Cool weather catches
  |  First Published: May 2015

The Easter break was a busy period for many, both on and off the water. We saw a lot of people out on the blue enjoying the beautiful weather, and with all the extra boats out fishing it did make for some busy traffic on a lot of the popular fishing locations.

Courtesy is a word that comes to mind during these busy periods. Always be courteous of fellow boaties already fishing a mark. It won’t kill you to jump on the VHF and ask before you anchor up right on their back doorstep. Courtesy goes a long way, and most people will appreciate your thoughtful gesture.

The Spanish are coming

As mentioned last month we have been seeing great numbers of Spanish mackerel about and this should continue in the coming months. The standard techniques work on these guys, including trolling lures, swim baits, floating livebaits, and jigging artificials. Artificial fishing is proving more and more popular these days and we have been great believers of this technique, and we have been challenging ourselves and our guests with this approach with great result. Plastics, metals slugs and a variety of lures have been used.

Getting Jiggy

A popular choice for our reef species has been the Shimano Lucanus jig. This is an excellent small squid-like jig that the fish absolute love and can be used by tying it directing onto your leader, or rigged drop shot style in deep water or fast current locations where more weight is required. Not too much action is needed with this jig, as we have found gentle lifts provide the best hook ups. Even the lift and drop of the boat on the water’s surface can be enough movement to make this lure work. Blue colour has been working well, although various other colours are also very productive. Also don’t be discouraged by the small hooks on it, as they are very strong and very capable of handling big fish.

A variety of species have been caught on artificials including Spanish mackerel, cobia, coral trout, long nose emperor, fingermark, nannygai, red emperor, cod, and black jewfish. Next time you plan a fishing trip, pick up a couple and give this technique a crack and see how you go. It may not produce massive numbers of fish the first time you try them, however practice makes perfect and you will be landing great fish with out getting your hands, or boat dirty from messing with bait.

Island time

The islands have been fishing insanely well of late and will continue to do so this month. Coral trout have been biting well with good numbers being pulled from the fringing reefs around the islands. Sweetlip and nannygai have also been biting well in these same areas.

The wider reefs and shoals have also been producing fantastic numbers of red throat emperor and coral trout. So if the weather permits, taking the time to travel a little further afield will often pay off. Look for the building moon phases when heading out for a fish as this will generally produce better fishing. Of course always make sure all your safety equipment is up to date and your boat is in good working order if you intend on travelling out that far as you are a long way from help. Things can turn ugly very fast out there so always be prepared, and make sure you’re a member of your local VMR.

Good luck if you are heading out on the water this month, and remember catching a fish is a bonus!

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