Report 6/7/18

Lynton 'Heff' Heffer
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Report 6/7/18

Post by subeditor » Fri Jul 06, 2018 2:03 pm

It has been a few years but 2018 to date will go down as the windiest it has been in recent history. Back to back high pressure systems rolling across the Australian continent has sent bullets up along the east coast delivering constant prevailing winds for several months on end. Flicking back through the memory bank in a two month period we’ve only had a few days in a row when the winds have remained under 10 knots. The offshore fishing has been predominantly left alone to the brave with bigger boats whilst the small boat brigade has had to settle for slim pickings in the calmer waters of our local rivers and estuaries.

With continuous cooler weather the water temperature in our river/creeks has plummeted and has also been exacerbated by a steady flow of dirty water from the sea entering the systems with the incoming tide. The fishing has been challenging to say the least with modest catches being recorded across the board. The better catches have been some good sized grunter getting right up into the minor creeks and the bream have been big and fat in most areas. There has been smatterings of estuary cod, barracuda , mangrove jack and fingermark in the bigger systems. With any hint of clearer water small sized Gt’s and queenfish have bobbed up from time to time. The Daintree River north of us has probably fished the best overall and more so on the neap tides at this time of year. If day temperatures can go up a notch we’ll start to see some movement on the barra front which have been reluctant over the stretch of cold weather.

On the reef, inshore patches are holding great numbers of nannygai breeding schools and the school and Spanish mackerel are around on the calm days which have been rare. Once again they have had plenty of rest from the fishermen due to weather constraints. Offshore the outer reef is still producing nicely although it has come with its difficulties. It been up to the larger vessels to provide the reports in recent times. Coral trout, moses perch, trevally and stripeys have been quite common up in the shallows which has been getting a thorough work out as it provides more protection from the wind. The low tide has offered the least wind resistance and getting out to deeper hangs has been the plan. These limited opportunities has provided your large mouth nannygai spangled emperor and Spanish mackerel are also generally in the same locations. For some reason we’ve seen a big improvement this time around on cobia or black kingfish. Their numbers have been really good over the last few months and are definitely a worthy adversary on the end of the line. Interestingly they have coincided with presence of sharks which have harassed the nannygai marks at various times.

August see’s a real shift of focus for many on the small black marlin with a couple of major tournaments run out of Cairns this month. Their numbers are here but haven’t been fully explored due to the run of bad weather. However this month traditionally sees the weather pattern settle which would be welcomed with open arms.

I sense we’ve been through the roughest period and it is onwards and upwards from this point on. Good weather will see the fishing go through the roof on all fronts.
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