As winter marches on, most of the regular cold water target species are firmly in place by August. Now is the time to use all that previous winter fishing knowledge and catch what Brisbane has to offer.
Some anglers I speak to tell me they don’t use bait of any kind at all since switching to plastics, lures or fly, which is fine for some, but losing touch with bait altogether seems a real shame in my book. Bait fishing can be a relaxing day in comparison to hundreds of casts for no result, which has happened to all of us at some stage. Taking the time to look around, sip coffee and have a lazy chat with a mate while waiting for that rod to buckle, is not a bad day out.
Bream are still present in open water, including good shows on surf beaches north and south of Brisbane. All foreshores from Sandgate to Redcliffe are producing great catches. As it should be in August, there will be some outstanding fish taken in the above mentioned areas. Jew fish will also keep us busy, as they did in July.
Luderick are at their peak in August and weed, later in the season, is more easily obtainable than in earlier months. If chasing luderick for the first time I would suggest an experienced partner to avoid frustration in this very specialised form of angling.
Flathead are always present, but lately the Pine River just keeps on giving, particularly in the lower reaches from Deepwater Bend to the mouth.
Longtail tuna have shown in good numbers right across the bay, with the average weight around 14kg reported by anglers.
Snapper are holding their own, with Mud Island, Harry Atkinson and areas around Peel Island all giving great reports of fish up to 7kg, with most around 1-3kg.
Tailor can show up anywhere in the bay and quite often what appears to be feeding tuna, turns out to be tailor. Large specimens can be pulled from deep water schools, so it’s always worth a look.
Squid are also around at the moment. Weed beds from about the mid to southern end of Moreton Island are producing well. When squid are located in good numbers, send one back down with a couple of 6/0’s as luggage, as many species follow these tasty rockets around.
Water clarity in the river at this time of year is fantastic and coupled with clear winter conditions will make for some outstanding fishing.
Bream and luderick are in strong numbers in most backwaters and current-free pockets, day and night. In my experience, natural patterns for bream work best during August, with hardihead style hardbodies are always a good choice.
Jew fish are still being caught in most locations, with the southern side of the mouth along the main wall doing the job. For those prepared to brave the cold for a night session, live pike or mullet seem to be the pick bait but if live bait is not used then large fillets of either will do nicely.
Snapper just keep showing up in all the favourite haunts, on bait and artificials, with full tides and the first of the run-out producing well.
July was great on our lakes and dams and August should be no different.
North Pine turned up some true trophy bass for friends of mine recently, with some coming in at 58cm. Poppers, at night, were doing the trick but not small ones; 80-100mm is not uncommon equipment for anglers who know this water well.
During the day we sometimes have to wait a litter longer for things to warm before any action occurs, especially around edges and shallow coves. Golden perch seem to fall into this slot more so than bass.
Bait fishing in winter can be very productive and one technique not practised very often is an airtrap leader. A small section of clear tube around 3-4mm in diameter and 50-60mm long, sealed at both ends and fished on a standard running sinker rig, will stop shrimp hiding in leaf litter and weed as it holds bait up off the bottom. Air traps can be fished very close to the hook for best results.
Somerset is a beautiful place in winter and slow trolled deep divers have been working well lately in all areas.
Snapper have been on the chew recently with quality fish coming from most of our local inshore and offshore reefs. Both bait and artificial are working well, but the standout performer has been the Z-Man Scented Jerk Shadz 5” in new penny. While there are plenty of plastics out there that catch snapper, on the last couple of occasions, for whatever reason, this plastic has been very successful.
When selecting a jighead there’s a couple of key things to consider – water depth and current. Depending on these factors you’ll find yourself using anything from 1/4-1/2oz. The general rule of thumb is fish as light as you can and try and keep the plastic looking as natural as possible.
There are plenty of different ways to work your plastics. A couple of popular methods are to cast in the direction of the drift, making sure your plastic is in contact with the bottom, or simply place your rod in the rod holder, open the bail arm to get the jig to the bottom and let the wave action and boat do the rest. It’s a lazy way to fish, but it works.
As well as snapper there will be other reef species available, particularly a little wider, such as pearl perch, parrot and a wide variety of others.
At the Tackle shop we are continually expanding our range. We now have a lot of new products in store at very competitive prices. We have something for everyone, from beginner to expert. Also, we still have the largest ranges of 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 would like more information on tips and techniques, locations or for an up to date fishing report please give us a call on 38629015 or just call in 1754 Gympie rd Carseldine (the Caltex service centre on the way out of town). Myself and my team are all mad keen fishos and are always happy to help.
Airtrap leader: A small section of clear tube around 3-4mm in diameter and 50-60mm long, sealed at both ends and fished on a standard running sinker rig.Reads: 1585