April opens species options
  |  First Published: April 2013

As we slowly trickle into 2013 the fishing is changing and there are a few species that are really making their mark. Throughout April we can be treated to some absolute glamour days on the water for offshore and inshore fishing.


When the days are calm the fishing on the reefs at this time of year can be excellent. The main favourable species getting caught are coral trout, red throat emperor and the popular nannygai.

Fishing in the slightly shallower water can yield top results for all the mentioned fish with depths ranging from 10-25m ideal. Keep your eyes peeled for any signs of bait fish on the sounder as well as visual cues, which can be a current line on the surface, a diving bird or obviously a rippling school of bait that isn’t going to last long at all.

It always pays to have a rod rigged up with a metal slice or Shimano Wax wing lure to cast into any bait schools you see on the surface. There can be myriad species hanging around waiting to belt your lure once you have cast it in, given it time to sink and then wound back as fast as you can.

With the water temperatures slowly starting to decrease the mackerel are improving with their numbers slowly getting higher. You can target mackerel on the reefs in a number of different ways including trolling, float lining and, probably the most exciting, high speed jigging. There are heaps of jigs on the market today and most of them work pretty well for mackerel, such as the Spanyid Raider, TT Blades and the Bumpabar.


Townsville is quite unique with heaps of estuary systems available within a quick drive, ranging from small creeks that are the width of your boat to large rivers with deep water and structure. There are literally hundreds of options when the weather turns sour and pushes you up the estuaries.

The very popular, and surprisingly consistent, Bohle River is well worth launching the boat in this time of year with the chance of catching a multitude of species throughout the day. Using live baits such as small poddy mullet almost guarantees you some action, as they are a favourite food of barramundi and mangrove jack.

Alternatively using fresh dead baits, like garfish fillets and prawns, will see you tangling with bream, flathead, grunter and also mangrove jack.

A popular method is to anchor up towards the mouth of the river in the few channels that flow out. These channels act as a fish highway, with the running tide allowing the fish to travel along feeding as they go. It is simply a matter of getting your lines out there and waiting for a fish to swim past it.

April is another great month to be fishing in Townsville with the a few subtle changes starting to occur. The fishing will be on the improve, so stay tuned and keep your line in the water.

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