Weekly Report 9 Apr 09

Danny & Rosalie Brooks
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Nicole Penfold
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Weekly Report 9 Apr 09

Post by Nicole Penfold » Wed Apr 15, 2009 4:16 pm

LAND BASED
The weirs have slowed up as a result of the lack of water flowing over them, however the Ross River’s freshwater reaches have still been producing some big barra encounters on livebaits and surface lures like C’ultiva Tango Dancers. Big freshwater barra are not great on the plate so it’s often better to release them so that one day they can make it over the weirs into the saltwater. After spending a few weeks in saltwater, their tails will start to turn yellow and their bodies will become very silver. At this point they will be a great fish for the dinner table. However, it is probably worth mentioning that the eating quality of barra also deteriorates as they get bigger; most fish over 1m are best released to go forth and multiply so there are more of the 60-70cm fish that are great chewing.
With the full moon on Friday the dams and weirs should fire up. It will however depend on what happens with the winds, as strong winds on the dams can make for very difficult fishing.
Pallarenda has been producing some nice queenfish on live baits and the Northern Beaches have been producing some nice whiting, however the strong winds might put an end to that.

INSHORE
One of the best times for quality crabs is often around Easter and it looks like this year will continue the trend with some great catches of crabs reported in recent weeks. For many locals, Easter just wouldn’t be the same without a big feed of muddies.
The prawns have been quiet but the fishing is on the improve. There have been some great reports of barra in the Burdekin area with the Burdekin River, Plantation and Hell Hole creeks producing some exceptional barra catches this year. Alva Beach has been producing some nice whiting and the tides do look good this weekend for these fish. Yabbies or peeled prawns are working best. There have been some good salmon caught at the mouth of Crocy creek on the incoming tide later in the afternoon.

OFFSHORE & BAY
Last weekend was an interesting weekend; the winds dropped right out with some of the best weather we have seen for some time. There are plenty of theories out there as to why fish shut down and after the events of last week I am a true believer that the wind direction plays a major part in the feeding behaviour of fish.
I fished a few days last week and had more reports that you could poke a stick at. Tuesday 31st March the tides were less than brilliant but the fishing was quite good, Thursday 2nd April the fishing was also quite good, on both these days the winds were very light but coming from the E/SE direction.
Friday 3rd was a complete shut down, particularly for pelagic species. I even observed a school of mack tuna swimming under our boat like a bunch of stunned mullet, I didn’t think mack tuna could swim that slow. Then Saturday and Sunday the fishing went off with reports of monster red-throat emperor everywhere to the point where it was hard to catch a trout. The red emperor and large-mouth nannygai were also on the chew with numerous reports of great catches.
I can see no other factor apart from the wind direction that could have affected the fish, Friday the wind was NW and changed around to the E/SE direction throughout Saturday. If anyone has a theory on this I would love to hear about it, I can’t think of another time when I have been more frustrated with fishing.
There were some reports of grunter and school mackerel around the Bay Rock area over the weekend also.

Play safe

Danny Brooks

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