Love to fish, live to release!
  |  First Published: February 2015

The fishing has been a little hard going but is set to get better as all the holidaymakers vanish. Less humans, more fish, that’s my theory anyway.

Whiting have been a fish that’s been targeted hard over the holidays. From Bribie surf side, Red Beach and all the creek inflows mainly around the mouths of the creeks with Coochin being the strand out producer along with Bells Creek and its surrounding sand banks. If you can’t find whiting in these areas you must be doing something wrong. Make sure you have the freshest bait possible and go into your target area with full stealth at all times.

Bream have been taken in numbers on fresh flesh baits along with the odd grunter. Both fish fight hard and are great on the table, but just keep in mind that your bigger smarter fish will only be feeding in the low light periods of dawn and dusk; you will still catch the odd cracker at any time of the day just not in any numbers.

There have been a few small snapper taken from under the bridge. The size of these guys will climb dramatically when the water temperature drops (March and April), which is when the water temperature declines to about 25°C and under. Your temperature gauge on your sunder can be very handy at times so keep your eye on it.

The mulloway numbers will also climb with the cooler water temperatures. Just watch your size limits with a minimum of 75cm and a bag limit of 2 per person. Time and time again I see hillbillies at the boat ramp bragging of the mulloway they caught only to find out seconds later they were not even of a legal size. All I can say is fish for the future, not for the fame. Do your homework and make sure you do the right thing every time. Our kids will thank us for it one day.

I’ve seen some nice jacks boat side recently. There’s nothing better than seeing the big red flank as it surfaces for the first time and it feels even better when it slides into the net. Now you’ve netted it, there are a few things you need to do to treat it with care. Take a quick happy snap or two and preferably release the beauty to fight and breed another day. These fish are way to cool to kill and eat and that feeling you get when it swims out of your hands is priceless.

The crabs have been hit and miss for some time now, both sandies and muddies. If you want to put in some time and hard work chances are you will get a feed. Just remember you will have your rouge crab pot thief not too far away. I know a lot of crabbers opting to not bother because of this reason, sometimes it’s just not work the hassle. I’ve fished these waters for a long time now, and I used to have to play ‘dodge-the-pot’ with my tinnie, but over the past few years this has not been the case as there are a lot fewer floats on the water for of this reason. I know it’s sad, but it’s true. No one wants to spend time, money and effort setting pots just to come back and find some low-life has ripped you off.

There are hoards of turtles and dugongs in the passage of present; so get out there have some fun with the family and hopefully you will land a few fish. Just remember, fish for the future, not the fame.

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