Afternoon storm activity and balmy nights are just the right ingredients to fire the fishing up this month in the northern bay. With water temperatures holding warm and steady, fishing activity has really heated up for estuary and inshore anglers of late with many taking advantage of the holidays to duck down early to their local fishing haunts before an afternoon storm arrives.
Fishing in the northern bay has been up and down over the Christmas break but we have really benefited from days of good southeast winds, which has helped push bait schools up from the southern islands bringing along predators big and small to our waters.
Redcliffe Peninsula is where I’ll start this month’s report with fishing holding very stable over the past month and is set to continue provided the NE winds stay absent.
Flathead numbers have slowly increased lately with the southern end of the Peninsula holding better size. Try the Clontarf foreshore from Pelican Park to Woody Point, sand flats outside Hays Inlet and the mouth of the Pine River and the mouth of Cabbage Tree Creek with anglers getting good fish on larger soft plastics in bright colours.
Estuary cod have shown their gritty faces all through the peninsula with bait and lure fishos coming to blows with these aggressive predators. North Reef, Queens Beach, Drury Point and The Wells have been noted hotspots with aggressive fighting on the angler’s part allowing more cod battles to be won than lost. For the lure junkies, deep divers have been recipe for cod hook ups, for example OSP Dunk 48SP, Atomic Crank 38, Jackall Deep Chubby, Imakatsu IS Wasp 50 an Ecogear CX40HS with colour having no bearing.
Bream numbers have remained stable of late with anglers having good days and bad depending on the direction of the wind. To combat this anglers have been forced to not rely on their usual bream spots but to venture to new grounds in search for better fishing.
With North Reef being quiet on the bream front, the lower Peninsula, such as Suttons Beach, Woody Point, and the lower reaches of the Pine River, have been more fruitful with the mouth of Cabbage Tree Creek at night even producing bream on the incoming tide, for those who can brave the mozzies!
Good-sized snapper are still filtering through at the infamous North Reef with this year’s snapper season showing good wears, even as the water temps have increased. Early (I mean really early) mornings have been successful for the keen ones amongst us with larger shad style soft plastics doing the damage. Upgraded leader size has also benefited anglers in landing these prized reds as low light hasn’t impacted larger diameter leaders.
Good summer whiting have been reported in the South Pine River over recent times with numbers reaching the 30s in a session being reported. Bloodworms and fresh yabbies have been the flavour of the month as per usual with afternoons being more prosperous for anglers loving an afternoon session.
The Bribie end of the northern bay has been very kind to fishers over the festive season with increased boat and jetski traffic not affecting the fishing. Summer whiting and sand crabs have been the two outstanding catches with most whiting anglers being rewarded for dropping a couple of pots before heading to their favourite spots.
Red Beach and Skirmish Point are definitely worth a try for whiting in the early mornings along with the mouth of Ningi and Glasshouse creeks producing sizable catches as well.
Sand Crabs have been everywhere throughout the main channel so exercise caution when travelling around the passage as crab pot floats are nearly out numbering the seagulls over these summer months!
Flathead are being caught between Sylvan Beach and White Patch on the ebbing tide with bream reported in Pacific Harbour canals, Ningi and Donnybrook flats, lower reaches of Hussey Creek and also Cooks and Tiger Rocks being the place to be at the top of the tide for the lure extremists.
Reports of prized mangrove jack being caught around our creeks have been filtering through with anglers taking advantage of our hot humid weather to tame these toothy brawlers. Upper reaches of the Caboolture River close to the highway, Coochin Creek, Upper Pine River and Pelican Waters Canals have drawn many successes over these balmy months with eager anglers even resorting to night sessions to pursue these rewarding fighters. Live baiting (eg. poddy mullet) has yielded solid results with soft plastics like Z-Man 4” Diezel Minnows and 3” Atomic Plazo Prongs accounting for numbers as well.Reads: 1254