With the shift in weather, we can expect the fishing options to open up here in Hervey Bay.
Snapper are still the main focus for many anglers trying for a few fish before they disappear for another year. The Arty fished well last month for fish in the 3-6 kg range, and should hold a few fish this month, depending on the water temperature. Other places worth trying are Moon Ledge, The Outer Banks, the Burrum 8-mile and 25-fathom hole for late season snapper.
The local reefs are still fishing well for a mixture of coral bream, cod, trout, blackall, small snapper and tuskies along Big Woody, Bagimba, the Picnics and Mckenzies Ledge.
There are a few big local squid still kicking around and even if they aren’t your preference to eat, they make great bait for almost everything that swims. In the estuaries, winter whiting are still on the move off Big Woody, Point Vernon and Gatakers Bay. Flathead are abundant and should only fire up more as the water warms, and bream have continued to average 35-40cm at most local known hot spots.
As we lead into the warmer weather, the pelagic action will only increase as the water temperature rises. Everything from big cobia, mackerel, tuna and billfish will come back on the radar. Tactics to target pelagics vary from casting and trolling to vertically fishing plastics and jigs around beacons, reefs and wrecks.
Even when you’re bait fishing, it’s worth a few drops with a jig or floating a pilly back on a gang to value add your fishing. With a blend of winter and summer fish around, you never know what you will catch at the moment.
The southern gutters has been producing plenty of red fish. Mixed bags of red emperor, coral trout, nannygai and snapper over 8kg have occupied the ice boxes of many boats lately. Just remember with the bigger snapper that you are only allowed 1 fish over 75cm.
The sharks seem to have backed off lately too, which is a bonus when you’re catching quality fish like that, no one likes losing them to the taxman!Reads: 501