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Spring brings a fishy ring with it
  |  First Published: September 2013



It's blooming spring so bring on the flowers and the fishing.

What a year we have had in the Bundy area and now spring has sprung, it’s time to hit the water and enjoy the longer, warmer days.

The water temperature is the key this time of the year so finding the systems that warm up first will see you getting into warm water fish earlier. Generally the smaller systems will hold the warmer water so it's time to get on Google Maps and search out a small creek you haven't fished before. With all our creeks having had a good flush out (some have had new paths forged in them by the raging flood waters), there should be some excellent exploring opportunities.

I know I will be dragging out the kayak and revisiting some old creeks I haven't seen for a few years. The reason is as we had such a large overland flow, every farm dam or creek that had fish stoked in it will have dispersed fish far and wide. These rarely visited locations will be very exciting to fish with barramundi, bass and mangrove jack well and truly on my target list. The big question is where?

To give you an idea of where I will be looking, the upper Burnett River is one location as there are already reports of barra and big bass being caught between Paradise Dam and the Walla Wier. I will also be checking out the upper reaches of Littabella Creek, Coonar Creek and I will be visiting the upper Baffle for the first time since the floods. If the water temps are still a bit cool and the bait hasn't moved up the creek yet it will be spring flathead time.

Spring Flathead

The spring flathead bite is the best way to hone your estuary lure fishing skills. It's also a great time to introduce the kids to lure fishing as flathead are usually quit easy to catch.

For those new to the art of lure fishing for flathead here are a couple of easy to remember tips. Flathead live on the bottom so your offering needs to get down to where the fish are so they can eat it. This means if you’re trolling a lure for flathead, it needs to be bouncing off the bottom to get more attention and be in the strike zone. If you’re casting around soft plastics, make sure your jighead is heavy enough to get your plastic down to the bottom. It sounds simple but I see a lot of anglers just casting light plastics in running water then retrieving them without the plastic getting near the bottom.

Second tip, and this is for those who fish sand flats and moving water, flathead will sit facing into the current waiting for their lunch to be delivered by the tide. Flathead will pick an ambush point where the tide delivers fish that are travelling with the tide.

If you put those two tips together, you’ll need to be trolling with the tide and if you’re casting, cast upstream and let your plastic hit the bottom and then retrieve it back by hopping it along the bottom. These are two basic tips that can be expanded and delved into but they are the basics that will help you catch more flathead.

I went a bit old school recently when my old man decided to buy his first boat, it is a circa 1976 v-bottom tinnie that has bench seats and a 2-stroke 25hp Yamaha on the back. He asked if I could take him for a run in it so he could get comfortable with it? Of course I did and I had a ball. We launched at the ramp at Walkers Point on the Burrum River fishing with cousin Gary and targeting flathead. The weather was perfect and the boat handled like a 1976 tinnie and despite the lower back ache associated with spending a few hours sitting on a bench seat, the maiden voyage was a success. The boat is a far cry from my pimped out Polycraft that has all the bells and whistles, but we were on the water and living the dream. It sunk home the value of getting on the water and sharing great times with family and friends despite your boat budget. So get out there get fishing and enjoy the spring weather.

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