If you’re fishing the reef, rivers or dams the fishing is at its best this time of year with warm waters firing up the fish.
The reefs are all firing but the changing weather conditions can be a worry. I suggest all anglers’ stay away from the northwesterly winds. These unpredictable winds can leave smaller boats in dire straits trying to belt their way home in atrocious conditions.
Your other option is to go barra fishing, as barra love falling a barometer and onshore breezes. The secret to fishing this area is to find a section that hasn’t been fished for a while. If you have a chart plotter you can find great reefs. If not, buy a paper chart as you will be amazed at their accuracy – just try not to fish the marks that every one else is fishing.
If you have been reading QFM lately you will have noticed all the cobia pictures. The larger catch sizes can be attributed to less fishing pressure along our shores with less boats working due to the cost of fuel.
Offshore areas such as The Swains Reef have noticed a significant impact on this fishery by the live trout industry, line fishers and number of charter boats. The inshore areas were flogged for years so pros and charter operators have been forced offshore.
If you work on a rising barometer whilst trolling and watching the bottom on your sounder, look for a school of birds working the surface. If you see some terns it means there is some bait around.
I have one special spot that is catching some really big fish so if you want to catch something between 10-50kg give me a call. We have also caught massive reds, yellowtail kingfish, amberjack, cod, snapper and coral trout.
If you want to catch marlin or sailfish, some of the best light tackle game fishing is on offer from 1770 to Hervey Bay. People often make the mistake of beefing up the hard ware on the tackle with wire and shackles. Steel or wire in the water produce electromagnetic fields that fish are highly sensitive to and 9/10 times I find that no wire or steel works best. I just use 150lb mono on my lures and all I do is double the leader over and use two crimps. If the fish bite off the hook the lure stays and most wahoo and mackerel are tail biters that usually take the hook on the rear. I have caught some huge mackerel and wahoo on 8kg line using this lure tackle set up.
You can also catch dolphinfish, wahoo, Spanish mackerel and all of the tuna species.
The best lures are not always the cheapest. If you buy cheap lues just check that the centre hole is central and the lure is symmetrical. The two best lures to buy are Tropic Angler or Pakulas.
1770 have produced small blacks and yellowfin tuna since June and is really worth checking out the bait grounds and inshore reefs.
The grounds up here hold bait on the small rubble patches and small pieces of reef, with the Nine Mile being a great place to try. Head 9nm NE of 1770 and look for the bait.
Water temperatures are not warming up as quickly as last year and this should extend the season considerably.Jigging has seen some big fish caught on and around the shelf and this still proves to be one of the most exciting types of fishing.
Lure casting with large poppers is always good on the big trevallies, mackerel on the shoal area’s.
MASA just finished the annual tournament and it was a total success with nearly 800 competitors.
The fishing was reasonable with 50+ barra caught, not a bad result as the number of boats on the dam seemed to slow the fishing down.
Based on last year’s performance we should be trolling in the dam by mid-December and catching good size barra out in the middle of the dam. I have also noticed that Monduran’s fish are not as voracious this year but as we move into December the fishing will go off.
I recommend the large B52 Reidy’s in the gold as this was the lure that caught all the winning fish. They just represent the gar that these predators are feeding on. If you want to try a lure that walks though the snags better and is a great all round lure is the Tropic Angler floater lures in the metallic green/blue floater.
If you’re in town and you want to know the latest just call in at the Gin Gin Hotel and we can get you up to date. We also offer budget accommodation close to the dam with courtesy bus running daily to the dam and boat lock up facilities.Reads: 3218