Winter winds fail to chill
  |  First Published: August 2012

A marked increase in the prevailing westerly winds blowing over our Northern Bay has shown little impact on slowing the great run of fishing we have had over the winter.

As reported last month, the species on everyone’s lips and dinner tables has been the crowd favourite, and king of the winter seas, the humble snapper.

It’s not hard to locate the angling hotspots in which there have been reports of good snapper being caught. North Reef at Scarborough, the south end of the green zone at Woody Point and Garnet Rock have certainly been keeping the anglers around the peninsula happy, along with areas in the Pumicestone Passage. Areas like White Patch, the coffee rock ledges on the northern end of the Bribie Bridge and the mouth of Pacific Harbour have kept locals entertained with decent catches in the early hours of the morning especially on the rising tide.

Baits have dominated snapper numbers, however some persistent anglers have had good success on soft plastics with the standout performers being 5” Z-Man StreakZ and GrubZ, Atomic Plazos 2 3/4" and 3 3/4" jerk minnows and 100mm Squidgy Wrigglers. Colours have shown no consistency but sticking with the old rule of clearer coloured plastics for clean waters and darker colours for dirtier water should bring you success as these relentless feeders show no mercy. Keep your jighead size as light as weather conditions permit with a twitch-twitch-sink retrieve working greatly.

Another winner on the soft plastic front has been the likable flathead. Numbers have been hot and cold over this winter but diehard ‘lizard hunters’ have still been managing to fill their quota. Areas of mention include the fishing platform on the Ted Smout Bridge, Deepwater Bend, the mouth of Cabbage Tree Creek and Clontarf foreshore. Also worth a look in the Bribie area would be the drop-offs around Toorbul and Turners Camp Road where some big lizards have been snagged during this winter.

While talking about the Bribie area, local fishos have been getting solid numbers of winter whiting at the Cockle Banks just south of Bribie. Blood worms, both fresh and preserved, have been the pick of the baits with less consistency coming from the use of squid. Be sure to keep tabs on your bag limit while fishing for these delectable table fish with the limit being 50 winter/trumpeter whiting per angler.

Bream have been on their seasonal spawning run with good numbers being caught in all corners of the bay with better numbers coming in deeper waters. Schooling in the deep is common for bream this time of year so be prepared to concentrate your attack on these areas in your favourite fishing holes.

Soft plastics like 2 3/4" Atomic Plazo Jerk Minnows in carolina pumpkin holographic, 2 1/2” Z-Man GrubZ in watermelon red, Ecogearaqua 50mm bream prawns in king prawn and 2” Gulp Shrimp in peppered prawn colour have been the favourites among breamers throughout the Northern Bay. Again, keeping your jighead weight as light as possible is the key but when fishing deeper waters and ensure your plastic gets to the bottom as bream are commonly bottom feeders.

For the lure lovers, using small cranks mimicking baitfish have been the key this winter with favourites being Ecogear CX35HS, Cranka Deep Cranks and the trusty Atomic Bream Shads. Due to water clarity being quite good of late, clearer colours have worked a treat with darker colours working better in the upper reaches of most of our northern bay estuaries.

Along with the improved water clarity and decreased temperatures has come the marked increase in the numbers of squid around the Redcliffe Peninsula. Woody Point and Redcliffe jetties are working well at night, and targeting the shallow bommies throughout the peninsula during the day is the key to bagging these tasty cephalopods. North Reef, Redcliffe Point and Osbourne Point have produced good numbers during the last month and should continue provided the water clarity remains high. Yamashita and Yo Zuri squid jigs have been popular among anglers with Megabass Dart Crew jigs proving to be worth their weight in gold… all 14g of it!

With our spring season just around the corner be sure to enjoy the remaining weeks of cool weather and great fishing. I’ve really enjoyed fishing the cooler months without the worry of the beating sun on my neck, so we really have nothing to complain about we have it pretty good!

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