Southern Action
  |  First Published: November 2009

The gamefishing action in South East Queensland should heat up in December, which should also extend into January.

Some years the mahi mahi and wahoo invade the waters before the run of juvenile black marlin. Even though there was no run of sailfish off Mooloolaba during October, the odd mahi mahi was hooked or seen and the odd black was taken by bottom fishers.

Now is also a good time to try heavy tackle fishing with blues being available and big blacks, which have finished spawning off Cairns, could get swept south with the East Australian Current. I can remember some late November/early December tournaments held off the Gold Coast where blue, black and striped marlin where tagged and boats achieved grand slams.

On the heavy tackle side of things the only fish I have heard about from local waters was a blue marlin tagged on Wayne Finlay’s 40’ White Cap Keneka, with Wayne in the chair and AJ Wright on the pegs. That day the crew consisted of a full complement of other gameboat owner/skippers so it was always going to prove interesting as to who would jump on the sticks once they were hooked up.

Slightly further afield in the Capricorn Bunker group and off the top of Fraser Island, Gold Coast 49’er Mistress did three days off Musgrave Island for one blue marlin tagged and a day off Breaksea Spit for two blue marlin tagged and one good size black marlin lost. They also caught a couple of good sized yellowfin tuna and mahi mahi and a few other bites which didn’t connect. However, the very next day in the same piece of water they only got two mahi mahi.

The following day the SCGFC 5.2m Kevlacat Shikaree, owned by Ian Eberhardt, tagged a 120kg blue marlin right beside me in my Stabicraft, also off Breaksea. Earlier in the day I got the monkey off my back for the season tagging a 12-15kg black marlin for Lachlan Tuckwell in 17-18m of water right on the spit.

Light tackle in local South East Queensland waters has been a bit of a non event over the past month and I have only heard about mac tuna and yellowtail kingfish being caught on the troll. One boat did get a couple of wahoo and got snipped a couple of times, which is a good sign. On my bottom fishing trips I have noticed the current pick up overnight through the month that should bring the pelagics on.

This year looks like being a great year for the Cairns heavy tackle black marlin fleet. They are not only experiencing good weather for a change, instead of constant southeast trade winds, but the fishing has gone bananas in comparison to past years. One SCGFC trailerboat did an overnighter on the reef and saw seven fish for an afternoon, hooking six and getting five, which included a sailfish that must have followed them up there from the Sunshine Coast!

All the big name boats are getting a slice of the action and the best way to keep up to date with the going ons of the Cairns fleet is to follow Kelly Dalling’s black marlin fishing blog on the internet (www.blackmarlinfishingblog.com). I know this is essential reading first thing in the morning for many of my friends.

In South East Queensland the first tournament of the year, the Hervey Bay tournament, should have been run and I will be able to report on it next month. I should also be able to report on the Mooloolaba Billfish Bash Tournament by then as well. Early in the new year the Gold Coast Gamefish Club will be conducting their Light Tackle Masters Tournament. It will be held from the 14-17 January (www.goldcoastgamefish.com).

This past month on charter I was still into the cobia and yellowtail kingfish. Although the current did move in on me, so I expected it to turn the fish off or make things unfishable out wide. In the past I have had good soft plastic fishing in December.

I looking forward to the run of summer black marlin this year as last season the Stabicraft accounted for 27 marlin. The mackerel, tuna, mahi mahi and wahoo should also crank up this month.

To check out the action on the seriola family, cobes, marlin or for some soft plastics action, jigging or even a deep sea fishing trip give me a call at South Queensland Charter Services on 0407 574 868 or check out my website, (www.sqcs.com.au).

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