Report 3/2/17

Erskine's Tackle Wolrd
51 Mulgrave Road, Cairns QLD 4870
Ph: 07 4051 6099
Posts: 1260
Joined: Thu Sep 11, 2014 9:56 am

Report 3/2/17

Postby subeditor » Fri Feb 03, 2017 3:14 pm

This past month has seen plenty of good weather that should have seen plenty of you out at the reef. The reports have been good with Coral Trout and Red Emperor the main targets. They haven’t been jumping in the boat however and you have had to work for a good bag. That said there are plenty out there to be caught. The run up to the new moon on 28 should see some good all round fishing. There will be a spike in the winds on Thursday (Australia Day) according to the forecasters so if you are planning to head out for the day check before you go as things change from day to day. The Pelagic have also been about. Mackerel and Cobia have been a regular catch around any Wrecks off the coast. I don’t recall a year where there has been so many reports of Cobia, with one crew moving away from a spot because that was all they were getting. That is a tough call as they are a great fighting fish with plenty of flavour on the BBQ. Some people find them a little strong in flavour but I love them. They can be prepared any way and have the strength of flavour to carry it which is more than can be said for some of our glamour species. Mackerel also fit that category and have also been about in good numbers. The other species that I touched on last month was the numbers and size of Sharks about this year. Almost every crew that heads out and finds a few fish report getting beat up by the Sharks. I am not sure why there are so many but it is disheartening to find and hook quality fish only to get them taken by the men in Grey on the way up to the boat. The powers to be may have to up the catch quota on Sharks to take some pressure off the prime species.

I asked you all to pray for heaps of rain last month and some of you did because we got some good showers but again not enough. The rivers need to flow up and hard for a period of time to really clean them out. A storm that gives the rivers a quick flash flood that comes up and down in the same day does help but nowhere near enough for it to be a long term solution. The big summer tides have produced some excellent Grunter out on the Hospital Flats. Early morning or evening high tides are not only the best for Grunter but also people. The middle of the day is far too hot and if not careful can be a serious risk to your health. Strip baits of Mullet or Garfish fished on a light sinker will generally produce the goods. Barramundi season is just around the corner so your preparations should be well under way and a plan of attack ready. Now is the time to get your gear out and checked to make sure everything is in tip top condition and ready to go. Lures need to have hooks checked and sharpened if required. Line weather it is Braid or mono also need to be checked and if you have any doubt about it get it changed as the last thing you need is to hook that fish of a lifetime and have your gear let you down. I will be looking for some first Barra of the season from you all for next months news letter so best of luck. The rain that we have had has brought out the Prawns and with the Prawns there is always some Salmon. This year is no exception and both Blue and King Salmon have been about. See photo of Daniel Courtney with his ripper from the northern beaches.

The rain has freshened up most of our local rivers but we need follow up for any long term benefit. Jungle Perch have move down the river systems a little so look for them downstream from your usual spots. They are like Barra and travel to the Salt to breed. They then get straight back up to the fresh and generally as far up as they can. The first major obstacle like a water fall is the end of their system location. Sooty Grunter also breed during the rainy season so there is a chance you will find a spawning aggregation which could produce quite a number of larger fish. If this happens to you please treat them with care and release them to build up the populations for future. With a number of public holidays coming in the next couple of months you should be planning that annual camping/fishing trip for the family. Also be careful that heavy rains further up the river system could have the river levels rise even though you haven’t had rain where you are and most important “IF IT’S FLOODED FORGET IT” Do not ever put yourself, family or friends in any dangerous situations.

The rain has lifted the level up to about 39% which still means the fish are mixed with much less water than normal and the keen anglers are taking advantage of it. The rise has quietened them down a touch but there are still plenty to catch if you put the effort in. The newly flooded areas will create a feeding station for the fish that come up at night. Night fishing is obviously the best time to be out there but also the most dangerous to be traveling around. The low level had exposed many stumps and large rocks that could be dangerous if you run into or over at any kind of speed so slow down and stay safe. The other advantage of fishing at night is the temperature. Daytime temps have been horrendous and as I mentioned before can be dangerous to your health, so get out at night when it is cooler. Don’t be fooled though it can even in the middle of summer get very cold up on the dam if conditions dictate. There are plenty of Catfish there at the moment so some bait fishing for the kids should be productive and a heap of fun. Don’t forget your Permit and ensure all your safety gear, boat rego and fishing gear is all up to date and ready.

Tip of this month is one I have used before and that is to be prepared for the heat of summer sun. There is a huge amount of sun protection clothing available at the moment so there are no excuses for not covering up the children and hats and sunscreen should be the first things that are packed. Fresh water is also vital to stay hydrated as you will lose plenty of sweat fishing in the recent heat. Room temperature water may not cool you down as quickly as iced will but will still get it into your system and stop the dehydration factor. Besides you may need the ice to chill down the fish you catch and in the tropics that is also very important as the hot conditions will start to send fish off in a very short period of time. I think there is a number of people each year get sick eating fish that is blamed on ciguatera which is plain old food poison due to lack of care of fish. So get the prize fish chilled as soon as possible.

Erskine's Tackle Wolrd
51 Mulgrave Road, Cairns QLD 4870
Ph: 07 4051 6099

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