Try something new
  |  First Published: April 2014

Most of us have had fishing trips that didn’t go as planned due to unforseen circumstances. It could be that you ran out of time, the tide doesn’t suit the area or maybe a mate couldn’t come. It’s at times like these that you have to think on your feet.

Such a situation happened to me. I had planned to go fishing early one morning at a new spot I’d stumbled across a couple weeks earlier. However, due to the start of a rising tide and a steep bank I was unable to beach my boat and, as I needed to fish this new spot by foot, it rendered it inaccessible.

This early morning session was my only opportunity to get out for a fish on this day, so I was left with a decision: where to go? I thought about returning to one of my regular haunts that I’d been hitting the last couple of weekends but I was keen to try somewhere new and closer to home.

I decided on South Trees Inlet at Boyne Island. I launched the boat at the South Trees bridge and headed downstream cautiously, as it was low tide and there were plenty of gravel/rock bars hiding just below the surface. Although hazardous, it was these very same rock bars (which formed narrow corridors) that had enticed me to the area after spotting them on Google Earth. They make great structure for the bait fish and estuarine species.

I found one of these corridors creating a funnel effect for the water and bait passing through. The target species in areas such as these are mangrove jack and barra, however you can also expect a possible bycatch of flathead, bream, fingermark, trevally or cod.

I had noticed that there were plenty of juvenile prawns in the mangrove drains on the journey to my destination, so I chose to use a Zerek Live Shrimp. These lures are pretty much snag proof and the terrain I was fishing was extremely rocky. While I didn’t get any barra this time around I did manage a few mangrove jack, flathead and trevally – so my exploratory trip turned out well after all.

As for the Boyne River, barra are still on the chew from the mouth right through to Pikes Crossing and are being taken on hardbodies, soft plastics and live mullet. Just be wary of keeping fish from up past the Benaraby bridge as there have been reports of mass barra and catfish dying there, and the cause is still unclear.

Another thing to note when launching your boat at the Benaraby bridge is to park your vehicle well up from the regular high tide mark. As a couple of unwary anglers found out, when it’s a king tide your vehicle will get swamped up to the door handles.

Other reports have come in with salmon being caught up at the Narrows on livies and soft vibes. From the reef when the wind had stopped blowing for a day or two, grassy sweetlip , coral trout, cod, and red emperor have been taken on squid, pillies and trolled hardbodies.

So let’s hope this wind dies down and we have a good month of fishing.

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