Weekly Report 29 Sep 09

Water Tower Bait & Tackle
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Weekly Report 29 Sep 09

Post by Brad » Tue Sep 29, 2009 7:01 pm

I have been in Townsville for most of the last week however several reports have filtered in to me from the Moreton Bay region. Results have been good from all accounts with gradually increasing pelagic action and plenty of demersal species on offer. The estuaries have also been fishing consistently for those who make the effort and crabs have definitely been worth the effort, with muddies in the estuaries and sand crabs in the bay.

Tunas, such as longtails, mack and frigates, along with a few Watson’s bonito, have been found throughout the bay and are responding fairly well to small slugs and plastics when you can get to within casting distance. This has been a little hard at times although anglers who watch the action and then position themselves within casting distance will usually get a few casts away to the active fish. The Maria Mucho slugs have worked well along with the 20g TT Assassins and Riley’s Rockets. Most small profile offerings are worth trying however with flat-stick retrieves generally work best. Small stick bait plastics such as the Berkley Powerbaits and Zoom Flukes have also worked well but getting within casting distance whilst using a small lead jighead (1/8oz or lighter) or Squidgy resin-head is often a sizeable ask. Light line will allow longer casts but will also increase the fight time on quality fish.

Flathead numbers are still consistent throughout most of the estuaries and anglers have been using boats, kayaks and Shank’s pony to target them. The shallow water that this species often favors, definitely makes them an ideal target for anglers in small craft and on foot. Larger vessels are often at a disadvantage for chasing flathead and are generally limited to the deeper channels which usually only fish well during the lower stages of the tide. From around mid-tide up, when the water starts to break over the mud and sand flats, the flathead will move into these areas to feed. Drifting over these flats and casting plastics will often work well, with flathead holding in the smallest of gutters and depth changes. Another technique that can work well, and an easy method when fishing with kids over the school holidays, is to drift across the flats dragging baits. Good offerings include whitebait, frogmouth pilchards, hardiheads and even strip fillet baits. These are best fished on a snelled-hook rig such as the Penetrator rigs as these present the bait well and will hook whiting, bream, flathead and almost anything else that decides to attack these baits. It is a good way to cover a fair area of water and the drifting boat almost hooks the flathead for you, which makes it easy for the kids.

A few mackerel are still being caught in the bay around the top end of the Rous Channel and also around the bay islands, however numbers have thinned considerably from all accounts. It is still worth drifting a pilchard behind the boat whilst fishing plastics, or at anchor for snapper etc around the bay islands, as even one mackerel can make a welcome addition to the days catch. Shark numbers seem to be on the increase with several anglers complaining about having their snapper baits intercepted. Specific targeting of this species will almost assure a few captures throughout the warmer months with the majority being whalers to around 15kg in weight, which can provide a lot of sport and fun on 4kg to 6kg line. They can be caught anywhere around the bay islands, along the length of the Brisbane River and many other waterways filtering into the bay, and especially around the bay’s spoil grounds. Live mullet and other baits work best in the river whilst a gar, pilchard or dead pike drifted into a berley trail of tuna oil will do the job in the bay proper.

Many anglers have noticed an increase in jack numbers with several of the bream lure tossers getting dusted whilst fishing around the canals, creeks and rivers. Live baits will also work well for this species, which likes to hunt in ambush mode around structure. There are plenty of options over the coming week so get the family out and enjoy the great outdoors. Remember to check your safety gear before venturing out and be courteous to others whilst on the water and at the boat ramps.
May your bait be nervous. Gordon Macdonald

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