Fresh and Salt Fruitful
  |  First Published: August 2009

September is an excellent time to get on the water in the Whitsunday area, with the weather warming up after the cooler months and the fishing is just amazing!

Whitsunday islands

The many Whitsunday islands should provide some great angling opportunities for a range of fish throughout September.

The usual island inhabitants include species such as queenfish, golden and giant trevally, coral trout, emperor, sweetlip, mangrove jack, tuskfish, flathead and a range of other species.

These fish should be great targets in September and can range in size from average to very large!

Giant trevally will be an excellent target around the islands on large surface lures. Casting and retrieving large surface poppers and stickbait lures for these big fish is a productive technique.

GT are opportunistic feeders and will rise up to attack a large surface lure during all hours of the day.

Using heavy, good-quality gear on these big fish is a good idea as they are very strong and will easily break light or low quality lines, hooks, leaders and split rings.

The shallow fringing reefs around the islands hold a variety of cover and structure for a lot fish.

Spots like reef bommies, boulders near the shoreline and areas where the reef overhangs to form a shady ledge usually hold good-sized reef fish that will often race out to take a sinking soft plastic.

Coral trout, sweetlip and emperor love to hang under these shady spots and ambush any food items that come travelling past in the current.

Many of the islands also have shallow, sandy flats and these can be good areas to fish as the tide rises and fills the sand flats.

Golden trevally and queenfish will frequently roam these places hunting baitfish and crustaceans. A productive technique is to cast and retrieve small metal slice lures and surface poppers over the flats with a speedy retrieve.

It’s always a good idea to have a heavier outfit rigged up while fishing the sand flats as some massive trevally and queenfish will occasionally come cruising past in the shallow clear water.

Peter Faust Dam

As the air temperatures warm in September, the water temperatures will also gradually increase. This means more feeding for a lot of fish species, especially impoundment barramundi.

The stocked barramundi will usually increase their level of feeding as the overall water temperature warms, which will see the fishing improve. Barramundi will also tend to become more active in the warmer months.

The warming water temperatures also increase the aquatic weed growth around the edges of the lake and this should be a good feature to fish in September.

The morning and afternoon times are usually always the best times to have a lure in the water as there’s usually a lot of fish biting as the water becomes dark or light. Impoundment barra can choose to feed at anytime, which makes them catchable during all hours of the day and night.

Fishing for barramundi at night is a great option in September, as the fish become more active during the dark hours searching for food. Night fishing is also more enjoyable during the warmer nights, as the air is more comfortable to fish in.

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