After a hectic and sometimes arduous working year, we can now look forward to some ‘me’ time to hit the water over the holiday period. With the summer really heating up and the easterly winds in full swing, the Northern Bay have been a little bit of a fishing haven over the last month and is set to continue with the rising air and sea temperatures.
Sweeping warmer currents from the Southern Bay have increased solid bait activity with the SE winds topping off the piscatorial dessert for us in the northern waters. This has seen a marked increased activity of bream, juvenile snapper, mulloway and even threadfin salmon in our local estuarine areas. Sand whiting are keeping our east facing beaches somewhat interesting.
December is one of my favourite times of year to chase these feisty feeders with topwater and surface approaches high on my agenda. Whether fishing the mangrove lined edges of the Pine River or over the countless bommies of Redcliffe, you would be a hard to please person if you didn’t find some entertainment in watching bream chase a surface lure with gusto. Topwater lures work effectively this time of year including OSP Bent Minnows, Luckycraft Sammys, Megabass Dog X Jrs, Zipbaits Skinny Pop and Bassday SugaPens. Add an extra application of attracting scent to make these lures delectable to bream.
Where is a good place to use these lures I hear you ask? Well, rubble bottom flats holding water around 2-4ft is an ideal start with many places fitting this description including; in the Pumicestone Passage, Ningi, Donnybrook, Glasshouse and Elimbah Creeks, Cooks and Tiger Rocks. Redcliffe has a gaggle of these areas both north and south of the peninsula with our major river the Pine, fishing well along the mangrove edges north of the highway bridge. Mid and deep diving cranks have also been working well in these areas with many solid bream around the 27-28 cm fork length making a regular appearance in the landing net.
Shallow water juvenile snapper have been popping up around the Redcliffe Peninsula with many anglers bagging a nice limit of table-sized legals in quick time. Low lit hours and fresh baits have been the most successful combination with many lure fanatics using soft plastics and Cranka Crabs to good effect. North Reef has been the normal hotspot with the southern waters outside the green zone at Woody Point also proving fruitful. Some reports have also come out of Osbourne and Redcliffe Points giving anglers plenty of choice when fishing the Peninsula. At the Bribie end, the Ripples outside of the Pacific Harbour Canal system have been producing the odd nice juvenile snapper along with the Bribie Bridge during night sessions. Cooks Rocks along the deeper edges is also worth a try, as juvenile snapper often populate that area.
Numbers of sand whiting have definitely been up since the mercury has risen with the usual hotspots on fire in the Northern Bay. Southern beaches of Bribie have been producing good numbers with many locals finding the calmer morning waters to be the most fruitful. Bloodworms have been the pick of the bait along with fresh yabbies and squid to a lesser extent. Some anglers have also decided to run lighter leaders off their swivels to increase their bite rate.
Margate foreshore and the lower reaches of the Pine River especially around Hays Inlet, have also been working well especially during the last half of the ebbing tide with bloodworms again proving their weight in gold.
Flathead numbers have been a little hit and miss over the past month with anglers having good sessions only to be disappointed over the next few. Mission Point, Toorbul and Sylvan Beach flats have been the best spots in the Pumicestone with the mouth of Cabbage Tree Creek and Clontarf foreshore being the pick of the southern spots.
Good numbers have been coming out of Bramble Bay recently with size being the issue at times. Sifting through numbers of undersize sand crabs has still been leaving patient anglers a good catch definitely rewarding the effort for the day. Pumicestone Passage has been on fire with good numbers of sand crabs caught all through the system along with it’s neighbour, the Caboolture River, where reports of good hauls are concentrated towards the lower reaches.
With increased water activity over these holidays be sure to recheck your boat’s safety gear before you head out next. Because minimum requirements change according to the waters you are fishing, be sure to check the Maritime Safety Queensland website at http://www.msq.qld.gov.au/safety/safety-equipment-recreational-ships.aspx to ensure your boat safety is up to speed this summer. A fine on the water can put a real dampener on your day!Reads: 913