power and can tangle lines very easily. Look for them heading north past the airport going north were the dirty water meets the clean. They are clean fighters so as long as you are patient you should not have any problems.

Most baits will work on blue salmon but it can sometimes pay to use a short wire trace and a set of two ganged hooks with a half pilly as bait. This will allow you to get lucky if the spotties or Spaniards are about. There were three Spanish mack caught using this set up last year. Please only take what you need as he blue salmon gather to breed and you will want to catch them next year as well.

I love it when the Fisheries boys are on the job. It can get very frustrating when you anchor up and then get others going past flat out and creating waves. One bloke was doing that and was caught by the boys and given a ticket. He came up to me to complain that when he was anchored people did it to him so it was unfair to single him out. I could not hide a smile and suggested that if he did the right thing then maybe others would follow his example.

One place to fish when the wind gets up is at Normanton. Talk to Tony at the caravan park and he will give you some tips. Just be careful as there are a lot of rock bars that come out of the water at low tide.

You should be able to catch some decent king salmon and the odd barramundi will show up in the late afternoon as the water warms up.

Sweers Island

Early August sees the return of a number of our regular guests, targeting mackerel, so this could be the month for the biggest catch of the year!

We seem to be back to our more normal weather with southeasters in the morning dropping off beautifully in the afternoons.

The weather has been quite cool and brought on the pelagics – look out Lindsay Wellings your 18.4kg Spanish mackerel is under threat as the biggest caught for the season!

Coral trout and nannygai are being caught in good numbers and good sizes. Soft plastics are working well in the shallow reefs and drop-offs.

Queenfish are going off on poppers, around the headlands and giving our guests a good workout!

All in all, a good month of fishing with the weather slowly starting to warm up again.

Watch this space!

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