Weekly Report 8 Dec 08

Water Tower Bait & Tackle
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Weekly Report 8 Dec 08

Post by Brad » Mon Dec 08, 2008 4:38 pm

Reports from the bay have been positive over the last week or so with both pelagic and demersal species being prominent in anglers catches. Even the estuaries have been fishing well despite a lot of fresh over the last week or so due to storms. In the long run this fresh is a great thing for the fishing in both the estuaries and bay due to the nutrients it brings into the system. This passes right along the food chain and will improve both the quantity and quality of fish to be caught. A few schools of mackerel have been sighted throughout the bay and although a little patchy, they have been decent quality specimens which have been fairly easy to tempt with chrome slugs and slices, as well as drifted pillies in some situations. I was heading out to The Trench on Friday and drove past a big school of mackerel that were feeding hard in the Western Rocks area. As we had our heart set on billfish, we didn’t stop for a cast. Schools have also been sighted around Gilligan’s Island, Pearl Channel, Middle Banks and Naval Reserve Banks as well as other areas of the bay so it pays to keep your eyes open and have a spin rod rigged and ready to cast once you do come across a school.

Offshore the pelagic action has increased with regular reports of black marlin, dolphinfish, wahoo and a few small Spanish mackerel being caught from The Trench, Hutchies and Flinders areas. Some boats have had more than ten shots at billfish in a day with about half that caught, tagged and released. Various species of tuna have also been surface feeding with small mack and frigate tuna being most prominent. These are often very flighty and hard to tempt but can provide a lot of fun and a quality bait source when targeted on light spin gear and 10gm chrome slices with a stealthy approach. The fly fishermen often do better on these than the spin fishermen due to being able to present extremely small profiles to ‘imitate the bait’ on which these pelagics are feeding.

Salmon seem to be available in good numbers right along the length of the Brisbane River and anglers are achieving hookups on both lures and live baits. The more successful anglers are using their sounders and fishing good knowledge to locate the salmon, the bait on which they feed, or both to know where best to position their offerings. Some are achieving more than a handful of hookups per trip with a couple of fish landed. Most anglers are releasing these great fish, which should go a long way to ensuring the viability of this fishery for years to come. Estuary cod, bream, flathead, snapper, grunter and the usual array of vermin are also being caught in the Brissie River. The estuaries have been a little quiet in some areas but are on the improve since the recent influx of fresh. A few mulloway have been caught around the Jumpinpin Bar area on live baits by hardy anglers putting in all night efforts. Catching big mullet has been a chore at times and some anglers have spent many hours before dark targeting these prime baits. A few quality flathead and some monster shovelnose rays have also been hooked.

Snapper around the bay islands have also been a little hit and miss of late but those anglers who have persevered and fished the ledges a little wider of the islands have generally met with success on both plastics and quality baits. Night sessions have been more productive than daytime sojourns however fish have been caught throughout all stages of the tide. A few longtail tuna have been sighted working wide of the bay islands however approaching these fish and getting within casting distance is difficult most of the time. One angler managed to hook one from his kayak near Peel Island however had it eaten by a whaler shark after it had towed him around for about half an hour. The Rainbow Channel, back of Peel Island, Naval Reserve Banks and Shark Spit would be good places to look if you were targeting longtails. Live baiting around the beacons in the northern end of the bay would be worthwhile at the moment as there has been a few longtails, large mack tuna and occasional cobia and yellowtail kingfish being hooked. The Curtain Artificial has likewise been fishing well for those livebaiting lately with a few large trevally and occasional cobia being caught, mainly at night.
May your bait be nervous. Gordon Macdonald.

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