Weekly Reports 9 Jan 09

Water Tower Bait & Tackle
10 Ernest St, Manly
Ph: (07) 3396 1833
www.watertowerbaitandtackle.com

Spero: sperok@ozemail.com.au
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Brad
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Weekly Reports 9 Jan 09

Post by Brad » Fri Jan 09, 2009 1:52 pm

The weather has been fairly ordinary over the last week although many anglers have managed a trip or two within the bay to take advantage of their favorite fishing areas before the ridiculous new closures come into force. It makes you wonder how the boffins in the EPA will keep themselves employed once they have achieved their goal of having an entire band of green zone closures all along the eastern seaboard. If the decisions they make were based on scientific data and not just the result of some political agenda then there might be some faith that they are actually doing something beneficial for the fishery. A feed of locally caught seafood on the barbecue on Australia Day may be a thing of the past soon. Unless you are one of the very wealthy you will only be able to afford imported Taiwanese product raised in sewerage in years to come. Not very bloody Australian is it?

Spotted mackerel are still being caught throughout the bay although numbers have been a little patchy and they have not been sighted smashing bait on the surface very often. Usually there is only the occasional small splash, which is only evident in good conditions, to indicate that a few spotties are cruising the area. A good pair of Polaroid sunnies and trained eye will often allow you to sight these cruising fish which have been fairly responsive to chrome slices, stick bait plastics and flies cast into the vicinity. Working over the beacons in the northern bay with jigged slugs and drifted pillies will also produce a few school and spotted mackerel at times. It has been a little hit and miss, though some anglers are managing to return home with a decent feed most of the time. Quality mangrove jack have been caught over recent weeks with canals and creeks feeding into the bay being worthwhile areas to cast a lure or soak a live-bait in hope of one of these crimson assassins. Casting mid sized hardbody minnows such as Smith Cherry Blood, Tilsan Bass and Barra, C-Lures Jack Snacks, Rapala Shad Raps and a many others, to prominent structure such as snags, mangrove banks, pylons and rock walls pill put you in with a good chance of hooking up. How you fare after that will depend on skill, tackle and plain old good luck. Live baits such as mullet, prawns, herring and pike fished lightly weighted around these same areas will also attract the jacks attention. Night sessions can be particularly productive and of course there is always the welcome bycatch of trevally, estuary cod and other species.

Whiting numbers have also been good of late with anglers working over prominent bank and shallow gutter areas in the bay doing fairly well. In the estuaries the going has also been good with anglers recording some exceptional quality whiting to over 42cm during the last week. Several quality fish came from the small weed bed area near the W’s in the Pumicestone Passage. Other areas that have fished well include the mouth of the canal system opposite Spinnaker Sound Marina, Mouth of Elimbah and Bells Creeks, Around the Avon Wreck and the many small gutters and shallow banks between the Bribie Bridge and Skirmish Point. Flathead have been around of late for those anglers specifically targeting them but numbers have been a little down on previous weeks for some reason. It would still be worth trolling a lure along the edge of any prominent banks on a falling tide or drifting the channels on low tide with lightly weighted frogmouth pillies and whitebait. Anglers fishing the bay islands have still been getting the usual array of reef dwellers on plastics, however those soaking baits have been plagued by the numbers of sharks in the area. Often every bait which hits the water is engulfed within a few minutes. This will only get worse in coming years due to the ban on taking any sharks or rays over 1.5m in Queensland waters, as of mid-year. This is one decision I found bizarre and unnecessary due to the plague proportions of sharks and rays along the coast and the fact that very few anglers ever kill a shark of that size for food or otherwise. Maybe this was another decision not based on any scientific data but just on a hunch or some political agenda. Where will it all end? The mind boggles. The crabs have been on the chew and anglers setting pots have been getting good catches of both mud crabs and sand crabs. Whilst setting your pots along the edges of prominent banks, ledges and contour lines will heighten your chances of a good catch, crabbers setting pots willy nilly have even been getting a feed or two.
May your baits be nervous. Gordon Macdonald.

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