The weather has not been the best over the past month resulting in limited opportunities to get out on the reefs so the estuaries have ruled for die-hard fishermen.
For those that got out on the few good days there were reports of pearl perch to 3kg and squire being taken around Caloundra Wide and the 12 Mile Reef.
The Barwon Banks has had a mixed result with reefies such as emperor, Moses perch, pearlies, cod and squire all being taken. These species will improve in numbers throughout April as the water temperature cools.
I predict this will be a great snapper season because the early indicators are strong and are much better than previous seasons.
The inner reefs have been full of small bait stealers, which can be very frustrating for keen anglers. The number of baitfish including rainbow runners and undersize emperors is incredible.
Murphys close in to Mooloolaba has been slow but productive enough to give you a feed. The most consistent species has been sweetlip with a few large mowong still coming on board.
The estuaries have certainly seen a lot more activity and bream have kept anglers on the hop.
They have been taken from Currimundi Lake through to the Pumicestone Passage and the humble whiting is not far behind in numbers. Some real elbow slappers have been taken on bloodworms around the shallow areas of the Currimundi Lake entrance.
Mangrove jack have been a real surprise this season with good numbers being taken from Military Jetty and around the bridges and mangrove systems from Caloundra to Noosa.
The channel running in front of the Boardwalk at Caloundra has had some monster queenies caught on live pike, some reaching sizes more suited to the Cape area.
Within the estuary there has been big schools of chopper tailor and trevally mixing it up with schools of small bait fish.
The mouth of the Caloundra Bar has tailor, squire, tarwhine and flathead. When the run of cooler weather begins the big bream will also start to fire, then the mulloway will follow suit.
Fishing the northern tip of Bribie Island has again been in the news due to the prolific whiting.
Whiting seem to congregate at this point every year. With all the sand that is stirred up by the tidal flow and breaking waves they have plenty of food to keep them here.
Fishing on the making tide is very productive but you will need fresh worms or yabbies, and if the big ones are around even a whole prawn has no chance.
The beach around the lighthouse has plenty of undersize whiting so this may be the spot to target big flathead, tailor or early season mulloway.
Further south around Coochin Creek it is worth tossing a lure in amongst the breaking schools of mullet. They are normally stirred up by bull sharks but lately some interesting predators such as GTs, jack and even mackerel have taken their fill.
The beaches are a chance as things cool down also with dart, tarwhine, bream and whiting all around the holes and gutters.
Dicky and Moffat beaches are worth a shot in the evenings for sweetlip and squire and Kings Beach seems to hold good numbers of whiting but they can be a very hit and miss affair.
Shelly Beach has been very slow but for those that like happy moments it is the place to fish, sadly that is all you may catch with a lot of effort.
It should be a great month ahead for the reefs and estuaries with the beach fishing coming in to its own around May and June so get out and have some fun.
I continually receive inquiries about Currimundi Lake so let me give you the run down.
Most people believe the lake is too shallow to handle smaller boats and that has been the case from time to time however you can comfortably launch a tinnie at the boat ramp and work your way down under the bridge and right around the canals at Wurtulla and beyond.
Certain precautions have to be taken because it is still very shallow in many parts but if you cross the lake directly from the boat ramp and stay on the eastern side you can motor down as far as the rocks sign situated in the middle of the lake before having to cross again.
Once you have made this correction you are safe to go right down under the bridge and down.
This particular area has many submerged logs and high banks with drop-offs that are perfect for a fish and are good locations for mangrove jack. The average depth in this area is around 1.5-3m.
Casting your hardbodied lures or soft plastics right up onto the edge of the bank and letting them sink before winding them back to the boat is one of the most successful methods.
Most people rush the retrieve and don’t leave the lure long enough in the strike zone. It seems that the adrenaline starts to pump and the lure is back in the boat in no time. Always be conscious of slowing down and pausing your retrieve.
Down the western side of Lake Currimundi the main water goes to a sharp right hand turn and heads up through the canal areas. This is an easy area to identify because of the pontoon put in for fishermen.
Don’t make the mistake of thinking there is nothing worth targeting in these areas as big mullet and herring frequent these places attracting all sorts of predators.
Fish around the pontoons and bridge pylons for bream, trevally and lazy lizards and don’t forget to troll the deeper waters on either the way out or in.
The speed limit around these waters is a cool 6 knots to minimise wash from boats; the banks show strong signs of corrosion and we don’t want to contribute to its destruction.
If you make a right turn when leaving the boat ramp you will head towards the mouth of the lake and into shallow water. Again cross the lake and head along the northern side.
There are many sand bars and drop-offs worthy of your attention so watch your sounder for good spots to cast a lure or throw a bait in.Reads: 10492