One option closes another opens
  |  First Published: November 2013

Large tides flushed the systems out and made the past month extremely good for fishing, which can be seen from the recent Barra Bounty results. However, as of midday November 1 the closed season for barra starts meaning they are now a no-take species to recreational anglers.

Fitzroy and the Narrows

It’s now time to get out for a lure fishing session to target the many jacks, blue salmon and king threadfin salmon in the river not to mention the large bream and grunter up in the Narrows.

The Fitzroy and the Narrows all warmed early this year from the lack of cool weather in winter, and now the fish are going off! Typical estuary lures are in high demand and are all pulling fish, especially the blade market with hardbody and soft body blades. The hundreds of new prawn imitation lures are also working just as well.

Plastic vibes should be cast right into the snags and worked slowly up and down to the boat. The Narrows has been highly successful for a variety of species and 60-70mm shallow divers worked slowly from the edge are picking up the most fish.

It is far more productive to fish on the smaller tides where there is less flow and current.

The recent barra competition in the Fitzroy saw many large species caught with an overall average length of 70-80cm. Previous to the close season, some great barra had been caught over the 1m mark and most of the fish were sitting along the rock formations in the river.

Mouths, Creeks and Beaches

Rock bars along the creek mouths and close to shore islands are producing massive grunter on hardbody vibes and live mullet.

Tannum Sands, as usual, is producing many good fish that are coming from the Boyne River, Wild Cattle Creek and South Trees. Many fish can be found schooled up along the rubble beds just inside all these areas. Lightly weighted crab or prawn imitation plastics will pull these fish time and time again with a small deep diving minnow working equally as well.

Yabbies are also a great way to go, especially if you’re taking young ones down to the beach for the day as they attract many species of fish and are easy to find and gather. Many people tend to break off the nippers on the yabby but I have always had more luck leaving them on.

For any estuary situation some 6-8lb fluoro leader is a great place to begin, with some size 0 sinkers and a size 2 longshank for the yabbies.

Freshwater lagoons

With the hot, high humidity days currently experienced, the freshwater lagoons and creeks are riddled with fish. Surface walkers and poppers have been getting them regularly when erratically twitched and slowly worked over the top of the water.

By keeping your rod almost vertical and shaking the tip while slowly reeling, the lure will get the perfect presentation required. The reason for this action, and not the constant bloop, is because if you take the time to look at many of the water boils and surface takes there are little insects erratically moving on the top trying to get to the bank. This is what we are trying to imitate.


If you want to catch a crab or two, the best bait lately is reef fish frames, with mullet head coming a close second. Fortunately mullet head can be bought from anywhere and take no time at all to rig a pot up with them. A simple bait clip between the eyes and the mullet head is good to go.

The rules still apply at 4 pots per person with the pots and floats both named. Label kits can be picked up for next to nothing and come with a waterproof marker, labels and zippy ties. Do the right thing when out crabbing to preserve this fishing method for future generations.

Fish light get the bite!

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