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Cleared to Fish
  |  First Published: March 2015



The year is charging by and it’s hard to believe that it’s March already.

Unfortunately the fishing hasn’t been as active as the passing of time and has been up and down lately due to the dirty water. Just as the water has started to clear another huge downpour and series of thunderstorms rip through the Gold Coast and the water dirties up again. As a result finding clearer water with some nice flow and baitfish is the key to success, with mangrove jack, bream, flathead and trevally all likely captures when you find such locations.

March is the perfect time for surface fishing, and the main species that comes to mind is mangrove jack. Fishing the surface will produced in both dirty and clean water and on any tide, although the high tide seems best, with early morning and late afternoon producing most fish. A few successful lures on the market include Lucky Craft G-Splash, Bolt Poppers and River2Sea Bubble Pop, and the standard walk the dog style surface lures. Cast these around rock and retaining walls, floating pontoons and around mangroves lined banks, and be prepared for aggressive bites as they’ll come hard and often without notice.

Bream will start to fire up with plenty of bait getting around the canals, especially on the surface, with small walk the dog surface lures fished around pontoon and sandbanks a fun and effective way to catch fish.

Hitting the tweed

The Tweed has been going off at the moment with plenty of kingfish and trevally to be found on the rock walls of the Tweed River bar. Fish incoming tides with soft plastics and you’ll be in with a chance to land some big fish. There has been plenty of reports of big mangrove jack being caught upriver of the Tweed Gold Club, with shallow diving hard bodies fitted with upgraded trebles and rings the key to landing big fish when fishing the mangrove edges and rock walls. Soft plastics have also accounted for some fish with large paddle tails such as the new 4” Z-Man SwimmerZ accounting for some solid mangrove jack. Good numbers of flathead have been caught at the Terranora flats on the run out tide, with shallow diving hard bodies, plastics and blades tempting a lot of fish. Daiwa Double Clutches in particular have accounted for a lot of quality fish!

Pulling a blade

Blades have been performing well of late, and fishing them light and slowly across the bottom around bridges is one of the most effective ways to catch fish. I have lost some insanely big fish and caught some superb flathead, bream and trevally doing exactly that. I have recently installed a sounder on my kayak, Lowrance 4 HDI, and I'm now able to sound up fish, read the depth and find the bait.

Night fishing is worth a shot this month, and there are a few great techniques to use, with live bait, noisy surface lures, blades, hardbodies and paddle tail soft plastics all gun options after dark. The 4” Z-man DieZel MinnowZ in mood ring colour has dominated along rock walls and bridge pylons, especially for those targeting mangrove jack.

After dark

There has been reports of plenty of trevally and tarpon working the Coombabah River rock walls at night, with spots with lights shinning on the water holding the best concentrations of bait, and as a result the best fish, with small surface lures fished in these locations producing some red hot action.

Hopefully the storms will decrease this month allowing the water to clear up and the fishing to become more consistent and predictable. While we should still get a few afternoon storms their regularity and hopefully severity should wane making for better fishing. Overall March is a great month for surface fishing both throughout the day and also night, so make sure you get out there and do as much of it as you can. Well that's it for me for this month, hope you get out there and smash the fish!

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