Offshore ready to fire
  |  First Published: May 2005

Fishing east of the South Passage Bar during May will give offshore anglers the best of both worlds. The wider grounds are starting to produce bottom fish and the pelagic fish are still very active on the inshore scene.

The summer currents are starting to slow and a lot of the winter species such as amberjack, yellowtail kings, trag jew and snapper are becoming more active and more accessible to the offshore brigade.

Deep Tempest, Square Patch, Round Patch, the 35 Fathom Reef and the wide ground off Point Lookout will all be worth a try for some bottom action. Snapper numbers will steadily increase over the next few months as they move in from the deeper water, and some good squire catches and the odd larger snapper have been reported recently. For anglers who are into deepwater jigging, yellowtail kings and amberjack have been slamming jigs on the 35-fathom and 42-fathom reefs.

For the dedicated trollers, The Group off Point Lookout, the Sevens and Shallow Tempest will still produce good wahoo and they’re usually pretty good fish in May. Mackerel are still worth the effort, with Spaniards and schoolies still hitting baits on the shallow grounds around Point Lookout and right along Moreton Island’s coffee rock reefs. Mixed in with the mackerel have been some hefty longtail tuna, and if you hook one of those be prepared for a long battle.

We’ve got the best of both worlds for fishing now, so break your day’s fishing up into a couple of sessions. Try chasing mackerel for the first few hours after daylight, then chase a few bottom fish in deep water and on the way home have a quick troll over your favourite bit of ground, especially around tide changes. This will give you a great variety of fishing options and a great variety of fish for your icebox.

There were plenty of baitfish around in late March and early April that were being gorged on by the sharks and pelagic fish. This accumulation of baitfish will mean the pelagics should hang around a little longer than usual, which is great for the fishing.

For those heading up to the Toyota Fraser Island Fishing Expo in late May and early June, I’ve heard about some areas being closed to camping and generators not being allowed in some areas also. So if you’re intending to camp on Fraser, it may pay to look into these rumours before you lob on the island.

I’m back on the water with the new boat and it’s absolutely sensational. I’d like to thank Warren Lyons and all the boys at Haines Hunter for their help in putting my new charter boat together.

Enjoy your fishing, take care on the coastal bars and if you’d like to join me on a charter (maximum four persons), give me a call on 0418 738 750 or (07) 3822 9527.

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