Weekly Report 8 Feb 11

Water Tower Bait & Tackle
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Weekly Report 8 Feb 11

Post by Brad » Tue Feb 08, 2011 7:30 pm

Lately we have had a fairly bad trot as far as weather is concerned with plenty of rain and plenty of wind. With water clarity low in most of the systems feeding into Moreton Bay, many anglers have not bothered wetting a line. However, they have been missing out on some great action, as the fishing has been surprisingly good. For those who have ventured out, most have been surprised to find that they have returned home with a decent feed or some great reports. During the recent periods of adverse weather, many anglers have been limited to the estuaries. Decent numbers of quality fish have been taken by those working around the mouths of major systems on the rising tide. Crabbing has been excellent for muddies and there has been a few decent catches of sandies at times. Prawns have also been worth targeting. This action will just get better in the coming days and weeks so start thinking about getting back out there into the action.

Further offshore around The Group and off Cape Moreton, the water quality is much better and anglers have been achieving good success with pelagics such as wahoo, yellowfin tuna, dolphinfish, Spanish mackerel and occasionally billfish being taken. Most anglers are trolling with skirts and diving minnow lures for these species because the bait has been fairly scattered. The north-eastern corner of The Trench has been a fairly consistent area for many anglers with wahoo, yellowfin and the occasional billfish being hooked.

Trolling rigged baits such as gar, pike, tailor and wolf herring has produced a few nice Spanish and wahoo around The Group (off Point Lookout). An occasional large GT has also fallen for these baits and have really made anglers work hard for the capture. Most anglers release these giants as they are poor on the palate yet are an awesome sportsfish. Poppering around the various rock and reef outcrops is also a good ploy for those wanting a little fun on these great fish. A minimum of 50lb braid (preferably 80lb) will be required to land the majority of the better GTs, which can reach weights in excess 30kg.

Anglers fishing in the estuaries have been getting some excellent fish on both lures and live baits. The mangrove jack fishing has been awesome this summer with decent captures coming from most systems north and south of Brisbane as well as the various canal developments. Plenty of jacks over the 50cm mark have been taken, with the occasional specimen nudging 70cm, a real cracker of a fish in anyone’s books. In addition to these awesome sportsfish, there has also been consistent reports of trevally, tarpon, threadfin, giant herring, estuary cod, flathead, bream and many other species. Many anglers are casting lures such as Smith Cherrybloods, Sebile Magic Swimmers, Mann’s Stretch 10, Jackall Squirrels, Bevy Shads and many others to obtain these results. Slow rolling these lures along the walls or around other prominent structure is an ideal way to catch a broad array of species. Surprisingly, there has been a couple of barra taken in the last few weeks, with at least three separate reports south of Brisbane and one from north of Brisbane.

The best landed was reported at 85cm. It would be nice to see this species get a hold on in our waters, like the threadies have done in recent years. Low water clarity has definitely improved the fishing in the estuarine environment, producing some of the most consistent results that I have heard of for years. Even unusual species such as hairtail have been caught. Some anglers have landed several in a night session on lures whilst targeting jacks and others. An occasional quality tailor has been taken well up in the creeks on lures, even in quite dirty water. One angler also managed some decent tailor around the Bribie Island Bridge whilst drifting unweighted whitebait into the lighted areas at night. Flathead numbers have also been good with several decent specimens to around 80cm being caught recently. With an average size of around 50cm at present, flathead are well worthwhile targeting in most systems.

The canal developments are all fishing very well at the moment with plenty of anglers luring and live baiting mangrove jack from along the walls and in the deeper holes. Live baits have been fairly easy to obtain at times with good numbers of herring, mullet and prawns being caught in cast nets. When fished lightly weighted along the walls, these have produced a wide array of species including some thumper bream over 35cm in length. Anglers have even managed a few squid whilst casting jigs around the various pontoons in the Raby Bay Canals.

Anglers have anchored in The Bedrooms at Jumpinpin and made the short trek across the island to fish the gutters on the northern end of South Stradbroke. This has produced some creditable tailor as well as a few elbow-slapper whiting, bream, dart and others. Tailor are a little out of season but we will take them when we can get them. The Rous Channel has been fishing well for whiting with quite a few winter whiting being caught amongst the ever present summer whiting. Live blood and sand worms are best however frozen offerings such as sand worms and thin tenderized strips of squid will also yield a quality catch.

Several reports of spotted mackerel came in last week with the occasional decent school being located, mainly over towards the Sand Hills. If chasing schools in this area, stay constantly aware of the green zone, as it is easy to venture into the zone when you are hopping from one bust up to the next. On the wide offshore grounds there has been a few blue marlin being caught by anglers putting in the effort and the miles whilst trolling skirted lures. Some boats have been achieving a couple of shots a day with the average fish between 120kg and 150kg and specimens to over 250kg being hooked at times.

There have been some decent hauls of prawns taken out on the flats wide of Nudgee, Deception Bay and Redland Bay. Anglers with a good knowledge of their sounders have been able to locate these conglomerations of quality prawns and have managed to take several kilos in a short time with a cast net. There has also been a few reasonable schools located up in the Brisbane River at times. As a result, some anglers are achieving success whilst working lures in the general vicinity of prawn schools, generally hooking threadfin or the occasional decent snapper. Redclaw continue to be caught in decent numbers at North Pine Dam. Anglers setting opera house style pots have managed triple figures within a few hours at times, especially at night. Spinnerbaiting from the banks whilst soaking your pots is likely to produce the occasional bass.
May your bait be nervous. Gordon Macdonald.

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Re: Weekly Report 8 Feb 11

Post by Cyclone540 » Thu Feb 10, 2011 3:56 pm

Hi Gordon,
Thanks for the report. I spent last Sunday cruising around the east and top end of the bay looking for a longtail or mackerel in my newly acquired Cyclone 540 with 90 Etec. Weather was crap, lots of rain and wind. Found a few small schools of school mackerel north of the green zone near the sandhills on the outgoing tide, a couple of lonely longtails in the shipping channel off Tangalooma and a couple of scattered schools of the worlds smallest bonito, maybe half a kilo at best, in the same area. Very littlel pelagic activity and even less enthusiasm to take a lure or fly. Oh well, next weekend will have a look up along Bribie and around Spitfire Channel. New boat is fantastic in the rough stuff compared to my old and much abused 5.2 Bass Boss. Thanks for the reports, highly appreciated. Regards, Allan Mitchell

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