Not much has changed since last month east of the South Passage Bar, except thee water temperature has risen a touch, and with that a few more pelagic species have turned up.
On charter, the wider grounds have still been producing solid catches of good juvenile snapper and we’ve been getting our bag limit on most trips. Most of the snapper have been around the 40-50cm range, but pleasingly we’ve pulled some solid 3-4kg models.
This time last year we boated our best fish from the wider grounds with snapper at 5-7kg fairly common.
Although we haven’t been spending a lot of time fishing on the 29s, 33s of 35s lately, from all reports they are fishing reasonably well for snapper. We’ve ventured into Shallow Tempest on a few recent charters and there seems to be plenty of bait holding in the area, so I’ll be surprised if we don’t get a good run of bottom and pelagic species this month.
We should see numbers of both Spanish mackerel and wahoo improving this month, so if you’re in the Point Lookout area of around Hutchinson Shoal off Cape Moreton, it would pay to drag a few hi-speeds around. Mixed in with the macks and hoos should be a few rat yellowfin tuna and the ever-present mac tuna. Don’t be put off if these tuna are jumping all over your lures, sometimes it’s just a flick of a switch and the target species will move in. Peak bite times are probably around dawn and dusk, but around tide changes can also see some red-hot action!
For the speedsters, I like to use 15kg line, but make sure your drag are smooth and your hooks razor-sharp. Something that’s also very important is making sure you have an icebox or killtank big enough to put these top-eating fish into. It’s vital to maintain their eating qualities, keeping their flesh firm by bleeding them and the putting them in an ice slurry.
Legal size on both Spaniards and wahoo is 75cm, but you’re only allowed two wahoo, compared to the Spaniard bag limit of three.
The Christmas holiday season is almost upon us, so there will be plenty of boats on the water and around boat ramps, so take that extra bit of care. Also make sure your boat and engine are in good running order, especially if you haven’t used them since the last school holidays. Lastly, your safety gear all needs to be current.
I hope everyone has a safe and happy Christmas and New Year and Santa drops off that new rod and reel you wanted.
• Until next month, enjoy your fishing, take care on the coastal bars, and if you’d like to join me on a charter (max. 8 persons) give me a call on (07) 3822 9527 or 0418 738 750 or visit my website at www.outlawcharters.com.auReads: 371