After an extension of summer that some may have called autumn, it’s been quite a pleasant change to have some cool weather. Air temperatures have started to decrease due to westerlies, with the water temperature ever so slowly following the cooling trend. With the westerly winds producing ultra-cloudless days, many anglers have struggled to find fish during the daylight hours. The low-lit hours have taken honours in the ‘ideal fishing time’ stakes.
The number of bream has been great, and as we settle into the middle of the bream spawn, the fishing is looking pretty good for anglers in all corners of the bay. Timing has been the key to catch bream in the northern bay lately with days around the full moon crucial to the arithmetic.
As bream venture to deeper cleaner waters to spawn, the Caloundra end of the Pumicestone Passage will be in contention as a bream hotspot in winter. Other pockets of schooled bream have started to appear around the bay; however, many anglers are sworn to secrecy as to the whereabouts of these fish in case fishing pressure causes the bream to move out of the area. We can learn from this, and choose to fish deeper, cleaner and tidal spots over the cooler months.
After the full and new moons, bream become ravenous, commonly hitting up their shallow water jaunts to chase baitfish and prawns to satisfy their insatiable needs. Soft plastics really come into play over this time, as you can fish them deep on 1/12oz and 1/8oz weighted jigheads for when fish are schooling in deeper waters. Fish the plastics light, when chasing bream in low light hours up in shallower waters. Vibes and Cranka Crabs are also a good option for the deep, as their presentation is excellent.
Areas fishing well have been upper reaches of the Pine River, Clontarf Foreshore, Otter Rock, North Reef, Bongaree, Dunlop’s Gutter, Gallagher’s Point and the boardwalk at Bulcock Beach at Caloundra.
Juvenile snapper numbers have been steady over the last month, with the cool weather set to ramp things up. Smaller models are being picked up around the bottom of the Redcliffe Peninsula and the mouth of the Brisbane River, with the bigger models set to come in the next month or two. Scattered reports have come from Bribie, with anglers picking the old juvenile snapper from The Ripples and under the Main Bridge, especially at dusk or at night. North Reef and Queens Beach have been the regular hotspots, with popularity growing for Garnet Rock and Margate during days when the westerly winds blow.
The tasty cephalopods have again graced us with their presence this winter with numbers appearing throughout the Redcliffe Peninsula. With the southern bay on fire early this winter, we have slowly gathered momentum, as the weather gets cooler and cooler. Squid jigs come in all shapes, sizes and colours, and anglers have found solid colours to work better in clearer waters and prawn patterned colours to work best in waters with decreased visibility. Rocky points and outcrops around the peninsula have worked well on rising tides, with a constant rolling retrieve helping to keep the lure in the strike zone and away from weed growth.
Lizard numbers have been good. As the weather cools, many flathead are taking advantage of the clear weather to ambush prey in the shallows. The recent rains have provided adequate colouring in the water, which has proved advantageous to anglers fishing for flathead in skinny waters. Large shad style soft plastics and sizeable baits like mullet strips and pilchard halves have been among the favourable baits for anglers and many have opted for both techniques when one hasn’t worked. Recent hotspots have been the newly refurbished Shorncliffe Pier, the lower reaches of the Pine (especially the mouth of Bald Hills Creek) and under the Ted Smout Bridge, Hays Inlet, Burpengary Creek, Cooks Rocks, Sylvan Beach (near Pacific Harbour) and Gallaghers Gutter.
‘Many strings to your bow’ is a phrase used to describe having more than one skill that you can use if you need to. This is important to fishing as many techniques can increase your catch rate and some days your usual favourite technique may not work!Reads: 380