Full steam ahead
  |  First Published: November 2012

This time of year is a cracking time to hit our waterways as it has everything; sun, warm waters and long days.

As we enter into another steamy summer it’s not too hard to fire the fishing eagerness inside us all as the warmer weather treats us with kindness – until it rains for a couple of days straight!

So I guess you are keen to see what’s going on in our fruitful Northern Bay. By all reports anglers are happy throughout.

Summer whiting

Flavour for the month would have to go the delectable table favourite, the faithful summer whiting. Anglers have been having great success nabbing good bags of whiting throughout the bay with bloodworms doing the trick on most occasions. I was taught at a young age, always thread a small 5-8cm piece of red tubing (available at most tackle stores) above your hook as this acts as an attractant to summeries to attack your bait.

Good whiting catches are being reported out of Dohles Rocks up the Pine River, Suttons Beach at Margate, Bribie’s Red Beach, lower reaches of Coochin Creek and the shallower waters of Mission Point.

Top of the tide and the start of the run-out tide has been the general consensus with these feisty feeders sniffing around tide lines and run-offs looking for food.

Sand crabs have come in at a close second, as anglers have been rewarded for their hard work and patience when venturing out to score a feed. Hot spots have been the Woody Point and Clontarf foreshore area, the mouth of the Pine River, the green markers south of the Bribie bridge and throughout the Pumicestone Passage.

It’s also worth dropping a few pots when you next head up river as the recent rains are sure to put the muddies into gear to be flushed out. Ensure your pots are clearly marked and keep your nose in your own feed bag as tampering with others’ property is not cool.


Another species that has been showing a rapid increase in numbers of late has been the trusty bream. In all corners of our Northern Bay you will find these aggressive bottom crustacean feeders with dawn and dusk being the pick of the times to encounter good sizes.

Baits like mullet strips, cooked prawns and chicken breast have been working well in these warmer months but the real action has been on the lure and soft plastic front.

For the lure fanatics, try Ecogear CX35HS in colours 533 and 527, Atomic Crank 38 Deep in Tim’s Prawn and ghost silver, Jackall Chubby Shallow in suji shrimp and ghost gill and also worth some court time is the Pontoon 21 Crack Jack 48SP Deep in bleeding prawn and threadfin shad.

Surface fishing has also been on fire with loud colours and fast erratic retrieves winning most battles. Lures of mention are the Megabass Dog X Jr (albino raigyo), Bassday Sugarpen 70 (HF-119) and Ecogear PX55 (392). As for soft plastics the outstanding performer has to be the Z-Man 2.5” GrubZ in the new bloodworm colour.


Flathead numbers are still remaining consistent with anglers fishing run-offs and creek mouths having good success. Outstanding areas this month have been Cabbage Tree Creek, upper reaches of the Pine River, Ningi Creek, Donnybrook Flats and outside the jet boat club at Caloundra.

Soft plastics have yielded great success, especially Gulp 3” Minnows in peppered prawn and 2 3/4” Atomic Plazo Jerk Minnows in carolina pumpkin holographic. Ensure your jighead weight is enough to get to the bottom during stronger current flow as this is the strike zone for these bottom feeders.

Estuary Cod

Another species that has shown its face in the early summer months has been the hard fighting estuary cod.

Redcliffe Peninsula has produced good legal-sized cod of late with many hard fought battles leaving anglers frustrated as they have resulted in bust-offs due to the dirty fighting tactics of these fish.

Upgraded monofilament mainlines and leaders are often necessary to combat these bust-offs but hard yakka at the start of the fight usually is enough to turn the cod’s head away from attempting to return to it’s home.

For the bait fisher, lightly weighted whitebait and hardiheads are working well with pilchard halves giving a good show as well.

For the lure junkies, deep diving shad style lures have been the pick of the bunch like Atomic Shiner 45, Jackall Soul Shad 52 and OSP Dunk 48SP with 5lb-6lb leader being adequate strength to land good cod.

As traffic on boat ramps increases over these warmer days, be sure to exercise some patience when launching and retrieving your boat as we are sure to share more of the waterways with jet and water skiers. Also keep in mind to lend a helping hand when needed as who knows when you might be the one needing that helping hand yourself! And don’t forget your sunscreen!!


In all corners of Northern Bay you will find aggressive bottom crustacean feeder bream, especially at dawn and dusk.


Estuary cod has left many anglers frustrated lately. These hard-fighting fish have caused plenty of bust-offs due to their dirty fighting tactics.

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